When people type into google a particular search word, without understanding what the actual industry term is, it can lead to the wrong information and pricing. This can be very frustrating and confusing to the consumer.
The term ‘Voice Coach”, ‘Vocal Coach”, “Speaker Coach”, and “Singing Teacher” are sometimes used interchangeably, but they don’t actually mean the same thing.
As a qualified & experienced (former) singing teacher, I understand the confusion as we are still talking about voice training and improving the vocal instrument, however most of my clients these days are absolutely not willing or wanting to learn how to sing! They are looking to either improve the sound of their voice for public speaking tasks, or improve their speaking skills and presentations skills for career progression.
As both a ‘speaker coach’, and ‘singing coach’, with over thirty years’ experience, you have come to the right place to get your questions answered.
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COACH…I NEED A COACH!
In this article, I will outline what to expect from each type of teacher, and how to identify the right coach for you, at the right price.
STEP ONE: FINDING THE CORRECT SEARCH TERM FOR YOU .
First, before we go into actual costing, let’s look at what you really need.
If you are looking for a speaker coach, voice coach for public speaking or presentation skills coach, scroll down to STEP THREE.
If you are looking to improve your singing skills for fun and creative expression, you can locate singing teachers all over the world whose prices vary from around $70 US per hour to over $200 per hour depending on their age, experience and expertise.
For example, a singing teacher with almost zero experience, straight out of college can charge a starting fee of around $60 – 70 USD per hour. This is mostly suitable for kids, because the coach may have no real-life experience on stage or in the recording studio at all.
Many of the larger professional teaching studios hire inexperienced, young teachers fresh out of college, because it’s the cheapest way to run their business and stay competitive in the market, especially when it comes to teaching youth. There is a great need for this type of coaching and it is a great way to get started if you are a mum looking for a cheaper solution for your talented child who just wants to make some joyful noise!
However, when you move into a higher level of professionalism, for example when a rising pop star needs voice coaching, the prices could easily vary between $300 to $1500 per one hour session. This is because the stakes are much higher and the teacher is required to have proper qualifications, decades of experience, and understand the immense pressures of touring and recording schedules for this level of performance.
As a coach who works in this space from time to time, (and a retired recording / touring artist myself) I can tell you the right vocal coach can save your career and your reputation.
A vocal coach working at this level of expertise teaches the performer how to improve and maintain their instrument for high performance tasks such as rigorous touring schedules and recording sessions. It is a no-brainer investment for any record company, talent manager or performer, because it may well save a promising career from an early death and also save millions of dollars in tour cancellation costs due to voice loss or vocal damage.
I have coached celebrities, global recording pop artists, rappers, screamers and rock singers alike and they all have one thing in common – they all need to learn how to use their voice correctly or their career will be cut short.
If you take your voice seriously and earn your main income from vocal performances, don’t skimp on price. You could end up with bigger vocal problems and waste a lot of time by hiring the wrong coach.
STEP TWO: DO I NEED A VOICE COACH OR VOCAL COACH? (SPEAKERS AND SINGERS)
The terms ‘voice coach’ and ‘vocal coach’ are sometimes used interchangeably by consumers mostly because they are ‘non-thespians’, which simply means, they have never been involved in the entertainment industry and therefore misunderstand the terms.
To give you a quick overview of the difference between Voice Coach and Vocal Coach, in the Entertainment Industry it usually means they will help you improve your singing voice or help you prepare your audition song for a musical theater audition.
It is also a term commonly used for ‘singing teacher’. If you are looking for singing training, then try both search terms, ‘singing teacher’ and ‘vocal coach’. They will both give you the information you are looking for. One, however, will be more qualified as a ‘singing teacher,’ whereas ‘vocal coach’ could mean a Musical Director who understands music at a deeper level and therefore can direct the singer to perform a piece of music correctly for music theater auditions.
If you are a non-singer and looking for a Voice Coach or Speech Coach however, read on.
STEP THREE: HOW DO I FIND THE RIGHT ‘VOICE COACH’ IF I AM NOT A SINGER?
