#156: Business Slowdown? How To Make the Most of Summer & Have Some Fun

During the summer everything sloooows down. You may feel your business has come to a screeching halt! But don’t worry…that’s normal for health coaching and in this episode Michelle shares some fun ways to make the most of summer months and prepare for the fall.

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Hey there health coaches. We are back and today I wanted to have a little fun... A little summer fun with you guys. Hence the braids, the pigtails, for those of you that can see me. This has been like my hairstyle for the past week because I was on vacation at the Jersey shore. It's very humid. And those of you with curly hair know, you just need to like tamp that down when you're in ocean air. So it's been all braids all day. Anyway, nice to see you guys today. I want to talk about this idea of what happens in the summer time. It's coaching businesses. Hey, I've been doing this a long time and for 12 years, I don't know if this is my 12th summer or my 13th summer, but whatever. It always slows down. It almost always slows down now, for those of you who are not me, my business is flourishing just fine. That's amazing. Happy for you, but we can all understand, right? People go away on vacation in the summer. People are really interested in having beer and hot dogs by their pool, and maybe a little bit less interested in what we have to offer as health coaches in the summer.

So, if this is happening for you at all, don't worry. Don't worry. In fact, I think that actually, it's kind of nice to have some downtime in your business here and there because it allows you to take a breather yourself, but also ramp up for the most important times of year, which I would argue the fall can be even more important than the new year when it comes to people being interested in signing up for health coaching programs. So, my advice for you is to just accept what's happened happening, breathe into it, and let's have some fun.

We can have some fun with business, move your business forward. If not at a very fast pace, we can still move forward and get ready for fall all at the same time. Now, speaking of making the most of the fall, one of the things that you absolutely need is a growing thriving mailing list. And not only do most coaches not have this, I know because I'm always asking you the thing is most coaches don't know how to acquire a list like this. How on earth are they going to build a list like that? So starting later this week, we're going to run from July 22nd to July 26th. I'm running a free event called multiply your mailing list and you are all invited to join. We've got several hundred coaches already signed up head over to healthcoachpower.com/multiply. Get your name on that list because we are going to be coming in hot with ideas for you to use, get your business all revved up for the fall.

But since it's still July, and I know maybe I was on vacation, I'm going on another vacation in a couple of weeks, which is awesome. It's like, what can I actually do right now? I don't want to get into a big project. Then I'm going to leave, you know, for a whole week when I'm away again. Um, I got to pick my kids up from campus, you know, every afternoon it's just scheduling stuff and, and maybe a little lack of focus too, because sometimes I might like to sit out on my deck with a drink instead of working during the day. Like I normally would you hear me? Okay. So with that in mind, I think there's still a lot of really fun things that we can do with our business in the summer. Things that you can be excited about things that will actually help you.

And so, let's go through them and just, if you're here live, tell me in the comments, if you're doing any of these things, if you need help with any of these things and what you're doing this summer, how are you making the most of the mid-summer slowdown? Okay. So the first idea that I have for you is all about connection. This is easy. You're doing this all the time. Anyway, you got a phone in your hand, great reach out to some people that you haven't talked to in a while. And specifically, I'm talking about people who are in some way connected to your health coaching business, either your past clients, maybe people who have expressed interest in your coaching services in the past, in a casual way. How about other practitioners in your town, in your area, maybe other health coaches, people that you went to health coaching school with connect.

And now's not a time to be like, Hey, we should do a webinar together. Or Hey, how can we help each other in our businesses? Because they are also sitting at their pool, just wanting to kick back and relax. So I say, keep it easy breezy. It's just like, Hey, I was thinking of you, how's your summer going? Just like that. If someone sent you an email like that would, I think that was weird. You would be like, oh, that's really nice. You could start actual conversation. You could be two people connecting in real life. How great is that? I think this is particularly important in our lives, in our businesses. Well, because of the past year and a half with COVID, right? Like there are friends that I haven't seen in like 18 months or longer, right. There are so many people that we have lost connection with for various reasons.

