Does the idea of getting out there and selling your product or service scare you? Is the fear of rejection stopping you from growing your revenue and your business? These anxieties can stop you from converting all your hard work on marketing into actual sales. In this blog, I am going to help you shift your mindset on sales and provide you with three rules to help you develop a natural, authentic approach to sales that works!
This blog article is a summary of the related podcast episode.
Being able to convert your business idea and your marketing activities into revenue is critical to building a successful business. Conversion is the final pillar in my 3C™system that I teach on the podcast, blog, and in my courses and coaching business. This blog is the last in a series focusing on each of the Cs – clarity, consistency, and conversion.
If you have not read the first two blogs in the series, you can click here to check them out now. They are important steps that you need to work through to be able to successfully convert your work into revenue!
Assuming you have done the work to be sure you have clarity about your business idea, and you are being consistent with your marketing strategies, it is time to build a marketing funnel that helps you attract customers and convert them into clients.
To give you even more support to be able to do this, I have developed a special free 3C™ workbook to help you build a successful portable business. The workbook includes more in-depth explanations, exercises, and advice to help you really dig into these issues. You can find it here.
Now, let’s get to my three essential rules for converting all the work you have done so far into sales and revenue!
Rule One: Create a compelling and irresistible offer
Do not let the term ‘an irresistible package’ intimidate you! Being compelling and irresistible is just a matter of being very clear about what it is you are selling, explaining the problem you solve in a way that really resonates with your customers, and presenting the results you can offer customers. You need to be able to communicate the transformation that your product/service will bring, or in other words, how your service/product will take your customer from A, dealing with their pain points or problem to B, enjoying results, and the process that journey involves.
There are five things you need to check when you are selling. As you develop your web page or sales document or even your face to face pitch, you need to be sure that these five points are clear to your customers.
- Validate the pain points & problem you address: are you showing that you really understand your customers’ pain? Whether you are talking face to face or writing something for customers to read, your customers need to know that you understand exactly what they are experiencing and their challenges. You need to show that you know how they express these things by using the same words and tone that they use. The content of your messaging is so important here – check out the blogs on clarity and consistency to learn more about this!
- Explain the process and transformation you provide: are you explaining how your process will address your customers’ pain points? You need to be so clear about what your offering, and the process involved in getting your customers from experiencing a problem to results! Make sure that your explanation of both your process and your product/service make sense to your customers, not just to you.
- Describe the results and solution you offer: you need to make sure that you understand not just your customers’ expectations of results in tangible terms but also how they expect to feel as the result of the transformation you are offering through your product/service. You must be sure that your customers are ultimately looking for what you provide.
- Identify and address the objections to sales: this is a huge thing that so many people forget when they are preparing to sell – you must anticipate and be able to answer objections. Before you start selling, you need to do your market research and understand what could stop your customer from investing in your product/service. The best way to find this out is to talk to your customers! Once you have done this research you can list the potential objections and work on answers to them. Doing this will help you address these issues before your customer even raises them with you – another sign that you really understand your customers’ mindset.
- Make it easy for your customer to take action: one final thing to make your offer irresistible – make it easy for your customer to take action! Sometimes the process to sign up to a product/service is so complicated that customers give up before they buy. Make sure that this does not happen to you! In practical terms, this means making your web links easy to read and remember. For example, I run a Portable Business Accelerator course. In promoting it, rather than send out a long complicated link, I have a single sales page that is www.tandemnomads.com/pba, making it easier to remember when customers are ready to sign up.
There are some other things you can do to make your offer even more compelling. You can incentivize those who act quickly, providing additional benefits to those who buy or sign up by certain deadlines. For example, you could have a reduced early bird price. Providing value like this will help give you quick results rather than having to continually promote yourself while customers think about it or running the risk of customers forgetting about you.
These are the key points that you need to address to be able to sell effectively and authentically. By focusing on these points, your approach shifts away from ‘selling’ to explaining what you offer in a way that allows your customer to decide quickly if your product/service is right for them.
Here is a secret to selling that I learned from working in door to door sales. You can learn more about the other things I learned from that experience in this episode:
Dirty little secret #1:
Before you start talking about price and your call to action, you need to get three validations or yeses from your customer:
– First, you need your customer to confirm that you have correctly identified pain points and challenges or a problem that they want to solve.
– Second, you want to confirm that the results you are promising are the outcome that your customers want.
