The challenges in marketing conflict-related services

For many practitioners who complete their mediation or conflict coach training, the challenges have only just begun.  This can be a difficult field in which to establish yourself, market your business, and get clients.  Great mediation and coaching skills are essential, but not sufficient to build and sustain a business.

There are some particular attributes of trying to market and sell conflict-related services that need to be considered when developing a business and marketing plan. These include that:

  • The services are intangible. It can be hard for clients to understand the value before experiencing them.

  • Practitioners don’t have much control over the outcomes.

  • Clients may not know much about the services we offer.

  • Clients may be actively avoiding engaging with our services for various reasons.

  • Clients can take a long time before they decide to engage us.

  • Our clients feel vulnerable, so high levels of trust are essential.

  • Practitioners cannot get too close to their clients (so no marketing to your golf buddies!)

  • A lot of work comes from referrals (from previous clients or other professionals).

  • Practitioners often have more than one client (two parties in a mediation, support people, lawyers) that they need to engage.

  • There are legal requirements, standards, and ethical considerations particular to the field. These are often changing.

  • Basic qualifications are not enough. Communicating ongoing professional development and expertise can be crucial in a field that values competence and skill.

While there are many marketing courses available online, most of them do not include consideration of these specific attributes of the conflict-resolution field.

In response to requests from our graduates, we recently ran a Marketing Bootcamp to test out some of our materials developed to support people with the business side of conflict practice.  This was enormously successful, and so we built the bootcamp up into a full online course: Beyond the Table.

The course has twelve modules, that cover:

  1. Your why

  2. Your ideal clients

  3. Your competitors

  4. Your brand

  5. Your website

  6. Your social media

  7. Your content

  8. Your sales and client experience

  9. Your networks

  10. Your ethics

  11. Your documents

  12. Your professional support

Our course is specifically crafted to address the unique challenges and opportunities within the conflict resolution field. Benefit from the insights of industry experts who have successfully established and scaled their conflict management businesses. Engage in practical exercises, case studies, and collaborative discussions to apply your newfound knowledge in real-world scenarios.

As you proceed through the course, you will be supported by coaches and mentors who can help you to apply your learning to your own specific situation and aspirations. By the end of the course, you will have a complete business plan and a clear map for your future development.  Each graduate also receives two hours of one-on-one business plan review sessions.

In February, we are offering people the chance to register for the course as beta-testers before we formally launch it.  In return for a 50% discount on the normal registration fee, beta-testers will get early access to the course and will be asked for feedback as they progress through the content.  If our beta-testers love it (which we are confident they will!) we will also be asking them to provide a testimonial when they have completed the course.

You can find out more about what’s in the course and register as a beta-tester here: https://www.conflictmanagementacademy.com/beyond-the-table-course/

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