Why do some businesses quickly sell out their offers while others struggle to get clients?
Why do prospects decide not to hire you—even when they’re a perfect fit?
How can you get those “perfect fits” to say yes every time?
The truth is, it takes more than expertise and a great offer to turn a perfect prospect into a paying client.
To sell out your services, you have to learn how your perfect prospects think so you can create clear messaging that speaks directly to them.Click to TweetIt takes more than expertise and a great offer to turn a prospect into a paying client. To sell out your services, you have to learn how your prospects think.
Here’s what happens when you get inside your prospects’ heads:
You know what to say every time to get them to eagerly ask, “Where do I sign up?”
You’d fill your roster. Heck, your waiting list would have a waiting list! (Wouldn’t that be awesome?)
So how do uncover exactly what your prospects are thinking… so you can grow your business faster?
Today I’m sharing three can’t-fail ways to get to know your potential clients so you can create offers they love, market your services like a pro, and fill your client roster to capacity (and then some).Click to TweetTo sell out your services, you have to get inside your clients’ heads. But how? Don’t miss these three tips from Jenny Shih.
Tip #1: Ask the right questions
The first step to understanding your clients is to ask them questions.
Sounds easy enough, right?
Well, it’s important that you ask the right people the right questions. If you don’t, it could lead to you making some bad business decisions.
That’s why using surveys to get in the minds of your prospects is a horrible idea when you’re just starting out. Newer business owners ask the wrong questions and the answers they get lead to even more confusion, not greater clarity.
The solution? Pick up the phone and talk to your clients. (Yes, on the phone. Or Skype.)
“But Jenny!” you might be thinking, “I don’t have clients yet!”
If you haven’t worked with clients yet:
Start by offering free sessions to people who you think are a good fit for your services.
And remember what I said earlier: Your goal is to find the right people.
That means you should look for people who would get the most out of your services, and who you would love to work with.
During your session, ask questions like:
What’s your biggest challenge right now?
Why are you ready to tackle this challenge right now?
What do you think will change for you after you overcome this obstacle?
Write down their responses word for word, and refrain from adding your own jargon.
Use their words when crafting your website copy, opt-in offer, blog posts, and emails.
If you’ve worked with people for free but haven’t sold an offer:
Create a bite-sized offer and begin selling it for a nominal fee.
A Bite-Sized Offer is small offer that allows your clients to test you out. It’s generally a 90-minute session with a short follow-up session via phone or Skype. I recommend charging around $99, so that it’s a no-brainer decision for someone to hire you.
The key to crafting the right BSO for your audience is to first identify a small, bite-sized, tangible result that you can create for your dream client.
No, you won’t help them lose 100 pounds or rewrite their entire website, but you can create one result that will get them moving in the direction of their goals.
The beauty of a BSO is that it will continue to evolve and grow as you gain experience, fill your client roster, and build your reputation.
You can start by working with 5 to 10 people for $99, then adjust the offer based on your experience and raise the price.My Personal Recommendation for YouThe Only Thing You Need to Bring in a Steady Flow of New Clients and Consistent Income, Month After Month
If you’ve worked with paying clients before:
First, make a list of your all-time favorite clients.
Then, set up phone calls or Skype meetings with them to get insight about their dreams, frustrations, and the results they want most.
The key is to ask them to go back to what they felt like before they worked with you. This ensures that you’re using the right language (no jargon!).
Again, the right questions make all the difference. Here are 14 questions for juicy marketing gems.My Personal Recommendation for YouSteal This! My 14 Questions for Guaranteed Juicy Marketing Gems That Convert Prospects into Paying Customers
Tip #2: Find other ways to listen
Asking your clients questions directly is one of the most effective ways to get in their minds.
There are still lots of ways you can listen to your potential clients. Here are a few of my favorites.
Client sessions: Already have sessions booked? Take advantage of this time! Pay attention to the words and phrases your clients use as they describe their challenges and goals.
Also, keep notes of the things you find yourself continuously telling your clients. These ideas can help you come up with blog topics or new offers.
Social posts: Practice “social listening,” by joining Facebook groups or Twitter chats that your ideal clients participate in.
Here, you’ll act like a fly on the wall (every introvert’s dream!). Take note of the questions your ideal clients are asking, as well as what they’re confused about, complaining about, or celebrating. And of course, be of service to them when possible.
Blog comments: Browse the comments on your own blog, of course. But if you’re just starting out, look at popular sites that appeal to your audience. These more popular blogs can be a godsend because you’ll have direct access to your potential clients’ opinions, even if you don’t have a large audience (yet!).
Client feedback: Always request feedback after working with a client, so you can continue to refine your services and copy as you gain experience. Use this client feedback template to get started.Click to TweetAlways request feedback after working with a client, so you can continue to refine your services and copy as you gain experience.
Tip #3: Put yourself in their shoes
This final option is a good choice if you’ve “been” your client before. In other words, you’ve been where they are and have successfully made it to the other side.
Go back in time and remember what it was like to be in the space that your ideal clients are in now.
Grab a notebook and ask yourself the following questions. Write down everything that comes to mind.
- What did your day look like?
- What prompted you to look for help?
- What were you thinking, doing, and telling yourself?
- Before you discovered what the real problem was, what did you think the problem was?
- What result did you want?
Use your own experience to imagine what your clients are feeling and what they need to hear from you.
The big mistake most people make when doing this is using jargon, rather than the words a potential client would use.
If you’re a life coach, you shouldn’t use words like “the stories from our past,” “negative thinking,” or “limiting beliefs.”
Instead, think about what you were looking for before you knew those phrases. You probably said things like “I want to be happy again,” “find a new career,” and “decide what to do next in my life.”
The more you can use plain language, something any fourth grader could understand, the more likely your prospects will say, “That’s exactly what I’m looking for!”My Personal Recommendation for YouStuck in the Jargon Trap? The Reason Prospects Aren’t Turning into Paying Clients and How to Turn It Around Fast
Take action now
Armed with all of these options, it’s time for you to step up and take action.
In the comments below, tell me…
Where do you think you could improve the most: asking, listening, or putting yourself in your clients’ shoes?
Which method are you committed to trying in the coming weeks?
How do you plan to use these strategies to improve your copy and offers?
This blog post was originally published in March 2017. It was updated in March 2018 with additional insights and tips.