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Can you really make money from coaching?

Does it pay

Who really makes the money?

I’ve long suspected that the only people who make a lot of money from coaching are those who sell training in how to become a coach and those who sell you how to sell your coaching services.
Most actual coaches or therapists are left struggling to pay the bills.
Is this true for you? Or do you have a thriving coaching business?

Are you offering what people want to buy?

There are a lot of people who have experienced a significant life change and want to share their learning with others, to help them, inspire them, enlighten them.
But do potential customers part with money for these sorts of services? To be honest, I’m not sure. It’s certainly not as easy as you might think.
The issue lies with the way personal development type coaches choose to position themselves. Without any better guidance, they choose to follow their heart and their passion. This is why you find so many ‘heart-centred’ or ‘spiritually awakened’ coaches. These wonderfully gifted and nurturing people are driven by their desire to help others. But conversely, they then put themselves at the centre of things and deliver what they want to provide, and not what others need.
Here are a few examples:

  • ‘channel the goddess within’
  • ‘learn to align your chakras’
  • ‘releasing your soul energy’
  • ‘learn to live an inspired life’

We’ve all seen the webinars and sales pages offering such esoteric wonders, which I’m guessing no one is really buying. Why is that?
I’m pretty sure no one wakes up in the morning with a burning desire to channel their goddess within. They may wake up feeling sick at the prospect of another day being walked over by a demanding and critical boss, or despondent at how badly they’ve been getting on with their partner lately. Whether or not their inner goddess might be just what they need to get back on track, what might actually compel them to get the help they need might be more like ‘learn the fail-safe way to create wins for you AND your boss every time’ or ‘the 3 day retreat that will put you and your partner back on the same team for good’

If your offer is fuzzy your results will be too

These might not be the best headlines in the world (getting those ‘hooks’ right is an art form!) but you can see the difference. Tangible results beat fuzzy concepts every time.

So how can you get round this?

  1. Ask friends if they know what you mean
    Would they know what they might be getting from your ‘energy realignment’ workshop, for example? Is it clear what the result will be? If you have to explain it using any further detail than what is covered in your offer, you need to have another go.

  3. Work out what is in a potential client’s head
    Write down statements using the words they would use, like ‘I’m sick of feeling taken for granted’ or ‘I dread going to work’. Make sure your offer speaks to these types of problems and provides a clear solution.

  5. Be the expert of a specific type of problem
    You may be a counsellor whose techniques would be effective for all manner of psychological discomfort but clients will choose the person who seems best qualified to understand their specific issue. Where would you rather get a pizza, from a restaurant that only does Italian food, or the place that serves Italian, Indian, Chinese, sushi and Mexican? Your offer needs to make very clear the specific problem you can solve as this will make you an expert of a wonderfully specific niche.


Value the results you can deliver

The other main way that coaches hinder their profitability is by not valuing what they do enough.
If you don’t value it, no one else will.
So next time an acquaintance or subscriber asks for your time or input for free, pause for a minute. If they valued it enough, they would be prepared to pay. If you valued what you do enough it wouldn’t occur to you to do it for free. Just because it might come easy to you doesn’t mean it isn’t of value. But it’s too easy for coaches or therapists to feel like it’s no big deal to help someone out just this once- they are people who like to help after all! There are things in life that people accept they have to pay for because they understand the value.

Be crystal clear about the value you can provide and your service will fall neatly into that category.

Are you confusing things for your clients?


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3 Responses to “Can you really make money from coaching?”

  1. There are a lot of coaches, coaching coaches, who coach coaches to be successful coaches. A huge amount of them don’t give much value and are just repeating what they heard from a mentor, who was being mentored, by a mentor. These people are flippin dangerous to your wealth and mental health. They don’t have the experience of doing what they tell you to do and you should run a mile, then hire a taxi to get you to the airport so you can fly as far away from them as possible. Great coaches/mentors – ones with integrity and experience – have a track record, a healthy stick rate in their programmes and happy clients. One thing with us, we NEVER take a client on these days unless we feel we can stand shoulder to shoulder with them and buy into their vision. We’re in it with them.

    • That’s a great point Neil, as you say there are a lot of people out there to be avoided but there are plenty to talk to and learn from.

      • Hannah and Chris
      • Reply
  2. Love your article and philosophy. I have and indeed still am working on this.
    Thanks for the reminder.


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