I’d love to tell you that getting your subscribers to become clients was as easy as “subscribe n’ pay,” but the truth is that it takes a little more work than that.
And if you’re making the huge mistake I recently talked about—the one that’s likely keeping you from getting the clients and money you’re hoping for—it’s even harder.
[Missed the post? It’s a must-read if you haven’t yet hit your stride in business. Read it here.]
The good news is that there’s ONE simple strategy that makes it easy to connect to your audience and get them to hire you.
I teach it to all of my Make It Work Online clients, and I can’t emphasize enough what a huge difference it makes to their overall client-getting success.
Here’s a quick example of what a game-changer it is. When one client used this strategy, she began getting guest posting opportunities, received raving client testimonials, and created autoresponders to start nurturing her list. Quickly thereafter, she had clients lined up to work with her, and she was loving her business more than ever.
Sound like something you’d like, too? You’re in luck!
Today, I’m going to teach you the top reason prospects aren’t becoming paying clients and how you can turn it around immediately, so they eagerly hire you!
Let’s get to it!
What You’re Doing Wrong
Last week I told you about a mega mistake I made early on in my business.
As a quick refresher, on my website copy and in my blog, I often used terms that were vague and theoretical—words that meant something to me but left prospective clients scratching their heads as to what I actually meant.
Most visitors didn’t understand how I could help them, so I wasn’t getting clients as quickly as I would have liked.
After a lot of head-scratching months, the problem finally became clear: I had fallen into the “Jargon Trap.”
What’s the Jargon Trap?
The Jargon Trap is when you know what your client needs (you are an expert at what you do, after all!), and you write about it from your expert shoes. Meaning, you use your own “expert speak” or “industry slang” or “jargon” to talk about what you do—not words your clients understand.
In short, prospects and potential clients have no idea WTF you’re talking about or that you can help them because you’re using words they don’t understand.
Sure, you might know what your clients need and be a master at helping them get it, but your word choice leaves them stupefied instead of ready to buy.
Every single client I have ever worked with gets stuck in this trap (until I teach them how to get out of it).
My personal recommendations for you: The First Five Steps to Getting Clients and The Questions You Must Ask Yourself Before You’ll Get More Clients
How to Get Out of the Jargon Trap
It’s actually much easier than you think (but only if you stick with me, keep reading, and make these shifts in your own business).
And if you read last week’s post, you already know the first step to solving this problem: Catch yourself in the act.
First, you must notice when you’re using “expert speak” so that you can start to make the shift into using everyday language.
But that’s just the first step.
Next, you have to ask one very important question.
This one question will help you determine if you’re using jargon or everyday language—and then you’ll immediately know if and how your copy needs to change.
The #1 Question to Ask to Shift This Today
What I’m going to share with you now is so simple that if you’re not careful, you’ll miss its power entirely. (So read closely!)
Keep in mind that just because what I’m about to tell you is simple doesn’t mean it’s not effective.
In fact, it’s THE most essential step to gaining more confidence, more clients, and more opportunities as you spread your message, and THE thing that creates the tipping point toward big success for my Make It Work Online clients.
Here’s what you need to do.
(I told you it was simple.)
Let’s see how this question works in action.
The #1 Question in Real Life
Since I’m not a coach who just likes to teach theory without application (I like to teach you the WHAT, the HOW, and make sure you get it RIGHT!), I’m going to do everything I can with this post to help you apply this concept correctly to your business.
Now that you know the question you need to ask, let’s see what happens next.
One of the concepts I teach all of my clients (in Make It Work Online and in Get Your First 1000 Subscribers) is the idea of creating a brief “what I do” summary. It’s just like it sounds, a simple explanation of what you do, who you work with, and what results you get for your clients.
It’s the perfect place to learn to get out of the Jargon Trap and start using everyday-person-speak instead.
Below you’ll see some examples from my clients of their first “what I do” summary, followed by their jargon-free summary. See what an amazing difference there is when they jump out of the Jargon Trap.
