What you’re not expecting about marketing a spiritual, personal development or healing business
In my former life, before I was a loud, ballsy, offensive teacher and healer LOL, I was a marketing aficionado.
Naturally, I thought that when I delved out into the teaching and healing world, that I would be able to translate my knowledge and success into a parallel success in this market.
LOL… I thoroughly saw my ass with that ;)
Luckily I have a GREAT of a sense of humor when it comes to failure, trials and shifting... so here we are to unpack the unique aspects of spiritual marketing you’re NOT expecting.
People expect it to be free
If I had a penny for every time that someone has been angry at me for "daring to charge for my services", well then, I’d have a good few truckfuls of pennies ;) But I’d probably still have to charge.
Being spiritual, and especially doing God’s work, means that you must live completely outside the world of money and not need any at all apparently.
In the same vein, people think nothing of talking to you for hours in-between booking a single appointment of an hour, or sending long volumes of emails for you to read through… up to 42 in a single day; you’ll often land up investing way more hours than what is necessary with clients.
If you think about it, it’s the way that people treat God too… God must fetch, carry, be a servant, be around when they need help… and in return? They’ll pray when they want something else, more stuff, or need more help.
You start developing a sixth sense about the time-wasters and you need to use it. An effective method is to raise payment upfront.
Just be prepared for the inevitable lambasting of your character and comments along the lines of “how dare you call yourself spiritual?"
People are lazy to do the work themselves
Ironically, when you do give people free resources, they don’t use them.
The sad truth is that people often don’t want to grow - they just want an audience to listen to their vitriol about how terrible their lives are, how much trauma they’ve endured, and how fascinating their spiritual experiences are.
Then they want you to appoint them the next celebrity Messiah, with a miracle that you perform, that elevates them to a level ABOVE you - and everyone else.
The instant gratification, quick fix, silver bullet miracle cure in other words.
People have no idea of what healing, spirituality, coaching, teaching, etc entails
People expect miracles to be instant and glamorous - and HUGE.
So small wins, small relief, and techniques where they have to do the hard graft themselves? Not interested.
Also don’t dare do anything that results in anything other than the person feeling amazing immediately - long term thinking just doesn’t feature for people.
Ego is used to getting what it wants - and we’ve built a society that has made everything about our personal happiness (if there is such a thing), and getting what we want. Or at least the hope of getting what we want - fast food style: no waiting, no long term input, no hard graft, and definitely no learning.
People are clueless about about the world of spirituality for the most part, and especially what a spiritual journey, over years, looks like.
I remember being one of them - wanting everything early, in my 20s already… and feeling like a failure because I didn’t get there.
Now I’m a bit older and wiser, and I can see WHY I couldn’t be ready then - I lacked the life experience, and the time to practice and develop my skills. I hadn’t been alive long enough at 30 to have developed all those skills.
And I’m pretty sure that when I look back to now at 60, I will feel the same way about this me, now.
People believe that they are the authority
For now, however, this is the highest level of knowledge I know of - and that’s where everyone else is coming from too. We call this paradigm blindness.
Paradigm blindness means that people can’t see much past their own internal level of knowledge. So they have paradigm blindness to what is possible on the journey.
For a seasoned veteran like me, I’ve had loads of experiences and I work in the realm of the extreme experiences. So I’m open to accepting and understanding any piece of knowledge.
However, for someone who hasn’t experience healing and clearing firsthand, or who hasn’t journeyed, my life sounds like science fiction. Or potentially mental delusion.
That doesn’t mean that they won’t go watch a movie about someone with abilities like that; it just means that I’m a fruit loop for daring to think those things are even possible for any one of us. Or that there are those who have achieved them.
People are EASILY offended
And nothing offends people more than the idea that they aren’t the authority - that their truth doesn’t trump.
So when you take a content marketing approach to the whole thing, you run the risk of offending people in a detail in the piece, even if they agree with everything else you have to say - and have agreed with you up until now.
So the first time you’re likely to hear from someone in comments is because they lay into you, insulting you and your intelligence. The comment is usually along the lines of “I liked you until now - and now I can see that you’re a total idiot.”
