Summary: Coaching is one of the most sought-after skills nowadays. Due to the economic uncertainties, market volatilities, and layoffs, it looks like everyone should seek a coach to guide their life, business, and career. If you’re having difficulties handling a handful of coaching clients, understanding how to do group coaching should be at the top of your list.
If you’re a coach in any niche, and you simply want to…
- increase your impact and reach a broader audience
- make use of your time efficiently
- ask people to pay less without compromising what you can earn
- grow your business to the next level
- support a collaborative environment among your clients
Sadly, you can’t attain this by offering one-on-one coaching alone. You need to create another pipeline or strategy to achieve these aspirations.
And what I highly recommend is group coaching.
It isn’t new at all. Many coaches in different niches have tried. It scaled up their business and it balanced their work-life. So how can you start? First, let’s define what’s group coaching.
What is Group Coaching?
Group coaching is simply coaching 2 or more persons at the same time with a common goal. You allow your clients to go through sessions, content, activities, and exercises led by you. In other words, you are giving them the advantage to learn from each other’s experiences, aspirations, goals, and life stories other than themselves.
Although group coaching is on a case-to-case basis (eg. one on one coaching is still better for clients who want your undivided attention and aren’t comfortable sharing with others). But if your clients are happy to learn not just from you, then I recommend group coaching.
What are the different Group Coaching Business Models?
The world evolves so fast and is coaching too!
Today, we have different types of group coaching models that are popping up to structure a group coaching program. Let’s break it down for you so you can reflect on which one will work out to run a successful group coaching.
The Course-Based Program Model
This model is entirely based on the course you’ve created. If you’ve created a hybrid cohort-based course where 70% of the time is entirely self-paced and 30% is live, then you can conduct a group coaching session within these 30% live sessions.
In order to create a better learning experience for students, Bootcamps, online courses, and training integrate coaching sessions and most of the time these are group coaching where everyone learns from group members and not solely from their coach.
The Membership Model
This model is also known as the subscription-based model. You encourage your clients to subscribe to your services/content for an amount of time. It can be weekly, monthly, yearly, or even a lifetime depending on how you design your pricing (more on this later in the pricing section).
It works well in online communities where there is no specific start & end date. The member can join and start anytime, and s/he can still keep up with what’s happening in the group setting.
The Cohort Model
This model has a clear start and finish date. Each group member learns together as a cohort. This can be very similar to the course-based program model as both are supporting collaborative learning.
The only difference is, this isn’t fully dependent on a course. You can use the cohort model without a specific course, as long as you are fulfilling the desire of your clients to learn in collaborative group sessions with you leading them.
How to Structure or Create a Group Coaching Program
After laying down the different models, let’s dive into the step-by-step guide on how to structure your group coaching program.
Step 1: Choose Your Business Model
You don’t need to be meticulous in choosing a business model as you can always change it anytime you want to attain a successful group coaching program. The main objective here is to start and see what works and what does not.
I highly recommend you choose the business model that will work well in your niche and with your existing clients. I'm assuming here that you’re already a coach with clients and you’re just looking for another way to thrive in your business.
Step 2: Identify a Common Goal or Focus
After choosing the model that can work for you, it’s time to set a common goal for group coaching.
For instance, you pick the cohort model where you design it as pure coaching sessions without following an online course. Ask yourself what would be the goal of your 4-week coaching calls. What do you want your clients to achieve in each session, and what is the overarching goal?
Feel free to check on the data and observations on the common needs, goals, aspirations, and challenges of your clients. Or simply ask them by creating a poll, survey, or assessment form. You can derive your goal setting from here.
Step 3: Create an agenda
Identifying a goal isn’t enough to run group coaching. You also need to write an agenda and the content for your program as a coaching technique. What will happen in a one-hour live group session? What will be the flow of activities with the group?
Group coaching has a different cadence compared to one-on-one coaching clients. You’re coaching 2 or more people in one room. It's important to plan out activities where everyone can speak up as some people might overpower others when you're running group coaching.
If you’re coaching more than 5 people, insert an activity where members of the group can be broken down into subgroups to have an intimate discussion.
