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How I Made 90K My 1st Year as a Coach (Uncommon Path)

Oct 27, 2023

If you’ve struggled to get clients for your coaching or creator business…

If you’re resorting to sending cold DM’s…

If the people you talk to don’t even really “get” what you do…

There’s a reason all of this is happening. It has to be fixed ASAP if you want your business to succeed.

I had this same problem when I started coaching. I tried cold DM’s and annoyed everyone about working with me.

I only made $1,500 in the first 3 months.

But over the next 9 months, I brought in 90K. Today we’re going to talk about what changed that caused the clients to start pouring in.

I Was Clueless

When I was a new coach, I had no clue what to do. I was drinking from the firehose and copying the gurus.

I posted on Instagram, started a Facebook group, created a webinar, built an online course, started a podcast, and ran Facebook ads.

I created a Youtube channel, a website, a funnel, and countless lead magnets.

It was a shit-show.

I did all of this with the hope that new clients would start beating down my door. But, they didn’t.

I got lucky when I connected with a local guy in Denver who wanted to invest in real estate. After multiple calls, I finally convinced him to take a chance on me—as my first client ever.

I charged him $1,500 for ten sessions. It was funny how nervous and excited I was to have a client. I met him at a coffee shop for our first session. I showed up early, nervous, with a bunch of stuff I had printed out.

I tried my hardest to over deliver. My armpits were really sweaty.

While it did feel great to be teaching others and getting paid for it..

I had a big problem. Getting that first client was like wrestling a greased pig.

The amount of content creation, following up with him (and convincing him to become a client) was not sustainable. I didn't like this approach. I had to figure out an easier way.

That’s around the time I grabbed the book Dotcom Secrets by Russell Brunson. In the book, he talks about how everyone should have a physical product they can ship, like a book. That way you can build a book funnel, run ads to it, and charge people for shipping.

He talked about how he breaks even on ad costs getting customers to buy the book. He gets leads for free, and they read his book. This makes the leads super warm and more likely to buy his coaching programs.

That got me excited. If I could do it even a fraction as good as Russell, my business would explode.

Then, I considered deeper reasons for writing a book. Books had been the one thing that improved my own life the most. The way I saw it, I could write a book that would bring me clients and leave my legacy behind. Seemed like a win-win.

So, I embarked on another project. I was going to write my first book. At this point, I was dipping into my savings to pay the bills. I was lucky to have the rental properties because they bought me time. But, it couldn’t last forever. I needed this book to be the thing that finally worked.

Writing my first book, with zero outside help, was challenging. I didn’t know what I was doing. I just opened a Google Doc and started hammering away.

The book was called Fire Yourself. It’s about a niche topic—how to hire an acquisition manager to grow a house flipping business. This is something I had a lot of success with during my time as an investor.

After months of wrestling with the manuscript, I got it to a place I felt good about. Then I watched Youtube videos to figure out and all the other sticky stuff that comes along with publishing a book (formatting, book cover, whether to self-publish or not, etc.)

I finally got it live on Amazon and my website. Then, I started plugging the book in all of my content. I lined up podcast interviews to promote it.

For the first two weeks, I didn’t sell a single book. Then one day I was working out at the gym and I got a Stripe notification on my phone:

“Congratulations, you just made a sale for $7.99.”

Someone had bought the book from my website! It turned out to be one of my friends from high school who wanted to invest in real estate. He wasn’t client material, but I was just happy to have sold a book.

As more time went on, I started selling about 15 copies through my website each month, plus another 10-15 on Amazon. I wasn’t making much money from the book sales, maybe $150/month. But, I was amazed that it was working at all.

What came next surprised me even more.

People started reaching out to me:

“Hey, I read Fire Yourself and loved it. Do you coach people one-on-one?”

I bombed those sales calls. Despite that, I brought in 90K total within my first 12 months as a coach. I finally had warm leads. The book turned it all around.

I never figured out how to do what Russell Brunson taught in his book. I didn’t crack the code on a book funnel that printed leads for free. I probably could have made a ton more money if I knew how to run ads and create a profitable book funnel.

Yet, it still worked. Why?

When people read the book, they grew to trust me. They could see that I knew how to grow a house flipping business. They understood how valuable implementing the stuff in my book could be for their business. They were willing to pay for my help, versus doing it themselves.

That’s when I understood the power of funneling my audience through a book.

It’s the polar opposite of cold outreach, where someone has no idea who you are and you’re just annoying them.

A book reader is the warmest lead you can have.

On top of that, being an author gave me credibility. I didn’t see that coming. I got invited to be on a bunch of popular real estate podcasts because of it.

If you don’t have a social media following (which is the #1 way to have authority these days), you can publish a book and gain credibility faster. Society will put you on a pedestal if you are a published author.

I coached in the real estate space for about 4 years total and the book continued to bring me clients. Over time, I lost interest in real estate coaching and fell in love with the online coaching space in general. I pivoted to helping coaches start their businesses.

Since it had worked the first time, I decided to write another book to get clients for my new offer. This book is called Nail Your Niche, which helps coaches hone their offer, refine their messages, and identify their ideal clients.

It worked again. Almost right away, people started reaching out:

“I loved the book, do you have a coaching program?”

The book brought in six figures of client revenue within 12 months of being live.

Over the next two years, I went about helping coaches start their businesses, Some of them started to ask me:

“You wrote two books and it worked for you. Can you help me write a book to get clients for my business, too?”

I started helping a handful of clients with their books. I was better at this and enjoyed it more. That’s when I made my latest pivot—helping people write books to get more clients.

My books bring in clients without me having to do cold outreach. I earn an above average income working 4 hours per day from the coffee shop. This lets me spend a ton of time with my wife and daughters every day too. That’s the best part.

Writing books has changed me on a deeper level, too. My communication has gotten clearer. I have more confidence and certainty. I have more credibility in the eyes of others.

I have productized myself. The lessons I’ve learned stand eternal in a book. When I’m on my deathbed one day, I’m going to be glad that I took the time to package these lessons up.

If you want to leave your legacy one day, and get clients today, a book is the way.

There is a very specific framework that has to be followed if you want a client-getting book. It can’t just be slapped together.

I have a book coming out Q1 2024 that breaks this framework down in great detail.

If you want to work with me 1:1 to get your book done now, the first step is to answer six quick questions to make sure you’re in a good spot to write a book.

It will take you 1 minute to do. Go here: 

Now, go write your book and change the world (and your business)...


When You're Ready, Here's How I Can Help:

Get Clients With a Book

Work with me 1:1 to write a book that explodes your credibility and brings you clients.

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Nail Your Niche

If you're unclear about your coaching or creator niche, this book will fix that permanently.

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1:1 Coaching Call

If you need a breakthrough in your business, let's hop on a call and get you unstuck.

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