Learning to structure a signature coaching program for your coaching business can be overwhelming.
There are experts who swear that 5-figure masterminds are the best business model, some who recommend in-depth courses, and many who have become successful with a simple 1-on-1 model.
In this blog post, we’ll cover how to structure a coaching program that fits YOU. We’ll guide you through how to create a signature program including naming, frequency, duration, delivery, pricing, and more.
And trust us when we say we’ve seen it all, and there is no right answer. We’ve built complex membership sites for million-dollar coaches and launched top-selling sales pages for small one-on-one coaches.
There is no secret, it’s just about playing to your strengths.
Let’s get started!
Table of Contents
- What is a Coaching Program?
- How To Structure A Coaching Program
- Step 1: Identify Your Coaching Niche
- Step 2: Name Your Coaching Program
- Step 3: Choose Your Coaching Program Frequency & Duration
- Step 4: Choose Your Coaching Program Delivery Method
- Step 5: Choose Your Program Structure
- Step 6: Outline and Create Your Coaching Tools
- Step 7: Decide What to Charge and Create Packages
- Final Thoughts
What is a Coaching Program?
A coaching program is an offer that you as a coach create to reflect and deliver your original teaching style and materials. It is a signature system. Something that is unique to you and allows you to coach in a structured and organized way.
Speaking of systems… the point of a coaching program is to help you deliver your teachings systematically so you get reliable, repeatable results. It increases your credibility and helps you to hone your approach to coaching. It also reduces the amount of time you need to spend planning.
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Even if you never share your program with another coach, it’s important that it’s set up as if someone else could deliver it easily by following your guidelines.
Your coaching program is a system and a pattern, that can be used repeatedly and allows you to scale your coaching business.
How To Structure A Coaching Program
The key to a powerful coaching program is structure! Your program should bring clarity, organization, and a process to your coaching.
Here’s an easy-to-follow step-by-step process to help you create your signature coaching program.
Step 1: Identify Your Coaching Niche
You need to know what your niche is before you can start putting together a program. What problem are you solving? Who are you helping? Which clients are you targeting?
Until you know what makes you special, you will find it very difficult to convey your skills and the assistance you offer to clients. You may also have trouble determining what material you should and shouldn’t cover.
For example, if you’re a relationship coach that works with separated couples, you wouldn’t use the same materials as a relationship coach that works with newlyweds.
The money is always in owning your niche.
Step 2: Name Your Coaching Program
The process of naming something can be challenging, especially when trying to communicate your program offers in a memorable, creative, and simple way.
Your coaching program’s name needs to convey quickly and concisely what it will cover, but it also needs to sound good.
Firstly, think about how your clients define themselves. If you’re looking for clients that are artsy and romantic, your name can afford to be flowery and creative.
If your clients are business-like, you want something simple and professional. Don’t just think about what sounds good to you.
Next, focus on solutions. Your client should feel the promise in the name, the answer that you’re going to give them to help them fix things.
Ask around and see what people think of potential names you come up with – ask in your actual target group if possible. Do they like it? Would they buy it?
Think about the sound, too. That might seem obvious, but if your program has a boring, forgettable, or tongue-twister name, it’s not going to do well.
Go for alliteration and rhythm, and try the name aloud several times to see how it sounds to you and to others. Consider rhyme too if you can come up with something clever.
Step 3: Choose Your Coaching Program Frequency & Duration
An important aspect of your program is how often and for how long your coach your clients. Does it run for six months? A year? Just a month? A day? How many times will you meet with your clients and how long will the sessions be?
When making these decisions, think about what the client wants as well as what works for you.
- If they are very busy, are they going to be able to show up to a weekly meeting?
- How long might a session be?
Structure the sessions around your content and goals, but remember to think about the client’s convenience too.
In general, long programs should meet less frequently (1 to 2 times/month) than short programs (3 to 6 times/month).
Depending on the circumstances, you might even meet frequently at the beginning of a new client relationship, working intensively on material, and then move to monthly meetings to stay accountable.
Another option would be to start with a longer VIP day (at least four hours), followed by regular shorter sessions.
Step 4: Choose Your Coaching Program Delivery Method
The choice is entirely yours whether to offer your coaching in person or virtually. There are benefits to each method. This is why you must understand how you will meet with your clients since that will dictate how you deliver your coaching program.
