A common question I get is “How do I structure my offerings?”
On the surface it seems simple:
If you’re a yoga teacher: offer a 1-hour private yoga class
If you’re a life coach: offer a 1-hour coaching session
If you’re an energy-healer: offer a 1-hour reiki session
The reason this is wrong is:
- People are not paying for your time, they are paying for a result/a feeling/an experience. And often the result that people need entails more than just an hour of your time.
- If you want a business where you can help people make a shift/a change/take action that keeps moving forward—your client will (often) need to go on a journey with you to make all the changes they need to make: and that kind of journey takes longer than an hour.
- Often, the benefit comes from the commitment alone: This means the help that most people require involves ongoing support for accountability and guidance. For example, the client who comes to a nutritionist to lose 10 pounds has likely read tons of books and magazines already. The reason they are hiring you is for the accountability and support.
- In order for your client to get maximum benefit they need follow-up support and resources. This means even if you do decide to offer a 1-off session, you’ll be giving a much better package and being way more helpful if you have something extra to offer your client (this extra resource can be a summary report of your time together, a recording, or an e-book that you create specifically for your clients)
So instead of thinking about your offering as a 1-hour session, start to think of your offerings as being a full-package experience.
And you can create a full package experience with a one-time offering by adding value to that session and creating an experience out of it:
Here’s an example:
If I help somebody figure out how to write their About page for their website, I can talk to them on the phone for an hour and help them string their words together to create a bio that fits them.
OR I can create a package—a full-out experience which would look something like this:
: I give an assessment form to see where they are struggling
: I take time to review their current web-copy to discover what’s off-base.
:Then, we get on the phone to discuss their business objective is, ideal client, and what message they want to convey in order to connect with their dream client.
: After the session they receive a mini-manual with added resources and tips on how to write up their About page and use the juice of our session to help them take action and finally finish writing that page on their site.
: To top it all off: there’s an extra post-follow-up to ensure the new page is complete and that they’re happy with what they’ve created.
Can you feel the difference?
Which one is more enticing to you?
As you can see—this is an experience that involves more than 1-hour on the phone.
It’s way more valuable and truly helps the client.
This is a full-on experience where the client receives a clear benefit, additional resources, and a solution to what ailed them.
Here’s another example:
You can give somebody a 1-hour nutritional consultation, or you can create a package out of it:
Once again, starting with an intake form, then a meeting, then an actual plan that get’s mailed out to them, complete with a recipe e-book and a follow up.
As you can see, even a 1-off session can become a full-package experience when you give immense value.
One-off sessions that are positioned as a package such as my breakthrough session are not for everyone. You should only offer this kind of offering if you truly want to work with people in this way.
If you believe that the only way you can and want to help someone is via a 1-month, 3-month or 6-month experience then that is what you should offer.
Again – make sure that you create a package out of it. Make sure that you state what happens in that 1-month or 3-month time frame.
Be sure to talk about the benefits that your client can receive by working with you.
For example, you can create an 8-week yoga series to help people feel confident to practice yoga and create their own custom yoga-sequence on their own (That is the Result)
The How: Over the course of 8 weeks you would gradually build up the lessons until at the end of this package your client would feel confident to walk away with a solid morning practice of their own.
The lesson here: To come up with your offering, think of the final result first.
What do you want your client to feel, have, or experience at the end of your time together?
It could be they have new-found skills to meditate, or they’ve lost 10 pounds, or are more effective at coping with anxiety, or have the confidence and momentum to keep taking positive action in their lives.
Think about the result you’re giving.
Then, you need to figure out:
1.How long will it take you to help facilitate this result?
2.What skills will you be teaching your client/facilitating for your client?
3. And, How many sessions/or how much time would it take for your client to truly make a shift in their lives?
Remember this key: for many people—making the commitment alone is where they receive the greatest benefit.
And although the commitment piece is important: an experience doesn’t have to be forever (nor should it be!).
It’s not reasonable, desirable or necessary that clients will be lifers:
Most people will come to you for a certain period of time, receive what they need, and then go off on their own.
Often they will return when they need more assistance from you. But, even if a particular client does not need your support anymore, they will be your best marketing tool: giving you testimonials and sending referrals your way.
So when you’re creating your offering: make sure to come from a place of giving.
Here’s a recap for creating your offerings
- Get clear on the result your client will get: What will they have/feel/receive after a session/package/experience with you
- How long/how many sessions will it take to create that result
- What added resources can you give to make your offerings more valuable (such as an e-book, an mp3./get creative here)
- Make sure you LOVE to give the offering that you give: because if you do not enjoy being with a client for the long-haul—do not offer 3-month packages! You may only enjoy working with people for a 1-off experience, or in a workshop environment—and if that’s the case: that is what you should offer!
You need to know yourself in order to know how you like to help/work with others.
Because if you offer things you don’t enjoy—you’ll begin to dread your business and you don’t want that to happen!
So make sure you LOVE what you offer and that your mode of working with people fits your personality.
And if you aren’t 100% sure – start with what you THINK you’ll enjoy. Over time, your experience will help you cultivate that clarity and help you refine and redesign your packages as necessary. And as things change in your life, and business: chances are the way you work with people will also change.
Remember: nothing in business is static. Everything is an experiment. Keep an open mind. (And heart)
If you have any questions, comment below, and I will answer!
And if you need further support in your holistic business or creative pursuits, go ahead and check out my offerings