Creative strategy programs come in many different formats and styles: email only, phone and email, mastermind groups, and any combination that suits your style and your client’s needs.
But one creative strategy format stands out from the rest for being the most valuable: VIP days.
A VIP (very important person) day is just you and your client, fully focused on the client’s needs. VIP days happen in-person, so the investment on your client’s part is not insignificant. Frequently there is travel involved (the client typically comes to you), and your charges can easily reach five figures, depending on your level of expertise.
For a large expense such as this, you must be sure you’re offering truly high value.
While it may seem obvious, the single most important aspect of your VIP day is access to you. That means your client must have your undivided attention for the duration of her day. How you structure the time is up to you – it can begin with breakfast and end with dinner, or it can run longer or even shorter, as long as you clearly set the time expectation in advance.
But for the time you’ve promised, your entire focus must be on your client. You should not be taking other phone calls, answering emails, or checking Facebook on your cell phone. This is your client’s day, and she deserves your attention.
It’s a good idea as well to create a framework ahead of time. Otherwise, you may end up sitting across from one another, wondering what to do next.
Typically, VIP Days begin with an application. This helps your potential client clarify what she hopes to gain from the experience, and it helps you know she’s ready to take action. The last thing you want is to accept a VIP student, only to find out she doesn’t yet have the prerequisites (e.g. a website, email list, product, or other necessities) in place to move forward. It will only be a waste of everyone’s time, and she’ll end up frustrated and unhappy with your program.
From the information given in the application, you can map out a plan of action. The details are completely up to you and your client, but for a creative strategist, it might include things such as:
Solidifying the branding
Identifying (narrowing) the market
Reworking sales copy
Creating new, high-end products and service packages
Creating a marketing plan
Building out an editorial/marketing calendar
Depending on what systems are already in place, you can easily spend the day in just one of these areas, so be sure to find out from your client what she feels is the most important piece.
In addition to your VIP day, it’s generally a good idea to follow-up in the coming weeks as well. Touching base with a 20- or 30-minute phone call after two weeks or so will help your client stay motivated, and also keep her accountable for taking action.
VIP days are typically the biggest and best coaching package you’ll offer. They can command $10,000, $20,000 or more, for a single day of work. Do them well, and you can create a 6-figure creative strategy program with just a few clients per year.
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