Are you going to be working with clients face to face, or over the internet? How do your materials need to be made available to the client? What is more convenient for them and for you?
Think about what meeting space you will use if you’re going to do physical meetings, and what programs you will use for virtual ones. How will you store and transfer resources? If you need physical resources, how will you provide these?
All these questions are important, especially when deciding which coaching management tools to use, like CoachAccountable, Paperbell or Delenta.
To find out whether you should deliver your coaching in person or virtually, ask your current clients or your ideal clients how they prefer to receive coaching.
Step 5: Choose Your Program Structure
One-on-one coaching means that you work with an individual client, whether you do so face-to-face or virtually.
Group coaching involves working with multiple clients together; this can happen in person or online.
Which one you offer really depends on your preference. Many coaches offer both, but you will still need to know your plan in order to structure your program effectively.
To decide, ask yourself how much guidance and feedback does each client need?
If your coaching methods require you to customize every session, then group coaching won’t work for you. It’s better to work one-on-one.
If your coaching methods allow you to follow the same process for every call, meaning you have a set curriculum and focus, then group coaching makes more sense.
Step 6: Outline and Create Your Coaching Tools
There are plenty of coaching tools, models, methodologies, and techniques out there. You should think about what to use in advance and plan your coaching program structure around these.
Here are three categories you should define:
- Methodologies: All coaches, consciously or unconsciously, use certain models for developing coaching conversations.
Usually, such methodologies follow a coaching model (such as GROW or CLEAR).
Decide which coaching methodologies you’ll follow to help your coaching program participants break through their obstacles.
- Techniques: A coaching technique is a strategy that is used with coaching methodologies to train a client’s brain to understand a new behavior.
Every coach has different techniques depending on their niche and training. However, there are some universal coaching techniques and tools that can be used by any coach.
Here are 15 that we recommend: https://lovelyimpact.com/coaching-techniques/
- Worksheets and Homework: Worksheets and homework are things that you give to a client to work on in between sessions. These tools are used to continue progress when you are not working with the client.
When developing your program, you should have homework created to help each client to continue to make progress.
Step 7: Decide What to Charge and Create Packages
Deciding what to charge can be a major challenge when it comes to creating your coaching program. You need to price your packages right to attract clients and make a living at the same time.
You do not want to set your prices too low; this will decrease the value that the client sees in your service, and can reduce your credibility as well.
You may also find that you end up catering to the wrong clients if you don’t set your prices high enough. You don’t want to sell yourself short or undervalue the importance of the service you offer.
To get an idea of what to charge, look at other similar coaches and what they are charging. Decide where to place your mark, and think about how to convey the value proposition to potential clients.
Here are a few best practices for beginner coaches.
- An hour-long session that will work on helping clients implement their ideas and strategies.
- A one-off session, rather than a recurring coaching package.
- Starting at $197 for the session.
½ Day Sessions
- A 4-hour session for a solid block of time.
- Intense focus on the most important factor to ensure the client’s success.
- Can cover more than one topic if this is believed to be more suitable for the client.
- Starting at $597 per session.
- 8-hour sessions (with breaks).
- Covers a wide range of topics, and you will often seek to define a client’s vision, their offerings, their goals, their plan for a month, for two months, and for a year.
- Aims to come up with an actionable plan they can implement going forward.
- Covers all important areas that you feel will help your client.
- Starting at $997 for a session.
Month To Month Coaching
- Ongoing coaching over a set period of time.
- Up to 8 hours for the first session.
- Often includes one weekly meeting of an hour.
- Aims to provide long-term support, direction, and help with your client’s specific goals.
- Usually based upon an agreed plan with a fixed end date.
- Starting at $1500 for a month.
- Ongoing coaching for a full year.
- Usually starts with an intense kick-off call to discuss goals, client requirements, expectations, roles, and structure going forward.
- Often includes weekly meetings of an hour or two, but maybe more or less regularly depending on the group’s needs.
- Aims to provide long-term support, direction, and help with your group’s specific goals, and will include conveying tools they can continue to use throughout life.
- Will have a fixed end date with specific, agreed-upon goals.
- Prices depend upon coach, client, and frequency of meetings required.
- Starting at $5,000 to $10,000 per seat.
As you see, there are so many ways to structure a coaching program, and it really depends on your business model, how you enjoy doing things, and the way you were certified to coach.
