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How to Differentiate in Business While Staying Authentic
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22 min

How to Differentiate in Business While Staying Authentic

0 min read
 | Mar 30, 2015
  1. Home
  2. Business Coach
  3. How to Differentiate in Business While Staying Authentic


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In this episode of the Better Business Coach podcast, author, entrepreneur, and all-around visionary JV Crum III brings a fresh perspective to business coaching. He advocates for authenticity, urging coaches to embrace their unique passions and strengths. He goes on to challenge the scarcity mindset, instead sharing an abundance approach for greater impact and success. This insightful conversation is a call to action for embracing your true self to create value and prosperity. A must-listen for anyone looking to make a genuine difference in their professional journey.

In This Episode We Talk About

  1. The importance of differentiating yourself in business coaching
  2. Identifying the type of coach you want to be
  3. Overcoming fear and discomfort around charging for your services
  4. Embracing an abundance mindset, even when client demand is high
  5. The three-step process to find your coaching niche
  6. How to match your inner self with the right type of clients
  7. Overcoming the scarcity mentality for financial and professional success
  8. The importance of charging appropriately for added value in coaching
  9. Creating wealth through coaching

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About JV Crum III

JV Crum III is a best-selling author, marketing and strategy expert, and founder of Conscious World Foundation, an international business coaching and training company that helps conscious entrepreneurs get their gifts out into the world and make a positive impact by building a profitable business. He holds a MBA, law degree, and a Masters in psychology. He is also a serial entrepreneur who has built and sold multiple companies.

About Matthew Pollard

About Matthew Pollard
Called the real deal by Forbes, Matthew is a small business advocate, introvert champion, Rapid Growth® Coach, and keynote speaker. Responsible for five multimillion-dollar success stories before the age of 30, today Matthew is an internationally recognized sales and networking expert, author of the bestselling Introvert’s Edge series, and host of two top-ranked podcasts. His work has transformed over 3500 struggling businesses to date.

Read the Transcript

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Coaches Need a Differentiation Strategy

Matt: Hello everyone, and welcome back to Better Business Coach Podcast. My name’s Matthew Pollard, and as always I am your rapid growth guy. Today I have a very exciting session planned with you. I have with me J V Crum III. He is a best-selling author, marketing and strategy expert and founder of Conscious World Foundation.

He’s also the founder of, which is an international business coaching and training company that helps conscious entrepreneurs get their gifts out to the world and make a positive impact by building a profitable business.

He also holds an MBA, a law degree, and has a Masters in Psychology – and is a serial entrepreneur, who has built and sold his own companies. J V, welcome to the show, and I’m so looking forward to the content that we’ve discussed that we’re gonna be sharing with the listeners today.

J V: Well Matthew, thank you for having me on your show. And first of all, I want to tell you how much I personally love your new podcast. It is such great information, I think every coach should be listening to it.

Matt: Thank you very much. I’m actually very, very excited and humbled by the fact of – all the great reviews that we’re getting. And somebody that has such a terrific podcast like yourself, that I know I listen to all the time – to say that, thank you very much. I really appreciate it. So J V, I know especially for business coaches, which is our primary listenership.

They really want to know how to get their message out. And I know that this is something that you specialise in. You’ve worked with so many different people in helping them get a unique message out there, in such a crowded marketplace. And I was hoping that you could share with the listeners how exactly you do that, and how do you make them unique?

Innovative Companies and Coaches Follow Their Heart

J V: Yep, well the place to really start is – what I think is where a lot of business coaches miss it completely. And it’s where a lot of entrepreneurs miss it, and that is starting with what I call your true north. Now it’s a 3 step process. I work with clients all the time.

I love doing this because it’s what can really differentiate you. But so many people try to differentiate on something that isn’t truly them. It’s not authentic, it’s not real for them. So you’ve gotta go inside to really find out what kind of a business coach are you? Because there’s – it’s not a matter of just looking at a list and saying, “I like those words.” Or, “Those are great keywords, so I’m gonna use them.” It’s a matter of finding out who you are, because who you are is going to be a match for a certain kind of client.

And so you first have to dig down and ask yourself, “What is the heart passion I really have?” Now heart passion’s pretty easy to understand. Because heart passion, you just put your hand on your heart and you ask yourself, “What is it that you’re so passionate about, that you would do it all day long, lose complete track of time – and you’d do it for free, because you get so much joy from it.” Now when you can say all of those, you’d do it all day long, lose track of time, and you’d do it for free, not for customer engagement or focused on a target audience, or what would give you a competitive advantage or serve as a key differentiator or any of that stuff – you’re on the road to your heart passions.

