#146: 5 Secrets To Running a Successful 5-Day Challenge

5-day challenges are fabulous for accomplishing a lot in a short period of time. Want clients? Want to grow your mailing list? Want to beef up your Facebook group? Want coaching experience? You’re in the right place. Listen in to learn more about 5-day challenges and some of the secrets Michelle has learned along the way – things you NEVER would guess! Join Michelle and ask your own questions inside the Facebook group: http://HealthCoachPowerCommunity.com

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Hello, health coaches. Listen, it has been super busy over here. Added has been super fun the past week or two. And one of the big reasons for that is that we were running a five day social media challenge. Were you participating in it? If you did, or if you didn't either way, I've been running five day challenges in my business for years and years now. I think they are fabulous for so many reasons. I have run them with you guys. I have run them inside my health coaching practice. Today. I want to share five secrets to making these types of events super-duper successful for you. It's amazing what you can learn by doing something over and over. Think about whatever you do, whatever you're really good at baking sourdough bread, right? Whatever. The first time was probably like meh. The second, third time, little bit better.

Once you've done it for years, right, It just, it gets easy. You get really good at it. You can troubleshoot and you're really successful with it. You learn by doing so. Anyway, I been running challenges several times per year for like, I think the first time I did it was maybe five years ago, maybe more and they just keep getting better. Now I want to let you know that during this spring's fast track semester, just like we did last fall, all of our members are going to learn exactly how to put together their own five day challenge. And then we're going to run it together. I'm going to help you. It's super fun. The perfect way of learning by doing, because like you can talk about this stuff all day. I love how you guys binge listen to this podcast. I always hear you say that. I listened to all your episodes in a weekend.

Wow. You can do that. You can listen about, uh, you can talk about your target market. You can learn about building a mailing list or finding clients. You can do that all day long, but what I've seen are the coaches who go, oh, okay, now I'm going to do this thing. I have to do a thing? Okay. I'm part of fast track, which means I got to get this done. Now they do it. And it all starts to click into place how good marketing works because we are in action. Um, and I'll just say one more thing about that before we get into the meat of today's episode. In our last episode, Danielle Meitiv shared how she has hundreds. I think she had maybe like 500 people signed up for her five day challenge. That's starting very soon. Well, guess what? She created that five-day challenge, the format, the content, the structure during our fast-track semester.

And now she's able to repeat it and repeat it and continue grow it in her business using it. So that's an asset, right? Let's back up for a second. What is a five day challenge? If you're here, live, tell me in the comments if you have run one before, right? Like when you see people running five day challenge, you probably been like, I could do that and maybe you figured it out and you've, you've done it before. So tell me how that's gone for you a five day challenge for those of you who are not so sure. Honestly, it's like no big deal. It's I want to say it's like a glorified email course. If you want to think of it that way, like at its assets, it means that over the course of five days, you are going to send an email with some type of information and some type of mini challenge to your participants.

That's it? Five emails. So if you want us to teach people how to bake sourdough bread, for example, and I don't do this, so I couldn't tell you what those five emails would contain. But if any of you bake sourdough bread, you could tell me what's the first step creating the starter, you know, and teach us how to do that. On day one, you know, day two, what do you have to do? Feed the starter, whatever. In any case, it's just something that, you know, broken down into five parts. You could do that. Right. All right. So that's sort of five day challenge. The idea with the challenge though, is not just for people to learn, but to actually do something. So not just teach, like, what is gluten? Where do you find gluten? But with the challenge, it's a little more actionable. It would be like now go into your pantry and find things containing hidden gluten.

Right? So we, we try to put a little task into each of the days. So we're not just learning, but we are implementing because that's how everybody learns fast. Okay. Now that you have the sense of what a five day challenge is, let me tell you some of the best parts. So far, we have Catherine saying that she has tried, but has not been successful with the five day challenge. Andrea says she's been wanting to do it, but needs more information before getting started. Yeah. Like to me, they always seemed really complicated. They're not, I mean, they can be, but they don't have to be complicated because I was watching people do. And then most of the people I was watching were doing it at a very large scale, like the five-day challenge that I just held last week, the week before we had like 1500 people in that.