When you trust yourself and your experience, you will build a thriving coaching business that has the ability to scale.
When you just wing it, you’ll find yourself relaunching programs and starting over, again and again, trying to get it right, costing you time and money.
Before you get starting structuring your coaching program, make sure to leave a quick comment to let me know what you think of this guide.
About The Author
Hey! I’m Tee, a brand and marketing coach and the Co-Founder & CMO at Lovely Impact, a website template shop for coaches. I help coaches grow their coaching businesses digitally. Here on our blog, my content focuses on web design, marketing, business, and social media strategy.
Thanks Tee! Very clearly presented. I’m feeling less overwhelmed about getting my on-line presence effectively organized.
Thanks John! Happy this helped you feel less overwhelmed 🙂 Thanks for reading and commenting.
So glad I found this site! Lifesaver!
Awww! Thanks Tae 🙂 Happy we could be of help.
Of course! Glad we can help Connie 🙂 Thanks for commenting.
Thanks to your lovely impact website I managed to get more information about structuring my coaching program. Thanks to you and many years of creating content others can now follow your steps without feeling overwhelmed and stressed out.
So thank you Tee for making the creation of my coaching program less stress free and exciting.
Hi Izilke! Thank you so much for your kind words. So happy we were able to help 🙂
Thank you very much Tee it is clear and breakthrough to me
Glad I could help Elin! Here if you need anything else.
This is exactly what I’ve been looking for!! I literally googled what I needed and this came up! You just gained a client.
So happy we could help Jailyn!
Hi Tee — I’m very excited about using this outline! Thank you!
Hey Sybil! So excited that you found this helpful. Good luck putting your coaching program together. Here to point you in the right direction if you have any additional questions.
Thank you Tee for a very insightful program structure with an effective logic layout. It indeed boost one’s confidence and give strength to pursue the mission.
The only other hiccup for me is the process of setting/ asking questions
Asking questions was the hardest for me to master too Steven! We have an awesome book we always recommend: “Coaching Questions: A Coach’s Guide to Powerful Asking Skills” – it’s amazing. You can grab it on Amazon. https://amzn.to/3wVrVGa
I am absolutely in awe of this article. I am doing my research as required as a Life Coach just starting out. Some I have paid for, some I have not. This is the best information that has helped me so much on how and where to get started, you are appreciated!
WEBSITE in the making.
Hey Jennifer – So glad we can help 🙂 Congrats on becoming a life coach! It’s challenging to get going but once established, I believe it’s the best job in the world. Don’t hesitate to reach out to us if you need anything.
Thank you for the great information and providing so many points of reference and examples. Really appreciated!
Happy to help Cat! Here if you need anything else.
Of course! Happy to help Oksana 🙂
This was so informative and helpful!! thank you so much for taking the time on creating this ! Becoming a coach has been exciting because of all of the skills and knowledge i can provide however structuring my own business has been a challenge lol
So happy we could help Cecilia! Good luck on your coaching journey. Your people need you.
Hi Marisely, Thank you for taking the time to leave a comment. We’re glad to hear that you found the article helpful. If you have any questions or feedback, feel free to let us know.
This is sooooo useful, thank you so much. I really appreciate the wisdom and time taken to go into detail. My coaching (and website) is in the very early stages, but this will definitely help to get further along quicker.
Kibbe! Congrats on your new coaching business and we are so happy we could help, even in a little way. Thanks for being a reader.
This was so helpful. I was feeling overwhelmed before reading this. This was spot on. I really appreciate you taking out the time to put this information together. May God bless your endeavor’s the way that this information has blessed me.
Lisa, I’m thrilled that our blog post helped you overcome overwhelm! You’re doing amazing! Sending you all the blessings and positive vibes on your coaching journey. If you ever need more guidance or support, we’re here for you. Keep shining bright! ✨🙌
Hi, Tee thank you so much for dedicating your time to help people like me as I am about to start my coaching business online I had no idea where to start from. Indeed you are a gem. ❤️
Hey Charity! You’re so welcome, and I’m thrilled to hear that our blog post was helpful for you as you embark on your coaching business journey. You’re a gem too, and I can’t wait to see you shine bright! If you ever need more guidance along the way, just give me a shout. Keep rocking it! 🌟💖