How to get coaching clients on Instagram

How can you leverage your Instagram account to build trust, show off your experience and get more high-paying coaching clients?

I’ve got a lot of experience when it comes to leveraging Instagram as a powerful tool in my own business (My Instagram Success Summit was hugely popular, generating 22,000 new leads). And now, I’m sharing these tips to help you get get in front of your target audience and land more high-paying clients.

With that said, here are 19 practical examples of how to get more ideal coaching clients from Instagram for your coaching practice. These strategies are designed to work across any coaching niche and can often be modified to work across other visual social media platforms.

19 actionable strategies to get high-paying coaching clients on instagram

Use Reels

An example of Instagram reels for health coaching services

I’d love to use an example from one of our clients because I think it really shows the power of reels. Carl Cincinnato, founder of Migraine World Summit, worked with me to grow his email list to 100,000 subscribers.

The Migraine Strong Instagram account posts reels regularly. The reels share simple facts for migraine sufferers, as well as common questions and answers, and some behind-the-scenes videos from team members.

Reels are a popular type of content on Instagram, and followers respond well to informative, short, useful clips. You can repurpose content you have already created (for example, you can use podcast clips, or short sections from online workshops).

Reels can communicate everything from your personality to the services you provide to the knowledge you have. It’s a simple and easy way to build trust with your audience and attract new clients for your coaching services.

Promote a Virtual Summit

Instagram is the perfect place to promote a virtual summit. You can post reels, stories, and grid posts giving your potential summit attendees a glimpse of what your summit can offer them.

I’m passionate about virtual summits, having seen huge success with my own. I’ve gained 5,000 to 25,000 new leads for each summit, with my Instagram Success Summit giving me 22,000 new leads alone. Launching over 15 summits and hosting over 400 speakers, I’ve got a lot of experience here.

If I can convince you to do one thing, it’s to look into running your own summit and advertising it on Instagram. It’s so worth getting your summit advertised to a larger audience. I’ve made multiple six figures every year off the back of these summits and make money from them every day, so I’m always going to vouch for them.

Plus, you can put your summits on evergreen, selling them as digital products. These are excellent for advertising on Instagram: just show off the content you’ve already worked hard to create, and make sure you re-post them every now and then for new followers.

Promote Your Podcast

Promoting podcast interviews on Instagram

Let’s take a look at one of my clients at EHQ and how they’re using Instagram. Sara Artemisia, a Plant Spirit Wisdom Teacher & Coach, worked with me to grow her email list by 5,000 people and generate thousands of dollars. I also helped her to pivot to a new niche in a few weeks, and she’s leaning into that niche with a podcast.

Podcasts can easily be repurposed as Instagram content by taking small snippets and posting them as a reel. This is a great way to show your expertise in your specific niche, and it gives potential coaching clients a chance to get to know your personality.

Write Compelling Thumbnails

Instagram account of a business coach with blended coaching niche

James Wedmore is a business coach blending financial advice, growth strategies, and wellness. This is a niche that is performing well for him, as he has around 127k followers at the time of writing.

What I like about James’s content is the fact that he has a way with words:

Instagram reels with compelling thumbnails designed to attract potential customers

James’s content – mostly reels – has some really intriguing thumbnails with some interesting titles. These titles are going to reel people in (pun unintended). They make you want to click through and find out more.

Key Takeaway: don’t just focus on images or reels. Think about what you’re writing in your thumbnails. The thumbnails will make people click through and watch the reel. Hooking people in with an intriguing title is really key.

Write Interesting Captions

On a similar note, you need to have a strong caption. Not too long, informative, and interesting to read. Crucially, you need to have a CTA here. If someone has clicked through to read your caption, they may already be interested in what you have to say.

So if you’re advertising a webinar, a downloadable resource, or a webinar, make sure you point viewers in that direction (usually in the form of a ‘link in bio’ line or similar).