But now ask yourself, what is the difference I want to make? What’s the purpose? So think of purpose as, there’s 2 or 3 differences that you’d really like to make. Now in my case, I like waking people up to their potential. And I would do that with adults, with children. With everything that I do in fact, it really comes down to personal growth and awakening to potential.

And giving people tools so that they can do something with that potential that really matters to them, to other people, to the world in which we live. So for yourself, there’s going to be some difference that you’re just– If you leave this earth and you haven’t completed that difference, you’re gonna feel like you missed the whole boat. That you had not taken the true path for yourself.

And then you’ve gotta look at your strengths. Because each of us as a coach has different strengths. I’m really great at mindset and strategy and execution, and so that’s what I focus on. Now Matthew, you’re really great at really – you’re such a good salesperson, and I love sales, but I love the mindset even more.

And you really have focused on sales, so you’re gonna focus on sales. If you’re listening to this, you have some specific strengths that are so natural for you that while you’ve probably gone and gotten training in ’em – because you love ’em and you want to be your best.

The truth is, you probably did ’em better than 80% of the world before you ever got a moment of training. Because they just came to you. I can think strategy in my sleep, it’s just easy for me. There’s something that you can think in your sleep as well. So you’ve got to get that true north. So once you’re clear about who you are, then you’ve gotta go out there and ask, “What’s the–?” I call it the convergence factor.

Find Your True Niche Market

There’s probably 100 niches that you could work with, but you gotta find the ones that are gonna be a good match for you. They’re really right now seeking the kinds of things that you’re excited about providing. They’ve got the money to pay for it. They really want it, and you’re gonna really be a great match for each other. But now that you’ve got the true north and you’re beginning to get an idea of who’s that avatar you really want to be working with.

Forget what might be the ideal – that you read in some magazine. Or that, “This is the top kind of client to get, they pay the most.” Go for the client that’s right for you, and when you find the right client, you’re gonna get plenty of business.

That’s not gonna be the problem, because here’s what you got to do. You’ve got to create a platform. You must have a platform for yourself, so let’s define, “What is a platform?” Platform’s pretty simple. It’s any time you’ve got, and I call it a “microphone that you can use, and there are people out there that are your avatars that want to hear you on that microphone.”

So in my case, I love talking. I would rather talk, I’ve got a great best-selling book – but it wasn’t as much joy for me to write my book as it is for me to get on a podcast and have guests or be a guest on podcasts. Or be on radio shows, I just love doing the talking – so I love to coach. And you probably like talking as well.

But you might also like reading and writing. So if you like to write, maybe you like blogs? Maybe you want to get articles out there? You’ve got to find what is the avenue that’s gonna work for you that you’re gonna connect. Maybe you like doing a webinar and you want to get that webinar with lots of affiliates? That’s really your shtick, and you’re really good at that.

Or you like being a guest on other people’s webinars. But there’s going to be some platform, some way that’s going to feel so right for you, that you’ll be excited about building that plat– It won’t be work. Because I assure you, I am now recording – we are having 4 podcasts with my non-profit by August. And I’m now working – right now, on 3 podcasts for Conscious Millionaire.

And the 2 days a week that I’m working on my podcast are my favourite days. Why? Because they don’t seem like work. This week I have one day I’m interviewing 8 people. Today I’m on 2 interviews myself. But it doesn’t seem like work, because it’s so much fun.

Let Your Business Stand Alone – Find Your Calling

There’s some platform that’s right for you, and it’s going to– You don’t have to worry about even the kind of sub-products that you’re gonna create around your coaching, ’cause you want to create digital products. That’s a whole ‘nother conversation.

But every person has a way that’s just natural for them. And guess what? There are going to be people who will find you no matter what you do. You don’t need to go searching for your target customers. There are people who read blogs, and they might – and there are people who listen to podcasts, and listen to different audios and like to watch videos.

So you might put videos all over the internet and put ’em at YouTube and put ’em Facebook, and put little ads to them. I mean there’s so many different ways that you can connect. You will connect with your audience in a way that resonates best with you, because that’s how you’re gonna shine.

