Your life coach certification training is complete, and you are ready to start practicing but now what? While your training would have covered the basic steps to start your business, create a welcome package, the initial consultation, and provided mentorship, the one thing it would not have covered is how to discover your niche or if you need one. While not every coach has a specific niche or needs one, for example if you are already getting clients and enjoy the work you do with them, your niche kind of gets created itself because your happy clients will refer you to others with the same issues as them. If this is your case, there is no need to discover your niche unless you want to completely rebrand yourself. However, for most people, whether you are planning on becoming a life coach, business coach, or career coach, it is helpful for yourself, your future marketing efforts, and future clients to choose or create a niche for yourself.
The basic outline of discovering your unique coaching niche includes:
- Identifying your interests, passions, and what you enjoy doing in your work life
- Identifying potential problems you can solve, be as creative and specific as you look
- Do some research to see if others are in your niche, or a way to make it more specific and unique to you
- Testing your idea by talking with others and seeing if people have other problems you did not think of that you could also look at solving for them
During your coach certification training process, you may have specialized in a specific area such as adult ADHD coaching, executive coaching, career coaching, and others; if you particularly enjoyed one of these areas this may be a great place to start as it has piqued your interest and you are passionate about it. Those specific areas can be looked at as broad categories of coaching and through doing research into the market and discovering problems that need to be solved combined with your personal experience, values and interest you should be able to brainstorm some truly unique niche possibilities.
Let’s walk through an example for someone who really enjoyed the specific area of career coaching, what should they do next? There are two options: first, they could research niche possibilities under career coaching to see what is out there, or they could look at their personal experience and interest and connect that career coaching and any potential problems in that area that people need solved.
Doing some simple research on career coaching it can be discovered that there are quite a few specific niches including:
- Career promotion/advancement
- Interview skills and confidence
- Resume and cover letter writing
- Finding your purpose
- Strength assessment
- Improving public speaking
While all these are great, the fact they can be so easily found might also mean that the market is saturated with many coaches that focus on this aspect of career coaching. They will not know without doing more research.
Let’s look at their personal experience and work experience. Their work experience involves various jobs in the nonprofit industry with a focus on the arts, sports, and newcomers to Canada. They got involved in this work because they grew up seeing their parents struggle to get work as newcomers as well as their parent’s friends and children. Do you see a problem here to solve that is more personal and unique than option one? Let’s focus on the children, who are now the age of the individual in our example, and they have noticed many of them are struggling to find careers they enjoy leading to a coaching niche for our example of “Finding Purpose in Your Career Journey as a Child of Immigrant Parents.” Is this a niche that is needed though? The next step of testing the idea with others will provide more answers and insight.
Discovering your niche in the coaching industry can be a long and emotional process, if you are really struggling taking other continuing education courses that align with your values and interest will help.