This past weekend I held the 3-day workshop/retreat for the Marketing Mastery Program with 19 very smart and fun InfoGurus. We explored every area of attracting clients you can possibly think of in great depth.
In one of the workshop sessions, we brainstormed a list of fears clients have about working with InfoGurus. It was quite eye-opening and I thought I'd share this list with you.
Some Fears of Working With InfoGurus (duplicating the colors from the flip chart)
I don't understand what you offer, what's in it for me, how it works, or the difference between a coach and a consultant.
You don't get me and it’s gonna cost me.
You're asking me to buy a service that's putting money in YOUR pocket and ends up losing money for ME. It'll cost me even more to get out of it.
You just don't get it! This is not my reality! I can't use what you’re offering!
Here comes some more Seagull Training: Trainers fly in, dump a lot of stuff, make a lot of noise and fly out …
You'll take a cookie-cutter approach to advising my child.
You're asking me to share my deepest, darkest business and financial secrets?!? With YOU?
You're just going to hand me off to your junior staff anyway.
I don’t really know what you do, but I do know this: You'll probably charge me a lot of money to tell me the obvious.
All you consultants are alike: over-promise and under-deliver. You'll fail to link this "training workshop" to my real business issues or needs.
You don't understand our organization, culture, language or business—and you won’t integrate your "stuff" into what we’re trying to do.
With training programs, there's no long-term benefit. Sure, you’ll give me a workshop, but it will be impossible to measure the results. No metrics!
Quite a list right? And I'm sure you could add many of your own.
The big question is how do you overcome fears and objections like this? If you don't, there's a good chance you'll never get the client. But if you do, you'll dramatically increase the chances of getting the client by resolving their fears.
So how do you do this?
Remember, marketing is communication. It's your job to not only communicate about your services and what your clients can expect from you, but how you address these thorny issues.
You don't want to sweep these under the rug, but confront them head-on. After all, most of your prospective clients won't even tell you this stuff face-to-face; most will look at your web site or other marketing materials (which never mention these fears) and simply not contact you.
You want to talk about these fears in your written marketing materials as well as during your selling conversations. One good place is in the "How We Work" section of your web site, or perhaps in the write-up about a particular service.
Here's an example of how you might address one of these issues:
"Many people consider training programs to be "Seagull Training" where trainers fly in, dump a lot of stuff, make a lot of noise and fly out! This is actually true for a lot of training. There's a certain amount of excitement during and after a program, but a week or a month later, very little substance remains.
"How our training programs differ is that we focus on transferring skills, not just stuffing participants with information. You can read to gain information but training needs to go beyond that.
"Our leadership skills training model is based on proven approaches and strategies successful leaders actually employ. This model is based on over 50 years of research on leadership effectiveness by the Rothman Institute of New York.
"In our programs, we take real-life situations where leadership is called for and through demonstrations, case studies and role playing, participants learn the 'Seven Leadership Competencies.'
"This skills-based training is then reinforced with a series of monthly teleclasses over a six-month period where these skills are practiced and honed until they become natural behaviors.
"As a result, our leadership skills training results in employees who not only know the concepts of leadership, but actually exhibit the traits of leaders. What this means for your company is better decision making, more cohesive teams, and ultimately better productivity and profitability for your company."
What you've done is taken a fear or objection and persuasively explained how this fear, although understandable, is something you have thought about and addressed comprehensively.
And you could do the same for any of the other fears listed above.
The More Clients Bottom Line: If you think or know your prospects have certain fears or objections about your services, don't avoid these issues, address them in detail, assuring them that you not only understand their concerns but that you have structured your services to resolve those concerns completely.
What fear do you need to address in your written marketing materials? Please share your answer on the More Clients Blog in the Comments section below: