Friends, so since I made my post on FB I got a lot of people asking me what did this program cost, was it worth it, and should you get started? So I’m writing this quick review of Sai Blackbyrn’s Accelerator to hopefully answer those questions for you. We’re going to look at what’s in the program, how it’s structured, and my experience so far.
So what is in Accelerator? Let’s start the review with the business knowledge.
There is a ton of business knowledge in Accelerator so I don’t want to go into all the detail in this quick review, I could spend hours doing that. What you need to know is this. When you navigate through Accelerator they first teach you the basics of planning your business, and this is quite different than what you get in formal education about business planning.
It’s very practical and applicable, and it’s tailored specifically to online coaching businesses. The most important thing is they teach you how to craft a coaching program that people will actually desire and want to buy. They teach you how to be unique and stand out from the crowd; how to be able to charge premium prices from the point when you start, and they teach you how to find that specific group of people that will want to sign up for your coaching business.
Now, I know this sounds basic, but I myself learned as I was going through Accelerator that the reason why 98% of businesses fail in the first five years (it’s some crazy figure like that if you look it up), is because they create something people never wanted to buy in the first place and then they go try to sell it to the wrong people.
That’s because they didn’t start off with research and strategy, but just an idea that sounded great in the founder’s head. And this is true for coaches, too. It’s actually extremely difficult to just get started as a general life or business coach with no strategy because you’re doing and selling the exact same thing as the next guy, but they have a better track record than you do.
Accelerator taught me how to do this research and how to strategically differentiate my coaching business, which let me get clients very easily, and this was worth it in itself. Accelerator also taught me how to do cross-promotions with so-called Joint Venture partners. It’s a way of partnering with other businesses who have a different audience than you do, where they promote you to their followers and you promote them to your followers in exchange.
That is normally how it would work, but since I was just starting out with the online side of coaching, I had no followers I could promote them to, and that was a problem. So what Sai’s team did is they actually took an email list of business owners they owned and promoted my Joint Venture partners back to them instead of me.
That way I got endorsed by coaches and other influencers who were a lot more famous than me, and I could quickly grow my following with JV’s. The other thing I learned a lot about is the topic of sales. The harsh reality was when I started coaching I realized that people are not just coming through the door wanting to sign up, but they’re very skeptical and unsure, and you have to have some sort of salesmanship to move them through their resistance.
Before Accelerator I wasn’t a huge fan of sales, and honestly, the way I looked at it was if somebody bought my stuff great, and if they don’t, that’s fine too. But needless to say, that approach was ineffective, I saw a lot of would-be-great clients disappear in thin air or walk away in hesitation and I spent too much time trying to talk to too many people and then being turned down by the vast majority of them.
The sales module in Accelerator taught me how to do sales in a way that’s nothing like how you would imagine a salesperson. It’s not pushy, it’s ethical, and it’s also very easy to do. I can recommend that sales module to anybody.
Parts of the material I didn’t reach yet:
I’ve done the 6-weeks fast track to launch challenge in Accelerator which includes everything I mentioned above. But there is also an 8-week scaling challenge, which I haven’t started yet. That one is about getting even more coaching clients and automating the client-getting aspect of your coaching business.
The way they do that is they teach you how to do a webinar to get clients to reach out to you and then they build that into a funnel that automatically repeats the webinar so you don’t have to keep re-hosting it every week. I haven’t completed this part of Accelerator yet, but I know people from the Aces of Accelerator Facebook group who do, and they said it’s great. If it’s anything like the 6-week challenge and the other modules, I’m sure it will be.
Reviewing the Mentoring and coaches in Accelerator
In my first few months with Accelerator, I’ve worked with 5 coaches:
Sai Blackbyrn, head coach at coach foundation
He is the one you go to when you have a general business question that the other coaches can’t answer or requires strategic insight, or thinking along multiple areas of business such as sales and marketing combined. There is a weekly call with him that’s about coaching businesses in general and there is also a JV Q&A call.
