You know what sucks? Not having any clients.
I remember when I started my business, there were times in the first 2 years where my current clients would phase out, and I’d have NO new clients on deck, and I felt like my business was a complete failure. Because what the hell is a coaching business with no clients? It’s a sucky business, that’s what it is.
If this sounds like you, there’s probably one KEY thing that’s stopping you from actually getting clients.
Sales are a funny thing. None of us want to do it, but our businesses require it. Selling plays into everything that you do in your business, from your website copy to your client interactions on social media. And if you suck at selling, you don’t have a business.
What I tried – coaching people for free
I tried a few things to get new clients and work on my sales when my business was just getting off the ground, and I thought it would be useful to share with you what I did and why it didn’t work, in case you’re in the same boat.
One thing I tried when my business was in suck-ville was doing free coaching calls with potential clients (sometimes called “discovery sessions” in the coaching world). I’d hop on the phone with them for free, and coach them, and it was awesome. Until that awkward moment at the end of the call when I’d have to transition into being like “Soooooo, how’s about you start paying me for this? Whaddya say?” and they got all awkward because they just wanted the free coaching and had no intention of hiring me. #wompwomp
Why this didn’t work and what to do instead
It was totally unclear to ME whether this was a consult, or a free session, or both. I just assumed if they wanted free coaching they were probably also interested in working together. Don’t slather your “free session” button all over your website either. If someone is interested in working together and reaches out, THEN you can tell them that you do free sessions and offer them one. And if you’re offering free coaching, for the love of god, don’t try to sell them anything at the end. No one likes a freebie with a catch. Keep it free and coach the crap out of them so they have no choice but fall in love and want to work with you.
What I tried – Free Consult Calls To See If We Were A Fit
I stopped that whole free session shit pretty early on in my business, and started only doing consults with people who expressed interest in hiring me. Instead of me coaching them, we’d talk about whether we were a fit to work together, which involved talking about… well… that was the problem. I had no fucking idea what I was supposed to do on these consults calls and every time someone signed up for one I’d be terrified and want to crawl under my bed and “accidentally” miss the call (cuz that’s realllly good for business folks).
If I wasn’t coaching, what exactly was I supposed to do? These call would usually consist of the person telling me it was too expensive/they didn’t have time,and I would say “Ok, maybe next time” and leave it at that. Again, NOT great for getting new business.
Why this didn’t work and what to do instead
Again, it was super unclear to both me and my clients whether this was a free call or a consult or why they should be signing up in the first place. Half of them wanted free coaching and half had so many objections to working together that I was totally unprepared to deal with. If you want to offer consults, ONLY offer them to clients who are interested. You can do this by only putting the “sign up for a consult” link at the very bottom of your sales page, so that they have to read the whole page and they can clearly see that the consult is ONLY for people who are interested and that it’s NOT free coaching). And on these calls, don’t coach! This is not a call where you are giving them free help – you are discussing what you will be doing with them in your work together and answering any questions they have. By all means, you can end the call with a next step for them to help them out, but be clear that this is a consult and not a freebie.
What FINALLY worked for me
Two words – Kendrick Shope. I met this super Southern, red-headed firecracker who was running a course called Sales School that, magically, promised to help with exactly what I was struggling with — lots of client interest, but no one saying YES to putting their money where their mouth is.
I had seen Kendrick around, mostly on her blog where she posted videos every Tuesday where she sang a (kind of annoying) jingle at the start of every video, and even though I had to fast forward through the start of her videos (Sorry Kendrick, it just wasn’t my bag!), she always had awesome tips, so I kept watching, and thank GOD I did.
Kendrick’s sales methods seriously changed my business. The way she teaches selling is GOLD and as soon as I started doing consults her way, I felt more confident (yay), but I ALSO started having almost every potential client say YES to working with me. That’s a huge fucking win!
Here’s some of the specific selling tools I learned from Sales School that I still use everyday in my business:
- The BIG difference between a consult and a free session (with scripts for each one so you never flounder with what to say and you nail it every single time)
- How to follow up with clients in a way that worked (instead of the usual “So, just checking to see if you wanted to work together” emails I was sending before)
- How to deal with the “I can’t afford” it objection in a way that felt in integrity (and worked!)
- How to drastically improve the amount of responses I got to my market research
Hello BUSINESS. Finally.
What I LOVE about Kendrick is that she gives everything to her clients – she’s 100% got your back when you work with her and she’s the queen of over-delivering. I have learned a lot from her over the years about how to create clients that fall in love and keep coming back for more, and a huge part of my success with Uncaged is a direct results of working with and learning from Kendrick.
Registration Opens Today
Sales School is opening again today, so if you’re someone who gets a lot of client interest and gets muddled between consults and free calls, feels like selling is gross or you get nervous talking to potential clients because you don’t feel confident selling, or you have clients say they can’t afford it and you don’t know how to respond to that – or basically any other problem that you have with selling and converting potential clients to PAYING clients – this is the program for you. I’m an affiliate or the program but even before K had an affiliate program, I was hustling as best as I could for her. Because her shit WORKS and changed my business and will change yours.
AND AS A BONUS — I’m giving away Hey, Nice Package to anyone who registers through Sales School using this affiliate link. Because Kendrick and I both agree that selling is WAY harder when you don’t have a great package to sell, and I don’t want you stumbling in SS just because you haven’t sorted out your packages yet. Use this link and I’ll send you over Hey Nice Package so you can get started!
Who is Sales School NOT for
I am always telling my clients to go work with Kendrick after they work with me, because it’s the logical next step in my opinion. But if you’re NOT yet clear on what your message is, who your niche is, or what exactly you’re selling, Sales School wont help you, so be sure that you’re absolutely clear on your foundations before diving in. This program has a ridiculous amount of value, but ONLY when you’re ready for it and at the right place in your business – it’s not meant for brand new businesses who are still wishy washy about what they want their business to be.
Selling should feel FUN in your business, and as someone who used to FEAR getting on the phone with potential clients you can take it from me – this is a skill you need to master if you ever want to be profitable in your business.
Even if Sales School isn’t for you right now, I would HIGHLY recommend getting clear on your client intake process – do you need to have a consult? An application? Do you have a system for followup for interested clients? These are the small things that will make or break your selling process (and thus your business).
Happy selling everyone, and if you have any questions about my experience in Sales School just hit reply. I’m more than happy to share!