So like we can make this summer a time to bring that back, both in our personal lives and in our business. Okay. So that's number one, easy. We're talking like a DM on Facebook or Instagram, a text message and email. If you're really feeling formal, that's the kind of summertime business building that we're all about. What about taking other summer ideas, things that you're already enjoying and turning those into business ideas. See, I think this is very clever instead of fighting against what we naturally want to do in the summer. Let's just roll with it. So, one thing that I love doing in the summer is going to summer parties, backyard barbecues, pool parties, that kind of thing, right? You can throw parties in your health coaching business. I know no one ever talks about it that way, but whenever you have any kind of special event, you're doing something out of the ordinary.

Think about it like a party you're inviting people. You're hoping that they will come. You want to make it sound fun. And you can do lots of different things, both in-person and slash or online. So many options for you. So here's some things that you can do and things that I've done. So for example, you could have a potluck at your house, right? This would be something where you're inviting friends, acquaintances, people in your neighborhood, but make it a theme. So instead of it just being like any old potluck, it's a healthy potluck, or maybe you're making it vegetarian, or maybe you're making it Keto, or maybe you're making it, you know, all dishes that can be made with quinoa. I don't know, but pick a theme and challenge everybody to bring something that fits that theme. What you can do is then collect a recipe from everybody, compile them, you know, it could just be a simple word doc or something like that.

And just throw in a little extra information about why you picked that theme and include your email address or your website address or something like that. It is a very soft way to let people know what you do with your business without beating them over the head. Plus, they're going to get all these cool recipes to try so fun. All right, Janice is saying it is my first summer in business. I didn't know it was slow in the summer. It's good to know that that's not, it's not that they don't like me. Right? When things slow down, it is absolutely crickets on Facebook, right? Nobody is emailing. It's so easy to be like, they hate me, but they don't. They love you. They're just all on vacation this week. It happens. It's all good. But what can we do that for the people that are in town, right?

Have that potluck dinner have a book club. You could do book club in person. You can do book club over zoom or Facebook live or whatever format you want to do. Pick a book, not something too nerdy. You know, you guys like we might like to read the nerdy nutrition stuff, but normal people, people who may someday want to be our clients or refer clients to us, they might need something a little bit more interesting than like reading the blood sugar solution. But you can still pick a book that is related to health and wellness. Have everybody read it, host a party BYOB again, make it fun. That's the only reason people are going to join you. They are not going to join you if they think you are there to pitch yourself. So, make sure you're coming from a place of, let's have some fun.

I am your friend. I want to host a party, right? If you're coming from a place of sales, they're going to sniff that out a mile away. Nobody's going to show up. Melissa says, summer always gets me. I'm so excited to be and have a lack of motivation to do work. Exactly. So I guess what I'm suggesting is like, don't do things that feel like work. All right. I still want you to email your mailing list on a regular basis, especially you Melissa. Cause I know you've been in business for a while, but like now's not the time to start recording videos and putting your nose to the grindstone on like creating that next online course, maybe, right? Like maybe now's not the time for that for you, maybe for you, it's having a party. Like the ones we've been talking about. How about some type of cooking class or just a cooking hangout come over?

I'm going to make tacos. You know, that kind of thing. Again, you can do this in person. Um, actually over COVID in the beginning of COVID when nobody could come over and I was desperately trying to connect with people, it was a similar situation. Business really slowed down. I couldn't leave the house. That was, that was not great. But what I did was I hosted a series of these cook alongs. I think I called them cooking duos. It was me and a friend over Facebook live. And we cooked something together in our respective kitchens. People watched people commented. We gave the recipe and we just had fun. It wasn't like a formal cooking class where I was like, now we're going to take a quarter cup of this and a teaspoon of that. It wasn't like that at all. It was just chitchat back and forth.

I remember Andrea Beaman and I made, oh, what did we make? It was something with ginger. And I was like, I confessed that when I use ginger, I never peel it. I just don't. I just feel like you don't have to. It's a waste of time. So there you go. A little cooking tip for me to you, but this is the kind of stuff that can come out when you're just having a casual conversation and cooking in your kitchen. It can be a lot of fun. Now let's say you're more of an online kind of person. Yes. You could do the cooking classes online. Yes. You could do a book club online. You can't really do a potluck so much online. Maybe somehow you could figure that out, but there are really cool things that I've done like on Facebook where you host a Facebook party and I've done this a bunch of times in my career.

