Have you ever heard the following:
You’re too expensive.
Can you offer me this one exception?
Why can’t you give me a discount?
It’ll take a second to critique my product, can you do it for free?
In any business, you’ll spend a certain amount of time on clients who will never pay you.
Website designers quote jobs that never come to fruition.
Car dealers spend hours chatting up customers who will never buy.
Book agents read countless manuscripts they will never be able to sell.
And coaches spend time giving out free advice to clients who cannot or will not hire them.
Truthfully, it can be frustrating, and it’s definitely a drain on your time and energy. But there are some things you can do to eliminate those who will never become clients without having to spend time with them first.
Post Your Prices
One of the most hotly debated topics among coaches and service providers is whether or not you should post your prices on your website. There are pros and cons on both sides of the fence, but the biggest advantage to posting your prices is that it immediately eliminates those who cannot afford you.
Here is a great article as to why you SHOULD list your prices on your website.
Of course, you don’t have to list prices for everything to achieve the same effect. If you offer private coaching and self-directed training packages, having a price tag of $1000 on your “entry level” course makes it pretty clear that your private coaching is going to be at the high end.
If you prefer to quote packages individually, a line that states, “Coaching packages start at $XXX” is a simple way to state your prices while still giving you some flexibility.
Before you get on the phone with anyone, require that they do a little groundwork first. A client intake form should tell you everything you need to know about a potential client long before you pick up the phone. The most telling aspects of the client intake form is it tells you the most is how much work they’re willing to do. Freebie seekers aren’t likely to do the work required to answer even a simple questionnaire, so those who do fill out your form are better prospects.
Not only that, but you can include in your form a question about pricing, such as “What’s your budget for coaching?” Use a pre-defined list of answers that start with “$1,000 and up” rather than letting your potential client fill in her own amount, and those with smaller budgets won’t bother to complete it.
The key here is to be completely transparent with your prospective client. Remember, you do not want to serve everyone, just the ones that will be a strong fit for what you offer.
Not sure what to include in your client intake form? Check out the following resources:
Client Intake Forms. What you need to know and the important questions to ask by Lyn Ross. *While this is a dermatology focus, there are several detailed steps: Client intake form –> Consultation Process –> The Charting Process as well as some other important questions.*
21 Useful Forms for Small Businesses by Small Business Editor.
Change Your Language
Words have power! If the words you use on your website and other marketing material are speaking to newbies or those just getting started in business, you’ll never attract the audience you’re seeking.
Instead of using words like “step-by-step plan,” say, “advanced techniques.” Rather than talking about “easy systems,” mention high-end, complex software by name. Simple changes can help you to automatically attract the right audience.
You’ll still spend some time and energy on those who ultimately won’t hire you, but by making these simple edits to your website, marketing materials, and other business systems, you’ll begin to see more high-end clients and fewer of those you no longer wish to work with.
Best wishes in all that you do.
Dr. Melissa Halstead helps small businesses develop, launch, and market their online courses, workshops, and masterclasses so they can inject more cash into their business while making a difference in the lives they serve.
Would you like to know more? If so, reach out to her on:
FB: Melissa Annalise Halstead | Twitter: @MeliHalstead | Snapchat: @melihalstead or fill out the contact form.