And when I was first starting out, you know, anybody who's first starting out, maybe you're going to have 10 people sign up 20 people sign up, maybe a hundred people, you know, but it's going to be on a much smaller scale. It's going to be more simple, which is great because you learn and as you grow, you know, things can get more complicated. Kelly says she loves running challenges. Me too, Kelly. What's your favorite part? The cool thing about running a five day challenge is that it's an event. And any event is a reason for people to pay attention to what you're doing as a health coach. It gives you something to talk about. It gives you something to promote. It gets eyes on you. So even if literally no one signed up, just the fact of promoting an event. That sounds really cool. I know we want people to sign up, but even if they don't, it's a reason for people to pay attention to what you're doing.

It's much more interesting than just going. I'm a health coach. Hey, I'm still a health coach. Hey, three months later, I'm still a health coach. No, you can say, Hey, I'm a health coach. Now I got this really cool event going on. Oh, Hey, now I'm doing this other thing. All right. So this is going to help get eyes on you. How do you really make it successful though? Yeah. You have to give yourself time to promote. You need a plan for how you're going to promote if you want people to actually sign up. So one thing that coaches don't always do, they don't give themselves enough time. I would suggest giving yourself several weeks to promote your event. I'm talking three, maybe four. This way. You truly have time to get in front of your people. Whether it's emailing them several times about it posting to social media, hanging the flyer, you know, all the different ways that we can promote ourselves.

And especially when you're starting out, but always it is really, really helpful. I have found if you can pair up with another business or two, if you can find a couple partners. So for example, and this most recent five day challenge that I did, I had some help getting the word out. I already have a big email list. I already have, what do we have? Like 10,000 people inside of our Facebook group. But in order to bring new eyes in front of what you're doing, right, you're doing this really cool free event that people will want to be a part of. Um, it really helps to find these partners. And I do it recently. I've been doing this every time I run a challenge and it helps. So, so very much a good partner would be somebody who's not a competitor, not a direct competitor, but someone who does something complimentary to what you do and they serve the same target market.

So therefore their email list, their social media following their whole audience would be people that would be perfect for you and your services as well. When you do this, there's no need to pay for Facebook ads, right? If you can connect with other businesses, other organizations who serve the same population you do, if they can help you promote, you will get in front of those new eyes for free. To me, that's a much better way to spend my time than putting together Facebook ads, paying thousands and thousands of dollars to run them. Hope they get in front of the right people with ad targeting and then spending several dollars maybe up to, Oh, sometimes $10 a lead for people to actually join your challenge. So, I highly recommend that you prioritize the time that it takes to promote your challenge and a strategy for how you're going to promote your challenge.

Okay? The next really cool thing that you might not be thinking right now is that when it comes to creating content, you need to really have that much content. It's only five days. It's only five emails and people don't want to read a novel. Like nobody wants to, you know, learn every last little detail about gluten. For example, if you're running some sort of gluten free challenge, it's too much, people are busy. So less is more. The other reason less is more, not that you shouldn't give away your best info. You should absolutely always give away your best info, but you want to leave a gap. And this even comes into play with how you decide on a topic for your challenge. This gets kind of complicated. So, I'm just going to top-line it here by saying you want to leave a gap so that when someone finishes your challenge, they haven't solved their entire health problem.

Also, how could they, it's only been five days, but they should feel like, Oh, I'm good to go. I got everything I need. Thank you, bye. Instead, they should feel like, wow, I got so much out of this. I've learned so much and I can see how I still need help. So really smart challenge will help people, not only learn something and take action, but better understand their problem and how important it is for them to solve it. Because that's that gap between day five of your challenge, and then wanting to sign up with you as a paying client. Okay. Now also in terms of content, you can, you don't have to, like I said, you don't need that much. You can just do five emails over five days. That is enough to be a five day challenge. You can also include a Facebook group component or some other type of group discussion component.

