How to make £2k- £3k a month as a coach: let’s break it down…

One of the questions I most often get asked by new coaches or people considering becoming a coach is ‘do coaches actually make money?’ Usually people are initially aiming for an income of £2k- £3k and wonder if it’s possible to make this kind of income coaching (or working as a nutritional therapist, any other kind of therapist, healer etc).

The answer to this question is absolutely yes, I know many coaches who make this income amount comfortably.

I’ve been the main breadwinner in my family for the last 4 years and while my business model is now probably different from many of yours (i.e. the biz mentoring work I do) I was comfortably making a good income as a health coach before I started offering those services.

However, making an income as a coach is not just about being a coach. You can’t just do your training programme and come out the other end and expect to suddenly make that kind of income without a few key things: a business model and a marketing plan, which are sometimes one and the same thing but I’m going to break it down a little differently.

So let’s say your aim is to make £2500 a month. You’d like to do this by coaching individuals 1-2-1. You charge £750 for a three month package.

This means to hit £2500 a month you’d need to have 10 clients a month. You’d also need to be getting 10 new clients every 3 months to maintain that level of income.

But £2500 a month is never £2500 in your pocket profit. You’ll have expenses and tax to pay for too – so ideally you’ll be aiming for the £3000 mark or more, so that’s 12 clients.

So, to effectively work with 12 clients a month you’ll be spending 4 hours on each client (let’s say 2 x one hour sessions + 2 hours admin) that’s 48 hours a month on managing those 12 clients. If you’d like to work 20 hours a week, this means that over the course of 4 weeks you’d have 32 hours for everything else you need to do in your business including marketing to make sure you’re getting those new 12 clients each 3 months.

Let’s say to get those 12 new clients you need to be booking in at least 24 discovery calls (presuming you convert 50% of those calls to become clients – often you can convert at a higher rate than 50%) over a 3 month period – this also needs to be factored into your spare 32 hours a month. It doesn’t leave much time left!

Looking at this scenario, you have your business model which is 1-2-1 coaching via a 3 month package that costs £750 and your marketing plan is to get people on to free discovery calls and convert them on those – but you’d also need a way to find those people to get them on the calls in the first place – maybe Instagram, Facebook and networking events for example.

Now, you can of course play about with the cost of your programme – dial it up to £1000 per package (or more) and it becomes £330ish a month in income – but you might also expect the number of people you convert in discovery calls to drop. (This isn’t always the case and depends on how well you market yourself to get the right people on those calls)

So while it’s totally doable, there’s several issues with this method of getting £3k:

  • Getting 12 clients every 3 months might be hard work
  • You don’t have much time left for actually marketing yourself in order to make sure you have a flow of clients
  • You might find that you’re having to hustle it out all the time just to ensure you’re getting enough cash flow.

Let’s re-think things a bit and look at an alternative way to hit £3k.

Instead of 12 clients you aim to have 4 clients every 3 months – which for your 3 month £750 programme = £1000 a month in income. To fill those spots you’re going to aim to do 8 discovery calls every 3 months. Simples.

But we still need to find another £2k.

Let’s say you decided to create a group programme that lasts 6 months. It gives people a similar outcome to your coaching but isn’t as high touch (i.e you’re not working with people on a 1-2-1 basis). Your 6 month group programme is £100 a month and therefore you’ll need 20 people to join the programme to hit your income target. You’ll still need to invest time into delivering the programme but instead of doing several hours of 1-2-1’s you’ll be able to do just 2 x 1 hour group coaching calls. It also means that if you get more than 20 people join the programme, you’ll not have to do any more work to get more money.

To fill those 20 slots you’ll need a method of marketing that converts people into customers – if this was email marketing for example then you might expect a conversion rate of 2-4% (conversion rates can vary wildly however) therefore you’d need about 1000 ‘leads’ or in real words – people on your email list – to convert 2% of them to customers. You might decide to use Facebook ads to get those people on to your list for your marketing (which will cost money to run the ads of course).

Then, because £600 for a 6 month group programme isn’t much of a difference to £750 for your 3 month 1-2-1 package, you decide to raise your 1-2-1 rate so there’s more of a differentiator and focus on making it a more premium service. Boom, more money in your pocket.

So these are just two of a multitude of different examples of a business model and marketing plan (though we’d want to expand what I’ve written here quite a bit when it comes to marketing!) that shows how you can get to £3k a month before expenses.

My point is that you can absolutely do it via just 1-2-1 coaching but that it could be worth considering a more leveraged way to make income via other methods too. A few of the things I’ve done over the years as well as 1-2-1 coaching:

  • Group coaching programme
  • Membership programme
  • Retreats
  • Workshops (my own and doing them for other businesses, e.g wellbeing workshops for staff)
  • Writing books for publishers
  • Selling e-books and e-guides
  • Offering digital products
  • Selling physical products
  • Sharing affiliate links
  • Working with brands
  • Writing articles for other sites

For example you could book four corporate workshops at £500 a pop and make £2k, plus having some 1-2-1 client packages too to get you up to the £3k. If you’re super smart, you use the paid workshops as a marketing opportunity and offer some free discovery calls to people at the workshops and then if they’re the right fit, you get some new clients!

I’ll be honest, I was a bit apprehensive to share this – especially the bit on just 1-2-1 clients because I know it could put some people off, seem overwhelming and generally just put a bit of a downer on because I know when I started my business I thought it would be easy because everyone on the internet (mostly business coaches) were telling me it would be easy to make ££££££££ – as long as I bought whatever their thing was (usually some kind of twisted pyramid type scheme!)

So I’m here telling you my perspective and from my experience – no bullshit. The truth is it’s not easy, but it also doesn’t have to be hard or overwhelming either. You can create a successful coaching business, but it will take time and it will take strategy – funnily enough two things rarely mentioned by the business coaches I used to come across.

Obviously I do offer services to help make it easier but this is why I focus on very practical ‘doing’ things – like my done for you services or my new business club that includes lots of trainings on how to physically do and create stuff.

I’d love to get your feedback on this, has this been helpful? Scary? Inspirational? Both? Let me know in the comments!

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1 Comment

  1. Esther

    Thanks for sharing Laura, this was a really interesting perspective and gives me food for thought, even though I am a ways off before launching my business.


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