I think what I've normally done is one hour. And it's just like, you're inviting people to a party, except instead of saying, come to my house, you say, come to my Facebook page and it could be your Facebook business page. If you have a Facebook group, maybe you're going to do the party in your group. But I always, I think you might be better off doing it on your Facebook page because that's public and there's no barrier to entry. So anyone could invite anyone and it's all public. But anyway, during that hour, again, you're going to pick a theme. So I think one time I did a block party and it was in the summertime and I called it a block party. And it was all about grilling and outdoor eating. And you just all summertime fun stuff. So, we posted a question or a prompt or something every five minutes during that hour.

And it was like, what's your favorite, you know, summertime cocktail or what do you like to bring to a barbecue? And it just got people talking. The fun part is getting in there and commenting back on everything that everybody posts. Now you're in a two way conversation. This is a perfect lead in potentially to getting into a conversation with someone who wants to become a client. But even if that doesn't happen at all, even if people are posting things that have nothing to do with health or wellness or anything, you are still driving up engagement on your Facebook page and that does good things for your algorithm. So they're leaving comments, you're writing back. You're having it really feels fun. I remember getting quite an endorphin rush. Like I was really at a party and interacting with all of these different people who showed up.

They can come for the whole hour. They can just drop in for a little while. Maybe they weren't going to come at all. But now they see those posts in their feed and people are commenting on it even a day or two later. So if you want to do a Facebook party, again, pick a fun theme right up about 10 or 11 prompts or questions or things that will actually get a response. So, they have to be kind of fun, right? You don't want them to be boring or nerdy. Again, this is a party and you can even schedule them advance in advance to post every five minutes throughout the hour. June says, oh my gosh, Michelle, you look so cute with the braids. Thank you. This is my Pippi Longstocking look or my Marianne, you know, from Gilligan's island. That's what my boyfriend calls me when I do this.

Okay. All right. Here's another party idea for you similar to the Facebook party, you can have an Instagram party. I mean, you could do this any way you want, right? I'm just giving you a suggestion of one way. You might go about it. So instead of doing something that's condensed into one hour, how about over a period of a week? You're going to go live on Instagram every day. It doesn't have to be long. It can be five minutes, 10 minutes, whatever. And you're going to show up. And I think it would be fun to do something like a summer cocktail or mocktail where you're actually mixing it right there during the live. And funny things are going to happen. You know, you're going to spill it or you're going to like drink it all or whatever. And in this way, over the course of five days, people are hanging out with you, engaging with you, driving up the algorithm, all good things.

And you don't have to worry like, well, what if I don't get any clients? Or you know, what if I don't have anything free to give away for an email address or don't even worry about that stuff. You guys just be seen, do things, be seen, get engagement. That's the fun part of marketing. Don't worry about the rest. If it happens, it happens. If you sign the client great, you know, but right now you are just fueling the fire little by little. So come the fall. You have people who've been seeing you around. You have people who've been talking to you. That's much better than starting from, you know, this way. You already have some engagement going. Okay? So I love the idea of throwing a party. Does anyone feel like this is something that you could do over the next couple of weeks? It doesn't take that much preparation.

You could invite people today, tell them it's happening next week. And in the meantime you figure out the details, right? This is very casual, very, very casual. All right. The other thing I love about the summer, I don't know about you guys, but I've got all kinds of fun. Summer recipes, like things that my family loves. I make a strawberry salad dressing that goes great with like spinach and black beans. I make that every year I do these tie pork, lettuce boats, my son loves those, right? So you probably have your own version of that, those warm weather recipes that you bring out every summer. That's awesome. Write them down, take a picture. You're probably making it tonight anyway. So take a picture of what you're making. You can compile these things into just like a mini recipe book. It doesn't have to be fancy a little picture.

Doesn't even have to have a picture, a little up of what your recipe is, and don't be afraid to keep it casual, to say something like add some mango, add some avocado. You don't have to measure everything, but give your audience some of your summer recipes. And you could wrap that up with a nice, shiny bow. And that could actually be a list builder. You could give it out. You could just give it out or you could put it behind an opt-in page and actually start building your list. And we're going to be talking more about that during the multiply your mailing list event. So if you don't know how to create a freebie or you're not sure how to put together an opt-in page, I'm going to show you how to do that. And we'll talk about what really makes that type of freebie work. But right now hit on these summer topics that people are going to be likely to opt in for. Anyway, we'll talk more about that. If you haven't already signed up, go to health coach power.com/multiply.

