The self-help industry is one of the better performing industries when compared to global economic trends. There are tons of aspects, features and trends out there that are still quite unknown to the general public, with not nearly every single one being positive. In this summary, you can expect to learn a thing or two about the self-help market evolutions, trends and what to watch out for while being on the lookout for your next coach or program.
State of the industry
Up to $500 million is spent every year on personal development products. The net worth of the self-help industry in the U.S. alone is estimated to be almost $11 billion, comprised mostly of self-help books. This market is also beating most global economic trends as it is averaging over 5% growth each year. The largest sector of the industry are the holistic institutes and personal training centers. They offer professional and personal growth tips and together account for almost 50% of all total revenue. According to market research, the 16 U.S. holistic institutes are attracting about 156,000 people per year. While growing moderately, these workshops and seminars are still popular with a lot of people.
In order to maintain long-term viability, the industry’s future generation of experts will need to be able to be more accountable to consumers. The classic motivational programs are losing popularity every day. Consumers are starting to look for more practical programs and alternatives. When people look back on their invested time and money, they often find that programs and philosophies have underdelivered.
Consumers are also realizing that there are too many so-called experts peddling a plethora of online coaching services. Cutting through the clutter is proving to be quite the task, while consumers are struggling to identify legitimate, competent guru’s.
Unfortunately, there are still a few big issues regarding the self-help industry that give the entire space a bad reputation. You could throw a rock at any street corner and hit someone that’s preaching about any self-help cliché or passion that’s antiquated and out of date. There are countless self-proclaimed professionals that give out both bad and irrelevant advice. It’s like telling someone to “just think positive” when they’re at their lowest low. Something needs to change.
Expectations vs reality
People are being tricked into believing false methodologies, programs and promises. There are several things consumers should look out for while searching for their next self-help program. The first thing that’s out there to catch the average consumers attention is marketing. This is where the deception begins. What you see is almost never what you get.
Programs being advertised at the top of the page are usually just the ones that pay the most. Another simple trick websites and marketers like to pull off is letting you believe that they have the perfect program suited just for you. As you might have figured out already, these are also just paid advertisements. They usually only know the best way to appear on your computer screen, and not the best way to solve whatever it is you might be struggling with.
The next aspect the average consumer will take a deeper look into are the ratings and reviews of a specific program they might be interested in. This is a feature a lot of websites include in their list of functionalities. A perfect example is Udemy.com. Being founded in 2010 and averaging over 100.000 different courses, they’re one of the absolute giants of the online education industry. A lot of websites, them included, like to include different kinds of ratings and reviews to further solidify the opinion consumers form over a specific subject. Unfortunately, this is also very easily manipulatable. It’s just as easy to buy extra positive ratings and reviews on educational websites, as it is to buy extra following on social media network websites. The problem is that a lot of people don’t realize this. Due to the obscene amount of undetected fake ratings and reviews, a lot of people end up getting baited and tricked.
Cutting through the clutter
As an outsider, the course or program you find first is usually the most heavily advertised one. In most cases, this is not the most effective solution either. It’s getting more difficult for both content creators and consumers to be able to get an effective overview of what actually works for most. This is where the 360 Tribe platform will step in. On our platform, there will be no opportunity given for content creators to buy themselves into the spotlight. We will have a certain set of filters in place that will work with AI that consumers will be able to use to find the content that suits their needs. Once filtered they will also be able to rank the results on several criteria, facilitating an easy way to find the solution they need the most.
Just like in every other sector and industry, the self-help industry is struggling to keep up with the newest technological improvements of the last couple of years. Old webinars, meetings, and training programs are severely outdated, and the internet seems to be the only logical direction to take. While working online, you can follow the program of your dreams without leaving your home, traveling or living in an unknown city while struggling in a competitive learning environment.
The comfort of being able to study at home compared to attending classes or seminars for hours, sitting in an uncomfortable chair and struggling to pay attention is remarkable.
During the last couple of years, the demand for online education is dramatically increasing. According to a study performed by e-campus news, ninety-nine percent of the online education program administrators say that demand has increased or stayed the same over the past few years. Nearly 40% of the respondents are also planning to increase their online program budgets. According to a few other studies, nearly 80% of the students in online education programs think that it’s better than or equal to on-campus education.
Schools are also starting to offer new online educational programs as an opportunity for growth to increase overall student enrollment. There’s an employment demand of 68 percent for the knowledge and skills and a 64% demand from students who are interested in a certain subject area or degree. One of the biggest hurdles for schools specifically is the ability to deploy a proper marketing strategy for their online education programs to prospective students. It’s hard to meet the recruitment goals, costs and management demands required by these new digital programs.
On top of that, most online courses and programs support self-paced learning. This means that students can start and complete certain targets of their courses at any time, and can arrange a learning schedule that meets their own personal needs. Enrolling in traditional college programs usually equals forgetting about work, hobbies and even family. Studying always has to be a priority. A self-paced system allows students to consume content at a flexible and adjustable rhythm. You don’t always need to attend live sessions and you can usually access the materials at any point in time.
Of course, just like everything it also has its downsides. While the classic methods might be more time-consuming and less practical, it also stimulates people to finish the course they started. When you’re attending a live event or training program, there’s an entire experience that comes along with it. It’s way easier to not finish an online course than to not finish an event which you’re physically attending. Finishing something on paper could for a lot of people be way easier than finishing something on their computers.
The road ahead
The current state of the industry to us is quite clear. We’ve had a number of amazing new methodologies, technologies, and trends being introduced to the industry. Some of them were the start of something great, while some weren’t. We have a tough road ahead of us to be able to fix all of these issues, but we’re confident in our capabilities to contribute towards making both the self-help industry and the world a better place for all.