Life coach example
Before: I’m a life coach for women who have lost themselves because they’ve been absorbed into the identities of their husband and kids. They’re full of self-doubt and don’t know how to move forward. I help them feel empowered as women and start living boldly again.
Let’s apply the #1 question (Would my target client use those exact words?) to this phrase in her summary: “They’ve been absorbed into the identities of their husband and kids.”
Does anyone actually use those exact words to describe their situation? Do they say to their friends, “I’ve been absorbed into the identities of my husband and kids”? Of course not!
Applying that question to every single word of her summary, check out her everyday-person-speak, updated summary.
After: I’m a life coach for women who have lost themselves in the demands of everyday life. They are stuck and don’t know how to move forward. I help them take bold steps toward new dreams so they can finally feel happy.
Wow! What a difference! Now, you actually know what it is she does!
Health coach example
Before: I work with women who are frustrated with sugar and their digestion and looking to resolve the cycle of cravings and bloat for good. By bringing clarity to what the cravings and symptoms mean, I get to the root of the problem, find simple changes and get my clients to finally feel good again.
Again, when you apply the #1 question to every word in her summary, you get the everyday-person-speak version that you actually understand!
After: I help women who have lost their energy and just don’t feel like themselves anymore. They want a holistic approach with a practitioner who will really listen, do the digging and find solutions tailored to their needs. Together we get to the root of the problem, find answers and get them feeling normal again.
Homeschooling coach example
Before: I work with overwhelmed parents whose children are miserable in school or who struggle with making homeschooling work. I help them understand what they need so they can be confident in their educational choices and create a home life with children enthusiastic about learning.
After: I am a homeschooling coach and an unschooling mentor who works with parents who are frustrated with their current educational approach. I provide the information they are looking for and help them create a homeschooling plan that will actually work.
Do you see the difference in the language? It’s sometimes very subtle, but it makes all the difference to your potential clients.
Although these examples are from coaches (they were the first of my clients to say, “Share mine!” and truly, coaches are the worst when it comes to jargon!), this applies to all service-based business owners.
This #1 question has been used by all of my clients, including copywriters, designers, social media experts, dietitians, accountants, yoga teachers, therapists, acupuncturists, naturopathic physicians, consultants, intuitive healers, PR experts, commissioned artists… you name it!
All service-providers easily fall into the Jargon Trap!
This Changes EVERYTHING
Sure, your “what I do” summary is a great place to start when it comes to leaping out of the Jargon Trap, but it’s not the only place where you risk falling into the trap.
You must apply the #1 question to all of your messaging: your website pages, package offerings, sales pages, squeeze pages, opt-in offers, autoresponders, blog posts, guest blogs, consultation calls, follow-up emails… the list goes on!
At the same time, there’s a lot more that goes into making money in your online business than just mastering this question.
That’s why I do everything I can here on the blog (for free!) to show you how to build a profitable business doing work you love.
Plus I’m offering a brand new, totally free training on how to master this one question AND everything else that’s required to build your business.
If you’re ready to discover exactly how to get your business to take off, be sure to join this brand-new, totally free workshop. You get a step-by-step plan to fill your roster with perfect clients and make a consistent income doing what you love. Click here to join the free Make It Work Online workshop.
Let’s Clean Up Your Jargon (Free Coaching!)
Not sure if you’re using jargon? Worried you might be caught in expert speak?
I want to help!
The right words can have such a huge impact on your ability to sell your services and grow your business, so I want to help you right here in the comments.
In the comments below, share up to three paragraphs of your copy (copy and paste from your website) and tell me specifically where you’re uncertain. Then I’ll coach you, ask questions, and get you closer to using everyday language (language that sells!).
I can’t wait. I’ll be watching for your copy below!
UPDATE: Now that the Make It Work Online is underway, feedback here is closed.
Love your business but wish you had more clients?
If you’re ready for your business to take off, join me for Make It Work Online. You get a step-by-step plan and personal support so you can fill your roster with perfect clients and earn a full-time income doing what you love. Learn more about Make It Work Online.