Ajay, business/marketing strategy specialist
When you start with Accelerator and you finish the foundational business strategy modules where you’re planning out your business, what kind of coaching service you’ll offer, how you stand out from the crowd and where to find your clients, he will get on Zoom with you and help you make the final decision, as well as validate if your decision is business viable. I personally really liked the safety of having a specialized expert validate my strategy instead of just taking a blind shot at it in the dark.
Ari, head accountability coach
Ari hosts a weekly accountability workshop for all members going through the 6-week fast-track. On this workshop, he tracks everybody’s progress individually and helps them set goals for next week. He then helps you take those goals and turn them into tangible, step-by-step action steps, todos that you have to complete to reach that goal. This system helped me clarify what I actually need to do, what steps I need to take next, which was extremely valuable as things can get pretty confusing – because you’re learning so much.
Philip, sales coach
Philip is a very professional guy when it comes to sales. You can tell that he has tremendous experience and industry wisdom as soon as you step into the Zoom call, and I don’t mean the cheesy car salesman type. He is a lot more sophisticated and knows his stuff better than that. In sales, Philip is wisdom over force, and he also emphasizes how important it is that we’re selling in an ethical, no-pressure way.
He focuses on great presentation rather than wacky tactics. I worked with him to analyze my sales presentation delivery and a few of my lost client calls, and he pointed out exactly where I was losing them and how to fix it. Now I feel much less tense on my sales discussions and I lose fewer clients.
Chris, JV coach and partner provider
Chris is a JV partner of Sai and he’s the one responsible for promoting back your JVs and building up your following. That is his first role, and his second role is being a JV coach. So naturally as he does a lot of business with JVs he knows his stuff well. I haven’t had that many questions to him yet but I hope to work with him in the future.
Things coach foundation did for me
Coach Foundation isn’t merely a coaching company, they are also service providers. As part of Accelerator, they’ve
- built my website
- built my funnels
- had my marketing copy reviewed by a pro writer who’s done millions in sales
What’s in the pipeline
- building my automated webinar
- getting me published in news outlets
- getting my next book published (and hopefully best-selling author!)
What it got me so far
So this is the real question of the review. What did I actually get from being a part of Accelerator in terms of results? I don’t want to go into cold-hard cash figures as everybody should have their privacy around that, but what I CAN say is that I’m converting more clients than I did before at significantly higher prices. And, I also talk to a lot more people who want to sign up for my coaching program, thanks to the joint ventures, but also the fact that my business strategy is finally well put-together.
These two combined mean that in the Accelerator months, I’ve got more than a 5x increase in the number of clients I work with per month, and that’s really impressive. Add on top of that a credible website and sales funnels, plus support and guidance whenever needed from a wonderful team at Coach Foundation, and we’re definitely so much better off than before.
Was Coach Foundation Accelerator worth it?
All in all, was Sai Blackbyrn’s Accelerator worth it? I believe so. I’m getting so much more work than I did before, it’s more consistent, and that also means I experience a lot less stress. If you have been coaching for a while and your income is reliant on continually finding new clients, this can be very stressful and I wouldn’t wish that on my worst enemy.
So regardless of whether you’re just getting started or have been coaching for some time, don’t gamble with the marketing strategy and don’t stress yourself with the hustle of trying to find clients from a source that you don’t know if it will work.
You’re much better off just getting Accelerator and letting the marketing pros do their job, and then you only have to deal with coaching. If you just get your next few clients from it and you’re charging as much as Sai recommends (around 5k), you’ll make it back in no time.
And the funnels keep on working for you later on, bringing in even more clients. Also, even if you knew everything that you needed to do yourself and calculate how much it would cost to get all the stuff I outlined above from agencies or freelancers, it would likely come in at around double Accelerator’s price. And it would probably take a lot more time, too. In my opinion, definitely worth it, so my recommendation, if your in the market, pull the trigger.