Why Not Having an Email List is Like Telling Prospects “I don’t want to work with you”

email marketing for coaches

The term “email marketing” has a tendency to make coaches contort their faces into expressions of dismay. And probably with good reason. It can feel like an intimidating feat to somehow grow a mailing list, create regular email promotional campaigns, and then somehow, by using your budding sales skills combined with daily mantras and a dab of divine intervention, turn a subscriber into a paying client.

Yes, that sounds like the equivalent of running a full-length marathon in a torrential downpour. You can’t see where you’re going and you have no idea where the finish line is or if you have the endurance to reach it. That’s why many coaches never start the email marketing race in the first place.

Even if email marketing seems overwhelming to you right now, there’s a reason coaches use it to grow their businesses. And it’s not because it’s been hyped up by all the I’ll-show-you-how-to-make-a-million-dollars-while-you-sleep online marketing “gurus.”

Okay, well, I guess it has been a little hyped up over the last decade, but again, there’s good reason…

When you first meet a potential client—someone who you think would benefit from your coaching services who you would love to work with—what’s the likelihood that this person is ready to sign up to work with you in that exact moment?

Let’s say for example you meet a potential client at a networking event. Let’s call her Amanda. You talk with Amanda, give her your business card, and followup by sending her an email the next day. You’re right on track to land Amanda as your next client.

BUT… what if Amanda’s not ready to hire a coach that specific week? (Chances are, she’s not.) Do you just write her off and go back into the marketing jungle to search for other clients?

Well, you could. But then you’d find the next potential client and run into the same dilemma—they’re not ready to work together in the exact moment you meet them either.

What do you do now?

This is where email marketing comes to the scene in a shiny red cape to save the day.

Just because a potential client (like Amanda) isn’t ready to work with you in the MOMENT doesn’t mean they won’t want to work with you in the FUTURE. They might be ready to hire a coach in 6 weeks, 6 months or even 6 years.

You did all the hard work to connect with Amanda in the first place—now you just need to make sure that WHENEVER she is ready to hire a coach, that you’re the person she calls.

The secret to landing Amanda as a client is to remain “top of mind” with her UNTIL she’s ready to work with you.

Enter email marketing.

With email marketing, you now have the ability to regularly stay in touch with Amanda (and all your other potential clients that you met at networking events/workshops/social media/forums/etc.). This means, week after week, they’re getting messages from you. They’re seeing your name in their inboxes. They’re reading the advice/stories/insights/wisdom you’re including in your email newsletters. And they’re starting to build a relationship with you.

Fast forward to 6 months from now. Amanda is finally ready to take action to make a change in her life. She’s prepared to get the help she needs to reach her goal.

Who’s she going to contact? Some random coach she found on Google?

No! She’s going to contact YOU.

Why? Because you’ve stayed “top of mind” with her all this time. You’ve built trust with her. You’ve built a relationship with her. It’s unlikely at this point that she’s going to take a risk by hiring another coach who she may or may not relate to.

That means you now have Amanda as your newest client (who you wouldn’t have had if you’d originally written her off in search of other clients).

Think about the opposite scenario…

Say Amanda met you at a networking event 6 months ago and she hasn’t heard one peep from you since. Now she’s ready to make a change in her life. Who’s she going to call? Well, not you. By this time, your existence on this planet has become a faded memory at best.

This means that if you DON’T have an email list and you’re NOT consistently staying in touch with your prospects—it’s the equivalent of saying, “I don’t want to work with you in the future. It’s now or never” … because you’re pretty much ensuring that they’ve forgotten about you down the road when they need your help.

Is this what you’re basically saying your prospects now?

If so, it’s time to start an email list. No excuses. OR if you already have an email list, but you’re not consistently sending out emails to remain “top of mind” with your prospects, now’s the time to step up your game.

If your face is all contorted in a weird expression of dismay right now, relax. Getting started with email marketing is easier than you might think.

Here are 4 simple steps you can take to get started:


Start your email list. I recommend signing up for either MailChimp (free) or Aweber (what I use).


Prominently place an email opt-in (a.k.a. sign up form) on your coaching website where all your visitors can see it and easily subscribe to your list.


Choose a frequency to send out your email newsletter that you know you can commit to. Examples: every week, every other week, every month. (I don’t recommend choosing a frequency longer than 1 month because it’s easy for prospects to forget about you.)


Write your emails. Don’t worry about being fancy. Simply write text emails like you’re writing to a friend. Share stories, insights, advice, and helpful tips that you think your prospects will enjoy. And be sure to let your personality shine through.

Simple, right?

The time to start building your email list and doing email marketing is NOW if you want to start getting a steady influx of clients coming into your business.

The bottom line is that you don’t want to be unknowingly writing off clients just because they’re not ready to work with you immediately. Use email marketing to build trust and create long-term relationships with your prospects that will pay off for you for years to come.

Eager to learn more about email marketing?

Check out this article: 5 Deadly Email Mistakes That Will Lose You Clients

In the ProCoach Academy, you’ll learn everything you need to know about how to easily and successfully use email marketing to land new clients. View the entire program curriculum here.

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