So you always want to be thinking about how you can go out there, do what you find to be enjoyable – that you feel is your calling. And do it in a way that’s so natural and easy for you that it’ll come across that you really are an expert, because you’ll be at ease at it.

Foster Brand Loyalty and Customer Satisfaction through Passion

Matt: That makes perfect sense, and the thing I really like, and it really feeds back to what we were talking about in Better Business Coach session 2 and 3. Which is – work out the true benefits that you provide and the true people that you help and that you get the best results out of.

J V: Right.

Matt: Because anything less, you’re not gonna enjoy it as much – and you’re not gonna be able to offer as much value. ie. You’re not gonna make as much money as you could of either. And you and I, I mean – obviously I’ve got the nickname “the rapid growth guy.” I make that very clear in this podcast. But it really is embodiment of everything that I offer. I mean, just before we got on this podcast, we had a conversation about your new Conscious World Foundation.

And we were having a whole conversation about ways in which that you can get a scholarship, which is just a phenomenal thing that you’re doing. And ways in which you could perhaps create rapid growth inside your foundation.

It’s because it’s what I love. I love to share ideas. And everybody has that thing that they love that, again, they wouldn’t charge for – it’s just so nice that they can.

J V: And that’s exactly right, and that’s why I have Conscious Millionaire. Because I want people to be financially successful. However, it’s connecting with the higher consciousness. It’s doing something that has a higher purpose. It’s using your mindset and moving through the levels of resistance that you might have and changing your belief systems.

And doing something that helps the whole world. So I like attracting people who really want this to be a better world. I like working with those kinds of people, so Conscious Millionaire’s perfect for me. There’s gonna be something, that just like Matthew and I have our particular niches – you’re gonna have your particular niche. And you’re gonna be great at it, as long as you choose what is authentic and real for you.

Scarcity vs. Abundance

Matt: Brilliant. Now J V, I know that a lot of people pick up and do what they love, but the problem they have is they struggle with charging for it, even if it’s a differentiated and unique business model. And they tend to devalue themselves so, so much. And I know that you, you talk about extensively in your shows – the mindset to achieve abundance, and having that abundance mentality. Would you mind imparting some of that wisdom with my audience?

J V: Sure, absolutely. Let’s think of scarcity and abundance as a continuum. It’s not an all or nothing, there’s no person on earth that’s completely embodying scarcity. Although there’s some that might be 99% there, and there’s nobody that’s completely embodying abundance.

Most of us are some kind of a blend. But when we move more towards the abundance end is when we become more profitable, more financially successful. And also, a lot of times when we make the bigger difference out there, because you and I both know that when people– You know yourself, I know myself. If I pay $5000 for something, versus $500 – well by golly, I want to get some value back, right? So I’m probably gonna do the work.

Matt: That’s exactly right.

J V: Right? Because I’m not gonna pay $5000 for a program, and I didn’t get at least 10, 20, 50 thousand dollars’ worth of value back – ’cause I’m not that kinda guy. I’m not gonna be happy just wasting $5000. But honestly, if I paid $500 or if I paid $50 – now, if I paid $50, that’s like if I ever get around to it.

Matt: I agree with you, and I’ve had people that have sold things for a certain amount of money, and it might have a price tag for $10 000. And when I buy the product, because I’ve spent $10 000 on a seminar – and I’m continually going to seminars. I will always complete it.

And there are other people that offer me their seminar for free on the basis that I may pick up consultation with them or something in the future – and I never even get through their seminar, because I just didn’t value it as fully as I probably could have if they had have charged me for it.

As a Business Owner, Get Comfortable Charging What You’re Worth!

So I was gonna segue into – a lot of people have trouble with– Them feeling like they’re imposing on people though, and devaluing the true benefits that they can provide, even when they provide amazing results and an incredible customer experience. How would you suggest they deal with those situations?

J V: Yep, well I think we – we’re talking about several issues. Let’s talk about money purpose, wound. Because it’s something I haven’t talked about for a while on any interview, and it’s in my chapter on abundance in my book.

So I realised, because I work with so many conscious people. And coaches are good people. People don’t go into being coaches generally unless they really want to help other people, they’ve– So most people who go into coaching have a good heart.

They genuinely care about people. However, I created this concept, money purpose, wound after I met so many caring good people who were broke. And yet they had great skills and were adding great value. And I’m going, “Something is clearly wrong here.”

