Healers, Therapists, Coaches, are you running a therapy business or hobby?
A big problems for so many spiritual, healing and coaching businesses.
No matter how much you think you are living your purpose by helping others. If you are running your therapy or holistic business it to make an income. You are a business and you still need to apply the basic principles of business.
Most therapists and coaches invest a lot of years of time, money and energy in training. As well as the years mastering the right skills and investing in their own spiritual or self development. But so many therapy businesses fail to invest in the right business tools, business skills, business advice and so does many of the colleges and training schools.
Common Issues For The Therapy Business Today
Some discerning coaching and holistic training schools give students false impressions that it is very easy to make a healthy income as therapist or healer. I have seen so many people over the last 20 years give up great paying jobs. Some 25-40 year careers or those who spend their retirement fund investing in this belief. Many end up shell shocked of how many coaches, healer and therapists are in the market. And the reality of how much time and money it can take to build up a business. Some therapy schools imply that students can charge crazy charges in something they have only learned in a few days or a few weeks, Sadly the reality is that most experts in this field who have spent years in training and experience building up their expertise and business struggle to charge these prices. And even more concerning is they think they can create this income without a business plan or any investment.
Sadly I have had many of these typical coaches/therapists come to me for advice, after a very bumpy financial year or so, some still with not even one paying client. To make a living as a healer, therapist you have to apply the principles of business.
So lets see Are You Running A Holistic Therapy Business Or Hobby?
No 1: You recognise you are a business and have to run your therapy business as a cost effective, profit making business.
No 2: You know Income is not profit. you may charge £30 -£100 for a service but you have business outgoings, you have insurance costs, you have training and cpd costs, you have professional membership costs, advertising, marketing, travel, telephone, computer and many, many more business costs. So your profit in a year is what you make after all your business costs have come off, not what clients pay you.
No 3: You Know You Need To Show Up As A Professional Service. If you want to be taken seriously as a professional therapist you need to show up as a professional business. You need to start earning potential clients trust by building up your business and expertise. Let me give you an example. what kind of impression do you think you would be giving if you choose to opt for the free, most basic website that clearly demonstrates that it is on a free platform? For a client, this may suggest a FREE low cost budget service, that you are a newbie or someone who is doing this as a hobby. It doesn’t exactly show professionalism. I know starting out can be very costly but websites are now approx. 90% cheaper than they were 15 years ago, you can get a fresh modern website up and running very simply for less than the cost of a cappuccino out of costa every week.
No 4: You Have Full Contents & Indemnity Insurance: If you are charging for your services you need to be accountable not only to yourself but more importantly your clients. Insurance is a must. Your clients health and safety must be top priority, no excuses. I am always shocked to hear how many therapists don’t have insurance. Insurance policies can be bought from about £60 a year for mainstream therapies. My insurance costs was at one point £2000 a year because of the work I did I had to have two different types of costly insurances and I was only able to work part time. If you care about your clients make sure you have insurance, all sorts of things can happen even with the least invasive therapies such as healing. In the early 90’s I know of one reiki healer, who was sued because of they way she helped someone off her table. I had an incident where a candle in a very solid container smashed into pieces and went on fire when a client was there…I worked in an a place where a client tried to sue this project because she tripped in the hallway…they didn’t have insurance and this nearly had cost the organisation to shut down.
No 5: You Recognise Clients Buy Solutions Not Techniques: When you are looking for a product or service, what do you look for ? Imagine a potential client is looking at your product or service, what do you think they want to see, When someone wants to trust someone with their health or well being… what do you think they are looking for I would say a sense of assurance that you can help and you take what you do seriously, that you have the skills and experience. Each client will buy from a place of trust and in the online world where there is so much information overload your message has to be clear, you have to accentuate the REAL benefits of your product and your service is right for them. With such a saturation of healers and coaches you have to make your professionalism clear. You could be the most gifted healer in Scotland or the UK but still get very few clients if you don’t show up effectively.
No 6: You Know You Are Not An Expert In Every Area Of Your Business. Imagine you were opening up a restaurant. Would you try to be the cook, the receptionist, the waitress, the printer, the accountant, would you try to offer chinese, italian and thai dishes? NO you wouldn’t. Promote what your great at and outsource the things that are not your forte, outsourcing doesn’t have to be as costly as you think. But if you invest in the right people or the right training your holistic business will bring in the right clients, the right income. Small investments in outsourcing can make a huge difference, exchanging services with other professional businesses is a great option for those with a very small budget. If you still think you can’t afford to outsource or get a friend to help then you have to be prepared to learn new skills as you are now running a business.
No 7: You Have Worked Out Your Perfect Price Point. Your not trying to charge premium prices when you’re really not that experienced or skilled? Every day I see polar opposite’s on pricing. Young experienced coaches and therapists trying to sell their services at expert rates, while experts in the field are selling at bargain basement rates. I am not saying that you aren’t gifted, can’t make powerful charges in people’s life, most healers and coaches do. But pricing has to match what your ideal clients and soul clients will pay. Every single type of business, product or service is totally different. But I know too many therapists and coaches who arrived at me with no clients even after 12 months because they priced theirself out of their local market. Many of them new to the industry and so mesmerized by what their training school told them to charge, that they didn’t get one paying client. So sometimes, it can be a good idea to start off with introductory offers until you built up experience and some clientele. I don’t know about you but I wouldn’t want to pay a newly trained coach or therapist with only a a few years experience the same as someone with over 20 years experience, unless there work was tremendous. Would you?
No 8. Your Highly Experienced Great At What You Do and aren’t too under valuing your products and services. I see so many highly experienced, highly qualified amazing healers with decades of experience who charge as if they have only started out. I was one of those therapists. My students were charging more than what I was. When you are too cheap, clients may get the impression that the product or service is not great quality.
No 9. Your Holistic Business Or Clinic Is In The Perfect Location To Attract Enough Clients. If your holistic business is in the wrong location? Or you are selling to the wrong location or wrong clients? Are you trying to sell to an area where you will find very few of your ideal clients. I see many new therapists trying to sell their services online in facebook groups that are full of other therapists. Holistic or spiritual groups is usually not be their specific target market. Imagine that your target market is small local business owners, but you are focusing all your time and effort advertising your services to online groups that are full of other therapists example a facebook group global light workers offering the same or similar service?
No 10. You Know Who Your Ideal Clients Are. I had a male therapist who believed his ideal clients were polished high end executive women. He wanted to help them lose weight. Now, this lovely gentleman had weight challenges himself which he hadn’t completely resolved. He didn’t focus too much attention to his appearance, so he wasn’t going for the polished look., he had little experience of being with or working with high end female executives. DO YOU THINK that these executive women were his IDEAL Clients ? Who we want as clients and who we are a perfect fit for can be very different. If your product or service does not match the needs or expectations of your prospective clients you are unlikely to get the sale.
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Eileen Burns has been studying holistic wellbeing for 28 years, owner of Stress Coach Training, a therapists, healer and coach. She has been a self employed for 20 years despite having suffered many business and extreme health challenges.