“All these long years the Ring was in the Shire, under my very nose.”
The Slow Road to Sales
- Find people who are experiencing the problem you solve;
- Help them understand that there is a solution to their problem;
- Show them why your solution is superior to others;
- Sign contract and deliver the solution.
The problem with this approach is that it requires a lot of time and effort to educate prospects and, in the process, there is a high probability that along the way they will get lost in the maze of other solution-providers.
Making people aware of their problem and showing them a solution only to have them buy an alternative is a business tragedy that happens all too often… which is why I always recommend that my clients skip steps #1 & #2 above and head straight for Step #3. This shortens the sales process and means that you can actually evaluate whether your solution is a good fit or recommend an alternative.
The alternative to this ‘slow road’ is to head straight for the ‘low-hanging fruit’… this hungry buyers who are sitting on your doorstep ready to buy soon… if not right away.
Step #1: WHO Are My Hungry Buyers?
Hungry buyers are also called low-hanging fruit… they are people who already know they have a problem and they are actively looking a for a solution. This means that you don’t need to educate them about the:-
- Gravity of their problem;
- Urgency with which they need to solve it; or even the
- Steps they need to take to solve the problem;
You simply need to:-
- Amplify the pain they are experiencing;
- Depict the pleasure they will experiencing when it is solved;
- Demonstrate your knowledge and ability to deliver a solution to people like them; and
- Create an urgency so that they want to take action NOW!
To do this, you need to go beyond standard demographics (gender, education, title, income, location, age, etc.) and psychographics (ambitions, interests, hobbies, heroes etc.) and dive deeply into their fears, insecurities, language, and values. You need to probe the things they hide from everybody… often including themselves.
Yes, this means research. It means challenging everybody’s assumptions about why people buy (including your own). It means going into great detail to discover the real reasons people buy from you. The good news is that doing this work will reveal information that can transform your business and make it far easier to sell and to charge higher prices than you would ever have believed possible.
I recently went through this process with a new client who was sceptical and it transformed her business (as well as the marketing strategy which was our primary focus). She was convinced that she knew her market inside and out because she had been working in the field for so long and she was astounded by the discoveries. As a result of digging deeply into her ‘who’ we:-
- Created a lead magnet that is generating a minimum of 10 qualified prospects per week (previously she was talking to 2-4 per month); and
- Reduced the time she spends with clients from 90 minutes to 45 minutes (her clients love the tighter focus and perceive they are getting more value, where she was assuming that longer sessions were of greater value);
If you aren’t regularly updating your notes on who your client is, what they care about most, what makes them angry, and insecure etc. then this step alone will absolutely transform your ability to easily attract the right clients.
Step #2: Position Yourself as an Authority
It has been said repeatedly, so I don’t need to stress this point too much: the more authority you have, the less price and buying resistance you receive. Genuine achievement, fame, and awards bring an aura of credibility which enables you sidestep the question of price and effectiveness. If you have any questions about this, check out my blog on the importance of authority. https://hiltoncopy.com/balance-power-fall-authority-scale/
The good news is that anyone can build their authority if they have two things:-
- Knowledge and experience to base your authority on; and
- Willingness to do the work required to get the word out.
Writing and marketing a book is the easiest and most effective way to position yourself as an authority. Speaking is another excellent avenue for building authority, and the combination of a book and speaking gigs is almost irresistible.
Step #3: Pre-Qualify Your Prospects
It’s hard to over-state the importance of this step in raising your status and increasing people’s appetite to work with you.
The client I mentioned in Step #1used to offer free discovery calls. She’s pretty good at closing sales, so she would then close about 50% of those who booked a call, others mostly didn’t sign up because they couldn’t afford her program. Once she started pre-qualifying clients (and offering clients who didn’t meet her criteria another pathway) she was able to close 90% right there on the call and she has cut down the number of available call slots each week because she and her team can’t handle the volume… That’s a great problem to have and has also enabled her to increase her prices!
Step #4: Simplify Your Offering
Funnily enough, most businesses are tempted to throw in more and more services and benefits even though this erodes their profit margins. You’d be surprised how often removing some of the bells and whistles makes your product or service more desirable, while at the same time saving you time and money.
This goes back to how well you know your ‘who’ in Step #1… my client discovered that when she stripped some of the extras away from her offering even her existing clients were happy, (she offered a compromise solution to the few who objected). When you think about this, it makes sense: we are all so busy and our lives are so cluttered that a service provider who helps us streamline our lives is greeted with gratitude, not complaints.
So, How Do I Attract Hungry Buyers?
The prospect who is already looking for a solution is likely to buy on a short-cycle (exactly what that means depends on your industry) which is great for cash flow.
Once you know who that person is you can create a lead magnet and sales copy that will draw them in and have them (metaphorically speaking) eating out of your hand because they will understand that you know them inside and out. All you need to so is to offer your lead magnet to that person and they will be desperate to hear what you are saying. Once they’re listening to you, confirming your credibility and making your offer is easy.
Need some help profiling your hungry buyers? That’s the first thing I do with new clients. Pick up a copy of my book “Dynamic Direct Response Copywriting” and learn how I work with clients.