You will literally lose fans and followers because of a single detail or point of view - and the reactions are extreme. You are about 10,000 times more likely to hear from someone that is angry at you than you ever are to get a like.
So you can literally land up with good, popular pieces where the only comments are insults. Often in fact, because the good pieces are usually the ones that spark controversy for these types of people.
And there are so many, many, many ways that you can offend someone when you’re talking spirituality… so you have develop a VERY thick skin.
LOL, it’s damn good ego mitigation practice though ;)
Common jargon does not exist yet
So people are using terms that mean different things to different people.
And you’d be surprised at how low the level of knowledge out there is, even for the basic words, like healing. People who consider themselves “spiritual” may only have been for ONE healing session in their entire lives - a few years back.
So where you are coming from a place of understanding the difference between healing, clearing, shifting, coaching, mentoring, etc, your marketing almost ALWAYS has to come from a place of explaining it from scratch. Because most of the people reading it are clueless to your jargon.
One thing this does is make it feel like you are always at the beginner level - and at a point you want to start moving faster and teaching the higher level stuff. But you often get stuck catering ONLY to what people want, like Twin Flames and wealth, even though you know that you can offer no more than a band aid for that stuff.
In many ways, this means that you never get to display the best parts of you in your marketing, and you never get to work on the fascinating stuff. You also run the risk of attracting needy and clingy clients who don’t really want to heal and prefer to stay mired in their own misery.
Watch enough people stay “stuck” like that, for so long, when they are your clients, and it can knock your self esteem as a healer hugely. Detachment is your key here.
Lack of knowledge and vocabulary is also part of the problem of why people get so offended… they carry misinterpretations of the information and apply those, instead of being able to read the piece with open-mindedness and clarity.
If you understand how the evolution of the journey happens, this isn’t a problem, because you will evolve into understandings of terminology - just like how the new words and knowledge appear as you level up more.
However, on a planet of “my subjective truth” where everyone is "entitled to their opinion", and believes their opinion is the highest knowledge, this becomes a problem.
So "facing your dark" and "shadow work", which is facing the pain and ego emotions that dwell inside you - and mastering them - gets people believing you’re talking Satanism.
They won’t go out and research though, or clarify that they understand: they will simply assume they’re right and then go at you in public.
If you were doing this for your journey, that would be okay, but when this is your marketing stream, the attacks can scare off potential new customers.
It will ONLY get worse as you progress further along the path and the chasm between you and others grows even more.
Here's an article of spiritual jargon terms that make your journey easier: http://lifecoachestoolbox.com/index.php/spiritual-jargon-that-will-greatly-simplify-your-journey
People want to be spoon-fed… so lots of push marketing
This is not unique to spiritual marketing at all - it’s probably common to all types of marketing today. You have to repeatedly get out there and engage in marketing activities that find people and drive them to your content.
However, the spiritual and personal development journeys mean that when people are shifting and working through their layers, their mind goes foggy and they can’t recall much of anything.
So it’s not enough to deliver the content once and hope that people will keep it on hand for when they need it… you have to deliver the content to them, at the right time, when it’s relevant to them.
This is made way harder by the fact that journeyers isolate themselves and don’t go online much when they’re shifting!
This isn’t crucial to survival, it’s considered a luxury
If you asked me, I’d say this is crucial to survival… and across the decades of my personal healing journey, I regularly spent my last pennies on healing sessions. Nothing was more valuable than healing to me.
However, the social view is that this is a luxury - not necessary to the "real world survival issues" of life.
So the moment people don’t have money, yours will be among the first costs to be cut. So you may be doing well with new and regular clients, and then hit a month or three where all of a sudden no one has money to do business with you - and you have to start the hunt for new clients all over again.
And, as above, you have to hit people when they are shifting the issue and it is relevant to them.
As you shift, you won’t relate to the same clients anymore
Over time, this is going to get more and more difficult to do because your path is going to take you to places where you no longer relate to your clients. Drop enough mirrors and you’ll have to attract a whole different group of clients.
