How to Convince a Client to Use Your Services
in Small Business Growth on April 12, 2021Share with your friends or professional network
While marketing can bring awareness and add credibility to your services, there is more to growing your business that all comes down to you. Scary thought? Shouldn’t be. After all, you went into business for yourself because you believed in you. And you don’t need a sales or marketing background to make others believe in you. So, let’s talk about how to convince a client to use your services.
TIPS TO PREPARE FOR ENGAGING CLIENTS
Get to know the client. Everyone is not your client. Everyone doesn’t need your services. So instead of casting a wide net, zero in on clients who align with your business. Here’s how:
- Connect with them on, or at least examine, their social media to get a feel for their personality. Are they super buttoned up and serious? Are they laid back and casual?
- Check out their website. What are they doing for their customers? Can you help them better reach or engage their customers in some way?
- View their customers’ reviews and feedback. Customer feedback is a good indicator of their pain points. Can you help them improve their customers’ experience with your services?
- Use their services or buy their product to get a firsthand experience of being their customer. Think of ways you can help improve their customer experience.
Get to know the competition. But don’t bash them to clients. You shouldn’t need to do that to convince a client to use your services instead of a competitor’s. Instead do this:
- Look at their website. By checking out your competitors, you will know what their selling points are and possibly find some opportunities to differentiate yourself from them.
- Check out their ads. What do you think they are doing right? Are you also doing/saying those things? If you look at enough competitors, you just might find that some traits are “table stakes” and that you have to mention them somewhere if everyone else is.
- Look into their social media. Are they posting “thought leadership” content that is aimed at helping customers alleviate their pain points? Could you speak to these points better on your own social media or website?
TIPS FOR WHEN YOU’RE ENGAGING CLIENTS
Listen instead of being a talking head. The big moment arises when you get the chance to meet over the phone, internet, or in person. Time to tell them what they need? No. Here’s what you should do instead:
- Ask them what they need. Create a series of questions that will help your customers tell you what they’re looking for and what problems they have that you can solve. For example, if the problem the client has is that they want to use your services, but they feel they don’t have the time to hire you for the work, what options can you give the client? Are you willing to work evenings and weekends instead?
- When you get a chance to talk, be a trusted guide. Using your experience, how have you seen other clients overcome their objections. You may have no way to alleviate their pain points, but you may know it’s better to “rip off the band-aid” and get your services.
Let your work sell itself. Marketing genius and bestselling author Seth Godin says, “People don’t believe what you tell them. They rarely believe what you show them. They often believe what their friends tell them. They always believe what they tell themselves.”
- Sometimes when you are in business for yourself, you don’t take the time to gather examples of your work. If it’s conducive to being a visual aid, make sure to take a photo of before and after.
- If your services are complicated, create a piece of collateral that explains your offerings in a simple (but not simplistic) way. Thinking of Seth Godin’s quote, your goal is for clients to talk themselves into buying from you.
AFTER YOU HAVE ENGAGED THEM AS CLIENTS
Mind your manners. Thank your clients, don’t forget them, and don’t let them forget you. Here are some things you can do:
- Send an official “thank you”. First things first. Whether it’s a handwritten note or a short email, make sure they know that you appreciate that they trusted you with their business. And make sure your contact information is noticeable so that they may have it in case they want to use you again or refer you.
- Keep them in mind. Did you find out something about them in the process of working with them? If you see something online that would interest them, why not share it with them and deepen your relationship?
- Don’t let them forget you. You don’t have to inundate them with communications, but an electronic newsletter containing a note from you and some helpful blog posts and a video may be a great way to keep top of mind.
Convincing a client to use your services does require some thinking and effort on your part, but it doesn’t require you to be a sales pro. That said, you may have to get a handle on other aspects of your business so that you have the time needed to set yourself up for growth. Are you treading water, not sinking or swimming? Try managing your projects and cash flow forecasting with FuelGauge, and free up the time you need to work on your business.