No, I didn’t disappear. I just spent the past week with my brother and sisters for a family reunion of sorts. We drove up to Vancouver, BC, and ended up at Grouse Mountain (www.GrouseMountain.com), where we “zip-lined” high above the tree tops, rivers, and valleys.
At the top of the mountain, there’s a brand new wind turbine. We went up into the attached view pod, about 200 feet in the air. Part of the floor is glass, so can you imagine the feeling of standing on the glass floor, looking past your feet at the ground, far, far below?!? Yikes!!!
Back to business. If you’ve been following my recent posts, you know I have a lot of stuff on pricing. It’s really important. So I asked you if there was interest in me creating a free Value Pricing Resource Kit.
And there was interest.
Now I want to update you on the Value Pricing for Prosperity Resource Kit and Training Program AND I want to take a step “back to the future” and invite you to be a more direct co-creator of what’s next for all of us:
The Final Call: Value Pricing for Prosperity Resource Kit
Recently, I sent out an e-mail asking if anyone was interested in a complimentary “Value Pricing for Prosperity Resource Kit” that I am THINKING about creating.
I didn’t want to make this thing, if you didn’t want it… so I first wanted to see if people were interested.
A number of you expressed interest, and as a result, starting tomorrow, only people on the “Value Pricing for Prosperity Interest List” will receive insider information on my upcoming Value Pricing for Prosperity Training Program and…they will also receive the free Resource Kit.
(Not everyone on my list is interested in pricing and business financial management strategies, and I want to be considerate of them and make sure they don’t get bombarded with information they don’t want or need, so only those who are interested will get the emails).
If you want to get the Resource Kit that’s coming shortly and all the good stuff I’ve got coming your way, I invite you to join the “Value Pricing for Prosperity Interest List” below now:
What’s Next for All of Us?
I feel very passionate about pricing and helping people who are not charging what they are worth. But not everyone needs — or is ready — to deal with how they price their programs, products, and services.
A lot of high-minded, big-hearted, service-oriented professionals are struggling out there, but not for lack of commitment and effort. Over and over again, I’ve seen on-going frustration with people’s businesses because they People aren’t even coming close to fulfilling on emerging possibilities.
Though I’ve been fortunate enough to have success multiple times in my life and to help others create it for themselves, I’m troubled by what I’m seeing happening all around me. Over and over again, I’ve seen on-going frustration with people’s businesses. People not even coming close to fulfilling on emerging possibilities. Down economy or not, I think it’s unfortunate that failure rates are as high as they are. There are so many people out there wanting to change, but aren’t getting it. And Especially motivated by the down economy and global social unrest, I think believe something needs to be done about this.
So here’s the thing:
I’m really enthusiastic about creating something for you, to build whatever it is you want. And this time, I’m NOT picking the topic. This is not about me, but instead, coming from a place of total service.
I want to make a free product for you guys, one that’s totally going to serve you.
However, I’ve noticed lately there are so many free products out there that are really nothing more than disguised marketing materials that don’t actually help you accomplish something or produce a specific outcome. What I have in mind is creating something that is going to truly help you out. And that means it’s got to have real “teeth” to it. This isn’t going to be me marketing for something bigger that you then have to pay for. It’ll be something with substance to it that will provide you with meaningful results.
This is what I’m wondering: If I do this, is this something you’re willing to invest back in, not in terms of money: I’m giving this away for free. This is going to be something that you’re actually going to be able to use, learn and apply.
I’m wondering if you’d be willing to help co-create this free product.
Look, we all have our hang ups, our fears, our doubts, and our concerns. We each have limiting beliefs, mistaken views of the world, and ineffective habits that hold us back. I know from my own experience, and from the work I’ve done with my own clients, that you can get past these issues and focus your efforts on things that really demand your particular skills, experience, and wisdom.
I don’t like standing around, waiting for something to happen, so I’m willing to invest my time and energy into making good things happen.
Would anyone be interested if I put time and energy into this? I just need to hear from you: What is it that you need to know? What do you need help with? What’s in the way of you becoming a solid success? So just let me know what it is by leaving comments below.
Based on the comments you leave, I’ll sort through the topics and we’ll “vote” on what to build first.
Together, we can make changes that will help you get the results you – and others — want. And that’s good for all of us, to help each other to thrive, prosper, and share our gifts. I’m willing to do my part here.
Are you up for it?
To freedom, contribution, and prosperity,
These days, it seems that everyone knows someone looking for work. Savvy job seekers prepare their resumes, polish their interview skills, and network like maniacs in the hopes of “getting hired.”
As a service professional, “getting hired” is no less a concern for you! No clients, no paydays. You may have finely honed your skills and abilities as an independent business owner in your chosen field, possibly obtaining degrees, certifications, and undergoing many hours of practice. But at the end of the day, it doesn’t matter how good you are at serving your clients if you can’t get clients to hire you.
It’s actually very simple (though not necessarily easy) to get clients. First, you have to develop marketing strategies to attract prospects. Next, you need a reliable way to convert those prospects into clients, customers or patients.
