Why I Don’t Offer Free Consulting Calls For My One-on-One Small Business Coaching Services

In the one-on-one coaching industry, it’s pretty common to get a 20-minute free discovery call/clarity call (or whatever you want to refer to it as), in order to get a “taste” for what your coach is like and to determine whether or not you’ll be a good fit, before you commit to that person for small business coaching services. Find out why I DON'T offer free consulting calls for my small business coaching services... and what I do instead! This article breaks it down (plus shares some other pretty great free resources for your solopreneur business!). Click on over to get the goods now...

I don’t do that---and I don’t believe I ever will.

Today I wanted to talk about why I've chosen not to offer free consulting calls for the Biz Bestie Program, AKA my small business coaching services, because I think it's really important to be transparent in our businesses. I work with so many different kinds of solopreneurs and I know how CONFUSING the world of online small businesses can be!

So, in addition to sharing solopreneur business tips here on the blog, I'm also really looking forward to sharing a lot more behind-the-scenes details about my business... such as my process behind each of my programs, why I still do freelance work for clients, how I stay productive and manage my time as a small business owner, and so on.

Is a business coach right for YOU?

This will help you decide whether anti-hustle productivity & business success coaching is a good fit for your unique situation...

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There are several BIG reasons for why I DON’T offer free consulting calls for my one-on-one small business coaching program:

1) I expect my one-on-one clients to have already gotten to know me through my free content.

How many people are going to spend $1,171/month for small business coaching without having ANY background on the coach, besides that single free call?

Frankly, I don’t want people getting one-on-one coaching with me if they haven’t gone through any of my free content.

If a person has never read this freelance tips blog, or seen my social media pages, or accessed any of my free resources (such as my Solopreneur Goal Planning Workbook), then I wouldn’t necessarily want them to just hire me as a one-on-one small business coach for their very first interaction with me.

One-on-one coaching is about trust. If my student doesn’t know me, how can they trust me? If my student hasn’t seen any of my other work, how can they know that I’m the right fit for them?

It’s one thing for a person to see on my Biz Bestie registration page that I have nearly a decade of experience in running a small business, and to see the testimonials from students… but it’s another thing for that person to have experienced some of my work firsthand, via my blog, weekly behind-the-scenes newsletter, free resources, or paid offerings.

Moreover, my students don’t need to go through a free business coaching call to determine whether or not they’ll want to hire me through one-on-one coaching, because I already have enough other free content out there that they should be able to know from THAT whether we’d be a good fit!

They don't need to spend days or weeks or months getting to know me—but I do want them to feel confident that I'm the right coach for them.

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2) My time is limited and valuable—and so is yours.

I spend A LOT of my time providing free content to new and struggling freelancers, between this blog, my free resources, and my free community group. I take the time to respond to emails I receive and I try to help readers out the best that I can.

But here’s the thing: I need to pay the bills, too. And while I have the capacity to respond to emails, write blog posts, facilitate webinars, and connect meaningfully with others on social media, I simply can’t dedicate 20-minute sessions on a regular basis to providing one-on-one small business coaching services without getting paid for it.

In addition, it’s not fair to my students who HAVE paid for my business coaching programs to potentially be missing out on my attention if I were doing a bunch of free calls, simply because I don’t have the hours in the day to *do it all.*

And you know what? Your time is too valuable, as well, to spend it booking a free session with me, setting aside the time in your schedule, only for us to come to the exact conclusion that YES, this is a good fit. You already know you want to work with me—Why should we waste our time on a ~discovery call~ when we could instead spend that time making great progress on your business, in an ACTUAL coaching session?

3) I DO offer VIP pricing.

While I don't like the concept of offering free one-on-one calls, what I DO offer is a special rate for my VIP list. I like rewarding people! I have a VIP list that anyone can join to get special pricing for the Biz Bestie one-on-one small business coaching program.

Pssst... you can CLICK HERE to be a VIP member, too! 
 I don't offer free consulting calls for my business coaching services. GASP! I know, that's kind of unheard of in the business coaching community. But here's what I do INSTEAD of offering free clarity calls....

So… how do you feel about offering one-on-one consulting calls for small business coaching services? Do you agree with the points I’ve made here?

If you’re a business coach yourself, do you have a rebuttal?

If you could see yourself getting small business coaching services in the future, what are your thoughts on this? 

Share on Twitter or Instagram and tag me (@Saganlives) to keep the discussion going!

Is a business coach right for YOU?

This will help you decide whether anti-hustle productivity & business success coaching is a good fit for your unique situation...

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  1. I don’t offer free consults either for many of these very same reasons; especially that my time is very valuable. I am a mom of three so if time is taken away from them, I need to be sure its a profitable reason. Great post!

    1. Oooh yes, gotta be able to spend time with loved ones!

  2. I went back-and-forth with this same issue a while back. For the most part, I don’t offer a free consultation either for many of the same reasons you offered. I offer a lot of opportunities for prospects to get a taste of me also.

    1. Offering many different touch point opportunities is a good way to do it 🙂

  3. I have struggled with this as well. Right now I am doing free discovery sessions, mainly because I want to make sure that the clients I work with are a good fit. I like your approach of offering a 7 day money back guarantee, but I would rather make sure they’re a good fit first, instead of giving their money back later (which I am sure you don’t have to do much, anyway…) I am also intrigued by your email opt in for $300 off. I am going to think about that one. Thanks for the ideas!

    1. I’m all about having VIP options 😀

      That’s a really important point you’ve made, too, about making sure people are a good fit first so there isn’t a need for refunds. *Knocks on wood* I’ve never received a refund request from a student for any of my programs, but I do think it’s primarily because of exactly what you’ve made a note of here: my students have enough background with me in other capacities that they know when it’s a good fit. SO important!

  4. I agree with you 100%! I do not offer free into calls either. Mainly because like you, by the time someone is ready to work with me they will have been following me and engaging with my content. My work is around sensuality, and this is not something women arrive to without thought. And not doing free sessions feels right for me.

    Thank you so so much for this post… and the amazing work you’re doing. I discovered you on the SITS Share Fest and I am looking forward to getting to know you better!

    1. ♥♥ So glad this resonated with you, Stacey! Thanks for stopping by 😀

  5. This is a great article, Sagan, with points I’ve never stopped to consider before.

    I was intrigued by Daniela’s comment about why she does a freebie. Sounds like SHE wants/needs to make sure that SHE feels the fit is there, whereas you want/need to the prospective client to have already answered the fit question for herself by having already interacted with your free content.

    I’d be curious to hear your thoughts on this. Has a prospective client ever approached you for one-on-one work that you could just tell wasn’t the right fit for you, and if so, what was the outcome? I think most people on this side of the biz are likely to run into this at some point, whether or not they provide free content leading up to the consulting–not everyone meshes!

    1. YES! Both sides are really important. I have yet to be in a situation where a client hasn’t been the right fit for me, but it would certainly be something that would need to be dealt with on a case-by-case basis!

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