And I realised it wasn’t the value proposition, it was the mindset. And the mindset went something like this, “I got these gifts, and it’s my obligation to go out and change and help people, right? And because I’m supposed to do this, I should do it for free.” And the fact that – and there’s the one that gets them in trouble. “The fact that somebody doesn’t have any money shouldn’t be a reason that I wouldn’t help them, right?”

Matt: Yeah.

J V: And then you go down this long little no win alley to, “I am gonna help all the people who really aren’t even helping themselves. Who really aren’t all that motivated, ’cause I’m gonna go save them.” You might not be saying that, but that’s really what you’re doing, right?

Matt: Yep.

Do You Want to Make Money, or Save the World?

J V: And listen, saving people – if you want to be in the salvation business, either go to religion or create a non-profit, but then again – you should only be helping people who really want the help and are gonna do something with it. But if you’re gonna be in coaching as a business, you need to get clear about 1 thing. You’re adding value, and you deserve to receive value back.

And if you don’t keep that in balance, you are doing a disservice to everyone. You are not serving your customer, because the customer’s not gonna value what they got from you. After all, you practically gave it to them. Why should they? You didn’t value it, you didn’t charge enough. And you’re not going to be served, because you want to be paying your bills – so therefore you won’t be expanding your business, therefore you won’t be helping more people.

Let me tell you, cash flow will take care of almost every problem in a business. Because if you’re running out of ways that you can get your message out there – the moment you’ve got plenty of cash, you’ve got capacity all of a sudden. Because you can hire one more person, and now you’ve got a whole new set of ways – you can create new products that you didn’t have time to create before.

If you don’t charge what you’re really worth, people will not value it. They won’t get the work done, they won’t get the results they have gotten. You should be asking them and charging fees that are truly worth what you are providing.

So ask yourself, “What do you really want your client to get?” Multiply that by at least 3 to 5. So let’s take 5. And this – and you’re a business coach, so let’s look at the money factor. Because that’s how they’re gonna look at it.

If they’re not making more money, they’re not gonna be happy with you as a business coach, ’cause that’s why they came to you one reason or another, right? So if you’re gonna go, “If I’m gonna work with somebody for 3 months, and they are going have $25 000 more bottom line – shouldn’t I get at least $5000? Isn’t that reasonable for all of us?”

Because you’re going to help them take that $5000 and leverage it into 25. And if it’s $50 000, maybe you should be getting 5 to 10 thousand for working for them. It’s still a great proposition. They invested and leveraged their money back 5 fold. Where can you do that in the stock market or real estate on a consistent basis?

Can You Really Triple Your Prices?

Matt: That’s exactly right. People don’t see their advice as truly valuable. However, if it affects their bottom line in such a significant way – and as a business coach, just purely getting a business owner to work on their business rather than in their business can have such a substantial difference. You will get those results. It’s funny, when you say that people don’t value the advice you’re giving unless you charge a significant amount – you’re so right.

When I first started coaching clients, I used to charge a few hundred dollars. And what I found was people wouldn’t do the homework that I set them. People wouldn’t do – if I told them to watch a video about niche marketing, they wouldn’t do it. And then I’d have to continually explain it. And what I realised was people bought into the idea of me, but they didn’t buy into the value of me.

J V: Right.

Matt: And as a result, they weren’t doing their homework. So what I then did is, I tripled my price. And what I found – almost overnight – is all of my new clients did all of their homework. And the success I got with them tripled, quadrupled – more than made up for the fact that I was charging more. That’s a different kind of customer feedback! And they even became brand advocates in many cases, recommending me to others.

Raising my prices allowed me to say things like, “What I find is any person in sales niche marketing and differentiation coaching should be able to pay themselves off within a period of 5 or 6 hours. Because the low lying fruit is generally so, so obvious to them that they can offer advice that will turn profit lines and rapidly grow a business so, so quickly.”

And that kind of message, that kind of distinct advantage, what I was charging was believable. Where if I had have charged, “Oh I’ll give my advice for free, pay me what it’s worth.” Or, “Pay me a few hundred dollars.” There’s no way I could sell the message of what I was actually trying to accomplish for them.

How Wealth is Actually Created

J V: Now that’s the scarcity end of what we’re talking about. The scarcity end says there’s not enough customers, and there is not enough money to go around. “It’s a pie, and I am going to have to fight for my share of it. And therefore I don’t want to charge too much, ’cause I may not be able to find anyone in my target market.” Now the truth, let’s just debunk that one right now.