One popular way to convert prospects to clients is through initial sessions. These could be free or paid introductory sessions, strategy sessions, or consultations.
There are ways to dramatically increase your chances of converting a prospect into a long-term paying client at an initial session, just as there are ways to dramatically increase – or sabotage – your chances of getting hired at a job interview. Nobody in their right mind would show up late in dirty jeans to an interview with a wrinkled, misspelled resume in hand. Similarly, you want to give yourself the best chance of “getting hired” by your prospects.
The process of converting a prospect into a client is often thought of as “selling,” or “closing the sale.” However, the real secret to success is getting clients to sell themselves… on hiring you! (more…)
If you’re going to use introductory sessions at all, you’ll have to decide “free vs fee.” In other words, will you offer complimentary sessions, or charge for your initial appointment? If you have a choice between free or paid sessions, all other things being equal, no doubt you’d choose paid. After all, who doesn’t enjoy being paid?
Does it stand to reason, then, that it’s always best to be paid? After all, there are big advantages to mastering the skill of paid introductory sessions, such as higher conversion rates, better filtering and qualifying of prospects, greater cashflow, and an increased lifetime value of each client.
Perhaps then, you should completely abandon the idea of offering free introductory sessions or complimentary consultations. Not necessarily! Just as you wouldn’t want a car with only one gear, a one-size-fits-all-approach is also not going to fit for all service professionals, industries, situations, or prospective clients.
So, how do you decide which approach is best for you?
There are fundamentals and nuances to being successful with paid introductory sessions. There’s a learning curve, and depending on where you are in that learning curve, it might make sense for you not to charge. Although I can promise that if you become proficient at offering paid sessions, you’ll be even more effective with your free sessions!
There are also circumstantial situations where it simply makes more sense to approach clients with a different offer or process than a paid introductory session. Just like you need a lower gear for a hill, or a higher gear to cruise the freeway, you’ll want to consider the situation to determine the best approach.
Here are common situations and circumstances in which you should not charge for an introductory session: (more…)
When I launched my business in 2005, I was the poster child of success for using “free introductory sessions” to build my business. Indeed, free sessions helped me build my coaching business to an annualized six-figure income in only 73 days! With a combination of networking, events, and complimentary introductory sessions, my income grew to the six-figure mark, and then doubled by the end of the first year. As this kind of jump-start is almost unheard of in the coaching industry, it became a sort of calling card, garnering me interviews, introductions, and more.
So why would I abandon a system that delivered so much success!?
While I did some things very right, such as offering diagnostic “Strategy Sessions” that offered stand-alone value, parts of my system didn’t work so well. (I explain more about diagnostic Strategy Sessions vs. “sample sessions” in a previous article, “The Problem with Free Introductory and Sample Sessions.”
One thing that didn’t work so well was the “free” part of the sessions. While free for the prospect, there was a high hidden cost for me: an enormous commitment of time and energy. I would meet anyone who appeared to be a potential prospect, whether they came from a workshop, website, referral, or other means. I would painstakingly gather all kinds of information about them and their business, and next, I’d spend literally hours conducting a free Strategy Session with them. (more…)
If you’re a coach, consultant, or service professional, it’s possible that you offer some kind of free introductory session, sample session, or complimentary consultation. Indeed, this is the primary method of “marketing” taught in some coaching schools. It goes something like this: “Go offer free sample sessions to everyone you know. Ask them if they’d like to continue coaching. Some will. Congratulations, you now have clients!”
And you know what? Some people will hire you. Maybe one out ten. Maybe two out of ten. Chances are, some won’t want to pay the going rate for a coach or other service professional, some may even insist on “trading services” instead of cash, but they enjoyed your service, and they’d like “more, please!”
You rationalize, a client is a client, and you take a few under-paying clients.
Now you’re somewhat busy (though not making much money), so you go find more people to give free intro sessions to. And the cycle repeats… you give umpteen free sessions to find a few clients who might not even be willing to pay your rate, much less stick around for the long term. Invariably, they leave about the time you find your next new client, so it feels like you are just spinning your wheels.
And it’s getting harder, not easier. You’ve exhausted your initial list of friends, colleagues, acquaintances, and other warm contacts, and now you’ve got to go meet complete strangers you hope will hire you.
You give free sessions to friends of friends. You offer sessions to people you meet at grocery stores. You network like a maniac. You blog. You tweet. You give introductory sample sessions, and just in time, because the first people who hired you have now run their course, so the new clients are just replacing the ones leaving through attrition.
Congratulations, you’re broke and exhausted. Welcome to self-employment.
What went wrong!?
Let’s take a look:
1. You used the scattershot method of marketing.
You didn’t wait for people to identify themselves as prospective clients; you simply went out and found people who could fog a mirror and agree to a sample session. The result is that now you’re trying to convert prospects you didn’t even really attract in the first place! It’s more like you “attacked” them – by putting them on the spot to do a “free sample session” with you. (more…)