To make the most of this blog, I recommend reading that first: Getting Started with Long-Term Development Programs - 3 Key Components
To summarize the major takeaways from last week, quality long-term programming:
- Sets clear minimum expectations at the very beginning. This is the common ground you and your athlete will work off throughout the coaching relationship.
- Starts with an agreed upon minimum time commitment you expect from your athletes to reach their goals. Speak in terms of 3-6 month commitments, make the expected commitment abundantly clear, and stay firm on what you expect during that period of time.
- Always focuses on the results you are achieving together. Focus on the wins and continually set new goals as your athlete improves.
So now that we have this programming framework in mind, how do you actually bring a new client into your business?
Because, let’s face it. Many athletes are currently conditioned to just book a lesson, show up, and figure it out as they go. Sadly, what I’m recommending here isn’t the norm, so you’re gonna need to explain all this clearly and powerfully when marketing your offer.
Here’s what I recommend..
First, create 3 variations of long-term programs for potential athletes. These can be differentiated by goals, skill level, in-person vs. remote coaching, etc.
Don’t fall into the trap of creating custom programs for everyone you work with. Create the program templates first, then determine which makes the most sense for each individual athlete to reach their goals within their budget.
Next, make it clear on your website and social media that you don’t work with just anybody. Require that any athlete interested in working with you take a free assessment before getting started.
That assessment can be on a technical skill, past experience, or even just a personality profile to make sure that they would be a good fit for your coaching style.
It’s important that this assessment is free and relatively quick and painless to complete - this will ensure a consistent flow of people requesting your coaching. A free assessment is a great way to automate screening of potential athletes, from which YOU can choose who YOU think will work best for your coaching style, programming, and business.
Then, once you have that foundational information and assuming there is a good fit, present the program that best matches where they are and where they want to be in 3-6 months.
Lastly, when they’re ready, discuss pricing, goals, and the expectations I outlined above before signing them on.
Here’s a quick example of 3 potential long-term development tiers:
Program 1: Practice & Group Training
For the athletes who book an assessment but aren’t ready to fully commit to your coaching. Maybe they aren’t at the right skill level, don’t have a suitable budget, or are just not the right fit for your private programs.
In this program, you coach/teach a group all at once, walking them through drills, strategies, etc. to help them improve their game. In this tier, you set a regular date and time, the athletes show up to group practice/training, you provide group coaching, and that’s about it.
Program 2: Semi- Private
Ideal for the athletes who have a promising future and are at a higher skill level. They’re ready to dedicate themselves to improvement both with and without you, and they have the financial means to afford a more high-touch coaching program.
In this program, work with pods of 3 and have them compete with one another. Give more personalized attention to each as needed, but overall you want them to learn from, support and inspire each other under your guidance. I’ve seen this strategy work super well and you can easily charge almost double what you would for the Group Practice/Training program.
Program 3: Elite/ Private
This is where the best of the best will be placed. The VIP, white glove coaching. Put your all into these athletes - Read this blog for more on how you can craft an offer focused on ConnectedCoaching: The $100k Offer Explained.
Quick note: CoachNow should be used with each of these programs, to varying degrees. Obviously it’s gonna be employed the most in the 3rd program and the least in the first.
No matter what tech you use, it’s crucial for your athlete to have their coach(es) and all their information in their pocket.
This will help you build and maintain a deeper relationship, offer micro touch points, give detailed video and image analysis, and ultimately overdeliver on the “$100k Coaching Offer” I lay out in this post below.
Remember: it’s crucial to move away from personalizing a program for every athlete. The three programming offers above become “buckets” that you can easily place your athletes in, based on their assessment results.
It’s absolutely gonna take some iteration….But time and time again I’ve seen coaches succeed with programs just like this.
I’m sure you can too if you give it a try.
Let’s put this into action. This week I want you to:
- Brainstorm 3 long-term development programs.You don’t have to introduce anything or change your business just yet - simply put pen to paper and ideate about what this COULD look like when you’re ready to pursue this model.
- Summarize each program, describing your ideal personas for each (e.g. age, skill level, goals etc.). Assign a price to each (and remember to keep in mind our past advice around pricing tiers).
Start thinking about this NOW. It’s a very potent exercise, even if it stays in the brainstorm phase until you’re ready.
No harm in giving it a try!
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