Because the truth of how wealth is actually created, is it’s by adding more value, period. And last time I checked, there’s 7 billion people on the face of the earth, and there’s no limit on the amount of value we can all add to one another. Therefore, if you make a million dollars this year – and I want you to be thinking that way, “How can I bring in a million dollars this year?” Right?

You did not take from anyone. In fact, you only added and added and added value to all that you touched. And all the people you touch go out there and they touch people. And they’re sense of who they are changed and magnified and was uplifted by your work. And now they’re gonna go out and uplift other people. And it becomes this major, major ripple.

If you add a million dollars’ worth of value, or paid a million dollars in return – then what you’re really doing is adding 10, 15, 20, maybe 100 million dollars of value to the world. Because everyone’s gonna go out and touch other people, uplift them, they get more value, they get more value, they get more value – that’s how we grow an economy right there.

As A Coach, You’re Giving Huge Value

Matt: That makes perfect sense, and really important just to extract the key principle about what you’re sharing there. Is a coach shouldn’t have the mentality that they’re taking money from the client.

J V: Right.

Matt: They should have a mentality that they’re really giving value, for which they get some return. But the echo of the value that they give is echoed eternal. In through the client, the client’s customer’s, the client’s supplier’s – out to a complete society experience for everybody that’s involved in that butterfly effect.

J V: Well, and the thing that we haven’t touched on that’s a critical piece of this. But we’ve kinda hinted at it, so let’s bring it out. And that’s that you’ve got to have clear criteria about who you want to work with. And part of that criteria is what they’re gonna pay you, and part of that criteria is what they have already had a success in their life.

Because you and I both know, it is a lot easier to take somebody from a half million to a million. Or a million to 2 million, than it is from $50 000 to $100 000 in revenue. Just a lot easier. Because they have already come to very big differences, and already have a mindset that says – and reference points for success. So they’re willing to pay more – and guess what? They’re gonna be a better client. Because they’re gonna get better results and they’re in–

I had a client that in 5 months went from 1 to 2 million in revenue and had $80 000 a month in profits. But went from 1 to 2 million. That’s a whole lot different than going from 1 to 200 thousand. Yes you can do that, but I find that the further up the chain you go -in terms of how much success somebody has already had. The better client they typically make, the more that they will pay you, the happier that they are, and they’re more – they’re absolutely gonna do everything that you discuss with them.

What About a Client Who’s Just Starting Out?

Matt: J V, thank you for sharing that, because that is so true. And a lot of people struggle with trying to get clients to pay large dollar values per hour when it’s a new start business – because there’s such a little amount of capital to start. So don’t be disheartened when you’re asking clients that you meet perhaps out in friendship groups or in networking events – if they don’t agree that you’re worth that specific value.

What they’re really saying is that they’re not big enough yet to be able to work with you. I find that for a lot of the businesses that I work with, depending on their size – they either work with me on a consulting contract or a coaching contract on a month by month basis. Or will come in and do something like my, “How to get more customers program,” to get some value straight away. And then go away, start the business – or implement those ideas, and come back a few months later once they’ve reaped the benefits of that advice. And then they’re there and ready to want to move in to long term coaching.

So don’t be disheartened if people are not going to jump on month by month coaching basis straightaway if you’re gonna be charging lots of dollars per hour. You can also change what you charge based on the size of the business. Because a corporate business will require a lot more preparation before you go in the door. Where a small business may require a lot less.

And Now for the Hard Question

Now J V, I want to ask you the hard question, which is – it’s okay for you. You’ve got a law degree, an MBA, a Masters in Psychology, you’re a serial entrepreneur and you’ve built and sold a bunch of companies. Plus you’ve got a successful podcast.

How exactly does somebody that’s starting now, who’s got no money in the bank, have an abundance mentality? However I’m looking at the clock and I know we’re getting close to 20 minutes now. So I’m going to press pause on this interview, and we’ll pick that up in the very next episode.

So I’m going to post it at exactly the same time like I normally do, so you can move straight into it if you’ve got time. But for now, thank you so much for listening to Better Business Coach podcast. If you haven’t already, please take a second to post your review on iTunes, I would really appreciate it.

All of the wonderful responses that I’m getting on those reviews – it’s just, it’s so overwhelming and it’s so fantastic to see. So for now, thank you so much for listening today, and I look forward to seeing you in the very next episode, cheers.



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