How To Build A Successful Life Coaching Business – Sleeping on the beach in Bali, changing lives before lunch and watching the events of Benjamin.
That’s why every year more people choose to start life coaching as a business. ICF estimates a 33% increase in trainees and a 21% increase in total income from training between 2015 and 2019.
How To Build A Successful Life Coaching Business
Success as a life coach. How reasonable is that question? And, most importantly, what is success asking of you?
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These are the questions that I will answer in this article. We will review the best facts available on the average salary of a life coach, what separates the successful coaches from the failures, and discuss whether life coaching is a pyramid scheme or not. Finally, I will give my conclusion about life coaching as a business.
“ICF defines coaching as engaging with clients in a passionate and creative way that encourages them to reach their personal and professional potential.”
“Life coaching is a service where the coach uses questioning skills and domain knowledge to help clients get quick results in a specific area of life. This service can be provided in 1-1 sessions, training class, live events and online services.
For simplicity, I will include any type of non-exercise training under the umbrella of lifestyle training. This means that career coaches, executive coaches, business coaches, etc. are considered life coaches in this article.
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My response when I tried to explain what I do and someone asked me, “What sport do you coach?” he asked me.
According to the 2020 ICF Global Education Survey, the annual income for educators in North America is $62,500.
According to the Sherpa Executive Coaching Survey 2020, executive coaches with 15+ years of experience can expect to earn $160,000, while those with 10-15 years of experience can expect to earn $122,000.
As you can see, in the average life and salary of a business coach, there is a wide spread among those who have active clients. What is the reason for this increase? First, there seems to be a relationship between time spent in business and total income. The more you practice, the more money you can earn. Second, popular coaches tend to work in their area (more on that later).
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Don’t listen to gurus who promise six figures from training. You can make money, but it takes time.
Now that we’ve covered the average salary of a life coach, let’s talk about how to start a life coaching business.
If you do a quick search for “how to start a life coaching business” you will find many articles about getting certified, forming an LLC, and setting up your home office.
The truth is that you don’t need to do anything to start making money as a coach.
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You don’t need to get a certificate. In most cases, it is a huge expense for data verification that no customer will ever ask for. According to iPEC, tuition for instructors ranges from $2,000 for non-accredited programs to $14,000 or more for programs. I recommend spending this money on your trainer so you can learn by example. For more information on this, read my article Why You Should Become a Certified Trainer.
You do not need to form an LLC. I’m not a lawyer and I’m not saying you shouldn’t create legal protection for your business. But it’s not so important when you start. You can act as a landlord for your first customers to review items and pay anywhere from $50 to $500 (if you live in the US).
You don’t need a fancy office. When I first started, I installed a standing desk in my studio apartment for $429.70. Later, I moved to a new regional office and joined our co-working space. But none of this is necessary – you just need a phone or laptop with Internet access.
You can start a life coaching business today for $0. Even if you invest in all the options above, the expected initial costs will be minimal compared to many other businesses.
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The largest expenses for life coaches as a percentage of income are salary (26.5%), fees (3.2%) and rent and equipment (4.5%) according to IBISWorld.
Like most business ventures, the hard part is not starting the lifelong learning process. The most difficult thing is to find customers.
At this point, we know that there is a huge income gap between the most successful educators and those who are not. The difference between these two teams isn’t necessarily how well they coach…it’s how they refuse to sell themselves.
1. Commitment to space. Life coaching is a hard sell until people apply it to a specific problem they want to solve. That problem combined with the target market is called a “niche”. This is the foundation of every successful business. Here are 21 of the top life coaching positions. Many coaches are afraid to step into the situation and pigeonhole them. These trainers often have trouble getting clients because what they are selling is not clear for anyone to invest in (fun fact: no one invests in training – they invest in what they think that would be beneficial).
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2. Play to your strengths. When it comes to marketing, many educators feel they need to learn every technique to be successful. The best way is to identify coach archetypes and use them to attract customers to focus on one or two key marketing strategies. The more you work to your strengths, the more consistent and successful you will be in marketing. For example, if you hate writing, blogging may not be for you. Maybe you want to make videos, talk to people on a podcast, or attend networking events.
3. Sell Game. If there’s one secret that all successful coaches have in common, it’s this: Coaching costs a lot of money. It’s hard to make a life coaching business if you’re only selling one session at a low price. It will take a lot of new customers to make the numbers work. Think about it: you can make six figures by selling 10 training packages with 10,000 or 1,000 courses for $100. To sell premium packages, learn how to conduct successful registration negotiations and increase your value effectively.
Before we decide on life coaching as a business, there is one question we need to answer…
If life training is illegal, if it is a group of trainers training other trainers, then it should be called a traditional life dream.
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The tricky way of making money is based on recruiting many “investors”. Startups recruit investors, recruit more investors, etc. The system is called “pyramid” because the number of investors increases at each level. The above group of small early backers requires a large pool of late investors to support the project by providing returns to the early investors.
(For the record, multi-level marketing businesses and pyramid schemes are technically different things, but I don’t recommend participating in one. Even legitimate MLMs are less successful than their participants.)
To determine if something is a pyramid scheme, ask yourself this question: “Is recruiting the only way to make money here?” If no one is making money selling your product or service (in this case, life coaching), then the “opportunity” is really a scam.
Fortunately, we know that many life coaches do not work with other coaches. According to this ICF 2020 report, 52% of training clients say their clients are mostly executives or managers, and 19% say they work mostly with private clients. This means that the study has failed the “Pyramid Thinking Test” above.
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Life coaching is not a scam because most of the people who invest in it are not other coaches.
So why is it that sometimes the only way to make money as a coach is to work with other coaches? Another reason is that once you become a trainer, you start looking for advice on how to build a training business. Then you’ll read articles like this and find ads mostly from coaches who work with other coaches.
Thanks to a cognitive process called the “availability heuristic”, it is easy to think that the examples of trainers you see are representative of the company as a whole. Consider this: If you’re on the brink of a divorce and looking for dating advice, you’re probably surrounded by relationship coaches.
It is true that educators tend to value and invest in learning. But they are not the only group that does that. Leaders, business owners, and ordinary people invest in training to solve the unique problems they face every day.
How To Start A Successful Life Coaching Business
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