How I Started A $15K/Month Health And Wellness Coaching Business

Published: March 8th, 2021
Brittney Oliver
Holistic Wellness...
started March 2017
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Hello! Who are you and what business did you start?

I am Brittney Oliver, better known as “Coach Britt” and I am the founder of the Holistic Wellness Coaching Academy school for Gut Health and Mindset Coaching. I am a two-time author, board-certified coach, and passionate entrepreneur.

In 2017 I launched an international Academy, based on my first book Buddha Belly with little to nothing as far as the financial startup goes and grew it into a six-figure business by year two.

HWCA was built in the scarce moments between motherhood demands in an attempt to find a piece of my own identity, something that I was passionate about that could add to my family’s income which was only $35,000 a year at the time! What started as a singular course on the microbiome, evolved into an international, full coach training academy which now has graduates all over the world.


What's your backstory and how did you come up with the idea?

As an overweight child with debilitating anxiety, I had spent years trying to diet for weight loss while juggling bouts of panic and depression. Even after I had hacked the weight and improved my nutrition, I still just couldn’t get to the bottom of my mental health struggles. After my second miscarriage, I finally discovered the root of what I had assumed were hormonal issues were actually originating from an imbalance in my gut.

Get an early morning routine. This will give you precious hours to which YOU control your day and execute your dreams.

Once I learned about the mind-gut connection I was hooked! My evolving passion for wellness grew into an intense need to share my epiphany with the world. At that point, I became a board-certified health and life coach and started writing my first book Buddha Belly out of the driver's seat of my car during my baby’s naps. I had just sold my previous brick and mortar business to buy myself a year of working, to stay home with my second child. I was becoming antsy, needing to find a place for my passion to ignite again and once I started writing, the book flew together and was completed within six months.


Take us through the process of designing, prototyping, and manufacturing your first product.

I launched the book, having no real idea of what I was going to do with it to create income. I had written it to help people and didn’t have a game plan past the point of printing. I chose to self-publish since it was easy and allowed me to get the ball rolling quickly. All I knew was that I wanted to help people with the information that had truly helped me.

Shortly after it was completed, I discussed having a colleague help me write a course based on my book, for health professionals to better understand this emerging and crucially important area of wellness. When the ball got rolling, I started toying with the idea of creating a certification for those who completed the course. I wish that I could say that the execution was methodical and detailed but I would be lying.

I utilized social media to test my potential audience and when I presented the concept of a Gut Specialist coaching certification, I had a potential student bite right away! I offered to sell her the entire training at the time for $1,500 and she enrolled the next day. I took the tuition that she had paid and financed the remaining course design and completion.

We initially had all the modules in essay format, which meant that the students had to type out all of their answers and email them directly to me to evaluate. I didn’t even have a real logo yet! I registered the academy with the state, drew up a client contract, and considered myself “In business.”


Describe the process of launching the business.

Initially, we didn’t have a website but after enrolling a few students, I decided to have one designed and paid a friend to create a landing page on a DIY site. I ended up re-investing 100% of our profits during our launch year and we later had a $20,000 student web portal built, a professional logo drawn up, and worked on solidifying our website presence.

At the time, I knew nothing about hard money loans, startup investors, or Kickstarter campaigns. I was using direct sales strategies on platforms like Instagram and keeping up with creating and sharing educational content. HWCA was built completely by organic lead generation and direct sales strategy with no money or know-how to spend on ads or campaigns.

I’ve always been a trigger puller. I move fast and am very impatient about the things that I create. This had its benefits and pitfalls in regards to the Academy. The benefit was that I got moving quickly, generated income from nothing, and was able to reinvest it back into the business. I also learned, first hand, all about my ideal client which helped me tailor and grow our course offerings and products to better appeal to the needs of those potential students.

