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Maybe you’ve been in therapy before.

You go, sit for your 45 minutes,  then write your check. The therapist whips out her appointment book and pencils you in for the following week. 
This goes on indefinitely until one of you decides you don’t need to go anymore. This session-to-session model is the one we’re familiar with. 

In this article, I’m sharing with you why it’s NOT the best model for a life coaching practice. Both YOUR BUSINESS and YOUR CLIENT can benefit from packaging your services, and here’s why!

WHAT DOES IT MEAN TO PACKAGE YOUR SERVICES?

Packaging your services simply means finding a way to offer your potential client the opportunity to purchase bunch of sessions or time at once.  

​For example, you might buy 10 Personal Training sessions at your gym. You might buy an Unlimited number of washes per month at your local car wash (hello, white car!) 

    WHY IS PACKAGING GOOD FOR MY CLIENTS?

    Think about getting a massage. You go and plunk down your credit card for the massage. It’s amazing, and you internally commit to doing this for yourself at least once every couple weeks. 

    But do you? 

    Leaving what I call a “commitment gap” in between sessions leaves rooms for all kinds of “germs” that interfere with the coaching process.

    • The “things are getting real and suddenly I don’t have time for coaching so I’m not scheduling another session” germ
    • The “I ran out of money” germ
    • The “I’m not sure this is working and the process is scary so I’ll just ‘put coaching on hold'” germ

    You + I both know that these kinds of drop-offs are due to the client’s fears, gremlins, or getting too close to their own greatness.
    Packaging your services is how you close the commitment gap so they can engage fully in a long-term process that helps them get where they want to go.

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      WHY IS PACKAGING GOOD FOR MY BUSINESS MODEL?

      As coaches, we lead with heart, but we’d also like to leave our dayjobs! The session-to-session model leaves us in the present moment, financially. While the present moment is a beautiful place to be spiritually… we’d like to look into the future and know that income is on its way in a few months, too! Check out why packaging in your business is a more secure way to work.

      • Packaging your services means you can create payment plans. Payment plans make coaching more accessible to your client… and means that you have predicable income on its way!
      • When you package your services, you can roll in all the extra work you do for your clients – texting, emailing, and so forth.
      • People subconsciously compare your “rate per hour” to their own “rate per hour” – and if you come out too much higher, they’ll feel they “can’t afford it”.
      • By having predictable income coming down the line, you can sink more into the part of your business you LOVE – the Service phase. When you are wondering if your clients will renew session to session, then you’ve got to spend more time in the Growth and Sales phases of your business.

      HOW DO I PACKAGE MY SERVICES?

      This is where creativity meets coaching. I LOVE watching the awesome and innovative ways coaches have come up with to package their services. The possibilities are limitless!
      Packaging your services is an opportunity to design something truly transformational to meet the unique needs of your clients. 

      ​Let’s dive in.

      IN THE BEGINNING: I HAVEN’T COACHED YET, AND I’M NOT SURE OF MY NICHE

      Month to month: 
      The first and simplest approach to packaging your services is to offer a monthly rate.  Instead of “$150 an hour” you might offer something like:
      $650 per month includes:

      • 4 x 45 minute deep dive coaching calls
      • 1 x 15 minute “SOS” call for Breakthrough Laser Coaching
      • Access to the coach’s personal email for longer updates, so we can TOTALLY concentrate on the present when we get on the phone

      Multiple months: 
      This is similar to packaging by month, but allows your client to sink into the energy of a longer process, while creating a payment plan option as well!  These are fun and you can name them all kinds of creative things!
      This might look like:

      $2500 for 3 months of life coaching includes: (Payable in installments of half up front, and $625 the following 2 months)

      • 1 x 90 minute “Foundations” session where we assess where you are, and set goals for where you want to go
      • 3 x 60 minute deep dive calls per month
      • 3 “SOS” calls for Breakthrough Laser Coaching
      • Access to your coach’s personal cell phone for texts

      Multiple sessions: Similar to the trainer at the gym, selling multiple sessions at once still gives the client agency over when they book those sessions, while communicating that this is a long term process.  This is also a nice way to graduate clients to a “maintenance plan” as needed. Multiple sessions might look like:

      • The JumpStart: Buy 10 sessions, get the 11th free
      • The Maintenance: 5 follow up sessions to be used at client’s discretion

      Notice I’m not including any bells and whistles here! This is straight up coaching sessions.

      If you choose this model, it’s important you ask the client at the end of each session, “When would you like to book your next session?” That way, they don’t leave sessions hanging over your head.

      It is also important to outline the terms and conditions such as by when they should be used by or be forfeited – you don’t want people coming back in 10 years with unused sessions!

      INTERMEDIATE: I’VE DONE SOME COACHING AND AM NOTICING SOME TRENDS

      As you work with clients, you’ll pretty quickly notice your OWN coaching rhythm. You’ll notice how long it takes you to do values work, or how long it takes the clients to start to gel with coaching and really rock and roll. 