Some people have used Instagram. There's different ways of doing that. You could choose to use any sort of online platform where people come together and discuss Facebook tends to be the go-to though. So this is awesome because even though you're not creating that much new content, you can be putting out these drips of content day one day, two day, three day, four day five, and inviting people to then join your Facebook group to go a little deeper or join your Facebook group to get their questions answered. I mean, how many of you last week were all up in my Facebook group asking tons and tons of questions every day. And we were right there answering you. So this is a way to connect with your audience, but it's also a great way. If you have a Facebook group to beef up your membership, right? Cause everybody who joins your challenge.

Now they have a reason to join that Facebook group. Um, it also boosts engagement within your existing group. And if you don't have a Facebook group, but you've wanted to start one, this is a great way to do it instead of just on a random Wednesday or whatever, deciding think I'm going to start a free Facebook group. Start it with the challenge. Now you have these members that joined because of the challenge. You can open the group after that, to whoever wants to join, you can turn it into a free group. And I've done podcast episodes in the past, all about running Facebook groups and how they can be helpful. So I think there's a lot of ways that this can help your business. And again, you don't have to create that much content Kelly saying my favorite part is the event aspect and the excitement that people have about it.

And then she said, that's the tricky part. Even if you don't teach too much, they still often feel like they have learned enough. Yeah, it depends. Right? Like I've seen people do something that's more like, um, let's say a five day elimination diet or something like that. If you can get people feeling better after five days, that's cool. But they also might be like, okay, now I know everything. They don't, you know, we all know it's not going to last. And just because they could eliminate sugar for five days or whatever, it's not going to heal all their health problems. They're not going to be able to continue on their own most likely, but they think they have everything solved after five days. So you kind of just want to be careful of that. You definitely want to leave people with that gap.

All right, here's the next thing that I want you to know about running a five day challenge. If you had to guess, what percentage of participants in a five day challenge do you think participate fully? Meaning they read every email and they participate in each challenge that you put out to them and they really pay attention to all of the material that you're creating with the same level of intensity that you have put into it. Any answers to that? Sherry saying, can you do a challenge on Instagram live instead of on email? Well, you always would want to include an email component. Cause part of this is building your mailing list Sherry. So, we definitely want to include email, but you could absolutely be using Instagram live to compliment what's going on with the challenge.

Catherine's guessing 5%. Dana's guessing 5%. Yeah. You guys smell what I'm stepping in here, right? Very, very Andrew says none. I mean, I don't actually have a number for you. I don't know. But I would guess it's like zero to 5% of participants in a five day challenge. Read every email, attend every live, you know, thing that you do on Facebook and pay attention to all five days with the level of intensity that you have. So what you have to remember is even though you think you're leading someone on a five day experience, they may only show up once or twice. They may show up on day four and they might read the day one email because that's what they have in their inbox at the top. Right? So you might just get them for like this short little snippet. So, you have to remember to make each day, make everything that you do in your challenge, actionable and fun.

It's got to be interesting or people are not going to pay attention. And you always have to think what if this is the only email they saw? Do they have everything they need in here? You know, sometimes I reference what we had done on days one and two and then day three, this is what we're talking. So even if they are just showing up on day three, they can kind of catch themselves up real quick. Even if they don't go back and read the others, right? What if they only watched this one Facebook live? Will they know what I'm talking about? Maybe not. Right. So it needs to be engaging and fun and keep in mind like this might be your one chance to grab somebody, but it's so cool because you have all these touch points. Let's say your event was, um, a one-time webinar. You have one chance to catch their attention and to engage with them, that one webinar.

But with the five day challenge, you have five times that you can do that five emails. And then if you do a Facebook live every night, like I do, then you got four or five more touchpoints. So it really gives your participants more opportunities to engage with you that fits into their schedule. You know, not to mention just their, uh, their curiosity level. The other thing that can really, really help. And I learned this the hard way, have an archive page. All my fast trackers know that I always stress the importance of an archive page. What is an archive page? It is when you take all the material from your challenge. So let's say it's be all the texts from your emails day by day. If you did some sort of live video, you'd have that video and you put it all in one place, all on.

