Using free consultations as part of the sales process came up for discussion in one of the Facebook Groups I’m part of. I’m sharing part of the conversation here.
Q: I am on the fence about free consults and really giving this whole process some thought.
I recently did some sales calls where I was putting my focus on connecting and giving a small tidbit of how I could serve them. Well, a couple of them posted a shout out to another “coach” who also had a “free” call with them. Honestly it left me bummed and angry and feeling tricked. They were clearly “freebie seekers” who took up every free call any coach offered and tried to piece their business together through this scattered advice and hiring no one.
I then discovered that another connection I have charges 250.00 for her “discovery” sessions that are 45 minutes!!
What do you think of this? I guess I am just looking for discussion about these calls and how you approach them.
If you are dealing with entrepreneurs who know they need your solution to grow their business they are easily presold. If you are looking to work with individuals who need life coaching because things are unravelled in their life – they are going to need some trust building and help to invest in themselves.
How they find you…
Your services and prices…
You have to ask yourself what you are really trying to accomplish with your initial consultation and if you are willing to learn how to use a consultative sales process. If you absolutely hate making sales calls , I recommend adding someone to your team that can help you create and implement a standard sales process. One of the biggest ways we shoot ourselves in the foot is by not learning how to sell. Even if you you plan on having a team member dedicated to sales, you still need to understand how it works and how to employ at least the most basic sales tactics. No matter how intuitive we are, we still need to learn the sales process if we want to build a sustainable business.
Don’t let a few bad apples spoil your sales process. In other words, don’t give up on using free consultations as part of your sales process because of a few people who wanted to take advantage of your opportunity. Choose how you are going to handle things, do it consistently for three months and track what happens. Keep track of:
For the calls where you have a successful conversion, note what worked – about the person and your approach – and then replicate that to get more conversions.
I wrote an article on a different way to think about free consultations, that has additional information: SHIFT Work – Rethinking Your Free Consultations.
Do you offer free consultations? What are the pros and cons to doing so? How has it worked for your business?
Tai Goodwin on a mission to help 10,000 women entrepreneurs create more joy and wealth in their life and business. She's the CEO of Aligned + Bankable and creator of the Bankable Brilliance Course. An intuitive business growth strategist and teacher, her specialty is helping clients create bankable business models that allow them to increase their impact and income without burning out. Tai is a former corporate trainer with a master's degree in instructional design and over 20 years of experience designing course, training programs, and certifications. She is also the author of Girlfriend, It's Your Time and founder of Brilliant Business Girlfriends.