How to run a coaching club without it consuming your life?

25 replies
Hello,

I was wondering if anyone could recommend a way to run a coaching club that would allow me to not be completed deluged by it.

I started my coaching club back in January, but it quickly became impossible to handle. I did it through email (i.e., providing coaching clients with my private email address), but people would send me these very long and detailed emails with many, many questions that were often difficult to answer due to my having to wade through all the stuff they wrote.

In the end, not only was my hourly wage low (since it could easily take me an hour just to read and answer one coaching email), but it was extremely draining for me.

I'd like to restart my coaching club, but I would like to do it in a way that also allows me to have a life and not just be on the computer answering long, detailed emails all day long that make my brain hurt.

Could someone please recommend a way to run a coaching club that would avoid that problem?

Thanks in advance for any help!
#club #coaching #consuming #life #run
  • Profile picture of the author Mohammad Afaq
    Try building a private forum. This might help you a little bit as other members might chip in and answer some of your questions for you.
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    • Profile picture of the author stockguy
      Originally Posted by Mohammad Afaq View Post

      Try building a private forum. This might help you a little bit as other members might chip in and answer some of your questions for you.
      Interesting idea! Can you recommend anyone who's currently doing that, so I can see how they set up their marketing for it, and so that I can join their club to see how they run it?
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      • Profile picture of the author Mohammad Afaq
        Originally Posted by stockguy View Post

        Interesting idea! Can you recommend anyone who's currently doing that, so I can see how they set up their marketing for it, and so that I can join their club to see how they run it?
        The guys over at Wealthy Affiliate are doing this pretty successfully but you will have to buy their $97 a month membership to get access to it.
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      • Profile picture of the author E. Brian Rose
        Originally Posted by stockguy View Post

        Interesting idea! Can you recommend anyone who's currently doing that, so I can see how they set up their marketing for it, and so that I can join their club to see how they run it?
        I am doing it. I wrote an ebook late last year and it sold very well. The book explained a method that nobody else was teaching, so there was pretty much nowhere for my customers to get questions answered other than emailing me.

        It was overwhelming, so I built a support forum. This helped a great deal. The questions were now organized in one spot, rather than flooding my email box. Some of my more advanced students also stepped up to the plate to answer questions and that was a huge help.

        I eventually expanded the course greatly by creating a membership site. The membership site lays out everything in an easy to follow way. The site's forum is laser targeted to on topic conversation only and the members are all about helping one another.

        I highly recommend the support forum route. It will help you get your life back and will be beneficial to your students, as well.
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  • Profile picture of the author Rich Struck
    Charge more & weed out the idiots.
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    • Profile picture of the author stockguy
      Originally Posted by Rich Struck View Post

      Charge more & weed out the idiots.
      I tried raising my prices, but I found that would induce people to write me even longer emails filled with even more complex questions.
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      • Profile picture of the author Rich Struck
        Originally Posted by stockguy View Post

        I tried raising my prices, but I found that would induce people to write me even longer emails filled with even more complex questions.
        lol Dang it anyway!
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        • Profile picture of the author stockguy
          Is there some kind of customer support software that limits the number of characters someone can type in? I was thinking that could be one possible solution to my problem.

          Thanks in advance!
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          • Profile picture of the author 91213
            Banned
            [DELETED]
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            • Profile picture of the author stockguy
              Originally Posted by 91213 View Post

              wow that's a good solution man,lol.
              I didn't mean for that to be funny.
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      • Profile picture of the author Steve Baker
        Originally Posted by stockguy View Post

        I tried raising my prices, but I found that would induce people to write me even longer emails filled with even more complex questions.
        Limit them to 1 question per day or whatever time period you choose and also limit the length of the question - say 5 lines. That stops them waffling on with crap and makes them get to the point

        Steve
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  • Profile picture of the author getsmartt
    Make sure you charge enough to drive out all people that drive your rate down

    In all reality it is the old 80/20 rule 20% of your students are going to take up 80% of your time.

    Either you charge enough to make money off that 20% or you figure out how to limit their drain on your business.

    Damn Rich beat me to the punch and so much more succinctly
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  • Profile picture of the author Maddi
    Depends on the niche but a lot of it can be automated.

    First off, find common problems and create products such as videos or pdf's around it.

    Have them in your members area.

    If you coaching is about taking a person from point A to B it can by done via videos. Record videos of the entire process broken down into steps and accessible via the members area.

    This way you are only doing the work once where as your members get the benefits.

    Answer the complicated questions personally but now it shouldn't take more time as you've already got the commonly asked questions covered and you can simply point them in the direction of your members area.

    Plus, Afaq's members forum idea is a good one. It is quite common to have a forum in most of the Internet Marketing Coaching groups.

    you can also create a F.A.Q document and still have the personalized touch as copying from the document and making changes according to the questions and then emailing them should take a lot less time than what you are doing now.

    Hope it helps.

    Maddi
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  • Profile picture of the author Aira Bongco
    Hey stockguy,

    I would suggest you run a forum. That way, you will not be compelled to answer all the time. Also, another idea is to set a particular time where they can ask questions like a weekly webinar or teleseminar.

    Aira
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  • Profile picture of the author Brad Campbell
    I'd highly recommend going with group coaching session to maximize your efficiency...and a great way to do this is to provide your coaching via scheduled webinars, where all members can get on at the same time and ask away...