Free Mirrors resources at http://lifecoachestoolbox.com/newmirrors/ and 300 free resources at http://lifecoachestoolbox.com/index.php/free-diagnostics-tools
Notable among these levels where you will suddenly stop relating to people, is Christ Consciousness…. when you go from “Source" and a "Higher Power" to using words like God and discussing religion, people get very offended - including religious people.
The conflict that you will face, and choice you have to make, though, is are you willing to stall or delay your own journey in order to serve people’s needs and give them what they want?
After all, you’ve only become the teacher as a result of your journey’s trajectory. Are you willing to stop growing in order to teach people what they’re comfortable accepting?
Balancing the conflict of editing what you share, and teaching what you need to teach in order to continue growing, is going to be a constant bug bear for you on your teaching journey. Every time you edit for people, it is going to slow you down and irritate you more and more.
You may look very bipolar for a while as you flip flop between catering to their wants and then standing in your beliefs.
Any PR expert will tell you that looking bipolar in media is not a good idea.
Lack of word of mouth and social media movement
Another thing you’re not expecting is the word of mouth, and word of mouse, or social media LACK of movement.
Regardless of the type of advertising your business does, at the end of the day, it is people telling each other about you that brings business to your door on an ongoing basis, and helps you grow your client fold.
However, in the development game, you’re dealing with a VERY niche group of clients - and often a VERY small market to start with.
Even among that market, there are people who don’t know enough for you to be able to market to them… they might never have experienced an actual healing before, or know what healing can be applied to, for example. Very rarely will you find people who can distinguish between modalities and have a broad range of knowledge.
So your reach is limited to a confined group from the outset - and most of them happen to be isolated loners. Just like you and me LOL ;)
So just like us, they have a limited circle they share anything with, and that circle often includes people they would never speak to about spirituality.
I hear this often from people - they’re too ashamed to post a question, thought or idea on their Facebook feeds, or any social media. They’re too scared to let anyone know they are spiritual or interested in any of this weird stuff.
Read more about this at http://lifecoachestoolbox.com/index.php/people-think-us-spiritual-types-are-weird
So they don’t like posts, share posts or comment - but they do read. You can reduce the average return on digital marketing ten times on spiritually related content - it’s as low as 0,05% to 0,2%. That’s how low the numbers of engagement will be compared to those who see and read the piece.
And then they project that out onto you, even when they are brave enough to share. Can’t tell you how often I get asked if people CAN share something off my site or my feeds.
Even though I post PUBLICLY, people’s fear of sharing spiritual and development content is so huge, that they ask permission on an instance to instance basis to share the content out.
So, as a result, you have to treat spiritual and healing marketing as if you are always building from scratch - and find ways to create one on one contact with clients you already have in order to keep momentum going.
You can’t just blast stuff, because people are very wrapped in their own journeys and the personal examples playing on their lives, and so if you get the content ANGLE wrong, they will just gloss over what you have to say.
So if they are having money issues, you have to be speaking about money issues… if they’re in Twin Flame heaven or hell, you have to speak about that to get their attention.
Even though the meat of the spiritual journey is in the boring information and layers, people don’t take a learning approach to this: people use spirituality to improve the specific parts of their life that they want to focus on.
So unless you hit them with the CONTENT FOCUS of what they are currently focused on, you stand little to no chance of getting their attention.
It’s hard to title pieces
Speaking of the content you have to share… it’s really difficult to title pieces in the spiritual game.
Clickbait is something we all know about because it’s so prevalent: juicy pictures and titles that get you to click through.
A lot of the topics we talk about however are not so sexy and glamorous - and because you’re fighting people’s content association filters, they will gloss over the stuff they think is not immediately applicable to them.
So people will only learn in soundbytes, and you can’t rely them on having knowledge you may have written in an earlier piece.
Editors often complain that us spiritual types want to get too advanced… but from our point of view, it’s because we’ve been stuck talking about boring basics for years.
But if you want to achieve a wider reach, you’re gonna be stuck talking about basics for a really long time LOL :)
It makes you aware of why we lack expert teachers… experts are interested in focusing at their level of knowledge, what they are learning… just like the students want to stay focused on the basics that they are learning :)