Offering a Home Study vs. Live Program… Which is Better?
Whether to offer a program live or as a home study is a strategic decision and I’m going to share my opinion on this. I’ve also got a little technique you can have in your back pocket, so you can make more sales.
First, what is a home study program?
A home study, or evergreen program, is one that clients can sign up for at any time. There’s no start or end date, and there are no live calls or live components to the program.
This can be attractive because you can make money while you sleep. Once you create the program and promote it, you don’t have to spend time delivering the content.
You might feel drawn to offer a home study program because you’re worried that the date you choose for your program won’t work for your audience. Nailing down a start date can feel difficult.
It’s easy to come up with reasons why each possible start date won’t work for a certain group of people. This happens to all of us. I just experienced this debate in my head as I was creating our calendar for 2014 and 2015.
While it may feel difficult to commit to a start date, that shouldn’t be the reason you choose to offer a program as a home study.
In most cases, I actually don’t recommend offering a home study program. I know I’m taking a bold stand here, but let me share why…
#1 When you offer a program that people can sign up for at any time, they are less likely to take action.
Think about it. Imagine you were thinking about joining a fitness bootcamp, and when you went to their website you read that their program was starting on February 10th. If you were interested, you’d sign up right away. If, however, you read that you could join at any time, you’d likely put it off and make excuses for yourself about why it will be better to wait until next week or next month. And then, after a week or month had passed, you might lose interest or forget about signing up altogether.
#2 Live programs are more enticing
People are generally more drawn to live programs that have a start and end date because there is more accountability and support. These are two of the main reasons people want to enroll in your programs. Of course, people also want to gain knowledge and learn from you, but intuitively, your audience knows that without support, they’re not as likely to make changes.
Live programs offer components such a Facebook group, forum, and live calls. This provides a way for your participants to ask questions and get the support they need to get over hurdles they may experience during the program. This is also where you can show your gifts as a coach, having your participants become raving fans and repeat customers.
How can you offer a live program, but still make it available after the start date?
Let’s say that you offered a live Fall cleanse. The program just ended, but you were on the phone with a potential client who was a great fit for this program. Even though you’re not promoting the program as a home study, you can still offer it as a home study to individuals when that makes sense. Simply send them a PayPal invoice (or a product link), and then give them access to the materials and call recordings. This way, you’re giving the client a way to get started immediately. And, you’re bringing in revenue with little effort.
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Great insight on “live” vs. “home study”. I personally like the option for the “home study” type webinar. While the live webinar is the better choice, I often find myself unable to attend at the appointed time. Offering the ability to attend after the actual live class has been offered is a great option for those of us who can not attend the live class.