How do you sell without selling? How do you turn more prospects into buyers and not just buyers, but higher-paying buyers without feeling uncomfortable, pushy, or overcoming many objections?
Most consultants, coaches, and professional service providers do not enjoy selling, but the sales process is where the money is made in any business.
Do sales conversations leave you feeling awkward or uncomfortable? Maybe you have learned pushy tactics through the years (like that of a used car salesman). Very uncool!
What if sales could become one of the most enjoyable things you do in your business? Cha-Ching!
I want to take away sales anxiety and help you build a process that sells you BEFORE you get into a sales conversation with someone (as if someone referred that prospect to you).
We all know how wonderful it is to get a referral from someone we trust. That prospect is practically sold before you speak to them, right? What if all your sales conversations could be as effortless and enjoyable?
You can sell without selling when you understand and leverage the three components to effective sales. Then, your sales conversations can be as enjoyable and effortless as having coffee with a friend.
So, what are the three components?
BEFORE THE SALE
DURING THE SALE
AFTER THE SALE
I have been selling all my life, without giving it much thought. You have too, but maybe you don’t realize it.
As kids, we had to sell what we wanted to our parents; that new outfit or pair of shoes we wanted, or convince them to buy us ice cream when it was almost time for dinner.
We also had to sell our ideas and thoughts to friends to get them to go along with what we wanted, right?
When I was young, I sold vegetable & flower seeds door to door to make spending money. I sold my services as a babysitter to neighbors and relatives. And I can’t forget the many years of selling Girl Scout Cookies (yes, I was a Girl Scout for years).
If you think back, I bet you can think of how you have been selling most of your life—getting a job, asking for a raise, or selling yourself to get a promotion all required selling.
So, what changes as we get into the business world? Why are so many entrepreneurs and professionals so down on selling? It’s because we make it harder than it is by not understanding how to make it an enjoyable and “rich” experience (no pun intended).
And, how necessary are proposals to sell your services? Many entrepreneurs waste so much time, energy, and resources with proposals that never convert into a sale.
What if you could eliminate proposals or, at the very least, streamline the process to convert more prospects without having to spend endless hours and effort on proposals?
Sounds great, right?
Let me break down each of the three components of what I believe is the most effective sales process for selling high-end premium services.
- BEFORE THE SALE
Your POSITIONING in the market is a vital piece in this part of the sales process. The stronger your positioning is, the more credible and trustworthy you will be to prospects. CREDIBILITY, CLARITY of What You Do & For Whom, BELIEVABILTY, and TRUST are all part of strong positioning.
Your POSITIONING is the outside perception, and the first thing potential buyers see when they come across you and your business for the first time. If you have weak positioning in the market, you will make the entire sales process more challenging and less effective. As a result, you will miss out on business.
Strong positioning is the foundation of a solid marketing strategy to attract and convert more high-quality buyers.
Strong positioning should establish you as the obvious and only choice! It should put you in a Category of ONE and make your competition irrelevant.
Once you have a strong foundation (positioning), you can implement the right marketing visibility strategy to be seen and heard by your perfect clients and attract them to you.
When your positioning and marketing strategy are dialed-in, it will do the heavy lifting to pre-sell you and your business before the sales conversation. Then, they will book on your calendar, almost ready to buy!
Also, before the sale should include a pre-qualification process. You want to leverage your time, so you only spend time with serious prospects who have the financial resources to buy. An application form or a paid consultation can ensure you are only spending time with qualified people.
An application form, when done correctly, also prepares both you and your prospect for the call or meeting. This allows you to control the conversation from start to finish and make the time more valuable and efficient.
I personally love to have and teach my clients to have, a business with freedom, so spending endless hours talking to the wrong people who won’t buy or are only seeking information or advice for free is not my idea of enjoyable. Is it yours?
Pre-qualifying prospects can minimize these types of people.
