Marcus Blankenship is a coach of managers of technical teams. What I love about Marcus is how much he was able to focus so squarely in a niche within a niche. He is a manager expert but he’s focused on those who find themselves managing technical teams or have been bumped up from being a developer into managing roles. He identified the pain-points, the challenges, the transitions that that type of person needs to go through, and he built a very successful coaching business out of that. We talk about personal branding, content marketing, positioning, and tips about managing a technical team.
How to productize a coaching business? I get that question a lot. So if you think about this, focus on staying solo, and want to leverage your time, your expertise and experience in any sort of coaching environment, Marcus is the guy to follow and you’ll want to listen to this episode.
[1:40] How Marcus arrived to niche down to coach “accidental” and novice technical managers.
- “I didn’t know coaching was a job, that you could charge money for.”
- “Agency owners are accidental technical managers. People who’d grown their company into a point where they now really need to be managers.”
- “Owners are some of the easiest people to extract money from, because they have so much on the line, they have everything at risk.”
- “Founders are afraid to be the boss.”
[10:08] Marcus’ current tiers of service. Specifics on coaching structure, prices, commitment, number of clients, agendas and frameworks. Bringing experts in groups calls.
[17:12] How to overcome the anxiety of focusing too tightly and turning away clients. Churn.
- “So part of the fact I reduce churn, is being picky [in the selection of clients].”
[24:32] Setting coaching goals. Common themes Marcus encounter when surveying tech managers: identity crisis, time management, conflict management. Experiences in scaling his coaching services.
- “Time is a much bigger problem than I originally thought.”
- “If I’m not a coder, does that mean I’m a manager? ’cause I don’t like managers.”
- “Coaching is a real practice that deserves an educational background.”
[34:05] Marketing. First 30 days of a new lead. Writing daily vs weekly evergreen content. Overcoming the fear of giving “too much” advice for free.
- “There is no substitution for regularity, consistency.”
- “A low production value doesn’t mean you don’t have high quality content.”
- “The more they pay for advice, the more likely they’ll act on it.”
- Marcus Blankenship on Twitter
- Marcus Blankenship’s Coaching Website
- Habits that Ruin your Technical Team Book
- Brennan Dunn Masterclass
- Philip Morgan – Website – On this podcast
- Elizabeth Grace Saunders – Time Management Coach
- Paul Jarvis Sunday Dispatches – Paul on this podcast
- Marcus’ YouTube Channel
- Ramit Sethi