Think About Aesthetics

Instagram account shows business owners with coaching experience

Sue B Zimmerman and Morgan Sutton are Instagram experts, business owners, and coaches. Their content is designed for women wanting to increase their income. They cover everything to do with building a social media profile, from creating content to finding new followers to standing out on Instagram.

I really like their profile because it’s a good example of simple but recognizable branding:

Instagram profile shows feed with consistent content

They stick with a limited range of fonts and an easy color palette of white, purple, and teal. Their Instagram feed is very consistent. This means that when their posts pop up, followers will instantly know who they are.

Key Takeaway: think about your branding and the kind of image you want to give to your clients. Create content that looks consistent, so that they instantly know who you are. This gives your account a professional feel while still being friendly and relatable.

Take a Stand

Instagram profile of an entrepreneur that offers coaching services

Morgan Bullock is an entrepreneur and former FSU softballer. Her content is aimed at female athletes, helping them to have a better mindset.

I like Morgan’s content because she’s not afraid to discuss some tough subjects, including sexism, anxiety, and self-esteem. But her content is positive, upbeat, and optimistic. Her life is inspiring, and her posts are genuinely empowering.

Instagram feed belonging to a coach featuring positive type of content

It doesn’t matter what niche you work in, your clients want to see success. They want to feel inspired by you to improve, succeed, and grow.

Key Takeaway: Be positive. Give your potential clients some optimism about their futures and share your success stories on Instagram. It gives people hope and a positive vibe will attract them to you.

Share Your Origin Story

Instagram account showcasing a coach with an inspiring success story

Tony Robbins is an interesting case study with 7 million followers on Instagram.

What makes Tony unique is his personal story. He comes from an abusive home, dropped out of college, and only changed his life when he found a mentor. His success, given the obstacles he has faced, is staggering. It’s hard not to feel inspired by him.

A coach sharing their story on Instagram reels as a form of marketing

While you might not have a dramatic tale to tell, you probably do have something that motivates you to coach other people. As much as you feel comfortable, sharing something of your life story can make people feel more connected to you. Even if you’re trying to get new clients or attract people to a virtual summit or event, you can still inject something of yourself into those posts.

Key Takeaway: Don’t be afraid to share a little bit about your past. You don’t have to share everything, but you can share your ‘origin story’, or the reason why you got into coaching in the first place. Showing your humanity helps potential clients to feel warmer towards you, and to be able to relate to you more personally.

Create a Strong Lead Magnet

Instagram profile showing account of a relationship coach

Rebecca Ore is a relationship coach with over 100k followers on Instagram. She offers 1:1 and group coaching. I like Rebecca’s profile because she gives her followers an incentive to interact with her.

Instagram feed displaying an example of a client acquisition strategy

All of Rebecca’s carousel posts end with a CTA, pointing people toward her free Self Esteem Kit, a PDF you can access by signing up for her email list. She also advises people to listen to her podcast, which can point to her coaching sessions. These pieces of content can be useful for both you and your followers.

Her posts are clever because they give just enough information to intrigue her followers while holding some advice and tips back to include in the lead magnet (in this case, a podcast or a free PDF).

Key Takeaway: What free content can you offer to encourage people to sign up for your email newsletter? Think free printables, PDFs, or one-off podcasts. If people sign up for your email newsletter, they’ll be exposed to more opportunities to work with you, and this will create a sense of authority and show your knowledge in the niche you work in.

Post Often (But Don’t Overwhelm Yourself)

Instagram account featuring a coach with regular updates

Another one of my clients, Janine Bolon, runs a radio show. After working with us, her podcasts are now broadcasting one program across 112 different internet platforms, and they’re also broadcast from a radio station.

Janine posts regularly, but keeps her posts fairly casual and easy to manage: a few selfies, some interesting snaps, and some text-based content advertising her services. Posting frequently sounds overwhelming, but it doesn’t have to be. You don’t have to post a grid photo every day, for example.