    I learned the hard way too, 1 on 1 coaching via email is NO fun at all and even with high prices, it just doesn't pan out. Also, try to have as many pre-made templates as possible prepared ahead of time...so that nearly every coaching client is most of the way "taken care of" before they even enroll.

    Good luck =)
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  • Profile picture of the author link8
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    Hi,

    I suggest a ticketing system with knowledge base support, meaning people can see if some of the questions have been answered before while typing the question as a suggested article will pop out.

    But the best way to to really automate your business is to outsource another expert or outsource someone you can train to answer the emails for you.
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  • Profile picture of the author Michael Silvester
    Hi Mate,

    I know exactly how you feel. And this
    is what I did as my solution. And it
    works perfectly.

    1. Charge More!
    2. They are limited to 1 question per 24 hours
    3. If you do critiques, there is up to a 72 hour turnaround
    4. Questions are only answered Monday-Thursday

    When you accept more than one question at a time you
    answers become watered down or even rushed, because
    you know you have a million other questions to answer.

    If only one question is asked, you can give the best
    god damn answer you could ever do and provide way more
    detail for them.

    One question per 24 hours actually gives them time to actually
    impliment the advice you have given them.

    As you know, you are spreading yourself too thin.

    Run your coaching through a ticket system like hesk.com
    and then all their q&a is compiled neatly in the one thread.

    You can also send and recieve files without them getting
    lost in email etc. Another bonus is you can add "Canned Responses"
    to the ticket system to answer any questions you get on a
    regular basis.

    Also, when they first join your coaching...let them know
    about the "Rules of the Game", what to expect from you
    and also what you expect of them.

    Hope that helps?

    Take Care,

    Michael Silvester
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    • Profile picture of the author Jerky
      How about an F.A.Q.?

      Surely you've noticed a pattern in some of the questions - or at least a couple of repeats. As you answer them individually, also write up a new FAQ section, so when the next person asks you can direct them to it.

      Then maybe include a statement like: "Before contacting me, check out the F.A.Q.s - there's a good chance you'll find the solution you're looking for..."

      Just a thought
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    • Profile picture of the author Deep.Arora
      Originally Posted by Michael Silvester View Post

      Hi Mate,

      1. Charge More!
      2. They are limited to 1 question per 24 hours
      3. If you do critiques, there is up to a 72 hour turnaround
      4. Questions are only answered Monday-Thursday

      Michael Silvester
      PERFECT SOLUTION!!!
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  • Profile picture of the author PPC-Coach
    I've been doing exactly this for about 3 years now.

    I did the 1on1 route originally, it's just not sustainable for any single person. You go batty answering the same questions over and over. The group format is best for this. Some may think they need one on one, but in reality they don't. They think they have unique questions, but they don't.

    You have to find the dollar amount that makes it worth your time. If you're just starting out in this, you can take on more members for less money, but over time, you need to increase the price, (like wealthy affiliate did), or decrease the support to a level that matches their cost.

    After a while, if you really like, it's not even like work anymore.

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  • Profile picture of the author Hoopatang
    Also, consider elevating some of your more apt members to "Team Leaders". They'll like the feeling of being valued and singled out, and folks can ask them for help also. Delegation is a wonderful thing.

    The forums idea is a great way to delegate.
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  • Profile picture of the author Big Al
    Think Michael hit the nail on the head. There has to be a limit to how much time they have access to you, or the number of questions the ask.

    People get lazy and stop looking for themselves for even the most mundane, stupid questions -- when they should be saving the time with you for the biggies only you can answer.

    Good luck!
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    • Profile picture of the author Steven Wagenheim
      Boy am I gonna get a lot of slack for this but so be it.

      In short, you can't.

      In spite of what many marketers believe, coaching is NOT some automated
      pre-packaged site, program or whatever that you can slap up online and
      then let your "students" fend for themselves.

      Real coaching is one on one attention with many hours of work.

      I've seen so called "coaching" programs that I consider a joke. They're a
      bunch of lessons or PDFs or whatever that somebody puts up in a
      download area and they call it coaching.

      Bull sh*t.

      So if you want to coach, coach. But expect it to consume your time.

      Your students are paying for that time.

      Having said that, you should be charging enough so that it's WORTH
      your time. If not, that's your OWN fault and nobody else's.

      Charge what you're worth, weed out the bargain seekers and you'll find
      that your time is better spent.
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      • Profile picture of the author ebusinesstutor
        Steven has a good point. If it is a one on one coaching program, you are trading your time for money. So make sure you charge enough to make it work.

        The other suggestions such as a private forum, etc are all good, but effectively this turns it more into an online course, not one on one coaching.

        The other suggestion about having lots of templates and videos can help as well. For example, if someone asks how to set up an autoresponder in Aweber, you can either have links ready to video tutorials or create your own. This way you don't do the same thing over and over with each client.

        And yes, I agree you need to limit the number of questions/hours. Your poorest students are the ones who will suck up all your time and will likely be the ones that will quit and you won't make that much money off of them.
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  • Profile picture of the author Brad Gosse
    Steven has this bang on.

    When I think of a coach I think of the Olympics. Did Michael Phelps join a swimming forum, download some PDF's or attend some webinars?

    No.

    Coach Bob was there every step of the way.
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  • Profile picture of the author John Romaine
    Back in 08, I was paying $2,500 an hour for one on one coaching sessions. Im not kidding. It was worth every cent.
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