I use a page on my website, a password protected page on my website and that way, because this will happen. I promise you on day three, you're going to have a bunch of people emailing you go, Hey, I never got the day one email. Can you send it to me? And that's okay when you're, if it's a small challenge and you only have a couple people signed up, you can shoot off a couple of emails to them. But when you have a hundred people signed up or even 50, you're going to be like, Oh my goodness, this is so much extra work. So it's so much easier. If you already have a place that they can go and get anything they missed. And I always recommend having that archive available, Kelly saying, what do you think about running a three-day challenge instead? I think it's fine.

The reason I like five is what I just told you. It gives you five opportunities to get in front of somebody. And it's not so long that there's major drop-off because if you were to run, let's say a 14 day challenge and I've tried, I've tried all different things. You see coaches running a 30 day challenge. You're going to see major drop-off after day four and five, right? It's just how people operate. They're going to sign up. There'll be excited. And after a couple of days, they lose interest. It's also true that people sign up and sometimes they don't have a chance to get to it. So if it's only a three-day challenge, they might not get to it until day three. So, for me, five days is like the sweet spot, but there's nothing wrong about doing something a little shorter or a little bit longer.

If you want us to try that out, what I want you to focus on when you're running a five day challenge is creating a result. And I don't think that health coaches always go into these events, thinking like that. We think, Oh, I'm going to teach something. I'm going to teach. I'm going to challenge about a whole food plant based eating. That's going to be my challenge. Oh yeah. I can't wait to teach about that. Cause I love that topic. Listen, it's not about you. It's about your participants and they're only going to sign up and they're only going to participate. If you are helping them create a result, create a transformation in their life, right? So you want to frame up your whole challenge, meaning create a topic around, this is something that you were going to create. This is something that you are going to achieve, leave in five days and be reasonable.

Like you're not going to lose weight in five days probably, but you could certainly create a plan to lose weight in five days. Right? So that might be how you frame your challenge. It should be something tangible that people can do or create in just five days. So they feel like this is an achievable goal. This is something I want for myself. Of course, I'm going to sign up. Okay. So it has to feel tangible, even if it's, even if it's hard to wrap, you know, to put, um, you, you can't hold it in your hand. You know, you're not going to like build a birdhouse in five days. That is very, very tangible. That has nothing to do with health coaching. But what could you do in five days you could create a meal plan. You could create that plan to lose weight.

You could, um, you know, clean your house out of toxic ingredients that are affecting your eczema, whatever it is in just five days. So think in terms of what you can accomplish in five days, let's see, Dana is saying part of my signature program is a 30 day elimination diet. Do you think it would be a good idea to do a five day challenge to get people interested or would that be giving too much? Um, I don't think it's giving too much. It's really, you can really never give too much, but I do think that nobody cares about an elimination and elimination diet. They care about solving a problem. So you would say, you know, I'm a part of my signature program is helping people solve X, Y, Z. And I'm going to do a five-day challenge that helps at least take the first step solving that same problem.

That's how you would connect a five day challenge to leading clients into your longer paid program. Samantha says, how do you come up with the idea for a challenge, great question. This ideally falls out of your target market. And I'm going to be leading all of our spring fast trackers through this process because I think we make it a lot harder than it has to be. So, let's say... Oh, Dana is saying that she, um, she works and I know this Daniel works with women who have depression. So if she's trying to, so if that's what she does, and I know you work with Christian women who want to overcome depression, so you would want to put together a challenge that's essentially called Christian women overcome or make a plan to overcome depression in five days. That's not the best title in the world, but you get what I'm saying.

I'm just coming up with this off the top of my head. But you want to make something for the person that you help to solve. That big problem that they want to solve in five days or at least take the first step towards solving it. That's the topic of your challenge. Don't go off on a tangent. Don't be like, I'm going to help you feed your kids healthy. In five days, even though in my paid program, I help Christian women solve depression because those two things aren't connected and you're going to have a harder time signing clients. Let's talk about signing clients because at the end of the day, that is one of the major benefits you're going to get out of a five day challenge. I mean, when I run these things, like I said, I build up my Facebook group. We build engagement.

