In order to sell you have to get inside your clients’ head and step into their shoes. You need to know how your ideal client thinks so you can speak your client’s language when you speak to him/her in a sales conversation
I would like to share 3 tips to get inside your clients’ head with you:
1. Speak to your clients and ask questions
2. Listen deeply
3. Get on the other side of the bed
1. Speak to your ideal clients and ask them questions
To get to know your clients, the advice often is to conduct a survey where you ask questions to find out what problem your clients are looking to get solved. The problem with a survey is that you can’t ask questions specific to the person. A survey doesn’t allow you to drill that bit deeper. You need to get people on the phone. Invite them for a skype coffee date for example.
If you already have clients, you can ask them relevant questions like:
- What was it that made you contact me?
- What stood out for you?
- What was happening for you around the time that you reached out to me?
Later in the conversation you can rephrase those questions to get different answers. Write down what your client says. I have worked in different niches over the years and I have noticed that what clients say when they first reach out to me is often the same: ‘I’m stuck. I need to be rescued. I can’t keep going like this. This is unbearable.’
A lot of us have come quite a long way on the journey in the area we work in. We have been where our clients and our potential clients are now. When we speak to our clients, we speak from that place of our ‘evolved’ self who has been through the journey, so it is important to know exactly where your prospective client is at.
When you understand and speak your clients’ language, having sales conversations becomes easy. When you are skilled at listening, asking questions and getting absolute clarity on whether you’re the right person to help this client, you will be selling with ease. The basis of good selling is building relationships with your clients. So get your ideal client on the phone!
Listening is very important. Life and business coaches don’t usually give advice. When you are looking for clients, don’t be coaching them to find solutions from within. Instead learn to sit back and listen deeply and attentively to what your client has to say. Don’t jump in too fast with advice. Hold the space for the other person to really express what is going on. Let it all come out and listen deeply. This is how you are really going to get to understand the client’s problem.
3. Get on the other side of the bed
I was an intensive care nurse in my younger years. We were forever getting lectures on what empathy meant. We needed to understand what the patients were going through. I found that difficult because I had never been a patient and I didn’t understand what it was like to be sick. In order to understand what patients were going through I practiced imagining what it was like being sick, having lost your independence, being stuck in that hospital bed. When patients with severe head injuries were unable to do anything but lie there and breathe, I used to try to grasp what it was like for them and for their families.
People don’t want sympathy. They want empathy. Only when you really understand where the other person is at can you help them at a deep level. Imagine how it feels to be in their situation, and how it would feel to be out of the situation when the problem is solved or when the way they feel about the problem changes. Step into their shoes.
During the first phone call potential clients often said to me ‘you really get this and that’s why I am going to work with you. You really get where I’m at. You understand’. And the truth is that I do understand. I understand what it’s like to go through bouts of having no clients, to have money struggles or to be wanting to do different work, wanting to follow your dream but not being able to figure out how. People can hear that when I am talking to them during sales conversations. That’s why you hardly have to sell at all once you have these 3 pieces in place: ask questions, listen deeply and get on the other side of the bed.
If you have any questions, please leave them below and I will get back to you.
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