Instead, I’d focus on one grid photo every now and then, and Instagram stories as often as you can manage without burning yourself out. Repurposing old content helps here, and you can include some casual snaps of your working day: people like to have a peek behind the curtain, and it doesn’t take too much effort.

Show Your Personality

Instagram account belonging to a career coach

Oriana works with high-earning professionals, coaching them and linking them to new employment opportunities. She has a smaller following than some of the others on this list, but I want to highlight something she does really well.

Instagram feed that shows posts of a coach with personality to attract ideal coaching clients

Oriana has a podcast, the Edgy Entrepreneur, in which she gives advice in a conversational, chatty way. Her personality shines through in every post, and she’s not afraid to be funny and show her human side. Her audience knows she’s a real person with a big personality.

Key Takeaway: Let your personality shine. You will attract clients that get your ‘vibe,’ so don’t pretend to be a professional robot all the time if that’s not what you like to do. That way, people looking for an online coaching business will get a good idea of your coaching style along with your personality.

Show Off Your Credentials

Instagram account belonging to a mental health coach

Nawal Mustafa is a clinical neuropsychology Ph.D. candidate. She posts about the brain, including obsessive thoughts, emotional triggers, anxiety, and emotions. She’s a refreshing and interesting person to follow on Instagram because she provides information backed by her studies.

Instagram posts featuring mental health content

Nawal’s posts are useful because she goes into the way the brain works in detail. This means that her audience feels her knowledge is legit, and that they can trust what she’s telling them.

Key Takeaway: Look at your bio on Instagram. Are you showcasing your qualifications? If not, now’s the time to do it, it will make your clients trust that you know what you’re talking about.

Have Fun With Instagram

Instagram account belonging to a social media marketing coach

Jo King, aka bringtotheparty, is an Instagram coach. So you’d expect her profile to be pretty good. She offers 1:1 training and workshops to help you grow your Instagram account. But what I like about this account is the fact that it’s fun to browse:

Instagram account with a delightful feed for profile visitors to browse

Jo makes her Instagram fun to look at, and her posts are intriguing enough to make people want to click to find out more.

Key Takeaway: Don’t be scared to have fun with your Instagram posts. If you like color and patterns and a lighthearted feel to your social media account, don’t feel you have to be serious instead. Create engaging posts that people will want to click on.

Use Testimonials

Instagram account belonging to an expert with a successful coaching business

Melinda F.Emerson (or the Small Biz Lady on Instagram) is a small business expert, coach, and keynote speaker. She offers coaching for small business owners trying to expand and grow.

Melinda posts a mixture of selfies with some personal updates, advice, and reels. She also posts testimonials and endorsements, which I think is a great tactic for displaying social proof:

Testimonial as a content idea for Instagram post

Here, she’s posted a testimonial from Steve Strauss congratulating her on 25 years in business. This is a great way to show potential high-paying clients that people trust you and have benefited from your experience.

I do the same thing, and I encourage my clients to do it too. Off the back of my virtual summits, for example, I’ve made multiple 6 figures per year ($50,000 from the first summit launch alone). These stats are what convince my clients to work with me, because they know I have the credentials. So don’t be shy about your achievements.

Key Takeaway: Use testimonials and endorsements on your Instagram account. Ask for feedback from previous clients to post on your social media accounts, and you’ll be able to use that to create trust in your potential new clients.

Do Keyword Research

Instagram account belonging to an entrepreneur with a life coaching business

Ed Mylett has a huge following on Instagram. He’s a public speaker, entrepreneur, and mindset coach. He hosts a popular podcast, The Ed Mylett Show. His Instagram account stands out to me because he really understands his audience.

Instagram posts of a coach with popular hashtags

Ed’s audience are looking to increase their performance and gain success. Ed uses a lot of useful keywords: success, discipline, potential, purpose. The thumbnails for his reels – which are sometimes reposted from other creators with their permission – all have these words included.

Instagram allows you to use up to 30 hashtags per post. You can have these in the main caption for your images, or you can post them as a separate comment.

