The 4 Product Levels of Coaching

by | Jun 4, 2013 | Creating Coaching Products | 10 comments


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Your Most Valuable Asset

Clock_dreamstimefree_80931Your absolute most valuable asset is your time. Unlike money, it’s something you can’t make more of.

No matter how efficient you are in your coaching business and no matter how many coaching hours you log, there are still only 24 hours in each day, 365 days per year and maybe 50 productive years in your life. This means if your coaching business is purely focused on selling one-on-one coaching (selling your time for money) there is eventually going to be a cap on your earning potential, not to mention, the high possibility of burn-out!

So, given the limited time you have to live a fulfilled life, it’s pretty important to set up your coaching business in a way that gives you more life and your optimal lifestyle. And NOT to create a JOB that sucks life away from you.


Make Money with Less Time

Fortunately, there is a practical and straightforward framework, us coaches can use to make money with less time (so we can enjoy our work while also enjoying all the other parts of our life too). We do this by creating products that fit within the 4 Product Levels of Coaching (see table below).
The first two levels (freebie and information products) are my favorite because you can work your butt off for a few weeks, build an awesome product and then sit back and make an income while you do other things that you love to do. Another great factor is that you can sell as many copies as you can find buyers for because sales and product delivery happen without you!

The final two product levels (group programs and one-on-one coaching) are also great to have in your coaching business. BUT, keep in mind, every time you sell one of these products, you’ll need to spend your precious time to deliver the product!

So, smart coaching businesses have products at two or more levels to best leverage their time and income. As every coaching business is unique, there is no one-size fits all approach to deciding what levels YOU need. So you can relax – you don’t need all four levels if you don’t want them.

Think about what you want your business to give you. Then choose the levels that will get you what you want.


An Brief Overview of Each Level


Level 1: Freebie

Free Coaching TemplatesA freebie is a product that helps someone take first steps to solving a common problem in your coaching niche. It is available from your website in exchange for a prospect’s email address and should be extreamly COMPELLING to your audience.

A freebie can come in many different forms. It can be a worksheet, workbook, eBook, email course, free video, template, etc. Choose a medium that you and your audience like and get crackin’!

Level 1 is the first serious touch point you have with many of your prospects. Then, once they are in your communication circle, you can build a trusting relationship with them (in a mostly automated way). As you give value to your subscribers, you become their go-to expert.


Level 2: Information Products

The Goal Tracker Program eBook Series: Book 1 - Discovering You, Book 2 - How to Wake Up Inspired and MotivatedInformation products are online resources that people buy. Your information products usually build upon your freebie or provide the next step(s) to solving the big problems in your niche. Information products can be Kits, eBooks, Video Series, Online Self-Study Programs, etc.

Level 2 is an amazing level because once you get the product set up, you can sit back and watch the sales roll in for years. This, of course assumes that you’ve got the basic marketing structures in place!

As an example, I launched my very first product, The Coaching Starter Kit, back in 2009. I’ve made some minor updates to the product over the years but it is still selling!


Level 3: Group Programs or Courses

Find your coaching niche, develop products, and get online!

Find your coaching niche, develop products, and get online!

Group Programs are about systematizing your coaching into repeatable processes. Your programs enable you to guarantee predictable results every time (providing the client does the work!).

You develop the course material once and over time, reuse it with many clients. You can and should especially run your program(s) with groups of people concurrently, as this is an effective way to maximize the financial return on your time.


Level 4: One-on-one Coaching

One-on-one CoachingOne-on-one coaching is when you coach one person at one time. It is your most premium service and it’s price should reflect this.

Paradoxically, level 4 is where most coaches tend start and where many coaches can get stuck (it almost caught me). If that’s were you are or where you are heading, beware! You’ve got all of your eggs in one basket and it may be time to diversify.


Where Are You Now?

Looking back, if I were to do it all over again, I would start with level 1 and build my way up from there – selling one-on-one coaching last (if at all). However, to do this you may have to go against what you see most of your fellow coaches doing (i.e. being 100% focused on selling their time for money).

Remember that as a life coach you have a responsibility to live a full and rich life yourself. This means being all that you preach, being smart in your business and leveraging your time and expertise to have a successful business AND to live your dreams now – the 4 Product Levels of Coaching will help you.

So, think deeply about the business you are creating for yourself. Does your current business model help you build the life you want to live? And what new products can you add in that will make the most difference?

I’d love to hear your thoughts and ideas in the comments box below.


  1. Mumin

    Very helpful, thank you Benay.
    Hope for you all the best

  2. Debbie Kessler

    As always-valuable savvy business information. Love this! You have helped me in my business and I want others to know you are the go to person.

  3. Clare

    Hi this information is very useful. Where to start though!?… Lots of food for thought. Thank you.

    • Benay

      Clare – I’d go in this order.
      1. Niche (ideal client + problem you solve)
      2. Signature Coaching Program (end to end process for solving the problem)
      3. Freebie – to start building your email list
      4. Once you’ve got this far, I know the next step will be obvious to you 🙂

      Happy Coaching! B

  4. Pat B

    The 4 Product Levels of Coaching is very clear and concise. Your knowledge and mastery of communication are valuable.

  5. Anabrese

    Wow, thank you, so grateful for this article explaining the levels so clearly. I am a level one but I got confused as I keep getting webinars and info for building a level 4 business quickly. I always got overwhelmed. Now I understand why I’m drawn to building the basics as I enjoy writing and videos. I wish to reach as many people as possible for the time and energy spent. I understand now why coaches charge premium rates as it’s very personal involvement which isn’t really what I want.

    • Benay

      Anabrese – Glad this helped. With simple frameworks like the 4 product levels, we CAN overcome our overwhelm and start creating our meaningful work – that makes a difference in the world. Looking forward to seeing what you come up with! -B

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