The number one thing every business owner, who offers professional services, needs to focus on is having more conversations with leads. That’s the only way you can convert them into paying clients. Yet, as I’ve worked with clients and asked them, “What’s your offer or call to action?” they’re either doing the same old thing or nothing at all! No wonder they don’t have a full pipeline of ideal clients and aren’t making their revenue goals.
So, if you don’t have a line of people waiting to talk to you about your solutions, it’s a clear sign that it’s time to get more innovative and creative with ways to attract more prospects. If you want to make your monthly income goals, you need to talk be talking with your ideal leads several times a week. And to get these leads you need to figure out offers and calls to action that will attract more prospects into your revenue pipeline.
Here are 7 strategic ways that I use to attract more clients and fill my own pipeline, and I coach my private business-coaching clients to do the same. (Some of these strategies took some trial-and-error, so for each of them I include an important lesson learned.)
1. Include a Compelling Offer in Your Free Marketing Talk
To get more private clients, speaking to the right audience is a great way to showcase your expertise. But don’t just give your presentation and tell them they can learn more on your website, give them a compelling offer! Offer your participants, in exchange for their contact information, a gift. Perhaps, you could offer complimentary strategy sessions for the first five to sign-up. Strategy sessions are a nice way for them to explore their challenges in-depth and see if your program is a fit for them.
Lesson learned: When people are in the midst of learning from you it’s experiential and they have hopefully learned some golden nuggets. When you give them an opportunity to learn even more, it’s easy to move them to the next step.
2. Provide Your Corporate Audience More Value
If you’re doing a corporate paid seminar, think of how you can extend value to these participants. Ask your corporate buyer if it’s okay to let the participants know how they can learn more at the end of your presentation. Again, strategy counts here. For example, could you offer them a new special report or put together a “Best-of” article pack to send them after your presentation? If they want this gift, it puts them on your newsletter list to continue to learn from you on a monthly basis. This is a great way for them to learn more about your services, begin to see you as a leading expert, and encourage them to hire you privately to take the experience to a deeper level.
Lesson learned: Corporate buyers appreciate you sending more information to their audience members to help them achieve results. This strategy helps you to become viewed as a trusted resource within the company.
3. Exploit Paid Professional Speaking Events
If you are speaking at a large leadership conference, or an industry annual event, as a keynote or breakout speaker, you’ll want to offer your participants something of greater value than just your paid speech. Offer them a two-page recap of your key talking points in exchange for their contact information. Then send them the information along with a link, asking them to sign up for your monthly newsletter and a complimentary strategy session.
Lesson learned: There’s real value beyond your speaking fee, having leads reading something that expands their learning and inspires them to work with you as paying client creates ongoing income for you.
4. Maximize Newsletter Marketing
Of course, your newsletter needs to be chock full of valuable content and should link back to your website. But there’s another underutilized technique to market your business. At the end of your newsletter always put a call to action. Send them to a link to have a strategy call with you, to find out more about your upcoming event or presentation or offer special pricing on your private coaching/consulting programs.
Lesson learned: A newsletter is a better way to market than social media, as you can see who is clicking on the links, so you know what they’re specifically interested in and can tailor your approach.
5. Offer a Special Deal Before Your Price Increases
Anytime you decide to increase your program prices, consider giving people a two-week window to take advantage of your old program rates with an additional 10% off. This is a great way for people who have been on the fence to take decisive action and take advantage of your old program rates and 10% off incentive. Again, be strategic by having a limited timeframe and following through by increasing your prices. Spread the word by calling former clients, making this offer on social media, or through one of your events.
Lesson learned: People who are already interested, know that time is at stake for taking advantage of reduced pricing. They don’t want to miss out on such a special offer so this is a fantastic way to strengthen your revenue pipeline.
6. Host Your Own Event with a Golden Opportunity to Extend Learning
Ideally you should be hosting your own events, either virtually via teleseminars or webinars, or in-person private events, where your audience is investing to learn more from you. I’ve found that a paid event will convert more clients than a free event. Why? Because they’ve already invested to attend and learn from you, so another investment is a greater possibility than trying to move a free client into one of your premium programs. The key is to give back to the people who invested in the event, by strategically lowering your price of your signature program to make it more attractive. Make sure it’s a limited-time-offer to move people off the fence. You want it to be compelling to those who want to immerse themselves in deeper learning, and make it easy for them to sign up, perhaps with a payment plan.
Lesson Learned: You want to strike when the iron is hot. When people are learning great content from you they’re wondering what it’s like to work with you. Now’s the time to make an offer, more will sign-up in the afterglow.
7. Grandfather in Your Current Clients
This strategy is about current clients, rather than brand new leads, but I wanted to include it since it’s such a great technique to start acquiring longer-term clients. If you’ve been working with a client in one of your signature programs and it’s nearing the end, consider grandfathering them in for an extended program at the same rate. This could be a continuation of your coaching or consulting to help them fine-tune their learning or to help them with their next set of challenges. The catch is they need to sign-up within a few days to benefit.
Lesson learned: The beauty of this strategy is you already know this client. Since you’ve worked in tandem together, you can continue to stretch them further without the need to increase your pricing, unless they break off service for a period of time.
So now you have quite a few proven strategies to help you start filling your pipeline with ideal clients. Did you notice that underlying all of them is the principle of giving people tangible value? You also want to make it super easy for them to sign up to work with you. If you know you would benefit from accountability and support in putting these strategies to work in your business, call 1-800-267-3245 to schedule a complimentary 30-minute consultation.
Predictable Results™ Assignment
Now don’t just throw caution to the wind and jump into one of these strategies without thinking it through. Take some time to ask yourself: How can I offer something really special with a limited timeframe? How can I continue to be top of mind as a leading expert in my field? How can I continue to offer more and more value so clients are happy to hire me over and over again?
As a pioneering and visionary innovator, Sarah is a certified professional image consultant and brand strategist, speaker, trainer and author. Her company, Illustra Business Coaching, provides leading-edge business building strategies for small business owners & entrepreneurs who wish to take their company to the next level.
Illustra Business Coaching
Copyright © 2018, Sarah Hathorn, AICI CIM
1-800-267-3245, [email protected]