This hides the hashtags away a little, and some people prefer the way this looks. But whether you use hashtags in your caption or in your comments, get on them straight away to build your following.

Key Takeaway: You have limited time to grab the attention of new followers and potential new clients. So, borrow from popular search engine optimization (SEO) best practices and use relevant hashtags with keywords that your ideal prospective clients might be looking for and make sure to include them in your thumbnails and captions.

Engage With Your Community

Instagram account belonging to a CEO with a life coaching business

Valorie Burton has over 40k followers on Instagram. As a life coach, she helps people to overcome their own personal obstacles in order to achieve growth in all areas of their lives.

I like Valorie’s approach to building an online community. She regularly posts uplifting images to her feed (just simple text over a plain background). But she also posts prayers for her followers, as well as posts like ‘What one thing are you grateful for this week?’ Instagram is an engaging platform, and this is a good way to get clients to comment and interact.

Instagram feed displaying posts with motivational quote or prayers

This is clever because it encourages engagement but also makes her community feel cared for. These small kind posts grows trust with her audience and creates a genuine back-and-forth conversation.

Key Takeaway: Engage with your community and make them feel cared for; this helps to grow trust.

Dig Into Your Client’s ‘Why’

Instagram account belonging to a coach with inspirational content

Sandra Glandt is an entrepreneur, and she aims her content at busy working mothers. She posts a lot of inspirational content designed to motivate her ideal clients to work smarter, not harder, to free up time for their families.

And that’s the key thing I like about Sandra’s profile. She knows the ‘why’ for her clients: they want to earn more money to spend more time with their children. And so she digs into that, posting frequently on that very topic.

A good example of a post to attract an ideal client on Instagram

Sandra presents the problem most of her clients are struggling with and offers a solution (working with her or engaging with her content). This is valuable content for attracting new clients.

Key Takeaway: Find out the main thing that motivates your clients and use that as part of your client acquisition strategy on Instagram. You can also leverage client stories to directly digs into that ‘why’.

Use Story Highlights to Your Advantage

Coach who uses Instagram story highlights as a marketing strategy

Brett Bartholomew is a coach focusing on social media and mindset. He posts frequently and honestly about his life, his work, and parenthood.

I’m highlighting Brett’s profile because he takes advantage of the Story Highlights on Instagram.

Instagram story featured in the account's highlights section

The story highlights everything a potential new client would need to find: Brett’s courses, his newsletter, podcast, YouTube, and mentoring. These highlights point clients in the right direction so they can easily find what they’re looking for.

Key Takeaway: Use story highlights to point potential clients in the direction of your coaching services. Make it as easy as possible to find.

Repurpose Your Virtual Workshops

I’m also really passionate about virtual workshops. I think these are a great way to generate income, and they’re an excellent way to introduce yourself (and your knowledge) to high-paying coaching clients.

Some of my own clients have had success with virtual workshops. Jennifer Regular, author and coach, had 16 people sign up to her ‘Confidence Builder Workshop’ right away. Philip Duncan, author and business coach, instantly brought in $6.5k in revenue after learning about workshops from us, and was able to drive people to a call to book in for his high-ticket services. Which led to a further $10k.

Just like virtual summits, workshops are so easy to promote on Instagram. You can take clips from a previous workshop, create a text-based post with client testimonials, and give your potential clients a rundown of what they can expect. Getting high-paying clients into a workshop is a brilliant way to introduce them to you and your coaching services.

Key Takeaways

Now you should have some ideas for your Instagram. If you haven’t posted in a while, it’s about time to get posting again. Instagram is an excellent resource with just a little time and effort.

Want to know more? You can read our workshop mastery blueprint, which is great for coaches. Janine Bolon saw success from working with us:

“From my first workshop, several people joined my group and 1-on-1 coaching program. I intend to run one a month going forward, and I now use the workshops as my primary way of attracting clients!”

There are a lot of ways to attract new clients – check our free training on how to get coaching clients for even more ideas.