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The Only Anti-Burnout Business Model for Career Service Providers

Let's face it: When you started your career service business, the ultimate goal was freedom. Not dreading 173+ looming deadlines and having your calendar jam-packed with 1:1 coaching calls... while feeling your business will collapse if you take a day off. (Or have a proper lunch away from your computer.)

But here you are, feeling trapped in your career coaching or resume writing business, teetering on the edge of burnout, with that irresistible urge to burn your business to the ground every month or so. Now, the question is, how can you escape this feeling and avoid burning out? Better yet, how can you build a business you'll love and not want to run away from 24/7?

Solution: Combine passive and hands-on offers to get time back while boosting your revenue.

Wondering how? Try the simple, 3-level business model explained in this blog post.

Each offer level is designed to fulfill a different need, attract a different type of client, and meet your clients where they are. This business model allows you to provide value to your target clients at every stage of their journey without being chained to the clock and trading your time for money every step of the way. (And that's the ultimate goal, isn't it?)

Curious? Without further ado, let's dive into the 3-level offers your business needs.


Level 1: Passive Offer

Your passive offers are entry-level products done once and sold on repeat. They are the key to getting revenue even when you're out of office.

  • What? Digital products (aka micro tools)

  • Price range: $ - $$

Why does your business model need passive offers?

Passive offers help you:

  • Attract DIY or risk-averse clients who prefer doing it themselves or sampling your work before opting for high-tier services.

  • Automate a portion of your revenue to get your time back without feeling like you need to grind 24/7 for every single penny you earn (they're the ones that will get you that "you received a payment" notification, even when you're taking a day, week, or month off).

Examples of passive offers for career service providers:

The most common passive offers are simple digital products like templates, workbooks, checklists, and trackers.

Think of them as micro tools that solve your ideal client's initial problem at the beginning of their journey. That way, you'll offer tools that will provide real value to your clients. Because the goal isn't to sell them a low-ticket product. The goal is to solve their micro problem, wow them, and make them think, "If I got so much value from this simple product, I can't imagine what I'd get from their other offers."

Here are four digital product ideas you can steal:

  • Resume templates with a pre-made design and/or content that help your clients DIY their resumes in a record time

  • Resume or cover letter writing workbooks designed to teach your clients how to write impactful resumes and cover letters for their specific industry, career path, or goal

  • Job search or career strategy workbooks developed to solve your client's initial problem, like gaining clarity on their next steps, setting aligned career goals, or learning how to adjust their job search strategy to their aspirations

  • Trackers that allow your clients to stay on top of their job search, e.g., job application trackers, networking trackers, interview trackers

Good news: You don't have to waste weeks creating your first digital product from scratch. Get instant access to commercially licensed resume templates + all the resources you need for their launch, and hit that "launch" button on your digital product today.

Okay, onto the next level.


Level 2: Semi-Passive Offer

The second tier is semi-passive offers. They require more time to create and solve bigger problems on your ideal client's journey.

  • What? "Bigger" digital products or group offers

  • Price range: $$ - $$$

Why does your business model need semi-passive offers?

Semi-passive offers allow you to:

  • Provide more comprehensive support to clients who want more hands-on guidance but aren't ready for top-tier services.

  • Maximize your time by serving multiple clients at once.

  • Scale your impact and revenue without filling your calendar and burning out.

Examples of semi-passive offers for career service providers:

The most common semi-passive offers are "bigger," more comprehensive digital products, such as toolkits or self-paced courses. Alternatively, they include group offers, such as webinars or workshops.

Depending on your preferences, you can make all these offers more or less passive.

For example, you can offer the job search toolkit as a standalone product or with a 1:1 strategy intensive to add additional value to your clients without you and them having to commit to weeks-long coaching programs. This way, they'll still get personalized support without the intensive time commitment and price tag that typically comes with the highest-end offers.

Here are three semi-passive offer ideas you can add to your business:

  • Job search or career toolkits that combine workbooks, e-books, trackers, and other resources to help your clients with their career or job search goals

  • Self-paced courses, either bite-sized or more comprehensive online courses on various job search or career-related topics, from resume writing to salary negotiations.

  • Webinars or workshops delivered in real-time for smaller groups, covering your clients' most pressing job search or career-related topics

Want a head start? Guess what—you can launch your first toolkit in a day with a done-for-you toolkit that sells, wows your clients, and earns you rave reviews without hopping on yet another coaching call.

Pages from Job Search Toolkit That Sells, a digital product for career service providers.

This leads us to the level 3.


Level 3: Hands-On Offer

We've reached the summit of our anti-burnout business model for career service providers. At level 3, with hands-on offers, we dive deep into personalized guidance through 1:1 services and coaching programs.

