Up Level Success Series

Article 1 – What’s Focal Is Causal


I’ve been in the coaching space for almost 5 years now, and delivered pretty much every model out there.  Masterminds, group coachings, 1-2-1 mentoring, digital products, continuity programmes, retreats…

But in early 2018 I conceptualised and launched a brand new programme that has produced the highest conversion rate of results for my clients…

(Quantified by a positive return on their investment within the first 6 months) than from any programme I’ve delivered before.

  • In the last 9 months I’ve seen clients go from having NO programme at all to just shy of £20,000 of sales within 5 WEEKS of starting…  
  • Or from closing £50,000 of sales from just ONE webinar
  • Or even shifting away from a £97 digital product that wasn’t selling to £40,000 of premium priced coaching sales in 2 months

That programme is called the Authority Accelerator.

…which I created with the sole purpose of taking coaches and trainers who are just getting started or stuck in the time for money loop…

And redesigning their business models to leverage their expertise (i.e. ascend above time for money) and set up effective systems to attract a predictable and consistent flow of high paying clients.  

This concept is, of course, nothing new.  

Every business owner in the world wants more and higher paying customers and clients, and if you’re like me then every time you login to Facebook, Instagram or Youtube you’re likely to be bombarded with similar messages from every man and his dog as to how all you need is a laptop and an online diary system and you can be billing £100k/month in the next week or so as an expert…

So I set myself the task of analysing the Authority Accelerator itself, to understand it’s principles on a deeper level of psychology and influence to pinpoint what in its DNA has led to these results for those that have been through it.  This research and analysis has led to this series of articles where I want to highlight the key ingredients that you can take and implement in your own coaching business.

In this, the first article, I want to highlight a finding that is so fundamental, powerful yet beautifully simple, I believe it to be the shortest lever anyone can pull in their own coaching business to get the greatest change and results.

“What’s Focal Is Causal”

As I was reading Robert Cialdini’s book, “Presuasion”, I came across the concept of “What is focal is causal”, or to flesh the statement out further, when things become focal in attention, that focus is seen to have causal properties i.e. have the ability to make events occur.

I have to say that the research cited by Dr Shelly Taylor from the University of California (UCLA) created a genuine jaw dropping moment for me.  

In a series of experiments, observers watched and listened to conversations that had been scripted so neither discussion partner contributed more than the other.  The observers, however, were positioned so that some could see the face of one of the parties over the shoulder of the other, and the other observers vice-versa. The observers were then asked who had more influence in the conversation.

The result was always the same; whomever’s face was more visible was judged to be more causal.

For sure – it’s fairly obvious that by putting out consistent content, in the form of blogs and videos, you will build your authority in front of your audience – and increased authority leads to increased trust, which in turn should theoretically lead to more sales.

But when we take this research into consideration and dig down to another level of understanding, is it actually possible to create the same effect (more sales) without even having to build up trust, but by merely getting the focussed attention of an audience with consistency which creates a subconscious link to causality?

If so, then this neatly answers one of my first questions as to why the Authority Accelerator creates results for those who have been through the training that are so much better that other ‘marketing’ courses.

The Importance Of Building The “Ecosystem”

One of the drivers that brought me to create the Authority Accelerator was the belief the the traditional marketing ‘funnel’ is on it’s way out, and is a truly inefficient way of bringing in new clients.  

It’s been my experience that when coaches and trainers get started – they hit their existing networks and communities, networks that already know/like/trust them and have an awareness of the outcome on offer.

This is called ‘low hanging fruit’, and can create the perception that coaching is pretty easy cash as there is often an influx of sales when you launch your new venture.  The problem, of course, comes when all the low hanging fruit has been picked and sales to dry up…

At this point you’ve got 2 options:

(i)  Switch on the hustle mode.  

You hit social media organically 10 times a day, get out to every networking event you can and beg for as many referrals as possible.

There’s nothing wrong with this – it will bring in sales!

(Largely down to the fact that our newly found concept of ‘what’s focal is causal’ is kicking in – but for a very small amount of people…)  

The real problem with this approach is you’ll always hit a glass ceiling of income, and probably have to work pretty damn hard for it.

(ii)  Turn on the cold traffic.  

The second choice is to chuck a funnel together and stick some traffic into it.  

Look, I’ll be honest here. Anyone can cobble together a ‘funnel’. Most people can even get a half decent ad up to get traffic there.  But for the majority of folks, you’re going to be getting some mildly qualified traffic coming into a funnel at a cost per lead that’s too high to make the model work, and within a few days, when they haven’t opened your first email, or watched your webinar or even downloaded that lead magnet they asked for…  

They’ll just be left rotting away on your database. If they’re lucky you may remember to send out an email every month or 2…

So what’s the solution here?

It’s to build out an ‘ecosystem’, not a ‘funnel’, that captures the most relevant traffic and keeps them engaged in your ecosystem, being value bombed on a daily basis (without you having to slog it out on the content creation machine), with total consistency and predictability.  

During the course of the 90 day Authority Accelerator programme, my clients build out their ecosystems with 7 different strategies to capture and nurture the most relevant audiences in a systemised manner.

Just one of these methods is to create a video view audience, on Facebook.  

Very simply – this is an audience of people who have watched certain % of one of your content videos.

There’s plenty of options we can use – I personally like to create videos in the 5 minute bracket and then build an audience of those who watch 25%+ of it.  

(In the modern world of distractions – if someone is watching over a minute of any video you have focussed attention!).

When you’ve built this audience – we can then re-target with more content as well as calls to action to create momentum in your ecosystem.

This video was taken from an Inner Circle Group Coaching session to explain the concept whilst I was still in the testing phase:

And, by creating this ecosystem where we can setup the systems to place follow on nurture content in front of those who enter it at a specific time and frequency, we are able to leverage the principle of “what’s focal is causal” into our own business without the need to be posting 10 times a day, travelling hundreds of miles every week or even to spend lots of money on putting unqualified traffic into our inefficient funnels…

However – there is a warning attached:

Although we’ve now linked focus to causality – this doesn’t necessarily link to a positive causality for the observer.  Attention is only successful when it has merit, and if we bring attention to a bad message it may, in-fact, backfire.

In the next article in this series I’m going to focus more on gaining the attention itself in the first place, how to craft a message that both attracts and holds attention and why your market is looking for an outcome that benefits them.

But before we move to that – I suggest you do an exercise to audit what audiences you have, or are building right now, and how often you are seen in-front of them.  If it’s not daily, you need to develop systems that will automate your message to the right person, at the right time and in the right state of mind.