Are you still making single sessions or packaged sessions? Stop trying to do that and try signature programs. As a coach, you should sell transformation, not sessions. A signature program is a collection of sessions and resources created for your ideal client. Join your host Kendra Perry as she discusses why a signature program might be best for you as a coach. Start having a profitable and sustainable business today!
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Should You Create A Signature Program?
If we are meeting for the first time, I’m an online business mentor for health and wellness coaches. I’m here to help you blow up your business this year. How does that sound? Does that sound good? Good. We’re on the same page. I hope you are having a wonderful January 2022. It is winter in British Columbia and I love it. I do feel that it is the most beautiful time of year because the snow, skies and colors are unbelievable. Not everyone appreciates winter. If you’ve been following me for any amount of time, I love the mountains and skiing and I love playing in the snow, but I find it so stunning, at least where I live. I would suspect if you live in a city, winter is gross because the snow turns brown.
The snow is untouched here and there are these pinks and purples and the lake. I have to say the colors that I’ve been seeing in the lake have been new. It’s been super interesting. I don’t know if it’s because it’s been abnormally cold. Normally we hover around freezing, but it’s been quite cold here. I was driving into town and the lake was this deep royal blue. I was like, “I haven’t seen that color before.” It was so stunning. When I was driving back from town, it was this baby blue. It was so incredible. I love those moments where you can stop for a second, especially me, who lives in my crazy monkey brain. I almost get shocked out of it. I can take this deep breath and look at the beauty of nature. Take it all in and feel so incredibly grateful. I hope wherever you are, you are getting yourself a good dose of nature.
Let’s dive into the topic. We are going to talk about signature programs and what it is. We’re going to do a total signature program 101 and should you create one? I’m going to tell you a little story. When I first started out, this would have been 2014, 2015. I was trying to mimic the business model taught in my diploma program through the Canadian School of Natural Nutrition and through what I had witnessed as a patient or a client for other practitioners.
At that point, my experience with practitioners was usually seeing a naturopath or seeing an acupuncturist or a massage therapist, where I gave you $100 of my money and they gave me an hour or whatever of their time. I thought that was the only business model. You get busy. You see clients. You trade time for money, essentially. You give time and they give you money. That’s the business model that I was trying to mimic. My experience was that it was difficult because I felt like was I was in this spinning circle of doom of client acquisition.
I was continually on the search for new clients and it wasn’t I needed a few new clients. I needed a lot because I was initially charging maybe $75 an hour with taxes and expenses and all of that. It ends up being a lot less. I was having trouble understanding how I was going to make a full-time income out of this because when I did the math, I was like, “I need like 80 clients a month to make the money that I want to make.” A big problem with this as well was that I was feeling deeply unsatisfied because I wasn’t seeing the transformation that I wanted to see in my clients.
Typically, someone would come to see me, and then I would never hear from them again or they would rebook multiple months later. I had no idea where they were at, what was going on or if they were seeing improvement. I got into this as I’m sure you got into this to help people. I wanted to see people have the transformation. I quickly learned that not only was this not getting people a transformation, but it was not working for my bank account either. There is a huge problem with this business model for a couple of different reasons, but I would say, especially if you’re unlicensed.
I’ve never been licensed. I never wanted to get licensed. I never wanted to have anyone telling me what to do, control me or tell me how to practice. While I briefly entertained the idea of going to school to be a naturopath or becoming a dietician, ultimately, I realized that I wanted to do what I wanted and that wasn’t going to work if I had a board that was governing me.
A big problem when you’re unlicensed is people’s extended health insurance doesn’t cover your services. I don’t know how it is in your country, but in my country in Canada, people get extended health. They either pay for it or get it through their workplace, which allows them to get a certain number or even unlimited types of services each and every year.
I have my extended health. I get up to $3,000 a year for massage, acupuncture, counseling, all those things. When you have the coverage, you’re going to go see the practitioners who can accept that coverage. For practitioners who are licensed naturopaths, it doesn’t take long for them to fully book out their practice. I’ve seen this to be true because I have a lot of friends who are massage therapists and Chinese medicine doctors. We have schools for both of those in my town. A lot of people in this area do that for work.