  • What: 1:1 services, coaching programs, or projects

  • Price range: $$$ - $$$$$

Why does your business model need hands-on offers?

Let me break down the key benefits of hands-on offers:

  • Ensuring maximum impact and satisfaction as with one-on-one interactions and a hands-on approach, you're honing in on exactly what each client needs

  • Deepening client relationships, as hands-on offers let you forge those deeper connections and build a loyal client base

  • Charging premium rates for your expertise while your clients get all your knowledge and support in one package

Examples of hands-on offers for career service providers:

Now, let's talk examples:

  • A package of tailored coaching sessions focusing on specific areas aligned with your client's goals, whether it's a career transition or leadership development

  • Bespoke career programs designed to guide clients through big career moves or challenges, one step at a time

  • Collaborative strategic projects tackling specific career objectives or challenges where your expertise is key to success


How to Apply This to Your Business

Implementing this business model that combines passive and hands-on offers to reclaim time and increase revenue is simpler than you might think.

Here's a 3-step guide to get you started:

  1. Step #1: Map out your ideal client's journey. Identify the key stages your clients go through, from recognizing their need for career assistance to achieving their goals. Understanding their pain points and motivations at each stage will help you effectively tailor your offerings to meet their specific needs.

  2. Step #2: Assess your current offers. Evaluate your current services and identify opportunities to create passive income streams. Look for areas where you can package your expertise into passive and semi-passive digital products such as templates, workbooks, webinars, and workshops.

  3. Step #3: Align your offers with your ideal client's journey. Finally, align your passive and hands-on offers with your client's needs at every stage. For instance, passive income products like e-books or courses could serve as entry points for clients in the awareness stage, while group coaching sessions may be more suitable for those in the consideration or decision stage. Tailor your offerings to provide value and support throughout the journey, making it easy for clients to progress and achieve their goals with your guidance.


Examples of the 3-Level, Anti-Burnout Business Model

Nothing helps more than seeing these tips in practice, right? Let's see how this business model could look for a career coach for parents and a career coach who helps laid-off professionals.

Example for a Career Coach for Parents

Level 1: Passive offer

  • New Parent, New Career Playbook, a workbook offering practical tips, strategies, and exercises for new parents to navigate the challenges of balancing their career goals with parenthood.

Level 2: Semi-passive offer

  • Career Transition Toolkit for New Parents, a set of digital workbooks, guides, and resources that guide parents through job search strategies aligned with their new career goals. An add-on includes a 1:1 Q&A session with the coach.

Level 3: Hands-on offer

  • Personalized Career Coaching Program for New Parents, a 12-week-long tailored coaching program offering one-on-one sessions with the career coach to address individual challenges and ensure they achieve their career goals.

Example for a Career Coach for Laid-Off Professionals

Level 1: Passive offer

  • Career After Layoff, an e-book offering practical strategies and exercises for professionals navigating career transitions after a layoff. This playbook helps them redefine their career goals and find new opportunities.

Level 2: Semi-passive offer

  • Career Reinvention Toolkit for Laid Off Professionals, a comprehensive set of digital resources including workbooks, guides, and templates designed to assist professionals in crafting effective job search strategies tailored to their new career aspirations post-layoff. An additional feature includes access to a monthly group coaching session for support and networking.

Level 3: Hands-on offer

  • Personalized Career Recovery Coaching Program for Laid Off Professionals, a 10-week intensive coaching program providing personalized support and guidance to professionals facing career setbacks due to layoffs. This program offers weekly one-on-one coaching sessions, resume and LinkedIn profile optimization, interview preparation, and ongoing support to help individuals land their next role successfully.


TL;DR - The Ultimate Anti-Burnout Business Model for Career Service Providers

After selling nearly 10,000 digital products, I learned firsthand that separating your time from your earnings is the key to building a sustainable business. For career service providers, it's the smartest way forward that helps them maximize their revenue without burning out.

Want to apply this to your business?

Steal this simple 3-level business model:

  • Level 1: passive offer including simple digital products like templates, workbooks, checklists, trackers, or Notion dashboards

  • Level 2: semi-passive offer including more comprehensive digital products like digital toolkits and self-paced courses or group offers such as webinars

  • Level 3: hands-on offer including VIP, premium-level support through coaching, specialized services, or custom projects

Map out your client journey, align your three offers with their goals, and watch your business grow.


Your Next Steps:

Ana Colak Fustin, founder of ByRecruiters

Ana Colak-Fustin

Hi there! I'm Ana—founder of My business and career advice has been featured in Business Insider, Fast Company, Yahoo News, The Muse, and other global media. Plus, I've helped over 8,000 job seekers through digital job search tools. Want to start or scale your career service business with digital products? Start here.

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