For starters during a google search you need to use the words ‘Voice Coach’, ‘Speaker Coach’, or ‘Presentation Skills Coach’.
This will set you in the right direction and eliminate the singing teachers from the search terms. A singing teacher is not the right choice for speakers, unless like me, they are qualified in the field of voice and vocal performance in any regard, and have lots of experience on stage and on camera as a professional speaker themselves.
Experienced and qualified ‘Voice Coaches’ or ‘Speaker Coaches’ can help you achieve the following goals:
✅ Voice Care, Vocal Maintenance, Voice Therapy and Voice Rehabilitation ( similar to a Speech Pathologist)
✅ Improve the sound of your speaking voice ( which gives you more confidence in all areas of life and business)
✅ Prepare a Keynote speech for a work conference
✅ Become a better public speaker in general (improve confidence and skill)
✅ Train and Prepare for a Toastmasters Competition
✅ Prepare and Polish a PowerPoint presentation for work
✅ Prepare for an important job interview
✅ Prepare for a Media or On-Camera Interview of some kind.
✅ Develop a signature speech for meetings or networking events
✅ Cure the fear of public speaking for good.
HOW MUCH TRAINING DO I NEED TO BECOME A GREAT SPEAKER?
How much training you will need will depend entirely on the person’s goals in life and business.
For example, if you are someone who suffers from anxiety, unresolved trauma and a fear of public speaking, these are areas that impact every area of life and so require a longer training period. People who are generally shy and introverted can really struggle in those areas so a longer training program is the best choice where you can join a group coaching environment and gain the support of others in the same community.
The length of the program for this group of people can vary between 12 sessions, 6 months and one year of coaching depending on how badly these issues are holding them back in life. To be perfectly open here, most people in this group need at least 6 – 12 months of coaching and support to improve their confidence, communication skills and competence in public speaking and presenting.
However, if you are a corporate leader, CEO or manager in an organization, you may simply need to hone your skills around public speaking and presentation, if you don’t struggle with the same deep personal issues as the group above.
If this describes you better, then Voice Coaching, Speaker Training and Presentation Coaching programs either 1:1 private session tailor made to your needs, or a group workshop training weekend may be a better option.
The questions then become:
A) Are you coachable?
B) How fast do you need results?
C) Which program fits your career goals and timeline?
For many of my professional clients that need fast results, a personalized 1:1 coaching package is the best way to reach your goals faster. Coaching packages are usually at least 12 weeks long, because most people have no idea how much work it takes to become a great speaker /presenter. If you think you can become the next Tony Robbins or Lisa Nichols in 12 weeks or less, think again. Not even they could achieve that.
Voice and Presentation Coaching is a personal growth activity, which improves both confidence and skill and requires time to master fully. Most people start with 12 weeks coaching, and then we analyze how much farther they want to go. If it is a simple presentation for work, then 12 weeks may be enough. However, if you are a business owner, or have bigger long-term goals, then 6-12 months is more likely a more sensible timeline for reaching true mastery.
Ok, so what’s it going to cost?
In conclusion, let’s look at costs:
For Speaker Coaching either in a group or in private, the costs can vary from $3,000 USD to $20,000 for three to twelve months’ worth of training.
The bigger packages may include a lot of options and extras such as bonus group coaching classes, in person events, private 1:1 coaching, WhatsApp support between sessions and online syllabus for a complete immersion approach. This of course is optimal for the serious entrepreneur or corporate leader, because they will get results faster and become a much more polished and professional sounding speaker or presenter.
If time is of the essence, however and your goal needs to be reached sooner, a no-frills package, where you simply sign up for coaching for a set number of sessions will at least get you off to a good start.
There is no one price fits all, or one program fits all, as everyone’s level of base experience will differ, and business goals can also greatly vary.
I hope this article has been helpful to you, and at least pointed you in the right direction.
If you are interested in professional coaching, check out the options here on our website then fill in the application form to book a consultation if you are truly ready to take action and super-charge your success.
See you there
Do not forget: Speak up. Speak out. Be ready to be heard because remember: YOUR VOICE MATTERS.