When is the best time to raise your rates, and how do you do it without losing or offending your existing clients?
Have you reached the point in your life coaching business when it’s time to raise your rates?
Once you reach a certain level of success as a heart-centered coach, there will come a point when it’s time for you to increase the rate you’re charging for your services.
As the co-founder of Life Mastery Institute®, the world’s premiere training and certification center for transformational life coaching, I’ve been asked this question many times.
Before I answer it, I’d like to offer you a new perspective…
You see, you didn’t wake yourself up this morning. Neither did I, and neither did our alarm clocks!
There’s a power moving through us: the power of life itself. THAT is what woke us up this morning – a power seeking a freer, fuller, more expanded expression of itself by means of you.
This is the power that manifests in a blade of grass pressing through cement, at the edges of a tree pressing upward with more life, and inside you and me.
This is why we feel more alive and fulfilled when we’re progressing, growing, and expanding… and this includes your business!
So when is it time to raise your rates?
As your life coaching business grows, you’ll reach a point where either your calendar is completely full, or you’re working as many hours as you want to, and you know that your expertise has grown to the point where your value is greater than the rate you’re charging, because your clients are getting great results.
They’re referring people to you, and word is spreading, so you might actually end up having more clients than you want, or finding that the time in your calendar that you’re willing to give your coaching business is becoming maximized.
At this point, you’d love to expand your income, because the life in you is wanting to grow in the same way it’s wanting to grow in your clients.
When this happens, you can raise your rates in a couple of ways, depending on your chosen business structure
How you go about this will depend on whether you serve groups, work one-on-one, or offer programs, and on whether people enroll for a year or for just one coaching session at a time.
Bear in mind that, if you’re doing one-on-one coaching, that’s the most limiting way for you to earn income, because you only have so many hours in a week!
If you’re going to work 40 hours a week, that means you get to see 25 to 30 clients per week at most, because it takes time to track and document your business, and to do the things that enable you to give your coaching clients the best possible service.
If you’re working with clients one-on-one, here are a few guidelines to follow for raising your rates…
One method you can use is to raise your rates for individual coaching.
If you’re raising your rates for individuals, never increase your fees for your existing clients until they’ve completed the program they’re currently in, and especially don’t interrupt the program to increase your rates.
For example: If you’ve enrolled people in a 90-day program, you should wait until the end of that program before raising your rate.
A few weeks before it’s time for the change to take effect, start speaking to your clients, and invite them to the next stage in their development. Let them know that, for this new and higher stage of development, there will be a different rate of investment.
This way, you keep your word to the clients to whom you’ve promised a particular rate for a set amount of time, and you can raise your fees after your promise is fulfilled.
How to explain the change in price for your services:
When it’s time to sign your clients up for a new program, be honest with them. Let them know that your rates have gone up.
You don’t have to defend your decision, or even give a reason for it, though you can if you want to.
If your client questions the change, go ahead and explain the reasons behind increasing your rates, but do it in a confident and non-defensive tone.
You can say the business is growing, or that you have more demand for your time, or whatever the truth is. Whatever you say, be sure to be truthful with them, in the same way that you can help your clients best if they’re truthful with you.
Having rates that reflect your value is also a matter of setting an example. You want your clients to become more prosperous, and you’re an example of that prosperity.
Growth and expansion is what you teach in your life coaching, so by growing your business, you’re actually practicing what you’re teaching!
So when you feel guided and you’re ready to raise your rates, then go for it, and calmly and honestly tell your clients about it.
Provided that your clients has been seeing results from working with you, they’re going to be willing to invest in greater and longer-lasting results over time.
It’s important to keep in mind that just as you’re happy for your clients’ growth, they’re happy about yours. You’ve been helping them, and they love you for it!
If you go into the conversation expecting them to be happy for you, you’ll be amazed at how pleased your clients are to hear about you growing and prospering.
During this conversation, you could also highlight any additional training, qualification or investments you’ve made in your life coaching business if you want to, but I don’t think your client really needs that.
They want to know that you feel confident about this, and that you really believe that the value they’re receiving is way more than what they’re going to invest even as you raise your rates.
How to increase your income WITHOUT significantly raising your rates:
I’ve been training and certifying coaches for a long time, and I myself am a coach.
In my own personal coaching business, I mostly work with people in groups. This means that, in the same amount of time that I would have spent teaching someone one-on-one, I can serve, transform, and get paid by dozens or even hundreds of people at once.
On top of my group coaching, I also have some one-on-one coaching clients.
Some of these clients have as many as 35 years of experience in coaching and mentoring tens of thousands of people from all around the world in large groups, small groups and one-on-one, teaching them the art and science of transformation.
These people are willing to invest at a VIP level, to pay a premium for my undivided time, attention, experience and mentorship for their particular project or major initiative.
By using this system, I’m able to serve thousands of people who aren’t prepared to make a large investment, while also giving personalized attention to some of my clients at a price that’s aligned with my value and expertise.
Raising your rates actually helps your clients!
If you know it’s time to raise your rates, and you know that you’ve been either giving away your coaching or offering it at a price that’s way too little for what the value is, your clients will actually have a better experience if they invest at a level that’s co-measured with the result they want to create.
They’ll feel more motivated to stay in action, they’ll value your coaching more, and they’ll feel good about contributing to your success.
In closing, when you know deep down that the rate you’re charging is far less than the value you’re giving, you’ll want to raise that rate to match the value you’re giving. You’ll feel good about it, and ultimately your clients will, too.
What’s your next step?
If you enjoyed this article, I encourage you to share it with your friends, family, groups, community, and anyone else you know who is asking for a smaller investment than their service and expertise are worth.
For more proven, step-by-step strategies on how to start or grow a successful life coaching business that makes a profound and lasting difference in the lives of others, while creating a life you love, click here to download my FREE ebook, “Are You Meant to Be a Life Coach?”