Unless you have been living under a rock (which at the moment seems like the best possible thing to do), you are aware of the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.
As of March 17, 2020, the novel coronavirus has infected more than 182,400 people and killed over 7,100 worldwide, according to Johns Hopkins University. For the first time, the number of deaths outside China have exceeded the ones inside.
Millions are under lockdown in Europe, Middle East, Asia, and the United States has followed suit by urging Americans to home-school, not gather in groups of more than 10, and stay away from bars and restaurants. Global sporting and cultural events have been postponed or canceled.
Further, nations across the world have imposed travel restrictions and suspended visas to curb the spread of coronavirus. China, the United States, India, Japan, Israel, Saudi Arabia, Canada, Mexico, South Africa, Australia are among the many countries with strict travel guidelines. Most companies are telling their employees to work from home, if possible.
As the world shuts down to fight coronavirus, businessmen are in a frenzy about the future of their company. It doesn’t help that economists believe a global recession is just around the corner.
What this means for you, as a coach, is that people aren’t going to be able to come to your events, and you aren’t going to be able to go anywhere!
Are you worried about the implications of coronavirus on your coaching business?
The purpose of this article is to guide you on how to keep your coaching business up and running in times of a global pandemic like coronavirus.
I’ll quickly run over some things about the Coronavirus. I know you must have already read it, but it’s going to be relevant for what I talk about next. I’ll be brief.
Coronavirus or the COVID-19 is a contagious, respiratory illness, whose outbreak was first reported in China’s Wuhan province.
- It spreads mainly through person to person contact.
- It spreads via respiratory droplets from coughs and sneezes of an infected person.
- Indirect contact via contaminated surfaces is also likely to spread the infection.
- Avoid close contact with people.
- Implement social distancing in your day to day life.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
- Wash your hands often.
- Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects to protect yourself from coronavirus.
You can also watch this video to understand why fighting the coronavirus depends on your efforts.
You have taken all the measures to protect yourself. But, how do you protect your business?
Let us talk a bit about that.
To slow the coronavirus outbreak, we are all being recommended social distancing.
What does that imply?
We stay at home and only go out when absolutely necessary.
It is important to note that pandemics are a recurring phenomenon.
It doesn’t make sense to shut down businesses and operations over them completely.
But what does one do in a lockdown situation?
What does one do when they are being asked to keep away from congregating in large crowds?
You cannot take on new clients – they can’t come to you and you can’t conduct your regular workshops and meetups.
Whether it is a one-on-one session with an old client or a group meetup, it is all out of question now.
You cannot market your business using the traditional methods of marketing.
How can you make your coaching business pandemic proof?
To prevent the spread of coronavirus, we are all under a lockdown.
How do you overcome this?
How do you keep your business afloat in such a scenario?
It might seem to be a hard thing, but it isn’t.
There are solutions. Believe me!
One of them is to take your coaching business online.
For those of you who don’t know what online coaching is or how to take your coaching business online, let me explain.
What Is Online Coaching?
Online coaching is simply coaching done online. Both the coach and the client make use of various video/audio telecommunication tools to connect with each other.
Online coaching also involves extensive use of social media apps and websites. These include Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, and Twitter.
Why And How To Go Online?
In the present day and age, it is crucial for all good coaches to have a strong online presence.
I am not saying this just because a pandemic is threatening the global economy and we don’t know what is in store for us.
I am saying this because I truly believe that the future of coaching lies in going digital.
And one has to adapt to the changing times in order to thrive.
Online coaching can be done through various tools such as Skype, Zoom, Google Hangouts, FaceTime, etc.
You can start by creating a website for your business. This will be your primary marketing pitch. After you have done that, focus on setting up a social media presence. You can record and upload videos of your coaching sessions on these social media channels.
These videos can be generic where you are talking about your business and why people need to come to you or more specific in nature, where you take your clients through your coaching techniques.
For the latter, you can use a membership site. It will help you earn more and also scale your business.
There are various ways to offer coaching online – from webinars to one-on-one video sessions. I will discuss all of this below.
First, let us understand the advantages online coaching has over the traditional methods of coaching.
Traditional Coaching vs Online Coaching
Traditional coaching is usually done on a one-on-one basis, where the coach offers the client extensive personalized coaching. Another way of coaching clients is through seminars and workshops.
I don’t need to point out that it can be time-consuming and tedious to go over the same concepts of coaching again and again with all your clients individually.
Yes, it is your niche and this is what you signed up for when you got into the profession. But, won’t you like it if you can free up some time for yourself and broaden your horizons?
Won’t you like it if you do not have to do the same repetitive thing on a day-to-day basis?
You are also limiting your reach by still following the traditional methods of coaching.
A virtual coaching business, on the other hand, will help you upgrade at a global level, and it will also ensure a steady flow of income, even when the world self-quarantines.
However, going online does not mean that you won’t be offering personalized coaching.
Not all online coaching needs to be in the form of webinars.
You can address 80 percent of your client’s needs through webinars and other standard online modules, and then offer them personalized coaching after they have been through the first stage, on their own.
Simply put, the return on investment is greater in online coaching as compared to the traditional methods of coaching.
Benefits Of Taking Your Coaching Business Online
Both small and large businesses alike have taken a big hit from the coronavirus pandemic.
