3 Questions to ask yourself when clients say "I can't afford it"
Let's talk about buying triggers. I am talking about selling to people who already WANT to buy! Selling doesn’t have to feel SLEAZY.
First and foremost, the answer is always NO unless you ASK. People will turn you down sometimes, and that's OK. It's business, and your offer is NOT going to be right for everyone. Don't get offended, don't let it lower your confidence. Not everyone will be your ideal client, and when you try to market to everyone you are marketing to no one. (And for the love of god, do not discount or come off as desperate. We are searching for full paying clients who are seriously looking to achieve results.)
As the Master of Sales Zig Ziglar says, “You can have everything in life you want if youwill just help enough other people get what they want.”
Selling to people who already want to buy
• Focus on the EMOTIONAL REASONS why somebody would want to buy your product or service. Quantify the value of the end results (before & after) you provide instead of initial investment they are making.
• What does the outcome of the emotional journey look like? (completely stress-free, them having more time with their family, increasing their overall well being so they don’t have mental breakdowns, clearing up age spots, etc.)
• When a client calls and asks about price the very first thing I always ask them is "WHAT ARE THE GOALS YOU ARE LOOKING TO ACHIEVE?". Make them acknowledge what their intentions and goals are before you even quote them a price. Cheap and results rarely ever go together, and do not let a client haggle you.
• Often times, people focus too much on the bells and whistles of what's included (hot stones, aromatherapy, product samples, ETC) instead of focusing on their vision & the emotional investment to get to their goals waiting for them on the other side.
• You must be able to easily explain what you sell and easily identify who buys what you sell. If you can’t tell anyone those two things in a few simple sentences, you aren’t in the right business.
• People make their buying decisions backed by EMOTIONS, and then the find a "real" reason to back up their decision. (example - Emotion: "I am so self conscious about myage spots, and want to feel better about myself"... Reason: "I have 3 conferences to attend this month and I need to appear my best on stage!")
• *Have they made buying decisions in that realm (previous investments)?* It's MUCH easier to sell to a prospect if they have invested in something similar before, instead of "cold selling" to someone who has never tried it. People have to start somewhere though, so it's OK to start off small & build up from there.
• QUALIFY your prospects first: Again: When you are marketing to everyone you are marketing to no one. What are the top 3-4 characteristics your ideal prospects have? (Example: 1- buys massage packages on regular basis for pain relief; 2- invests in self-care & upkeeping her looks; 3- lives within two miles, etc)
• Stay away from the scarcity mentality: ("I can’t afford this right now" or "I don't have the money to spend on that" or "i need to save for something better" etc.) They most likely will end up not following through on their commitment to you, even after they buy a small package or service; They aren't fully invested in themselves or the outcome they desire. They will often hop to the next cheapest thing.
• Testimonials/ reviews, case studies, before and afters etc: let other " real people" do the talking FOR YOU... It gives them way more confidence and clarity and increases their trust factor.
• Best Buying Triggers: URGENCY- give reason to buy NOW! Scarcity, limited quantity, bonus going away, available only for the first 20 people etc
When a Client says they can't afford it
You want to be successful in business, you have to understand what your client wants. They probably want more than just one thing, but the thing at the top of the list is the thing you need to pay attention to. So when a prospect says "I can't afford it", what they mean is that something else is a higher priority than whatever they think you're offering them. People are pretty good at finding a way to afford the thing at the top of their list. "I can't afford it" is almost always about priorities rather than resources.
You don’t have to cringe when a prospect says “that’s too expensive” and you don’t have to try and convince them to change their mind about it, either. How does your signature approach provide a unique advantage in your field? If you care confident on your unique selling point, then you are more likely to hear “When can we start?”
Also, if you are having trouble pricing your services, check out this free Get Rich Lucky Bitch Pricing webinar . We will talk about tiered pricing in another post.
IF YOUR CLIENT SAYS, “I CAN’T AFFORD IT,” DON’T TRY TO PERSUADE THEM.
Instead, ask yourself these 3 questions:
1) AM I ATTRACTING THE RIGHT CLIENTS?
First of all, check to make sure you’re going after the people who are most likely to want what you offer. If you offered to set me up with a lawn mowing service this summer, I’d say I can’t afford it. I bought a new lawn mower recently and I have an able-bodied young person hanging around my house. So even though I have the money to pay for a lawn service, it feels like a waste of money. Wasting money is what I can’t afford. Now, I might perk up if you offered me a weekend at the beach. I can afford that, even though it would probably cost more than three month's of lawn service. It doesn’t matter how well you “sell” your lawn service tome – I’m saving my money for the beach.
2) AM I SENDING THE RIGHT MESSAGE?
If you want to attract top shelf clients, you need to speak their language. Don't use low-budget language to sell high-end services. Words like “fast,” “easy,” “bargain,”, “affordable,” and “discount” attract customers who are price sensitive. High-value clients respond to CONFIDENCE, quality and service. They also appreciate a good deal, but you shouldn’t focus only on that aspect if you want to win their business. Words like “expert,” “specializing,” “custom” and “guaranteed” convey high-value appeal.
3) AM I SELLING THE RIGHT THING?
Are you selling inputs rather than outcomes? Time, materials and effort are all inputs. In fact, the coaching process itself is an input. How you do what you do (i.e., input) is not the first thing to talk about; that comes later (if and when the client asks "How are you going to give me this fantastic outcome you're talking abou?") Focus on the outcome first so the client can see that it'll be worth it.
Examples of outcomes:
Saving time away from work by avoiding doctor visits
Preventing back / neck pain from reoccurring quickly
Reducing/eliminating a risk
Gaining an advantage
Creating or leveraging an opportunity
Mastering new skills
DO NOT MAKE PRICE YOUR SELLING POINT.
Perhaps most importantly, when you hear “I can’t afford it,” don't assume you have to lower your price to stay competitive. You are not working at Wal-Mart. Instead of trying to compete on price, find a way to differentiate yourself based on the value and expertise you provide. What’s it worth to the client to have the results they want? What will it cost them if they get those desired results? Be ready to prove how your signature solution is a better option than a more generic, cheaper, cookie cutter solution. Another words, don’t be a basic bitch.
Need more to read? My mentor Ramona Rice wrote this great blog post Why Discounts Suck for Day Spas that is a great read!
FOr further inspiration, check out my live video in badass bodyworkers all about #MoneyMindset and #Abundance where I talk about not projecting your financial insecurities onto your clients.