Self-Guided Personal Development

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Self-Guided Personal Development - Demographics

People who spend money on self-guided personal growth and development programs/workshops/experiences are likely to be female Millennials based in the U.S. or North American region. Their preferred social media platforms are likely to be YouTube, Facebook, and Instagram. Below is an overview of the findings.

Age Range

  • According to a 2019 Marketdata report on the U.S. self-improvement market, Baby Boomers were initially the main consumers in the personal growth/self-improvement market. However, while Boomers are still an important group, Millennials are now driving the market due to their growing number. This paywalled report has been referenced or mentioned by several resources, including, WebWire, and Deals On Health.
  • A 2018 Forbes article corroborates the above findings, albeit using older statistics. The article, which quotes a 2015 research report, states that 94% of Millennials made "personal improvement commitments," and reported they would be willing to spend up to $300 monthly self-improvement, twice as much as Boomers. This compared to 84% and 81% of Baby Boomers and Gen X, respectively.
  • A 2020 article reported that an industry expert agreed that Millennial spend twice as much as Boomers, and that studies have shown that Millennials spend "almost a fortune on self-care" programs and routines. Millennials are also more likely to follow through on their self-improvement commitments, based on statistics for New Year's Resolutions in 2019, 2020, and 2021.


  • According to a 2017 BrandonGaille article, much more women than men make use of the Personal Development market/industry. It explains that women are more likely to look for ways to improve themselves due to the societal approach towards gender which holds men to a lower standard.
  • A 2018 MarketWatch article also reported that women were more likely to make self-improvement commitments. This conclusion was based on the findings from an annual YouGov survey on New Year's Resolutions in the U.S. The survey found that "self-improvement-related resolutions" were more popular with U.S. women than men.
  • Additionally, various statistics/reports featured in the Deals On Health report showed that women make up the grand majority of self-help industry consumers. More women have set personal development goals and they account for about 62.5% of the buyers of self-help books.

Geographical Scope

Preferred Social Media Platforms

  • In the U.S., YouTube (92%), Facebook (78%), and Instagram (79%) are the most popular social media platforms among female Millennials. Globally, YouTube (88%), Facebook (83%), and Instagram (67%) also rank highest among Millennials.


  • Although resources such as Feedspot and Alberto Nodale provide lists of the top Personal Development Influencers, none identifies the ones that are specific to Millennials. The top overall influencers by follower count include Gary Vaynerchuk, Jay Shetty, and Brené Brown.

Research Strategy

To provide the required demographic data, the research team searched extensively through the public domain for any data from media resources, industry experts, market research reports, credible surveys, and statistics resources. However, while there was some data that could be used to provide U.S.-specific demographic information, there was none for the global scope.
The research team also explored the available reports on the Personal Development Market published by GrandView Research, PRNewswire, VMR, and Market Data Forecast. We looked at the companies featured in the reports, and checked for any information on their customer demographics that would be helpful in our quest. However, we could find no such information. Therefore, the research team has provided the age and gender for U.S.-based consumers as proxies for the global data. We believe that this would be closer to the overall data since the U.S. makes up almost one-third of the global market, based on the statistics provided above. For the 'Geography' section, we have provided the global regional distribution since it was available.
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Self-Guided Personal Development - Psychographics

According to the previous research, the typical demographic for a self-guided self-help consumer is a female millennial living in the US or Europe. Therefore, this is the demographic for which we have provided a psychographic profile.

Millennial women are social, but value their unique identity. They value authenticity and convenience. When purchasing, they are most concerned with price and quality, and tend to plan their purchases.





Buying Habits

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Self-Guided Personal Development - Pricing Models

Most self-guided personal development programs/workshops are offered in the form of courses on top education platforms. The classes are free of charge, save the inclusion of verified certificates that require payment (ranging from $20 to $300). Nonetheless, the cost of popular programs ranges from $20 to $538.

Pricing Details

  • Personal development workshops/programs are differentiated based on the skills they imbibe and the industry in which they are prominent. For example, the course "Public Speaking" from Udemy is classified under communication.
  • Such programs' pricing details also vary based on the level of specialization of the skills to be acquired. For example, programs with high specialization levels range from $39-$79/month on Coursera.
  • The metrics qualifying programs as "specialized" varies among platforms. Specialized Coursera and Edx personal development workshops/programs are integrated packages of several courses.
  • Specialized Edx self-guided personal development programs cost $186 to $538. Specializations prices vary based on the number of courses included in the entire program. For example, a program comprising 3 courses costs up to $538 on Edx.
  • Specialized Udemy self-guided personal development programs cost $12.99 to $129.99 for programs consisting of up to 25 different courses.
  • The self-guided personal development courses Coursera range from individual courses ranges from $29-$99, and specializations range from $39-$79/month. Some of such courses award professional certificates.
  • All personal development courses (and other courses) on Alison are free and only require registration.
  • However, Alison course certificates go for slightly more than $20. Alison is known for its affordability. Some personal development courses on Alison have up to 25,215 users enrolled per course term.
  • The prices of most personal development workshops on Udemy start from $11.99. Some courses have up to 175,482 students.
  • Self-guided personal development workshops from Edx are usually free. Payment of up to $299 is required for verified certificates.
  • Various platforms effect drastic discounts and sales for many courses for several reasons.

Research Strategy

The research team examined user plans' average price estimates on self-guided personal development programs. This search was done leveraging reputable and popular blogs and news outlets (such as Addicted 2 Success, 4 Hour Work Week, and Thrive Global) in the personal development industry (and in general). Many articles focused on program comparisons, program reviews, and top habits to develop; pricing comparisons were not detailed. It was also discovered that people who pay for self-guided personal development programs usually opt for individual development courses and other online education platforms such as Coursera and Alison.

Alternatively, the team carefully analyzed the social media platforms (including YouTube, Instagram, and Twitter) of trusted influencers (such as Gary Vaynerchuk, Tim Ferriss, Brené Brown, and Eric Thomas) in the space for membership and payment plan details of popular workshops. Several posts were program comparisons, program reviews, and program walkthroughs. However, a few were pricing comparisons or estimates. Nonetheless, this provided more leads to the general pricing range and popular programs.

Next, popular personal development programs/workshops were identified, and their pricing details were meticulously analyzed. The focus was on self-guided options. Therefore, the team made and carefully summarized an in-depth pricing comparison covering a wide variety of plans.

Did this report spark your curiosity?


From Part 01