A major challenge that all small businesses and solo entrepreneurs face is how to turn prospects into paying clients. Many small business owners aren’t adept or don’t feel confident “selling,” so this can present a major hurdle. It’s particularly true of people with service-based businesses, like coaches and consultants, as the ‘product’ they are selling is often themselves.
However, you can turn this challenge around!
Turning prospects into profits is a matter of mastering five keys to success.
1. Overcome Mindset Issues and Difficulties About Selling
For many of us who are not expert salespeople, there are mental hurdles that stand in the way of moving prospects to paying clients. These mental blocks include thoughts like:
“Selling is sleazy. I don’t want to be in sales.”
“I’m not good at selling.”
“What if they say no?”
Overcoming these mental blocks is essential. It’s a real challenge for some people as the mindset gremlins are well established. But if you confront them, you can come up with strategies for combating them.
For example, if you’re stuck in the idea that selling is sleazy, think about the last product you bought that you love to death or that really suits your needs. Was the person who sold it to you “sleazy”? Did they take advantage of you and rip you off? Chances are, they were a conscientious salesperson who helped you match a product to your needs. You can be this person to others as well.
What about fear of rejection? For many inexperienced salespeople, the dreaded word “no” haunts their nightmares. When a prospect says no, it feels personal and it stings. However, you can combat this negative thinking by realizing that the prospect is rejecting the offer, not you, and it’s simply because the offer isn’t the right match for them.
You can also turn this “no” around and make it a learning experience. The prospect has given you something valuable by refusing your offer. They’ve shown you that there’s a flaw in your targeting, and if you analyze the reasons why, you can learn something and perform better next time.
When you think about selling, do you get a bad feeling in the pit of your stomach? Imagine the sales process.
- What part of it gives you that bad feeling?
- What can you do to combat this feeling and make it easier to sell?
2. Know What Your Client Wants and Match Your Offer to Their Needs
You may have a great service, one that you know will help many people, but still you put the offer in front of people and they say ‘no’. Why is that? Perhaps your offer simply isn’t for them. The service may be wonderful, but you’re targeting the wrong market.
How do you find the right market for your excellent service? You do it through market research. Conduct research on your potential clients and find out what they like, want or need. Most of all, focus on a pain point or problem that your service can solve. People spend money on services that relieve pain or help them overcome problems.
For example, you’re selling a service that handles social media for small businesses. Small businesses are busy and many of them don’t understand how to use social media effectively. A business might feel that it needs to use Facebook since everyone’s doing it, but where to start? As a service provider with deep experience and a track record of proven results with social media, you just need to put your offer in front of a business like this.
But what if you offer this high-quality service to a young tech-savvy company that already knows how to do its social media? Even if you’re the world’s greatest social media whiz, your offer just isn’t suitable to a business like this. It’s not a reflection of the value of your offer, but simply not a good match.
- What problem does your service uniquely solve?
- What kind of business is in dire need of this service?
3. Be Confident in Yourself and Your Service
Some basic confidence in yourself and your service goes a long way in selling effectively. The key is to understand the unique value you’re offering.
It’s helpful to understand the strengths of the service you’re offering. Think about your own skill. For example, you may be an excellent copywriter who can write sales pages that convert. You may have a unique skill that other similar service providers don’t have. You can also consider your service packages. What about the packages you offer is valuable or unique to your clients?
You should also know your service’s weaknesses. Consider areas where it can be improved. Compare your offering to similar offerings and look for ways you can further set yours apart.
You can clarify the unique value of the product by writing out a Unique Value Proposition, which is one simple statement that describes what your product does and how it helps people. You could write something like:
“I build your website so you don’t have to.”
“Our CRM solutions help you manage your customers and maximize sales.”
“Simple social media dashboard where you’ll take in everything at a glance.”
There are many good strategies for instilling confidence in yourself by recognizing the value of what you’re offering:
Recognize yourself as an expert. You know more about your topic or area than your audience does. You’ve spent a great deal of time there and they haven’t. You may not see yourself as an “expert,” but this makes you one.
