Today we get to the nitty-gritty of coaching as we look at how to establish a thriving profitable coaching practice.
At our Coach Training School, we always say that the real test of a successful coach is how well they can manage their practice. Even if it’s not all about the money for you, and I can agree it shouldn’t be, a coaching business that has finances, expertise, structure, and credibility in place can service customers so much better.
What do I mean by that? Keep on reading to find out.
Building a Profitable Coaching Business
So, let’s start by looking at a step-by-step guide on how to establish and develop a successful coaching business. I consider any business a success if it can sustain making a profit over its lifetime, hopefully for many years.
Such performance is only possible with consistent quality products or services that people want, and that is different and unique from the competition. A coaching business is the same. You have to offer a consistent, proven, and differentiated service to a client group that you have earmarked and understood well at a price that reflects fair value.
Here are ten steps that I follow to grow and excel in my coaching business and that I recommend to any student in my Coach Training School.
The following ten steps will help you to establish a profitable, niche, and sustainable coaching business. The descriptions are very brief here, but should still give you a good idea of those things to consider so that you can make a career out of coaching.
At my Coach Training School I have talked about the importance of having a vision that underlies WHAT you aim for and WHY you want to do it. Your vision is a blue-sky dream that articulates your passion for coaching in a concise statement, but an essential foundation of your mission, goals, and action plans. Your vision also reflects your values.
Income, lifestyle, and contribution goals
Keeping your vision in mind, you must define day-to-day aspects that will
help determine HOW you set up your coaching business. What is your income target? What lifestyle do you want or need to maintain? What and to whom do you want to
contribute? These answers set the broad parameters of your business idea.
Niche and target market
Your service must be of good quality and different from your competitors. Defining your niche based on what you’re good at and interested in will help position you competitively.
Your target market is the people you can offer value to in that niche, which includes the geographical area if you aim at face-to-face meetings.
Now that you know what service you want to offer and to whom, look at what you need to be able to do this. Do you need additional skills? Knowledge? Accreditation?
Start-up funding? Draft and implement a plan to close those gaps.
Create a unique and differentiated offer
Use your goals, niche, and target market to synthesize a MISSION statement.
Also, include aspects of your vision and core values but make sure your mission is feasible, attainable, and specific.
Price your offer
What is a fair value for the service that you want to offer to your target market? Estimate the amount that you will add to their lives, including career and performance. Use industry and competitor benchmarks in your area and niche to find a good position. Remember, don’t low-ball to attract clients as you are under-selling your worth.
Marketing and promotion
We ask all of our students from our Coach Training School this question: ‘Where and how can you best market, promote, and advertise your service?’ Use your network or personal and social media contacts to promote your business. Don’t hesitate to ask for their input, engaging as many people as possible to generate awareness and momentum. Set up online accounts – a business website, Facebook page, and LinkedIn account. Design your website like a sales funnel and use testimonials and social validation – there are many templates and reasonably priced developers available.
Give great thought and care to the planning and design of your discovery sessions. Create
professional T&Cs (terms and conditions agreement), supporting documents, and information brochures to promote your business image. The discovery session is incredibly essential to motivate prospective clients, start building a relationship and demonstrate a good fit that
optimizes the conversion to paying clients.
Look beyond the start of your business. How many clients can you manage with your initial setup? What would you need to increase that potential? Plan ahead of time to accommodate growth.
Get a mentor
Last, but not least. The most significant business can become even more spectacular if you can
harness the power of a mentor. Look through your contacts. Find people in your business area that you admire and inspire you. Don’t hesitate to engage with them and ask to be your mentor.
Now that you know the ten steps to build your business, it is time to put together a great business plan. Stay tuned for the business plan guide next week! 🙂