I’d like to show you in this post how it is relatively easy for coaches and consultants to fill their first group program, just as long as they follow a few simple steps which I’ve outlined below:
- Start planning out what you’re going to cover in your group program. Consider what problems you normally help your clients to solve. What is the biggest problem your clients experience? It’s all about helping them reach an end result. You must be able to help them solve a really big, important problem, and through your program guide them towards a powerful end result which should be the solution of that problem. With my program for example, the end result is a funnel that is set up that is creating qualified appointments for group programs. The problem I help people solve is to launch their first program and then more importantly – get a continuous flow of leads for their programs. What is YOUR program going to solve? What will YOUR end result be? If necessary you can create a survey and ask your prospects where they need help, but to be honest – you ought to know this stuff as it’s what you will be working on with them day to day! Try to avoid anything generic such as “makes them happier” – it needs to be super specific about the challenges it helps them overcome. Some useful questions for you to consider include – what are the best results you have achieved with your last 5 clients? What were their main needs? What was the end result you helped them achieve through working with you? If you’d like assistance thrashing this out or identifying where your expertise can be turned into a high priced group program, then I’m happy to do so on a call, see below at the end of this list.
- Start planning out how long your group program will be. Ours are typically 8 weeks – some of my clients go with 6 weeks or 12 weeks, I definitely don’t suggest you go with any longer than 12 weeks as clients can struggle to stay focused for that long. Choose the period of time that allows you to deliver the end result. Your group will typically take you 1 to 2 hours per week of delivery time (where you set homework, deliver training etc) and then 1 to 2 hours per week of group coaching. Add in a couple of hours per week to review homework and your group program will take you between 4 and 6 hours per week to deliver. Also – please don’t forget to factor in the “salescalls” where you interview potential clients (see below). A typical appointment will take an hour, so speaking with 3 leads per week will add an extra 3 hours per week to your schedule.
- Consider adding in some “Done-For-You”. If you have the ability to include some extras to help people out and get to the result faster, then do so. So for example we offer Facebook Ad designs, logos, assistance with mailing lists or installing tracking on websites – removing our client’s technical headaches. In the past we’ve built whole membership sites for our clients as it just made it easier for them to launch faster. What can you offer? If you can’t offer services, how about templates or your own contacts so they can get things done faster? Remember, it’s all about the end result and helping clients achieve it faster during the 8 weeks.
- Decide what the investment will be for your group program. Many of my clients start off charging $2k or $3k and gradually put their price up over time as their confidence grows, although some have decided to start off immediately at $10k or $15k depending on the program they are offering and the pricing for their other products.
- Create some realistic targets and put them on your wall, on your screensaver, wherever it needs to go to keep you motivated and working towards it! Just 3 new clients per month into your $3k program will generate an income of $9k per month. 3 new clients per month into your $6k program will generate $18k per month… are you starting to believe how much easier it will be to hit your income goals using group coaching? If you need to talk to 3 prospects until you get 1 client, this means you’ll need just 9 leads per month who have been positioned to see you as an expert. That sounds EASY doesn’t it? (If it doesn’t then you need to watch my webinar How To Generate Leads Who Want To Buy On The First Call). Personally I consistently generate between 15 and 87 leads per week, every single week for my coaching services. All of whom have applied to work with me – so I don’t mean just email address leads here, I mean genuine fully filled application leads. You can also see how I achieve this in my Casestudy Video
- The next step is one that sometimes strikes fear into the hearts of my clients. Why? Because this is where you show you mean business, and you’re putting it out there that you are an expert and stepping into your authority. So this is the most important step, and must be done with care. Some people may react with surprise to your offer of booking in for advice with you, especially if they are used to you giving free advice whenever they ask you for it, or perhaps they have seen you advertising low hourly rates. If you get surprise from some people, this is GOOD, and means you’re on the right track. So here’s what you do – simply put an offer out to your network to book in for a planning session with you where you’re going to help them solve the problem. Ways in which I guide my clients to put their offer out include as a Facebook post on their personal profile, as a boosted post on their Facebook Fanpage, as an email to their existing email list, and face to face at speaking engagements. Positioning is everything (see below). Do be careful when putting the offer out that you need to show you are an expert who is confident with what they deliver. An incorrectly positioned offer can generate even more leads seeking freebies or cheap help, so if you are in any doubt book in for a call with me about the best way to position it. You don’t want to risk blowing your chance to launch your program.
- Make sure all these leads have to book in for an appointment with you. No one gets to send you private messages to have a chat when they feel like it. Remember that YOU need to be in charge of the appointment, you are the one deciding whether they get to work with you or not. Never let people call you, YOU must be in charge of the call. Schedulers that my clients have used successfully include Vcita, Acuity and ScheduleOnce. You can also accept applications by form and then schedule people in after you have received the form.
- Plan out the appointment – i.e. “sales call” and ideally practice what you’re going to say with another expert who understands what you’re trying to achieve. The key is you’re aiming to bring the prospect to the point of decision in a single phone call and demonstrate how you can clearly help the person solve their problem. We help our clients by providing specific scripts that assist you to guide the client to a point of decision. At the same time you should ensure you provide immense value to help them uncover mindblocks they might have and help them clarify their next steps. The most important tip I can give you is to ensure you start the appointment off the right way by thanking them for booking the call in, explaining you will be asking a series of questions, and then you will explain your program and see if it makes sense to work together or not. This immediately sets the scene and ensures the prospect does not enter “info-seeking” mode. It also creates an expectation that at the end of the call, they will make a decision.
- Don’t drown them in detail. Never go through a detailed list of every single item they will learn or “get” on your program. This turns your program into a commodity not a transformation that delivers an amazing end result. Near the end of the call briefly explain what your program offers – I don’t even tell people what the name is for my program until they have already signed up. What you want to avoid is a tick list including details about what they learn. If they ask you for a list or for you to reconfirm in writing then then simply ask them, what else do they need to know? Keep in your mind – it’s ALL about the result and ensure you instil confidence that you can help them achieve it.
- Kind of obvious… but do have a payment method ready. This is all about creating clients who take action, so you must be able to take payment then and there. It’s ideal if you can take payment over the phone, for example using something like Stripe. Quick, easy to set up, pays out in 7 days, and doesn’t “hold on” to any of your takings – Stripe is my recommended payment processor and I love it. If you’re in the UK GoCardless is handy for clients who wish to pay by Direct Debit.
- Consider offering payment plans – you may want to reward clients who pay in one instalment, and you may want to offer the ability to split it into 2 or 3 instalments to make it easier for people to say yes. I don’t suggest you offer the ability for them to split it for longer than the time it takes them to complete the program.
- Remember that launching your first group program from your existing network is normally relatively straight forward – your next item on your to-do-list will be generating a continuous flow of high quality leads who want to work with you. As Facebook continues to evolve it is NO LONGER possible to create a single piece of marketing (such as one automated webinar) and then expect it to generate all your leads. This is due to the advent of the “Ad Relevance Score” and means that as people get fed up seeing your ad – Facebook simply stops showing it. A coherent marketing strategy that involves you creating great content – such as blogs, checklists, webinars and suchlike is essential to bring in leads on an ongoing basis. This is one of the key focuses in our group programs to creating ongoing revenue from your group program.
Would you like to talk any of this through and discuss how YOU can get this working in your business? Simply schedule a call in, simply book in a time here And of course if you’d like my help launching your program that’s great – but if you decide to go it alone after speaking with us that’s cool too!