– Finally, the last thing you want to have validated by your customer is that what you are selling is what they want. Once you have that final ‘yes’, you can make the transition to talking about price and taking action.
It is easier to identify these ‘yes’ stages when you are having a face to face conversation with a customer. However, you should also use this process when you are writing your sales web page or any other sales material. You need to think strategically about your ‘sales pitch’ so that you can get these validations before you address pricing. If you are face to face with a client, presenting your offer, make sure that you ask questions that will lead you to validate these different points and get those yeses, rather than trying to ‘sell’.
Selling is about listening
Listening will help you become more authentic and confident – it will help you understand whether your product/service is right for your customer and it will help your customers see you as someone who genuinely cares about them.
When you use questions in this way, it is also important to make sure your customer confirms the information back to you. When you feel that you have validated your offer as the right product/service for a customer, ask them to confirm this. You can use questions such as
“I have a feeling you are struggling or are stuck with (XYZ)…, is that correct?”.
You can also ask your customer to tell you if you are wrong about this. Make sure you listen to the answer and respond appropriately.
In this way, you can keep building a conversation that validates the pain points, explains the process, validates your customers’ desired results, and allows you to anticipate an answer to any objections and finally, make it easy to take action.
Rule Two: Plan and measure your sales goals effectively
One of the biggest reasons that solopreneurs fail to sell is that they do not plan their sales or have a plan to reach their sales goals. Make sure that you are systematically sitting down and planning your sales for the year, for the quarter, for the month. You should be thinking about how much revenue you need for whatever time period you are using.
You then need to ask yourself what you are going to do to reach those targets! Even the simple step of setting these targets will help you to build habits that lead you to selling. In my free 3C™ workbook, I have included an exercise that will help you work through, step by step, how you can achieve your sales goals in a strategic way. You can find the workbook here.
The key to reaching your sales goals is knowing how much revenue you want to make, and then figuring out how many leads that represents.
And here is another secret that I learned from door to door sales.
Dirty little secret #2:
You need to flip the script about rejection. If you are scared to sell because you fear rejection, you need to realize that the more rejections you get, the more sales you will make. You need to trust in the law of probabilities. The more you reach out to people, the more you will sell. But to be able to do that, you need to accept some rejections. So instead of looking at how many great sales you can make, focus on getting a lot of rejections and embrace it! The more rejections, the more chances you will sell because you are reaching so many people.
Flip the script: The more rejections you get the more sales you will make.
This is a huge mindset shift and I promise that if you embrace it, it will change everything for you. Everything. I honestly believe that if we embrace rejection, we will be better able to serve our clients and be better at selling and showing them the benefits of our products/services.
Rule Three: Nurture your clients and keep listening
This is one thing that I really want to insist on. So many people think that marketing stops when you sell but the most powerful part of your sales strategy is what you do after the sales happen. Here are some of the things you should be thinking about to make sure you give your customers the best possible experience:
- What is your onboarding experience for your clients like?
- Do you keep listening to them while you work with them?
- Are you paying attention to where they are still getting stuck?
- What are the challenges that they still have through the process of using your product/service?
- What can you improve?
You should always ask for feedback – you do not need to be perfect or provide 100% satisfaction, but you do need to be willing to listen and to improve. When you do have issues or something is not working how you thought it would, it helps to show your clients that you are listening, that you are trying to adapt and correct whatever challenge you are going through. It is not about being perfect, it is about listening, paying attention, and really being there for your clients. Building these relationships allows you to collect feedback but it helps you get reviews and testimonials, which will help you attract more clients and referrals. Make sure that you invest in nurturing your clients once you have sold to them so that you make them want to come back for more or refer you to their friends and contacts.
Dirty little secret #3:
Marketing does not stop when you sell. You need to think of marketing as serving. It is part of your service to market in an authentic way that shows that you genuinely care about your clients. By doing that, you are taking some of the pressure out of sales because you know that deep inside what you are doing is serving, even when you market and promote your products.
“Marketing does not stop when you sell if you know that marketing is about caring and listening”
I hope that these three rules help you reflect on the way you are doing business and the way you perceive sales and marketing- hopefully, you are now more comfortable with selling and no longer think of it as something scary or dirty. Selling should not make you uncomfortable – in fact, it should be your way to connect in a meaningful way with your prospects.
If you want to dive more deeply into these issues, do not forget to check out my free 3C™ workbook which has more information, exercises, and resources to help you convert your marketing efforts into revenue. Click here to download it now.