Let’s Get Clients in 2024!
As a pioneer doula, I had to get clients while initiating and engaging in PR campaigns and giving many interviews to spread the concept of hiring a doula. Over the past 24 years, I have overcome my reluctance to engage in enrollment conversations to enroll potential clients, and now I have a thriving doula practice. I gained confidence by consistently showing up for my potential clients. Over the past seven years, I have been working as a doula trainer and have founded a new approach to birth support known as Transformational Birth and Postpartum Coaching. I am deeply committed to helping my students acquire clients and build successful practices. Although ‘doula’ is a term in the dictionary and a well-known support figure, the most asked question in the Facebook group I lead, “The Aspiring and Thriving Doula” is “How do I find Clients? I gathered a few strategies to get clients which I teach at my doula training and transformational birth support coaching course. And you’re invited to join my mentoring sessions. Find how at the bottom of this blog post.
Storytelling – I’ts about YOUR passion and motivation:
If you’re a doula, you probably know that it’s not enough to just convince potential clients of the benefits of hiring a doula anymore. Your goal is to really connect with them and show them why they should choose you over anyone else. Instead of relying on the same old pitch, try building a personal connection with your audience. Share your story and listen to theirs. While stats and data are important, they don’t show your potential clients that you care about them or that you’re interested in learning more about them. So, let’s focus on building relationships and making connections!
Have you ever met someone and felt like you’ve known them for years after just a few minutes? That’s the power of rapport. To create a strong rapport with your potential clients, share your personal story of why you became a doula and how it has impacted your life. A good story evokes emotions and empathy in your potential clients and help them imagine what it would be like to work with you. They want to know more about you, what inspired you to become a doula, and why you are passionate about supporting them. While presenting statistics may be informative, it won’t have the same emotional impact as a personal story.
Potential clients must feel that their mindsets, beliefs, challenges, and desired experiences are the focus of your attention
Be curious about your potential clients:
Leading an interview or any encounter with a potential client should always begin with asking questions. It may come as a surprise, but everyone loves to feel heard and seen, especially when seeking leaders, coaches, or support persons. Clients need to feel that their beliefs, mindsets, challenges, and desired experiences are at the center of your attention. Simply informing, sharing, telling, or cheering will not result in getting clients. Instead, being curious and asking questions about the expectations of the individual will navigate the conversation towards a signed contract. Active listening to what people desire and the challenges they experience is crucial in understanding how you can help them achieve their goals.
Leading the interview with questions is a strategy I teach in all my programs, and if you’re not ready yet to jump into my immersion programs, you can read my book, The Art of Coaching for Childbirth. You’ll find many powerful questions to lead and establish rapport with potential clients.
Focus on RESULTS instead of your knowledge or actions
Potential clients do not hire you because of what you know, do, or say. They hire you because of the RESULTS you deliver or help them achieve. I lead the most comprehensive doula training possible and certify highly knowledgeable doulas. I also am a great believer in doula certification. However, this is not a marketing strategy but a pathway to deliver the results your clients want; their desired experiences.
Everyone who studies our programs heard me saying it’s time for doulas to join the results revolution. Individuals seeking leadership, coaching, and support focus on getting their desired results, and so should you. Your clients have access to Google, YouTube, Facebook, and Instagram just like you, which means they don’t hire you for the knowledge. Instead, they need a coach to get them to the finish line. So in your 2-minutes sales pitch and on all your marketing materials, focus on the results you help your clients achieve.
You’re hired for the RESULTS you deliver or help your clients achieve
Marketing materials and networking:
If you’re new to the field of being a doula and just starting your career, it’s a good idea to create simple business cards or a one-page brochure that includes your short bio, your photo, and your contact information. As an advisor to my students, I suggest that they use simple homemade marketing materials when launching their businesses. It’s better to wait to invest in more expensive and professional marketing materials until you have a clear idea of your professional identity and what makes you unique as a birth worker. Once you have your story and homemade business cards ready, you can begin networking.
Networking is crucial for building a successful practice. At the beginning of my professional journey, I struggled with not having a group of like-minded professionals to connect with. This led to feelings of loneliness and demotivation. I also didn’t have any accountability partners to keep me on track. Networking with other birth support professionals not only helps in getting clients, but also helps to establish oneself as a credible and competent professional. The more one associates with this group of professionals, the greater the boost in confidence and sense of professional identity. You will receive two email reminders with the Zoom invitation – one two days before and another one an hour prior to each meeting.
When you’re comfortable with networking, you can aim for a community leadership role to gain recognition from potential clients. Here are some ideas to help you become a leader in your local community of birth support professionals:
- Organize a holiday gathering for birth professionals.
- Initiate a monthly peer review.
- Invite guest speakers. I would be honored to be your guest speaker and share the miracle of transformational coaching in birth support practice. Please email me at email@example.com to schedule.
- Initiate a monthly “Meet the Doula Night” where couples can learn about doulas and meet them.
- Host a yearly event for the local community of expectant parents, where they can learn about their choices and meet local providers.
- Establish a non-profit organization and consider possible fundraising events.
When you’re burnt out, reconnect with past clients
If you’re feeling burnt out, it can be helpful to get in touch with past clients. we all have those periods of exhastion, demotivation, and low level of committment to attend networking events. Reconnecting with your past clients can encourage and motivate you. Your past clients already know and appreciate your service. You can express gratitude to them for supporting you and share your story of how being a birth worker has inspired and influenced you. For example, you can write a message such as, “I cherish our past experience and look forward to serving and supporting your friends, relatives, and community members. Your referrals and support would be the most beautiful gifts ever!” It’s a good idea to invest in a greeting card instead of sending an email, as you can include some of your business cards in the envelope. Additionally, you may also consider asking your clients to write a supportive review to share on your site, if you already have one.
Invite me as a guest speaker to share about the power of transformational coaching. Email neri@BirthCoachMethod.com
Create a digital consultation button
If you have a website, it’s a great idea to include a button that allows potential clients to schedule a free 20-minute consultation right away. To make it more appealing, you can give this session a catchy name such as “Your Better Birth Session” or “Your ‘Make a Wish’ Session”. This will help attract your ideal clients. Set up a free Calendly account.
Freebies and giveaways
Creating a freebie or a giveaway is an excellent way to add unique value and position yourself as an outstanding doula. However, be careful not to use ‘copy and paste’ to avoid giving away something that potential clients can easily find elsewhere. A giveaway can be a printed handout if you don’t have a digital marketing platform yet. However, it is usually a downloadable material. My first freebie was shared through a landing page. Today, you can download my FREE COACHING TOOLS for prenatal, birth, and postpartum sessions by subscribing to Birth Coach Method’s mailing list. Visit my blog and subscribe using the blue pop-up box or the pink box on the right side of the screen.
Want to learn more?
There are numerous creative ways to attract clients. However, being a solo practitioner can be exhausting. Without an accountability buddy, you may feel disheartened and demotivated, and these mindsets can hinder success. That’s why I offer continuous mentoring for my doula students and my students who learn Transformational Birth Support Coaching I invite you to participate in my mentoring sessions. It’s an excellent opportunity to come together, share dilemmas and success stories, ask questions, and feel inspired and motivated. You can email me or join The Aspiring and Thriving Doula Facebook group to register for these mentoring meetings.