Guest post By Janet Switzer
A decade ago, the term “coach” was reserved for sports, and coaching was something that happened on the ball field. Today, coaching, telecoaching, coaching programs and coaches training has become a multi-million dollar industry.
How does coaching differ from the rest of the “training” industry?
Coaches motivate people to action. They help them prioritize their projects and goals. They help them plan their work and work their plan — but they don’t necessarily give them the actual strategies to execute, steps to take, business or marketing plans to follow, nor do they give them financial or legal advice.
In fact, it may surprise you to know that many coaches have no industry expertise whatsoever in the field in which their clients conduct business. Sometimes coaches are personal coaches, helping individuals determine and take action on what would make them most happy in their life.
How to Benefit By Offering Coaching
Not only can you add coaching — either one-on-one or in groups — to your consulting work or to any information product you publish, you can also develop an entire product where coaching is the primary feature.
If you sell a home-study course, you can sell coaching as way to help your buyers and clients learn from the product, determine their own goals and move through their obstacles and roadblocks to take action.
What’s Typically Included in a Coaching Program?
Coaching “programs” are easier to sell and typically generate more revenue than coaching on an hourly basis. During individual coaching hours, you must always convince the client to buy the next hour and the next. Coaching programs, on the other hand, eliminate the continual question in the client’s mind about whether they’ve received value or not.
A coaching program typically consists of:
• A fixed number of coaching sessions or a fixed number of months of unlimited coaching services — conducted either privately or in group format and usually held weekly, twice a month, or when specifically requested by the client.
• Written material provided either at the beginning of the program or in weekly emails.
• Preparatory materials (in the form of exercises downloaded via the Internet, audio CDs, a questionnaire, survey or personal audit, a review of the client’s materials and so on).
A coaching program may also include a live training weekend or retreat, but this would be more appropriate to other kinds of programs.
Pricing Your Coaching Program
Pricing a personal-development coaching program can be as simple as bundling four coaching sessions with an audio program for $395. A business coaching program, on the other hand, should be priced at what the prospect is willing to pay to solve their pain or reach a specific goal. Typically, business coaching and “how to make money” coaching is priced much higher than personal coaching — occasionally in the thousands of dollars, depending on the price participants paid for your program prior to being sold the coaching program. Other factors that impact price include: how much access participants will get, how well you can describe the value of the coaching program, and more. Most business coaching programs are priced between $3,500 and $8,000.
How to Deliver a Coaching Program
Conduct all coaching sessions by telephone. Record them and send an MP3 file of the recording to the participant as an added value. During each session, use your motivational skills and any industry knowledge you have to get the client to commit to taking action by the time of your next call.
How to Market Your Coaching Program
The key to successfully marketing coaching programs is to deliver the message that your program will change the prospect’s life, give them a new career, jump-start their business, or in some other way give them highly valuable information they can use. There are dozens of strategies for launching and marketing a successful program. For instance:
• Create a powerful written announcement or compelling marketing copy you can distribute everywhere — in your ezine, at your website, in other people’s newsletters, as a flyer at your speaking engagements, in your subscription audio program, through dedicated mailings to your current customers, in press articles, everywhere.
• Speak at industry-specific events where the audience would be perfect prospects for coaching services and sell it as a package of sessions or one-on-one access over a specific time period.
• Offer your coaching package through your affiliate program.
• Do joint ventures with other people who have lists of customers and who can endorse your coaching service.
• Seek out endorsements and testimonials and media mentions from people — celebrities, past clients and customers, newspapers and magazines — that will appeal to specific segments of your market. Then approach these endorsers about selling your program to their customers.
• Position yourself as the leading expert for creating massive results in your area of expertise. Once you position yourself as this expert, you can not only conduct training programs and produce other information products, you can also generate press coverage and other media activity around your message.
• Call companies who distribute learning tools and especially audio programs, to see if they will give you a distribution contract for your home-study course or a product that causes a need for coaching. Include a special offer inside the home-study course that allows people to call for a free evaluation to decide if coaching is right for them.
• Do a “nationwide search” for individuals who would be interested in being test cases to work with you to achieve a specific result. Accept only three beta test students, and offer them the program for free. Then, when the final coaching program is launched (after beta testing), sell the program to the hundreds or thousands of prospects generated by the original “search.”
Janet Switzer is the marketing strategist behind some of the best known celebrity authors in the world: Jack Canfield of The Secret and Chicken Soup for the Soul, One Minute Millionaire author Mark Victor Hansen, personal finance guru David Bach, motivational speaker Les Brown and others. Subscribe to her FREE series of info-marketing special reports at http://www.1shoppingcart.com/app/?Clk=3654994.