Consider every win. You got some people to sign up for your list. You have some prospects who have expressed interest in your offer. You received one tiny sale, but it’s nothing to write home about. Each of these is a little victory and you should recognize it as the progress that it is. Recognizing these victories builds momentum and confidence (and remember – everyone has to start somewhere).
Visualize success. This is what athletes do. Before they get started, they fantasize and imagine what it’s going to be like to win the gold medal. When you visualize your success, it gives you feelings of positivity and confidence.
Lift up those around you. Recognize the achievements of those around you and celebrate them. When you see the good in others, it’s much easier to see the good in yourself.
Only associate with positive people. Surround yourself with people that make each other feel good and cut negative or toxic people out of your life, both professionally and personally.
View each step as a learning activity. Everything you do is a learning activity. When you make a mistake or fail, you’ll naturally feel the sting, but learn to recognize these as the most valuable learning activities. Learn and chart your growth, and this will help you instill confidence.
- Take a good look at your offer and find the genuine strengths of it and the unique ways it solves people’s problems.
- Try out one of the confidence strategies from above.
4. Hold Strategy Sessions with Your Prospects
Holding strategy sessions is a method for getting sales of medium or high-ticket items quickly. A strategy session is a genuine conversation with a prospect to determine whether your service is a genuine match for their needs.
In a strategy session, first you listen, then you answer questions about your offer if it seems like a fit. By the end of the session, you have a good idea whether it’s a good match or not. If it’s not, you have some feedback to help you make improvements in your service or your targeting.
If the service turns out to be a natural match, you have a sale. Of course, you still have to close the sale and ask the prospect to buy. But when it’s a good match, it’s much more organic and doesn’t really feel like “selling.”
Set up strategy sessions with interested prospects on a regular basis. The key is to have your session well planned out and present all of the information the prospect needs to know. Try to anticipate questions they may have and answer them in the session.
- Identify interested prospects and set up times when you can meet in-person or online to discuss their needs and your offer.
5. Use Sales Skills That Don’t Look Like Selling
There are three important sales skills to practice when you’re doing strategy sessions. First, you should ask questions and listen. Your session should include relevant questions for the prospect. When they’re talking, give them your full attention and listen closely. Try to get an idea of their desired situation so that you can determine whether your service meets their needs.
Second, summarize as you go along. This shows the person that you’re listening and also gives you a chance to clarify to make sure that you understand. It can also help your prospect clarify their own thinking. Say things like, “So, what you’re saying is….”, and then ask them if this is correct or not.
Finally, make an invitation to the next step. Lead the conversation from a discussion about your service and the person’s needs to some concrete action you can take as the next step. You can roll this into an offer, saying something like, “From what you’re telling me, I think my new program might be most suitable. Do you mind if I tell you about it?”
- Work the above three sales techniques into your strategy sessions. Use them as a way to smoothly and naturally move the conversation along.
If you like what you read above and found it useful, we’re also offering a full course that gives you a 7-step system for converting prospects into high-paying clients. It teaches you how to overcome your discomfort about selling, focus your attention on making the sale, learn in-depth about your customer, hold effective strategy sessions, and more, all with action steps and scripts you can use. Register now or see below for more information.
Join us on October 5th for a 3-day event, “The Ultimate Masterclass for Turning Prospects into High-Paying Clients!”
During This Impactful Masterclass, You Will Learn:
- How to 10X your prospect-to-client conversion rate
- A results-driven process for closing high-ticket clients that has increased client revenue by as much as 600%
- A 7-step script for funneling prospects into clients
- A powerful method for selling in a ‘non-salesy’ way, so that it’s a natural step for clients to say “yes” to your offers
- A high-converting strategy session that turns lightly interested prospects into high-paying clients.
- How to create a system that puts your sales process on autopilot
You Will Receive
- 🔑 3 Live Training Sessions (90 Minutes Each) Spread Out Over 3 Days
- 🔑 Templates, Frameworks, and Cheat Sheets
- 🔑 12 Course Modules
- 🔑 4 5-Page Coursebook
- 🔑 Replays to all sessions (in case you can’t make the live events)
- 🔑 30-Minute 1:1 Implementation Session