Melissa says, ooh, hosting a hiking party to meet local people on my list. Sounds like a good idea. That's a great idea. Like a meetup or something where you're actually doing something outdoors. Go do that stand up paddle board class, or you know, whatever the kayaking, all that kind of thing could be great. I love that idea. Melissa. Heather says simple is the key. People are busy. They want fun and valuable. That's right. They want fun. They want valuable. And often they want chocolate. I'm just saying, I'm just saying, if you want their attention, consider chocolate, consider desserts. Even in the summertime, right? I make all kinds of like popsicles Sherbet, like dairy free, frozen blended things. I'm sure you do all that same kind of stuff because you and me, we are very much the same. But they are not, right? Most of my friends have no idea how to make their own popsicles. So we have something to offer and you probably have all these recipes and ideas in your head that you can just tumble out onto a page. And suddenly you've got something really valuable to share.

Okay. Another thing that I like to do in the summer, because it's like play time is play a little. And sometimes that means playing with a new tool or a new app that I've kind of wanted to try for my business. I don't always have the time to do this stuff, but in the summer you're like, Hey, I've been really interested in trying out, I don't know, Instagram reels, which by the way, I have not done yet. But you know, now might be a good time to just try it out. And here's the key without attachment to the outcome. It's not about I'm going to do this. And then, you know, I'm going to sign four clients this month.

Maybe, maybe not, but you can just give yourself the freedom to explore because it is summertime and just have some fun with this stuff. I feel like I have a list of like that like different apps to try different tools, different websites that I've been to where I'm like, that's neat. I just haven't had time to check it out, out, play play a little bit. Okay. And then when you're thinking of what comes next, right? Like you can set yourself up this summer by being visible, getting engagement, driving up the algorithm on your socials, all good things. Maybe even doing some list, building activities. And then what, now we're going to be looking at the fall. So plan, I think I had like, this is really key to success. If you wait until September 1st to think about the fall, you are likely going to miss the boat or you're going to put something together real fast and like slipshod I've been there.

It always helps when you're planning things out. Not days in advance, not weeks in advance, but like months in advance. So, I'd be planning now and I am planning now for what my business is going to be doing in September, in October in November. And I encourage you to do the same thing in the fall plan an event. Launch your services. Whether you're trying to get more one-on-one clients or you have a group program that you've been wanting to run the fall is a good time. And all you want to do is look at the calendar and make sure that you're not doing it too early, like before labor day, because a lot of people will still be away and it's going to feel like summertime and potentially watch out for the Jewish holidays because there's a lot of days off school. So, if you're targeting moms, they may have their kids home, a bunch of extra days in that early part of September.

But between mid-September and the end of October, you're going to be in the clear, that's a great time to run something even into November, just got to end before Thanksgiving or do something where you hop over Thanksgiving and do your last meeting in the beginning of December before, you know, it would be the holidays. So, start now planning for what you want to sell in the fall. And if you're really smart, you can back out from there. What kind of content you want to be creating all summer, right? So if you want to be hosting some sort of group coaching program in the fall and it's going to be all about, oh gosh, I always use eczema as an example. I'm going to use it again. But it's a group coaching program for people who have eczema. You know what? Start talking now about skincare.

Talk about sunscreen. Talk about sun damage. Talk about moisturizers. Talk about aloe. Talk about eczema. Talk about all of it. Cause that's going to get the right people paying attention to you so that when you launch that in the fall, you've been seeding it all summer long. How smart is that? I know. I know. That's why they pay me the big bucks.

Thank you so much for joining me today for this summer fun episode. It's been great having you here, everybody that joined live. If you want to also braid your hair into pigtails and post a picture in our group, I would love to see your summer hair. And I will see you all later this week. When we start our multiply your mailing list event. Again, it runs July 22nd to the 26th. You can. If you're listening to this a little bit late, you can join any time during that period, just go to healthcoachpower.com/multiply. All right, get back out there and have some fun. Everybody I'll see you later.