Pricing Lessons Learned as a Coach
Results vs. Costs
When we start a coaching business some of the questions we ask ourselves as professionals are:
- Why do I want to be a coach?
- What will be my coaching area of focus? My ideal client?
- What is my operating platform and coaching process?
- WHAT SHOULD I CHARGE?
I have capitalized and bolded the last one as I believe it is where we struggle the most. I can say I did; and in coaching other coaches in their startup business, they agree.
Most think that keeping costs low will attract more business. However, many leaders in the industry say that the opposite is true. Often due to the programming of our own mental framework we look at cost as the deciding factor of value in the eye of the consumer. What I have learned is that while the consumer may speak of affordability as their primary driver of a purchase; it is results they seek.
When a client comes to you they want something; even though they may not be able to articulate what it is. They, of course, are looking for value at the best price. However, building your business and value is not determined by the price you charge; but by the product and quality you deliver. Give those two things to the consumer and they will seek you out; regardless of the price.
I recently experienced this in choosing a surgeon for my own eye laser surgery… trust and belief in the professional and not price were my deciding factors. I have been told by my clients that I was not the cheapest but I was what they wanted and needed in a coach. Focusing on what you deliver, pricing it fairly for your coaching time and product offering and delivering caring results for your client will be the deciding factor in your coaching success.
Other lessons I have learned around money and coaching…
Do not compete with other coaches pricing… competition is often focused on scarcity and scarcity thinking which often lead to professional insecurity and ineffectiveness. Cooperation can be a vehicle for maximizing client costs and results by bringing together in one package complimentary disciplines.
Do not get caught in titles and labels as a reason for pricing… our society celebrates degrees, certifications, titles, honors, etc. While celebration of those accomplishments is justified; it does not in any way indicate a better coaching experience or pricing rationale. In the end the client will decide what they are willing to pay and who they wish to work with, regardless of price.
Do not consider results and costs as having no relationship…Results and costs are definitely sisters (or brothers); in other words closely related. Think outside the box on how to get results for your client while managing their costs… not lowering necessarily; but splitting up payments, etc.
Do not forget to give ‘thanks’…Offer an occasional gift to the clients you have worked with. Maybe the gift is a short coaching session or a FREE workshop/webinar/video. Being grateful for the opportunity they gave you to serve.
In the end price your product, serve your client and deliver results. There is not ‘one’ right answer for anything in life or business. ‘Define your coaching pricing and quit stewing’!
If you would like to read more about other coaching lessons in general, here is a great article from the client’s personal perspective.
5 Invaluable Lessons from Working with a Career Coach
Patricia Leonard, Career and Entrepreneurial Coach
President & CEO, Runway to Success