They all seem to get pretty booked out within about a year of starting their business. There was a year where they were building up their clientele and then they were booked. The reason for that, you got to be good at what you do, but a big reason is people are going to see them because they can get it generally for free or at a discounted rate through their extended health. When you’re unlicensed, you don’t have that. People are going to be paying out-of-pocket. If they’re looking for a session, then they’re probably going to go see a naturopath.
If you are a licensed professional like a naturopathic doctor and you’re doing this business model, it’s problematic because while you might be able to get busy and do quite well, I know naturopaths are charging $120 an hour and they’re fully busy. What happens is you end up in this all-day back-to-back appointment situation where you’re seeing one person then the next. That ends up being a lot of people to keep track of. When you’re juggling, I would think naturopaths have hundreds of clients and you have hundreds of clients. You don’t have intimacy with any of those clients. You don’t know them that well.
Every time they come in, you have to review the notes that you have for them from last. You probably don’t fully remember that interaction unless you have this amazing memory. You’re going to probably butt up against the same thing that I did where the people you see them once you don’t see them again, they’re not getting the result. You can’t track their progress. Some people are diligent, but with a lot of people, you might be seeing a handful of times and they might not be doing the work. That’s what I was butting up against.
The next thing I did, I said, “Maybe selling single sessions isn’t the right thing. Maybe I should sell packages of sessions. I would offer six sessions with a lab or something like that.” It’s because I was a functional practitioner, so I was running lab testing. I was running packages of sessions, which did help me slightly financially. It did help me a little bit with client results, but it didn’t help my bank account because people still didn’t seem that excited about this package of sessions. It didn’t seem to sell that well. What I eventually learned is that I probably should be selling what’s called a signature program. Essentially what a signature program is, is your only offer.
I suggest that it’s your only offer for which your business is known. You very much want to associate yourself with your signature program. My signature program is Health Coach Accelerator. If you’ve been reading this show for a while, you know I talk about HCA nonstop if you follow me on social media. I’m obsessed with it. I love it. I’m always talking about it. That connection must be made very quickly. When you start reading to this show or following me, you’re very quickly going to know that, “She sells Health Coach Accelerator. That is her signature program.”
You want there to be a connection. What a signature program is, is it is a collection of sessions, education, accountability, support and resources that you bundle up into this program. You create specifically for your ideal client. If you help women with anxiety, then you have a signature program on anxiety. You don’t help women with anxiety and then have a meditation program or conscious eating program. That’s not going to work. It has to be aligned.
A signature program can be incredibly powerful and why you need one as a practitioner are sustainability and profitability. Those two things are things that we want in our business. You can have a profitable business. One that makes you money, as maybe if you’re a naturopathic doctor doing these single sessions, your business might be very profitable, but it may not be sustainable in that. You’re probably going to burn out. When you’re juggling all these clients when you’re in appointments all day, that can burn you out. That, in my opinion, is not sustainable.
There are always outliers. Someone is always going to be the outlier that does this, makes a profit and never burns out. That exists. There are people like that. I’ve witnessed that for a lot of practitioners, that is a business model that will burn you out. Therefore, it’s not sustainable. If you’re unlicensed, it’s not sustainable because you’re on this constant wheel of client acquisition spinning into this death-doom trap where you’re always on the hunt for so many new clients and finding a new client is not easy.
It’s the most time-consuming and costly thing that you do in your business. Acquiring a new client. If you have to find hundreds of those, that is not sustainable. A signature program gives you sustainability and profitability because it’s not a single session. It’s working with someone over a specific time period. For example, a very common signature program length is 90 days because you are working with a client for 90 days that means that you don’t need to find as many clients because obviously, you are charging a higher price point upfront for a 90-day program versus one session.
That means that instead of having to find 50 clients a month, maybe you’ll need to find five clients a month. If you want to make six figures, you want to make $10,000 a month in your business. That’s what most coaches are going. They are like, “I want to make $10,000 a month.” They’re going to be very happy with that. If you are charging $100 an hour, that means you need to do 100 appointments a month. It’s a lot of appointments and clients that you have to acquire versus even if you’re selling a signature program for $1,000, that’s five clients a month.
