One of the most common questions we receive from coaches is how to price their coaching services. There’s obviously not an easy answer to that question but we’re going to dig into some of the ways you can approach it for your coaching business here on the YouTube Coaching Channel
There’s an old saying that applies to both business and life: No margin… No Mission. I’m Dr. Bradford Cooper of the Catalyst Coaching Institute and today we’re going to provide some food for thought regarding one of the most common questions we receive from coaches running their own business: “How do I price my services??”
Back to the old saying. The vast, vast majority of coaches don’t pursue this route for the money – they do it to make a difference, to have a lasting impact in the lives of their clients and their community. However, your mortgage company, grocery store and others in your life don’t give you a discount for being awesome. If you set your price too low, your financial margin will disappear and you won’t be able to continue your mission. No margin – no mission. At the same time, if you price your services too high, your potential clients may go elsewhere. So what is the right answer when it comes to pricing??
Well, there’s obviously not one right answer for everyone. Each of us is unique, with different levels of experience, specialty areas, histories, networks and more. However, there are some ways in which you can dial in the right answer for you. First – take a look around at what other related services are charging in your area. I mention “in your area” because prices in San Diego, CA are likely very different than in Pierre, South Dakota. You’re looking for the cost of things like 1:1 Pilates sessions, 1:1 personal training, massage therapy, self-pay physical therapy treatment and other related health & wellness services. That will provide you a baseline from which you can work as a starting point.
Next, consider how you could create 3 tiers – or packages of services – for your clients. Maybe you call them bronze, silver and gold levels. Perhaps the bronze offers them an entry level option with less coaching but a low-cost way to get started. The silver is what most of your clients will likely use in terms of coaching frequency and supplementary services like group challenges, library of resources, etc. Your gold package then offers the kitchen sink, more regular coaching and communication for those clients who are willing to pay for it. This structure not only offers your clients an ability to choose based on their needs. Rather, it also provides flexibility for your clients to move from one package to another as their lives and goals change. In addition, every once in awhile, you’ll have a client who likes to communicate regularly – as in daily texts and emails. The tiered structure offers you an easy way to serve that client at an appropriate rate for their needs and your time
Finally, as you’re getting started with your coaching business, it’s normal to feel like you should charge less as you build experience and credibility. However, if you decide to do this, be sure to you understand the difference between a “discount” off of your “normal” rate and simply a lower rate. For example, let’s pretend you’ve set a rate of $100/month for one of your packages, but you’re thinking early on of only charging $50 to get some clients – and some practice. That’s fine, but don’t actually set your price at $50. Set it at $100 but let potential clients know that anyone who signs up by X date will receive the first 3 months at half price. Or maybe the next 5 clients who sign up will receive their first 3 months at half price. If you set your regular rate at $50, you’re unlikely to have any chance of increasing it to $100 in a few months because people will see your value as $50. However, if you set your real price at $100 but simply discount it down to $50 for a limited number of people or for a limited time, your potential
clients know your real rate is $100 and their mind will set that – not the $50 – as your actual value. It’s obviously the same dollar figure either way, but the 2nd option sets you up for success long-term.
Putting these guidelines into practice will provide you with a starting point from which you can build and fine-tune your pricing over time