I add names to my mailing list, like crazy. And there's this whole no like trust factor that happens when you're hearing from somebody five days in a row, maybe you're seeing them on a Facebook live. They're helping you get quick wins every day. Oh, I did this thing for day one. That's so cool. I actually followed through on it because it was easy. People feel good about that. And then they feel good about how they could work with you. So there's so many benefits, but of course the whole thing can end and should. And with some sort of offer for more, if you're ready to be taking on clients. So one way, and we will do this during the fast track semester. This spring I'll teach everybody how is you can make a pitch. You can make a soft pitch at the end. It doesn't have to be, you know, a hard-hitting sales message, but starting on day three, you would start to mention that you have such and such program available or that you have, you know, free calls available for people who want to take the next step with you and day four, you would reiterate that on day five, you would reiterate that and maybe send a couple of follow-up emails this way you can lead people from your free challenge directly and to taking that next step of working with you.

Catherine's saying, I liked that you added connecting with you via text message in your challenge because it felt more personal. Oh yeah. So some of you know that, like I said, you can get more complex as you get more practice with these things. But I did add a layer of text messaging to our five day challenge. And I would like to remind you that we had 1500 people in that challenge. Thank you. I need a nap now. Now it was really fun. It's really fun to be able to connect with everybody personally, and with people's inboxes being so full and Facebook algorithms being what they are. And sometimes people just don't want to use Facebook. Right? Text messaging is sort of another way that you can connect with your audience. So that's something to think about, but I'll tell you that's only something I've started to do recently.

Let me talk more about how you can get clients out of the... I will often say off the back of a challenge, meaning you're going to do this thing for free, but off the back of it, we hope to make some money, right? Or hope to generate interest in your services. So one would be to actually straight up offer your program and mention it throughout your program or throughout the challenge. The next is you don't even have to make a pitch if that's not comfortable for you. If you're not even sure of what you're offering yet, because maybe you're straight out of school, you haven't worked with any clients yet. It's kind of scary. You could still run a challenge, you guys. Get that Facebook group going, you know, build your mailing list, build up that know like trust factor. And even if you're not ready or you're too scared to pitch yourself, scatter client stories throughout the five days, and you want to reference work that you've done, right?

Even if it's only been with practice clients that you've done for free, you know, you could say, uh, I don't know, on day two of your gluten-free five day challenge or something you could say, Oh, my friend, Amy, you know who I helped get off gluten. She had the hardest time when it came to breakfast. And so here's the breakfast that Amy settled on. I want to share it with you today. Something like that. So you're not actually saying like, Hey, sign up with me. You know, I have this program available, but you're mentioning the work that you've done with people. And that gets lodged in someone's brain and they go, Oh, okay. So, you know, Catherine is running this gluten-free challenge. She works with clients. I could be a client, it plants the seed. And sometimes that seed will come to fruition sooner than later.

Because even if you do, neither of those things, even if all you do is say, I'm running this awesome five day challenge for Christian women who have depression, right. Even if that's all you ever did. It's so funny. I always see some of our HPU members saying this and I've experienced it myself. You're promoting this thing over here, but people will see that. And they'll just come to you through the back door. You know, they'll email you the completely separate. And they'll be like, yeah, I saw you doing that thing, but are you taking any private clients? And you're like, why? Yes I am. So it's like back to that idea of using an event to promote yourself can be so very beneficial. People will take notice. And sometimes they just come and ask if they can work with you, even if you've said nothing about it, that happens.