If it’s a 90-day program that means at any given time, you’re juggling fifteen clients. Amazing. You can juggle fifteen clients. That’s sustainable. The even cooler thing is you can charge $5,000 or even $10,000 for a signature program. Imagine you’re charging $5,000 for a signature program and you were happy to make $10,000 a month, two clients a month, six at any given time, you can see how sustainable this business model is. That’s why you need one. Why do your clients need a signature program? They need one because the transformation is in the transaction. I don’t know who said this. I did not come up with that, but I fully believe in it. I believe it to be very incredibly true that transformation is in the transaction.
You might notice that people who get things for free don’t put in the work or commit. If you’ve ever offered your services for free, probably what you’ve come across as people who don’t follow through. When you are charging a low price, it’s not a lot of commitment. People are like, “I’ll give you $100 for an hour.” It’s a very low commitment. As somebody is spending thousands of dollars to work with you, that’s going to hurt a little bit. When people make a transaction that is a little bit outside of their comfort zone and it’s significant, at least they’re more likely to be way more committed.
Committed clients are the only ones who get the transformation. The transformation is also in the commitment it’s in both the transaction and the commitment. If you work with someone who’s not committed, they won’t get results. It doesn’t matter how good of a coach you are. They’re the ones who have to do the work. They’re the ones who have to take responsibility for their health and make the changes. You get that commitment, and the higher the price point, typically the more commitment you will get. I will tell you that my highest ticket clients are the lowest maintenance.
When I was doing one-on-one coaching and I was charging $5,000 per program, those clients were very low maintenance. They got unlimited Voxer Support, yet they didn’t Voxer me that often. They did the work and they asked questions for clarification. They were the easiest clients to deal with versus the clients that I was charging $500 for. They were super high maintenance. Some of them were emailing me five times a day. There is a lot of benefits. It can serve your clients better to charge a higher price point. When you undervalue your services, not only are you hurting yourself, but you’re also hurting the client because that higher price point will make them further commit.
The other reason why your clients need one is they’re getting a better experience. People truly want an experience. People don’t typically have a one-hour session and then go rave about how it changed their life. They come into your 90-day or whatever length of your signature program and they feel supported, heard, cared for, served, and get the results. What an experience that people will rave about and tell all their friends about. I always say, “Don’t sell sessions. Sell an experience.” That’s what I try to do inside Health Coach Accelerator. I try to sell an experience. I want people to feel heard, supported and community.
I want them to have this amazing experience and that’s why people come. When people experience a transformation and they have an amazing experience, they get the results. What does that mean for you? It means more testimonials and referrals. Social proof testimonials are incredibly important for your business. People want to know that you’ve gotten people a result. It’s going to be way more likely that you’re going to get someone a result when you have 90 days or whatever to work with them versus one hour.
When people have that amazing experience and that impactful transformation, they’re going to refer you. When I reach out to new followers on Instagram, I always ask them, “How did you come across my account?” You’ll be interested to know that a lot of it wasn’t because they found me on Instagram search because they heard about me through someone else. It’s important to sell transformation. Not selling sessions. Having a signature program can greatly impact your business. It can change everything because once you start getting those big transformations, that’s when people start flocking into your business.
I do believe in 2022 that you can’t get away with selling one-off sessions unless maybe you’re licensed. Maybe you can still get away with that or selling packages of sessions. Signature programs are king and signature programs are the only thing that is going to sell in 2022. It’s incredibly important. If you are interested in learning how to build a signature program because now you know what it is, but maybe you’re wondering what I put in it, what will make it good, and what will make people want to buy it? What should I name it? I have a very exciting three-day free event where I’m going to show you exactly how to build and structure your signature program.
By the end of the three days, you can have your signature program built and ready to sell to your audience. I’m going to go through exactly how to structure it, how you should set it up, how you should run it, what it should include, how to choose the best style for your ideal client and how to work through the logistics. We’re also going to talk about naming and pricing. You do want to have a good name for a signature program and pricing is always a sticky issue. I invite you to join me for this three-day live event. It’s going to be awesome and incredibly valuable.
It is totally free. If you want to join me, you can go to KendraPerry.net/signatureprogram. I hope you sign up. I would love to see you there. I hope you enjoyed this episode. If you do love this episode, feel free to document your experience. Take a little screenshot, share it to your Instagram stories and make sure to tag me so that I can personally thank you in a direct message because I love getting to know you and chatting with you in Instagram DM. I will see you again in the next episode, where I help you become a wealthy AF. KendraPerry.net/signatureprogram