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How to Start or Grow a Thriving Professional Ayurveda Practice
The State of Professional Ayurveda Practice in the West…
These are from survey results of Ayurveda program graduates across schools in the United States:
- Only 10% of the graduates from our professional certification programs are going on to a professional Ayurveda practice. 90% do nothing in the professional space with their certification.
- Of those 10% who do go on to practice, the majority (over 60%) do it part-time while some other job or source of income is responsible for paying the bills.
- And of those remaining graduates who go on to a full-time practice, the average expected annual income is only around $25K to $35K per year.
Compared to the value that an Ayurveda practice has to offer individuals and our society, these numbers and this compensation are far too LOW!
Wouldn’t you agree?
The good news for the future of professional Ayurveda practice…
For some years now, I’ve been helping Ayurveda practitioners change these statistics through a system that I developed after struggling as a new practitioner and then developing a very different model for approaching my practice.
The result: I was able to build a $10K/month Ayurveda practice with a handful of committed clients who got long-term results, and I had a LOT more leisure to spend time with my family and pursue other interests.
The practitioners who learn and implement this system have consistently reproduced these inspiring results building thriving practices, sustainable incomes, and awesome results with their clients.
I call this system “Grow Your Ayurvedic Business” and it has 5 important steps.
Step 1: Map Your Market
What do we do when people in our community don’t know about Ayurveda?
This step addresses a fundamental mindset shift from “marketing your modality” to “serving a niche market.”
Instead of trying to educate people on Ayurveda, we pick a specific group of people with specific needs that can focus our practice. We become a servant committed to serving this market deeply, instead of trying to serve everyone.
When we do this successfully, we get start getting referrals everywhere we go, doors open up for us, and we become known as the “go-to” person for that market.
Step 2: Committed Client Formula
How do we get our clients to stick around long-term so they can get sustainable results?
Changing behavior takes a lot of consistency and accountability if it’s going to stick.
That’s why instead of offering individual “sessions” or even “session packages” we need to view our relationships with clients as a long-term program with specific behaviors we are going to help them change over the next 3 months, or 6 months, or year.
We position our program as a path that takes them from where they are now to where they want to be, and our role is to help them remove the obstacles to implementing the key behaviors that are going to get them there.
Clients pay for programs in full or on a monthly basis. Either way, it’s a much more sustainable model for practitioners and it guarantees that clients will keep their health a weekly priority so they get long-term results.
Step 3: Sales Sadhana System
How do we get new people on our email lists, in our calendar, and actually enrolling in these long-term committed programs?
Once we know our market, we can build a website that actually works for us.
It’s job: automatically build our email list of prospective clients, and automatically put the most motivated clients in our schedule for their first complimentary session.
The purpose of this session is not to determine their constitution and start handing out advice.
No, I call it the “Sales Sadhana” because it’s a grounded practice using a sequence of questions designed to elicit their own internal motivation to change their health.
- How long have you been struggling with these health challenges?
- What impact are they having on you? Your work? Your family?
- Where do you see this heading if these challenges aren’t addressed?
…and other essential questions that help a new prospective client determine their motivation to make a change.
If the motivation is there THEN we can transition to find out if they’d like hear about our program and how it helps people just like them overcome health challenges like these and get the results they are looking for.
Step 4: Multiply Your Marketing
Ever attend a health fair or business networking group or put an ad in your local paper or holistic health directory…only to get blah results?
Sure. Most of us have.
Once we know our ideal market AND have a consciously crafted lead generation and enrollment system in place, networking and advertising becomes much more effective.
Not only because we know WHO we’re talking to, but also because we know WHERE to look for them…whether in person or online.
Step 5: Advanced Profit Growth
Do you like some leisure, time for friends and family, and flexibility to travel?
If not, then you may be satisfied solely with a busy time-for-money private practice model…but for the rest of us, leveraging our time, impact, and income is an important long-term strategy.
We do this over time through emphasizing more passive or collective offerings over 1-on-1 clients in our Ayurveda practice: group programs, physical products, “infoproducts” and programs, as well as partnerships.
We can reach more people, and our private clients rates can go up as demand increases and we want to prioritize more time and space for other things.
Even though none of us got into an Ayurveda practice because we thought it would be an awesome money-maker, we DO need a financially sustainable model if we’re serious about our career, and our profession.
The great news is we HAVE stumbled upon one of the best business models available: low overhead and complexity, great income potential, and meaningful work supporting people toward healthier lives and freedom from premature and chronic disease.
Comments? Questions? I want to hear from you! Please leave a reply below to let me know your thoughts. If you know an Ayurvedic student, practitioner, or program that needs to see this, please pass it along!