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High-End Coaching: Six Essential Ingredients for a Program That Sells

by Marcia Yudkin

More expensive than a home-study course, more intensive than group coaching and more powerful in creating results for the client and profits for you: That's the high-end coaching program. Generally $3,000 and up, these programs require strategy, content, focus, consistency and follow-through from you if they are to work in your business long-term.

Based on my experience, observation, research and discussions with successful purveyors of high-end coaching, here's what you need to plan into your program.

1. A desirable outcome. People more readily sign up for programs that focus on a result they want, as opposed to an open-ended, whatever-you-want-to-discuss coaching agenda. If you have more than one outcome your clients gravitate toward, create more than one high-end coaching program. For instance, one program of mine helps people make intensive progress on their book project, while another helps them launch their information empire.

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2. Steps to the goal. Coaching clients feel good knowing that you're taking them through a defined process that has worked for others, yet is also tailored to their unique situation. Having a name for your process adds allure and inspires confidence. Build in whatever components participants typically would need to reach their finish line. However, unlike the way many information products are sold, don't assign a monetary value to each component that's included. With a high-end program, the whole is much more than the sum of its parts.

3. Time frame. The coaching program lasts for a defined length of time - typically 30 days, 90 days, six months or a year. If it's a one-day program, you may want to include one or two follow-up sessions so that the client has a chance to integrate and implement the work you did together.

4. One-on-one support, guidance, accountability and handholding from you. In your coaching program, clients move ahead on something they've long wanted to achieve, but they don't do so alone. They get your undivided attention at key points in the process. They appreciate your promise to hold their feet to the fire and rescue them if they stray off course. Emphasize the quality and effectiveness of your coaching sessions rather than the amount of time clients receive.

5. Their full commitment. Precisely because the program is expensive, clients tend to give it their serious participation. Set up clear and explicit ground rules to prevent them from backing out, sloughing off or trying to delay the work they undertook by signing up.

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6. Consistency from you. Naturally you must deliver everything you promised in the program description, adhering not just to the details of the promotion but also to their spirit. Clients expect your keenest attention, your wisest advice and no hold-back of what you know.

Launching your new program may require you to make changes in your other offerings so you don't undermine the perceived value of the high-end coaching. For example, if you continue to advertise hourly advice sessions, they can make your high-end program seem overpriced. Likewise, if your $500 group course includes one-on-one access to you, your personal help in the higher-level program won't seem so special.

For many experts, creating a first high-end coaching program represents a leap into the "big time." Design the above components into the program, and that leap is likely to be a triumph.

Copyright 2012 Marcia Yudkin.  All rights reserved.

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