      At this point, you can start creating packages using the information you’re gathering from your clients, and some of your own expertise as well!

      *Note: Some of these models divert from a PURE coaching model. In that case, you just want to be CLEAR about the role you are playing in the package, e.g. Coach + Mentor, Coach + Personal Trainer*

      Multiple Sessions Around a Theme:​ In a pure coaching model, we don’t promise “outcomes,” of course.  But what if you’re a health coach, and you specialize in overcoming emotional eating?

      Your 1:1 package might look like:

      • 8 Weeks to Explore Emotional Eating and Develop Intuitive Health Habits 
      • 6 x 60 minute 1:1 coaching sessions sessions
      • Review of Daily Food Triggers Journal
      • 2 Recommended Eating Plans to Break Emotional Eating Habits

      I didn’t say “Overcome Emotional Eating”. I didn’t promise they’d be done with it in 8 weeks. 
      In this model the 8 weeks of coaching will be centered around their relationship with food. Other areas of life will of course come into play, but this package is targeted as a specific specialty. 

      This health coach may have noticed that quite a few of her clients are coming to her and working through emotional eating triggers. By pulling out this theme or specialty, she’s creating an opportunity for people to focus on this one important aspect of a healthy relationship with their bodies.

      A group coaching program, around a theme:
      Once our health coach has noticed this theme, she might want to organize several people around a group program focused on this theme. The package stays the same, but the number of people enrolled would change.

      These packages still focus mostly on open-ended, pure coaching. The health coach might have the group or individual focusing on one area, but the client/group will still bring the agenda to the table.

      The only difference is the theme​ the sessions are organized around.

      ADVANCED: I’VE WORKED WTIH AT LEAST 15 CLIENTS AND HAVE A STRONG SENSE OF COMMON THEMES

      Once our health coach has worked with quite a few (paid OR free) clients, she will be really familiar with the ways that themes are unfolding for them.

      She’ll notice they all need to overcome inner critic voice in order to have sustained weight loss.  Or she’ll notice that of her last 12 clients, 10 were working moms struggling to balance nutrition and a busy schedule.

      At this point, s/he might develop a Signature Program. This is a step-by-step system the coach will walk the client(s) through, either 1:1 or in a group.​

      In a signature program, the coach might simply outline a number of coaching tools and exercises that s/he will use to help clients towards an ultimate outcome.

      S/he might also bring in her own expertise in a hybrid coaching-teaching program, but leave plenty of time for coaching as well.

      A 1:1 Signature Program might look like this:

      • A 12-Week Journey to Developing a “Fit Gal’s” Mindset
      • 10 x 45 minute 1:1 deep dive sessions
      • 8 pre-recorded training modules on developing a Fit-Gal Mindset
      • Access to an online FB community *just* for Health Coach’s personal clients
      • A Daily Success Visualization by Health Coach

      This same signature program, with a few tweaks, can also be used as a group program.

      • A 12-Week Journey to Developing a “Fit Gal’s” Mindset
      • 10 x 45 minute group teaching/coaching sessions
      • 8 pre-recorded training modules on developing a Fit-Gal Mindset
      • Access to an online FB community *just* for Health Coach’s group coaching and 1:1 clients
      • A Daily Success Visualization by Health Coach
      • Get paired up with an Accountability Buddy

      Now, naming programs isn’t my thing, and “fit-girl mindset” doesn’t scream “Yes! Me Me Me!”

      The point here is that you can start to incorporate your skill set and expertise along with your coaching skills to start teaching people how to make change… and coaching them through the blocks stopping them from making that change.

      WHAT DO I INCLUDE IN MY PACKAGES?

      Creativity can REALLY soar when thinking about learning aids and services to include in your packages. Coaches can be naturally generous people, so when we create a container like this… we tend to want to fill it up to the top!

      A word of caution – be sure you charge adequately in exchange for what you offer with your package! Don’t get yourself into a Resentment Rut of having to read emails and be interrupted in your personal life with constant texts if you don’t feel you’re making enough money for that!

      Caution aside, there are lots of things you can include in a package. The important part is the coaching sessions, and then choosing what truly would serve to help your client transform.

      • Coaching sessions – 1:1 or group
      • Text, SOS text, Celebration Text, Daily Accountability Text
      • Email, Looong Story Email (so they don’t have to tell you on the phone), Journal Email
      • Branded Triggers Journal, Food Diary, Leadership Triggers Diary
      • Longer Foundations Session to review coaching package, expectations, Assess
      • .pdf, worksheet, guide
      • Visualization, Meditation audios
      • Pre-recorded teaching modules (leaves more room for the coaching!)

      The possibilities are endless. Keep it super simple at first and build with ease if you choose to!

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