Step 4: Set a schedule
Where and when will your first group coaching practice take place? Is it a 4-week or an 8-week online program? Are you meeting the group members once or twice a week? Will it last for an hour or more than that?
If you choose the membership type of program, you can pick a time and a day for your online coaching ritual, and decide on the frequency if you want to meet weekly, bi-weekly or monthly.
Step 5: Practice Accountability
Some suggestions to practice accountability within the groups to make group coaching work:
- create a buddy system where 2-3 people are grouped together. They will be accountable for each other’s progress during the course
- run a Personal Development Plan (PDP) activity to help them clarify what they want to achieve. They can use the PDP to reflect on and track their progress
- add individual coaching as part of the program only at the start and end date
How to do Group Coaching: Pricing your Online Group Coaching Session
There are several creative ways how to price and offer group coaching. Let me share with you the popular ones:
Let’s go back to the business models. The subscription-based model is actually similar to the membership model. For instance, create coaching packages with different tiers, coverage, and levels depending on your customer segmentation and services.
You can offer a Starter plan for individuals and a Business plan for executive group coaching sessions or teams who want to avail of your services on a continuous basis.
Coaching Bundle Model
Unlike the subscription-based model, this is a one-time payment model where you arrange your group coaching offers into bundles indicating a specific outcome. For example, you would want to help your customers to shift into a new career in 2 months with the following offer:
- 8 live group coaching
- bi-weekly private coaching
- free access to 20 worksheets
- for only $1399, upfront payment and $699 for 2-month installment options
One-time Payment Model
A bit similar to coaching bundles, however, this is the basic version. Let’s say, you want to offer a 4-week group coaching online for only $1000 per person. And your goal is to get at least 15 clients.
It’s a win-win model for you and for them. You have a maximum of $15,000 in revenue in a 4-week coaching setting and they won’t need to pay much higher costs than $1k for a month of coaching.
In conclusion, pricing your live coaching sessions highly depends on:
- what you can offer (group coaching format)
- your client's needs, aspirations, and wants
- how much they can pay and how much you want to earn
Marketing Techniques used by Group Coaches to Sell & Scale their Online Group Coaching Program
Coaches are a hot trend right now. Putting together these 4 marketing strategies on how to do group coaching will get you into a 6 to 7-figure online business.
Build your credibility.
As a coach, you are your product. Whatever kind of coach you are—life coach, executive coach, business coach, career coach, the list goes on. Investing in yourself and in your skillset is the best strategy to build credibility.
Gaining mastery of how to handle a handful of customers through the use of group coaching can elevate you from the rest.
Build your audience.
While investing in your skills, build a bigger audience to attract more clients. Use social media platforms such as Facebook groups, LinkedIn, and Twitter to build trust and establish yourself. Once they see how group coaching can help them, they will flock around you and soon they will avail what you offer and join a group.
In short, help them first to build trust. People usually buy from those they know rather than from strangers.
Build your portfolio.
Show your audience real results by running a group coaching program with free sessions. Social proof is the best portfolio for coaches where you exhibit your current and previous clients’ success stories to attract potential ones. This is to show that you have created a group coaching program that establishes your expertise.
Build your platform.
Lastly, take your group coaching to the next level through a group coaching platform. Group coaches thrive to run the program using different online tools, apps, and platforms.
Once you expand your business, you won’t be able to perform all tasks anymore. So you need to level up by automating them to save you time and energy while scaling your business.
It’s a good thing that there are several platforms available for coaches. Teachfloor is one of the best group coaching platforms on the web as it’s designed for collaborative learning experiences and cohort-based learning.
It’s also perfect for those who want to scale their businesses with its outstanding features of unlimited students, unlimited courses, and unlimited storage. You can only find these unlimited bundle inclusions at Teachfloor.
Starting a Group Coaching Program is the smartest way to improve the existing coaching model & coaching format.
But we understand that starting a group program without learning the fundamentals such as structure, pricing, and marketing for your coaching is a huge hindrance to begin. Now that you have enough knowledge, I hope you can start and use group coaching as a way to grow your online business.