The downsides of my “just do it” mindset was that I had to work really hard to build a grassroots business, little by little. Had I taken the time to create the program with intention, the first time, I wouldn’t have had to redo it twice! I also could have potentially gotten investors or co-creators to finance and contribute to the content. We could have done an official launch and maybe been more visible in the beginning; however, the keyword here is still “maybe.”

Since launch, what has worked to attract and retain customers?

Since launching, the best growth tactics that we’ve seen have come from taking care of our students and helping them become successful in their businesses whereas most other schools send graduates off without real business know-how.

Word of mouth is also huge for both growth and reputation. Our educational content on our blog and social media gains a lot of attention and increases our SEO which has increased our traffic to the site. After much feedback from site visitors, we felt confident that our product was pretty desirable and that our biggest obstacle was visibility. At that point, we put our ad money into Google PPC and have seen a $53 return for every dollar spent on PPC advertising.

We also utilize a Linkedin automation system for our B2B leads.

As we speak, we are about to advance our YouTube presence and launch the Buddha Belly Life Podcast which will help to promote the school’s content, empower coaches in their businesses, and drive traffic to the Academy.

How are you doing today and what does the future look like?

While 2020 was a rough year for many businesses, it has led to an increased number of health coaches! We are expecting 2021 to bring a 20% increase in revenue with a higher graduation rate than we’ve ever seen. Because we have an online platform with digital materials, our overhead is fairly low and we boast an approximate 70% profit margin and are seeking to increase that to 80%.

We have added a client Gut testing and personal course package that our graduates can retail and add to their coaching services in an attempt to assist our graduates and create ongoing revenue for the Academy. We are also looking to bring on strategic, commissioned wellness ambassadors and recruiters which will double our staff this year alone.

Through starting the business, have you learned anything particularly helpful or advantageous?

They say that millionaires have lost thousands to make millions and lost millions to make billions and we lost thousands to unintelligent investing and marketers who couldn’t deliver on their promises and didn’t understand our business. One of the largest losses of funds happened when I was a single mother and it wiped out my entire savings. Being in that vulnerable place motivated me to learn more myself, which resulted in three months of record-breaking sales.

Having learned the hard way about subpar marketers, I was able to seek, spot, and invest in quality lead generation systems which in 2020 gave us an additional lead resource that operates on an automated basis and frees up time to work more ON the business instead of just IN it.

What platform/tools do you use for your business?

We rely heavily on Instagram for content, Facebook for closed group usage, LinkedIn for automated B2B marketing, and MailChimp for our CRM although it tends to easily go to spam so we are in the market for an upgraded system at this time.

While we also utilize YouTube and will soon launch a podcast, for us, Google PPC has been the most valuable investment. We happen to have a desirable product within a special niche and Google PPC has allowed us to become more visible to our desired client and dramatically increased our quality, inbound leads.

What have been the most influential books, podcasts, or other resources?

The most influential books and resources that I can personally reference are probably The 5 am Club by Robin Sharma, The One Thing by Gary Keller, and Unlimited Power by Tony Robbins.

With that said, I had the pleasure of investing in Tony’s in-person Business Mastery.

A 5-day seminar in January of 2019. That event was a complete LIFE CHANGER both personally and professionally. It is an investment, but for the serious entrepreneur, there is nothing like it.

Advice for other entrepreneurs who want to get started or are just starting?

My top tips for new entrepreneurs:

Get an early morning routine. This will give you precious hours to which YOU control your day and execute your dreams.

I also suggest surrounding yourself with “doers.”I train the coaches to “Reach outside your circle” meaning, build your business (and initial confidence) outside of friends and family. This will allow you to flourish and learn in a real environment without the clashes that often come with familiarity.

Lastly, appreciate your freedom to create. Your obstacles and adversities are gifts to compel you into growth.

Are you looking to hire for certain positions right now?

We are currently opening limited positions for student recruits. These are commissioned-based, creative sales positions. An ideal candidate will possess excellent sales skills and background or sincere interest in wellness, mindset, and/or holistic health.

Where can we go to learn more?

If you have any questions or comments, drop a comment below!