And then finally the way to think about how does this serve my business? What's the ROI in this investment of my time and my energy into running a five day challenge. Well, listen, all those things I just described can lead to paying clients. But just the fact that you were adding to your email list, you're building up your Facebook group or your Instagram following. If you want to be using Instagram, you know, but you're building up the engagement on these different touch points that you have with your audience. The next time you do make an offer a month later, let's say you're running a detox or whatever you're doing. You have a larger audience. You have a more warmed up audience to sell to, and that's going to lead to more sales then. So, I see five-day challenges working in the short term and in the longer term.

All right, let's see what questions do you guys have for me here? Andrea says, I want to get people to a sales call. That would be the goal. And of course getting more eyes on me and interacting with people. Good. It's really smart to go into these things with a distinct goal in mind. So, Andrea is saying she wants to get people to a sales call. Well, what do they need in order to be in a mindset that they're like, yeah, I'm going to book that call. I think what they would need is to realize they have a problem. They cannot solve on their own. Weird, right? I know we're here to help them solve their problem. But of course we can't do it in five days, but we can help and we can help along the way by... Let me give... Let me come up with an example.

I've done this before, and I'm trying to think of an example in my brain of this, let's say, okay, I work with women who have chronic stress and burnout and they know they're stressed out and they know they don't want to be stressed out and it feels terrible. But one thing that I could do over the course of five days is help them better understand their symptoms. So I could say on day one, Hey, I know we're here to talk about chronic stress. Today, actually I want to talk about digestion. You know, like, do you experience gas, bloating, diarrhea, have them think about their digestive problems. Punchline did you know that can be related very strongly to chronic stress? Ah, you know, maybe there's something that day about digestion or about reducing their stress day 2, maybe you get them thinking about, um, their sleep.

Do you have trouble sleeping? Do you wake up every morning at three o'clock, four o'clock did you know that could be related to chronic stress? So what the way you build your five days could actually, in a way, help them understand their problem better. The challenge I just described to you that I'm making up off the top of my head. By the end of five days, they would go, Oh, I thought I was just chronically stressed, but now I see that my digestive problems are all part of this, that my, uh, my sleep problems are all part of this. Obviously my energy is all part of my weight is a part as well. I have a bigger problem than I even knew. I really need help. That's how you're going to get them to book the discovery call with you, Andrea, if they feel like you have helped them and boy, they could use more help.

So, try something like that. You see how, like, you start with the goal in mind, you can engineer, you can kind of step backwards out of the goal and then engineer, how am I going to get people there? Sherry says, how often should you run a five day challenge? Well, let's say you have one five day challenge. I wouldn't run it too often because you're going to wear people out. They're like, yeah, you just did this last month. So I would do a five day challenge, maybe two times a year, if it's the exact same content, same topic. Right. But you could have more than one. Maybe it depends on who you're serving and what kind of problem they have. Maybe you have two really good five day challenges. Um, then maybe you would do it four times a year. It also depends on how big your audience is.

If you are relying on your Facebook group, your mailing list, your warm audience, primarily, yes, people will get tired. If you run a five day challenge constantly, you know, it won't be special anymore. So I would prefer, and I even found in my own business when I do the same thing too often, um, I get the same number of people and the same number of clients. And if I had only done it once or twice, cause all those same people would have done it just once or twice when I offered it instead of like five times. So make it easy on yourself, do it less, make yourself more exclusive and more special. Andrew says, wow, I love this. Awesome. Thanks. Good. I hope that helps. And I love when you guys ask questions because sometimes like, I don't even know what I know, you know, like some things I've learned, but like it's, it's become so routine for me to do it.

When you ask the questions, when you show up live and you're able to say, Hey, I have this situation or Hey, what would you do with this? I'm like, Oh yeah, this is what I do. You know? So I'm so glad that you guys are here today. And this is what really makes it so special, being able to work with you in real time. Like I think it provides so much more value, valuable. No, that's not the word so much more value. Christie says I'm not taking notes today is all of this wonderful information inside HPU. All of this wonderful information about the fast, about a five day challenges will be part of our spring fast-track semester. And Christie. I know you're in there with us, so you will get it for sure so much. And that is all we have time for today. You guys, so thank you so much for being here and I'll be back next week with more as always see you next time.