How to Create a Health Coach Business Plan Template
So, you have earned your Health Coaching certification or you are considering earning it and you are weighing your career options. Starting any new business, including a Health Coaching business, can be a daunting task. But, developing a business plan will help give you the focus you need to achieve your goals and succeed with your business plans.
New business owners in any industry should create a business plan early on in their business planning process. Many businesses miss this step, but even an existing business needs a business plan. So, wherever you are in the process, make sure you have developed your business plan.
What is a business plan?
A business plan is a document is a document used to focus the business ideas, potentially raise money by encouraging others to invest, and highlights several important areas of the business itself, including: market research and highlighting types of prospective clients and/or customers, financial projections, identification of the business’ competitive edge, budgeting with income, cost and cash flow information, identification of short term goals and long term goals, and future projections.
A business plan highlights all of the critical business opportunities for most businesses who want to strategically plan in this way and potentially help attain the necessary commitment from those willing and able to invest in the business.
Why do you need a business plan for your Health Coaching business?
The information within the business plan document creates a solid base for the business planning and ongoing strategy, as well as the information that offers knowledge to investors who could make a commitment to supporting the business financially. This is why creating a business plan for your health coaching business is one of the first things you should do when you decide to start a new business in the health coaching industry or if you are expanding services with an existing business now that you have your Health Coach certification.
What should you include in your Health Coaching business plan?
- Executive Summary
This brief introduction to your business plan gives an overview of your company, your skills, your services, and the scope of your health coaching business. It should be clear and concise, but offer a summary of the highlights of your business plan. This is the section potential investors will look at first to see if your company interests them enough to read further.
- Mission & Vision Statement
Your Mission & Vision are direct, one or two sentence statements that showcase your overall strategy as well as your focus and future goals for your company. While these are valuable statements for potential investors to see, they should be used by your coaching business itself to stay focused on your goals and help keep you on track to achieve them.
Revisiting and potentially revising your Mission & Vision should be part of your regular planning process as a company, because your goals as a business may change over time.
The Mission Statement is the ‘why’ behind your business, while the Vision Statement is you future idea for the business as a whole.
You may also create a set of 5-10 values for your business to include in this section. These would be one word values that identify the values and ideals for your specific health coaching business that display who you are and what you are all about. These values can add to the roadmap created by the Mission & Vision and will help your business succeed overtime if you remain focused on them and stay true to your company values.
- Industry Overview
This section of the business plan is where you can discuss health coaching and health coaching businesses to give an overview of the industry as a whole. Facts and statistics can be used in this section so the right person reading the business plan will come away with a quick but comprehensive understanding of the industry and what your business can offer your clients.
- Business Structure & Operations Plan
The Business Structure section of the business plan is where you will showcase who is involved with your business and what their roles are. If you are a sole proprietor and plan to run the health coaching business on your own initially, then use this section to explain your credentials and/or licenses and your health coaching certification. You can offer information about your professional background in addition to your education and potentially offer a brief sentence or two about your personal life as well.
The Operations Plan takes the structure a step further and should explain the logistics on how your health coach business operates. So, you will describe how you plan to gain clients, who will manage the operations (if not you), and the flow of those operations. The reader should have a good understanding of what the client’s experience will be as they interact with the business, as well as who handles the tasks directly related to servicing clients and generating revenue.
When writing this section of the business plan, consider how clients will communicate with your coaching business, who will interact with them, and how you will turn those interactions into sales and retain those clients in the future.
- Service Offerings
The Services section of the business plan is where you explain in more detail what a health coach does, how your clients will benefit, what you will offer the community, and potentially what type of office space you will be using to fulfill these services. The services section may describe what clients can achieve with the help of your coaching skills and you may give a brief overview of the cost of your services, though you will expand on this significantly later in the business plan.
- Target Market & Competitive Advantages (SWOT Analysis)
Before you write this section of the business plan and potentially much earlier in your health coach business development, you will want to conduct a SWOT analysis on your business idea. You will analyze four areas of either your overall business or specific areas of the business, such as marketing, operations, sales, or finances.