The traditional method of coaching which involves personal interaction with the client cannot run well in a time when the general guideline is to self-quarantine.
How do we make sure that such a situation doesn’t crop up ever again in the future for the coaching industry?
The answer lies in learning how to coach and market your business even when you cannot meet the client in person.
It isn’t just about the coronavirus pandemic, taking your coaching business online makes sense even otherwise.
Let me explain how.
- It saves time
When you offer online coaching, it saves you an ample amount of time. After you have selected your coaching niche, the mentoring you offer to most of your clients is more or less the same. Yes, individual cases differ. But after you understand why a certain client has come to you, their initial journey isn’t very different from what you would offer to your other clients. By taking your coaching techniques and modules online, you can create a standard journey for all your clients. After they have completed the initial process, you can offer them a one-on-one session. The same can again be done online. This will save you a lot of time in which you can target more clients.
- Helps you traverse geographies
Taking your coaching business online will not limit you to a particular area, state, or country. You will have access to people all across the globe. You can offer to coach them via a membership site which will serve as a funnel for your target audience. If you market your business right, it will not only help you scale it, but will also lead you to earn a lot more than what you are making right now. I will explain in depth below how much you can potentially make by taking your coaching business online.
- Potential to earn more
As explained above, taking your business online helps you target a wide range of people. And the more people you coach, the more money you make. Not only that, but online coaching also offers you the most cost-effective way to market your business. Your website becomes your pitch, and regular posts on social media helps to lure new clients. You can get plenty of new clients if you use social media to its full potential.
Taking your business online offers you the flexibility to work from anywhere and at any time. You can pick your hours, work even when you are not in town (only if you want to), and be in charge of your daily routine. You can still coach your client, even when the two of you cannot connect at the same time.
You don’t need old sales and marketing
When you take your business online, you also save yourself the trouble of indulging in traditional means of sales and marketing. As pointed before, your website and social media accounts are your sales pitch. You don’t need to employ people to sell your product physically. Your online presence pretty much takes care of it. The membership site keeps your clients interested and also take the sales load off you. SEO helps you market your product digitally. If you do SEO right, there is no limit to how much your business can grow.
The Internet has the potential to transform the way you reach and engage with clients. SEO is another powerful digital marketing tool that offers a wide variety of benefits. If you use them right, your business will have an edge over your competitors.
Many top coaches have moved their business online. You can be a part of it too.
Cholera, Smallpox, HIV/AIDS, Influenza – history is witness to various pandemics over a prolonged period killing over a billion people.
Nobody knows when the coronavirus outbreak will be contained. Nobody knows what will follow next.
In such dire circumstances, you have to do your best to make your business risk-proof.
But first, let’s focus on the basics.
Do you have the skill set needed to take your coaching business online?
As an online coach, here are the skills that you need:
- You need to understand the technology
Online coaching is a coaching style in itself. You need to understand the various tools that will help your business grow. It includes social media as well as various other digital marketing techniques.
- Listening skills
All coaches are good listeners. It becomes imperative to be a good listener when you are an online coach. It is quite possible that you might never meet your client in person. Listening to your client is the only way you can connect with her/him. Effective listening builds trust and also boosts the confidence of the person talking as they feel acknowledged.
- Interpersonal skills
Interpersonal skills include a wide range of qualities such as patience, flexibility, motivation, leadership, among others. To be a successful online coach, one must possess all of them.
- The ability to adapt and learn quickly
Taking your business online will help you scale it by leaps and bounds. But, it will only happen if you learn quickly and adapt accordingly. If you want to know how to become a successful coach, you should check out the qualities that all successful coaches possess and exhibit.
A relevant example would be that of the COVID-19 or coronavirus. We didn’t see it coming. But how do we ensure that our business suffers a minimal loss? The answer lies in tweaking the marketing pitch. This is where your learning and adaptive skills will come to test. For instance, if you are a health coach, you need to coach people on how to build their immunity. That is what they want at the moment. Nobody is looking for tips on a six-pack right now.
Potential Earnings From Online Coaching Business
You will definitely need a lot of capital to move your coaching business online, and if you are going to do so, it is only fair that you ask about your potential earnings.
Of course, you want to know the return on your investment!
Well, as an online coach, there is no limit to the amount you can make, once you establish yourself. You will be able to target people of all classes, across the globe, in any timezone.
You will be earning in more than one currency and choose what to quote to your clients.
However, for beginners, here are some pricing options:
You can charge anything from $75 to $500 per hour for your online business coaching, as you see fit.
You can also offer coaching packages to your clients and charge anything from $1000-$2500. When you offer your clients coaching packages, you are also making sure that they stay with you for a long time.
Plan up your financials depending on where you want to take your business, especially in the present pandemic situation.
Once you do so, and successfully switch your coaching business online, coronavirus or any other market meltdown that arises in the future, won’t take you by a storm.
I hope this article was able to explain to you why taking your coaching business online will help you scale it.
In the very near future, more and more people are going to need coaches. There will be a demand for financial coaches because people would need help in making their business recession-proof.
A lot of other people would need health and nutrition coaches to work on their immunity.
Further still, end of life coaches would be in demand. People who lost their loved ones to coronavirus would need help coping up.
There is no better time to take your coaching business online than now!