This episode is about the value of (pilot) program content + emails
Program content and emails are important program resources that help your clients to know what to do, grow into their new identity and make positive, lasting change. The right amount and type of content and emails can make your clients’ ‘know, grow and change’ journey more impactful, therefore adding incredible, tangible value to an intangible service – at least initially, before clients truly experience the value of coaching itself.
When creating content and emails, it’s essential to consider the customer journey and user experience so that you can meet clients where they’re at and meet their needs and wants.
Simply listening to and addressing needs is another great way to add value!
I like to call content and emails ‘assets’ – the definition being ‘things that you own (e.g. your IP) that has an economic or other value.
In this episode, I’ll talk about
* Getting started guide
* What are the monitoring tools that can really help?
* How your personal experience can help you come up with great content?
Here are some of the content assets that you can create and use in your pilot and completed programs.
Getting Started Guide
This is a program road map and welcome guide for your clients, all in one. It explains briefly how the program works and includes housekeeping items like how to book appointments, log in, whitelist your email, etc.
Written and Verbal Quizzes
Everybody loves to learn more about themselves. Everybody!
And as coaches, we know that self-awareness is the first step to making change. It’s an essential pre-requisite for creating a compelling vision (where I am now, vs where I want to be).
Quizzes, questionnaires and reflective worksheets are effective tools for raising self-awareness and/or changing perspective and negative thinking patterns that keep us stuck. They are fun and interesting methods of bringing curiosity and attention to who we are, what we like, and what we are capable of.
As clients become aware of the symptoms, thoughts, feelings, behaviours and situations that they experience, and identify those which affect their motivation and habits, they will start to really ‘get it’ – that they have unique lifestyle challenges that they must master on their own terms.
In coaching programs, we tend to use quizzes more in the pre-work and first 2 – 3 weeks of a program (in the awareness phase), but they are also useful going forward for ongoing discovery.
Quizzes can be sourced externally or you can create your own (Word doc, quiz software, Microsoft forms, Google forms).
We know that recognising success makes you feel like you are getting somewhere, and achieving a result – and that creates a sense of value.
Yet so few of us take the time to recognise our efforts, our progress, and our incremental results.
We live with ourselves every day, so the subtle changes that occur may be hard to see and acknowledge.
Monitoring tools offer a powerful way to help your clients recognize some of the more subtle but important changes they are creating in life, body and/or mind.
You can use monitoring tools from the first week of your program to help your client feel good and see hard data to show that your program gives specific benefits and results.
Useful tools include:
- Weekly, in-session monitoring tools like a rating of 1 – 10 in any area, like energy, stress, hunger, sleep etc. Discuss and get the client to write them down.
- Weekly goal review, including % success
- Goal review (mid-program & final week) to give a big-picture view of change.
- Wellness wheels (good ‘before and after’ visuals)
- Reflective journals
- Blank meal plans or other schedules
- Progress charts or spreadsheets (e.g. for workouts done, glasses of water etc)
- Anything else that helps a client ‘tick things off’.
Homework Tasks (in Email, or Portal Resources)
In addition to a client’s own weekly goals, you may like to offer optional homework such as some activity or experiment you determine with the client in their session.
Homework generally falls into the category of skills development (self-efficacy), challenge, or self-awareness.
Here’s an example of each:
- Skills development – invite a client to create their own tool for monitoring exercise based on their learning style, or to practice reframing negative thoughts.
- Challenge – invite a client to say no to something, or set a boundary with a person, or themselves at work. Or, in a group setting, create 2 or 3 teams to complete a fun task such as highest total number of exercise minutes.
- Stretch – invite a client to complete one of the goals they set, with the option to stretch beyond it and do a little more (e.g. 5 more minutes of exercise.
Other examples of homework tasks for coaching programs include:
- Complete the VIA strengths inventory and identify one way they have used their #1 strength this week to help them with their goals.
- Writing down 3 successes every night. This is a quick exercise that reinforces positive change – which is good for the client AND the perceived value around your program.
- Saying ‘you’re worth it!’ into the mirror each morning.
- Keeping a gratitude diary.
Coaching tools are used to help clients get unstuck and/or otherwise facilitate change.
Like regular quizzes but with more of a coaching flavour, these tools can help to enhance a client’s self-awareness and facilitate a shift in perspective. Both are essential parts of change.
They may include:
- Decisional Balance,
- the VIA Strengths Test,
- Appreciative Enquiry,
- Energy Drains and Boosters,
- the ABCDE model,
- Socratic questioning,
- a Positivity Rating.
Emails (or private / video / audio messages)
Used wisely and in the right amount, emails, private messages and/or audio/video messages can add value to coaching programs.
They can make it easier and more convenient for clients to remember to do this, such as:
- log in to the coaching call each week
- remember to complete their homework
I once had a program for busy people and many of them wanted to remember to do a small daily task during the program.
To help them, I created an email autoresponder series was optional for my clients to subscribe to. It sent a simple email at 6am every day for 6 weeks, reminding them to do their activity.
It finished after 6 weeks, and didn’t sell or subscribe to anything else. They found it extremely useful!
Emails, messages and personal video or audio messages can build connection, rapport and trust, if you use them to:
- check in with progress on goals
- let them know that you’re thinking of them or are ready to support them if they’re having trouble.
- be a cheer leader for them
- acknowledge their progress.
In short, emails can support a client to deliver content, but also to remember to do things, feel supported in tough times, and feel acknowledged and valued.
Your own experience – what you did, what worked for you, how you felt at the time, and what worked for your client – is super helpful content to share with program members.
It could be delivered as live or recorded videos, audios, blog posts or small snippets.
There needs to be context added, for example, how you overcame a mental hurdle along the way, or a specific tool your client used to finally get out of bed at 6am, or a story of how someone redesigned their environment so they were no longer tempted.
Stories are powerful and they help people imagine themselves in the same position, and succeeding.
Value adds are those unexpected little things that delight and surprise you – and add tangible value to a program, simply because you’re showing that you care.
The goal is to make the client feel personally valued, supported and/or rewarded
A great way to enhance ‘user experience’ (UX)!
- A physical welcome gift (goodie bag, book voucher etc)
- A personalised welcome letter
- A blank journal and a branded pen (easiest to start)
- A beautiful worksheet that you create
- Recipe booklets
- Recommended Reading lists
- Links to relevant Ted talks
- Offering a private 15 minute chat
- Links to ‘how to’ or ‘why’ style blogs or podcasts you’ve created (or others)
- A completion certificate
- A completion gift
- A personalised thank you letter
- A follow up postcard (e.g. 4 weeks after the program)
For value-adds that can be used within a program, getting your clients to use them – in session, and for homework activities – can significantly boosts their self-awareness, achievements and results.
Value-adds used outside a program help a client to feel heard, acknowledged and valued.
In a pilot program, actively taking on feedback and making changes to a program also demonstrate respect for and acknowledgement of your program clients. This is a way to add ’emotional value’ and to build trust and rapport.
Content and emails (and other media) aren’t about pushing your story or information on people, or forcing them to do or buy anything.
Content and emails (and other media) are an opportunity to truly support and help your client on a sometimes-challenging and uncomfortable journey to change and, to demonstrate that their journey and success is your priority.
Best of all, you don’t need reams of stuff. You just need a few pieces of super useful stuff to support the journey to know, grow and change.
Based on what you know of your ideal clients, what could YOU create that would add the most value to your clients’ journey?
Ready to get clarity on your pathway to success?
Understanding who you are and what you need will allow your business to thrive! If you’re truly ready to break old habits and get out of the rut I encourage you to check out the Habitology membership.
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