You will consider the Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats of the business or the specific area of the business, where Strengths and Weaknesses look at the inner workings of the business and Opportunities and Threats look at the market, the industry, or other external factors. This is how you will identify your competitive edge or competitive advantages.
This can be performed regularly to analyze the health and success of your business if you’d like.
Once the SWOT analysis is complete, you will identify, in detail, your target market, or your ideal clients or customers. You will consider the market and begin creating a persona or two that highlights who your clients or customers will be, what their life and health look like, what they want to achieve, and any demographics that can help you identify these individuals when creating your marketing plan.
- Marketing Plan
The Marketing Plan section of your business plan will explain how you plan to reach your target market through marketing and advertising, what social media platforms you will use, how you will utilize your website, where you will advertise and more. You should be as detailed as possible.
If you are securing funding that will help with marketing, you should explain what you will use the money for specifically.
Keep in mind this section gives information on the future strategy for generating income, offering insight into marketing expenses, so it is one of the most important sections of the business plan to a potential investor. If this area is not one you are comfortable with, there are business coaches who offer help with marketing specifically and can usually help with your overall business plan if you would like that as well.
- Financial Analysis & Projections
Another sometimes uncomfortable, but incredibly important, section of the health coach business plan is the Financial Analysis & Projections section.
The goal of this section is to convince the reader that your health coaching business will be successful financially. To do this, you should give financial projections for a period of time, often between one and five years, depending on the amount of financing you are requesting.
This is where you should highlight featured services, dig deeper into their cost and projected profit margin, as well as your revenue goals. If your business is an existing business, the longer it has been operating, the more information you would include. This could include financial documents such as income statements, budgets, cash flow statements and other items that show your expenses or how the money is moving within the business.
This section of the health coach business plan is another area where a business coach might come in handy. A health coach knows health coaching! Reach out to others who have other specialties! Perhaps you could even trade services with a business or life coach as you work through this business development process.
- Sustainability & Expansion Strategy
This final section of your business plan should show where you plan to go as a Health Coach, how your Health Coaching program may grow and change over time, how your business may grow and change, and how you will begin to move in that direction with your business.
You can also explain growth opportunities in the Health Coaching industry as a whole in this section. This information can show the potential for future opportunities for your business as the industry grows.
What are the next steps for your Health Coaching business?
Once you are done writing your business plan, what are your next steps? Here are a few more things to make sure you have done as you continue creating your coaching business:
- Make sure your business is legal – Register your business as necessary based on the requirements of your country, state, and city. You will also need to look into any required permits or licenses for your business or your office space.
- Make sure you are prepared for taxes – Get a Tax ID or EIN and talk with a CPA and/or Accountant to make sure you are prepared to file your taxes
- Get a business bank account – Your Accountant can help explain the ‘why’ behind this, but work with them or your bank to set up the right account for your needs
- Get business insurance – We often don’t realize how important this is, but it can save you a lot of money, time, and potentially heartache if you don’t have a policy set up early on. Just make sure you research insurance for Health Coaching businesses specifically and try to work with an insurance agent who has an understanding of the industry.
- Build your brand – Make sure your clients can identify what your business is, what you can offer them, and why it benefits them in a way that is not confusing or scary or overwhelming. Highlight how improving their health can improve their life and how you can help them succeed. Work on brand recognition and consistency, use attractive colors, and potentially work with someone who can help your brand succeed! This is your career, so be mindful and effective with your marketing. It will determine the success of your business.
- Figure out your technology – Who will set up your website? How will you take payments? Do you need any machines or devices for a specific service you offer? Is there a service that can help you manage your client base, such as a CRM (Customer Relationship Management) system? These are all great questions and may be another area where a business coach can be of service!
Writing your business plan and working on the rest of these steps may seem overwhelming, but you’ve taken the first step just by considering this career path! So, you’re on the right track!
- Take a look at the NSHC Mission Statement to see a Mission Statement example
- Learn more about the Legalities of Health Coaching
- Learn more about CPT Codes and Billing as a Provider