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“Hook, Story, Offer”: What it is and Why You Should Care as a Coach

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TL;DR

  • The “Hook → Story → Offer” framework can be a powerful tool for growing your coaching business.

  • A “Hook” should catch the attention of your ideal customer, the “Story” should pre-frame your unique solution, and the “Offer” should feature pricing bundles that make your coaching tiers irresistible.

  • I know you might not be interested in this marketing stuff.. But the coaching landscape is changing and it’s crucial that you adapt. The advice here is super easy to implement and can make a world of difference. 

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We say this a lot, but it bears repeating: At the ConnectedCoach Academy, we fervently believe that you aren’t just a coach, you’re an entrepreneur. 

And, as an entrepreneur, it’s crucial to regularly iterate and improve your product offerings. 

But, before we get there, it’s important to really clarify what we mean when we use these business terms in the context of your coaching business. 

In the ConnectedCoach Blueprint, I focus considerable time on the “Hook, Story, Offer” marketing framework. You can think of it as a repeatable formula to create effective messaging for your products/services that is irresistible to your ideal clients. And, while I didn’t come up with this framework myself (credit goes to Russell Brunson), I’ve noticed that there hasn’t been much written on applying it to the coaching industry. 

So, in today’s post, I want to dive into the basics of the first two components of the framework: “Hook” and “Story”. We’ll cover the “Offer” section in another blog next week 👊. 

Throughout this post, I’ll always be contextualizing these concepts in terms of WHAT THEY MEAN for the #ConnectedCoach

It's important to note that this advice applies to all coaching businesses, both young and old, regardless of “what” you're selling. It's a tried and true messaging strategy – once you learn it, you’ll start seeing it everywhere!

So, with that intro out of the way, let’s get to it. 

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1. The “Hook”: How to Catch Your Ideal Customer’s Attention

As I’m sure you assumed, the hook is the first thing that catches the eye of your ideal customer. 

The goal is simple - get their attention. A good hook sparks curiosity, so they stop scrolling and want to learn more. 

In my experience, the best hooks ask a leading question or make a provocative claim that hints at a common problem in your prospect’s mind. 

Think language like: 

“Are you plateauing in your pitching speed?”, 

“5 simple ways to fix your golf slice (they work)”,

“4 hacks to INSTANTLY hit more home runs”

Now, this doesn’t mean you have to go completely “salesy” in your messaging. 

I personally hate it when ads promise me the world just to get me to click on their link and waste my time. 

Because let’s be honest: there’s a fine line between a “hook” and “clickbait”. The former can be helpful in speaking to your ideal customer; the latter can break trust with your clients and hurt your business in the long run. 

My advice here? 

Check out the Meta Ads Library. Meta (aka Facebook) allows everyone to see every single ad being run on their platform. And within these ads you will usually see a hook either in the first sentence of the ad copy or as bold text on a photo. 

Within the ads library, you can search by industry type (e.g. basketball coaching, golf, surfing, etc) and see what others are doing in your niche. 

Now as a disclaimer, I’m not necessarily encouraging you to run ads yourself. In fact, I think the majority of our readers probably shouldn’t run ads at all. 

What I AM advocating for is learning from what others are doing. Looking at these examples is a great way to get inspiration for your next hook. 

Because if a company in your industry is comfortable spending thousands of dollars on a particular message, it’s likely returning a healthy profit!! 

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2. The “Story”: Pre-frame Your Unique Solution 

A hook without substance is just clickbait. Equally important is contextualizing your coaching business with a relevant story.

The best examples  make your ideal customer feel understood and pre-frames a solution to the problem you expressed with your hook. 

Think: 

“I know firsthand how frustrating it can be to plateau in your swing speed, but then I tried X” 

“I know how you feel when your injury prevents you from playing like you used to. I was there too”, etc. 

Your goal here is to share your story and help them see how your offer is the light at the end of the tunnel. 

The best stories show a level of vulnerability from the author and give a greater context of WHY you do what you do. 

This is your chance to really drive home your mission statement. 

Because think about it: of all the things you could have done for your career, you chose to be a coach. 

The first step to fleshing out your story: Explain WHY you chose this career.

What are you passionate about? What gap did you see in the market that inspired you to take up coaching in the first place? 

For me, I founded CoachNow because of severe burnout and frustration with both the “lessons” model of coaching and the lack of purpose built coaching software. 

I saw a need for a product that enabled effective asynchronous coaching communication, with no bloat or any of the unnecessary bells and whistles that caused platforms trying to emulate CoachNow to fail. 

In almost all of CoachNow’s marketing, I reference my personal story constantly. I am confident that, if I can get someone to relate to my journey and see why I created CoachNow in the first place, they too will see the value we can deliver to their business. 

I truly believe in the benefits of this software I’ve helped build over the last decade. And once someone lands on our website or clicks in our emails, I immediately communicate my story and the passion I feel.  

That, my friends, is the power of the “story”. Let them know you’re on their side and that you have their best interest at heart. And, importantly, be sure that you MEAN it. (fist bump) 

After you’ve hooked them and told your story, it’s time to present your offer. 

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3. The “Offer”: Make it Irresistible

Hook and story provide crucial context for a prospective client. But if you don’t have an idea of WHAT EXACTLY you’re selling, what’s the point of even getting anybody’s attention in the first place? 

All roads lead to the actual OFFER itself. 

When I set out to write this section, I very quickly realized that it would morph into its own post.

I want to keep these posts relatively short, so I'll be sending out a followup post elaborating on this topic in the near future.

Stay Tuned!  👊 

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Let’s be honest: in today’s world of information overload, catching the attention of new clients can be a tricky task. 

I know most of you reading this are not as interested in this marketing stuff.. And maybe even some of you are turned off by the idea that you have to “sell” your coaching like this to begin with. 

But I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: the coaching landscape is changing. 

Unfortunately, at this point thinking like an entrepreneur is less a choice and more a survival tactic.

Reframing your marketing in terms of “Hook → Story → Offer” really isn’t that difficult. It might not be the most glamorous thing in the world, but I’ve found it to be well worth the effort. 

I’d love to hear how it goes for you. 

Here’s to cutting through the noise and attracting your ideal customer!