- DURING THE SALE
By the time someone gets into the sales conversation with you, they are practically pre-sold when you have strong positioning, marketing, and the proper pre-qualification process in place.
The sales conversation then allows you to show up and fully serve. This means the sales conversation is all about the prospect and not about you trying to make a sale. Asking the right questions will show them you care, allow them to feel heard, and begins building the relationship.
The sales conversation should also be viewed as an additional qualification step to get to know your prospect better and determine if it is a fit to do business together. It isn’t about making a sale but showing up for the prospect that is looking for help.
When you detach from the outcome of having to make a sale and you have a client-focused conversation, it becomes effortless.
Listen to what they want, and then determine if you can help them. If you have done everything right up to this point, clarified what they want, and told them you could help them, they will often ask to buy.
When they ask you what’s next, what it looks like to work with you, or what the investment is, and how things work with your services, they have permitted you to share your services.
This is very different from you being pushy, having to overcome objections, or convincing someone you are the right person; super simple and without awkwardness.
Let’s discuss PROPOSALS. Do you need them, and what is the best way to handle them if the prospect asks for one?
If you have clear offers and packages, you can often eliminate proposals. However, if they ask for a proposal, you can streamline your process to eliminate wasted time and work by doing the following things.
Make sure you discuss everything to close the sale in the conversation and collect a “yes, they want to work with you” before working up a proposal.
Please make sure the financial questions are flushed out (what their budget is, or what are they willing to invest in getting what they need).
Ask them what they are looking for in the proposal, so you can keep it simple and on point (a few pages). The last thing they need is endless pages of stuff. Too many pages can often kill the deal or slow down the close.
Don’t add more to the proposal than you discussed in the initial conversation. Adding more than discussed can derail the final conversion because they could become overwhelmed or confused. A confused buyer doesn’t buy. Instead, stay on point and sell them other things they may need or want after they become a paying client and you have a relationship with them.
Set up another meeting (within a couple of days) to go over the specifics with them personally with two or three options (different levels of what they want) and get the signature to close the deal.
NEVER EMAIL OR SEND A PROPOSAL. Sending proposals will feed the black hole of who knows where and will waste your time. You also don’t want to be chasing prospects to close them.
If there are other decision-makers, try to get them to be included in the proposal meeting so you can get the deal done without further delays.
In my business and with most of my clients, we close high-end ultra-premium clients without proposals. So, if you can eliminate proposals, I highly recommend you do. You can thank me later.
- AFTER THE SALE
What kind of follow-up process do you have? For example, do you put people on your email list so that you can stay in front of them if they don’t buy, or if they don’t close?
Do you set up another time to personally follow up with them?
We want to believe that people will remember us, but often they don’t. So, you want to stay top of mind. But, if they didn’t buy, for whatever reason, it doesn’t necessarily mean it’s a “no” forever.
A strong follow-up process can continue to build the relationship with them until maybe one day they will buy. You can also use tactics like sending a gift or a thank you card to them if you feel like they are someone you would like to have as a client.
So how is your sales process? Do you have the before component dialed in so that you are only getting on calls or in conversations with highly qualified buyers who are ready and convinced that you are the person that can help them? Is that happening?
Do you have the during process dialed in so that your conversations are effortless? Are prospects asking you how they can buy? How about proposals? Is this something you would like to simplify or eliminate?
Finally, how is your follow-up process? Do you have one?
By implementing this powerful three-step sale system into your business, you can leverage your valuable time and convert more prospects into dream clients.
It will help you sell without being salesy, slimy, icky, or awkward and allow you to enjoy your conversations. When people don’t feel like you tried to push them into a sale, and you let them buy or say no without awkwardness, you can part as friends and add a new relationship to your network and connections. This can often lead to them referring you to others or buying in the future.
Don’t burn bridges; build them.
If you want help scaling your business into multiple six or seven figures and this newsletter resonates with you, book a call with me at A.carden.com. I want to wish you all the best through the holidays.
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To your success,