What you’ll learn in this episode:
Many believe that consult calls are this tool that we use to manipulate people into buying or doing something that they don’t want to buy or do.
I’m here to tell you that that is simply not true.
Consult calls, when done correctly, can be a great way to help potential customers solve a problem they already have, and to grow your business at the same time.
Today, I’m going to be giving you ways to transform your thinking around consult calls so that you can convert clients to paying customers, help them solve their problems, and make a lot of money in the process.
Here’s a glance at this episode:
- People won’t come to a consult call unless they have a problem that needs your solution.
- Be in thought leadership energy.
- You need to spend more time listening and asking questions than talking.
- The client is not the expert.
- Speak the client’s language to solve their pain point.
- Objections are a gift.
Mentioned in this episode:
Episode 6: Weekly Success Rituals.
Work/Connect with me:
Consults That Convert FREE Training
[01:00] Jessica: Hello, everyone, and welcome back to this week’s episode of the practical mindset podcast. I’m Jess Miller and I’m so excited to have you here this week to talk about an important part of your business, and that is around consultation calls. Today, we’re going to talk about how to run consults that actually convert in a way that you can understand your true buyer needs, overcome objections, and position your offer as the best solution possible.
[01:31] I am on a mission to make running a consult call fun and easy, and to bust through the belief that building a business and getting clients is hard, and that selling needs to be graspy and icky, and relentless, to be effective. A thriving business is built on utilizing a simple system that converts clients consistently, because without them, you have no business. Being able to have a business that thrives without spending all of your precious time and money hunting down and chasing clients should not be something that we only dream about. So, in this episode, you will learn about a simple system that every business owner can master. It will not only help you stop doing the things that are costing you your time, sanity, and lots of potential paying customers, but with a few easy tweaks, you’ll be on your way to closing sales and making the money that you desire, and frankly, that you deserve.
[02:25] From the moment that I changed the way that I viewed my customers and that I ran my consult calls, my world has completely changed, my business changed, and the amount of money that I was making changed significantly, and yours is about to change, too, so let’s jump right in.
[02:42] I want to start with helping you understand what conducting a consult is all about. Most people think that consult calls are this thing that is there to manipulate people into doing what they don’t want to do, or convincing them to buy something that they don’t want to buy, and I’m here to tell you that it is none of those things. Conducting a consult call, it’s about helping people. It is about helping them solve the problem that they want to solve.
[03:14] Here is a newsflash: people will not come to a consult call with you unless they are struggling with something, unless they are in pain around something that they don’t want to be in pain around anymore. They come to you and that consult call so that they can solve their problem. You are not in the business, you should not, and you cannot convince anyone of doing anything, and you certainly don’t possess the power to force them beyond their will to think or do something that they don’t want to do. Anyone listening to this podcast, have you ever tried to get anyone to do something that they don’t want to do? Even a 3 year old, like “eat your carrots.” It is not possible.
[03:58] I know this might be bad news for some people but you don’t possess the power to force people to do things against their will. So, consult calls are not this icky thing that are there to manipulate people. They are actually there to help people who have a problem get what they want, and when someone comes to a consult call, like I said, it’s because they have a problem they want solved, and if you run the consult called properly, and you are truly in service of your potential client and helping them get what they need, then your role on that consult call is to do nothing more than help them make a decision. A decision to either say yes to the solution to their problem, also known as your offer, your program, your package, or to say no and not to buy it or not to move forward. It’s that’s simple. You’re there to help them ask questions and get information to make a decision.
[04:55] Before you get on any consult calls, this is the first thing I want you to do. I want you to answer these three questions. Number one is, what problem are you solving? Number two is, what is your solution to that problem? Number three is, how is that different and unique than any other solution that is in the marketplace? Before you get on a consult call, I want you to be able to answer those three questions.
[05:21] Next is understanding your role on the consult call, and why are you there? When people get on a consult call, there’s you and your potential client. What is your role in that? I am here to tell you that your role on a consult call is to be the leader. It’s to be in thought leadership energy. It’s to show up in a way that you are taking control of that call. Here is the most important thing to remember: you are the expert, not your client. You are leading the call. When you show up in that energy, it sends a message to your potential client that you know exactly what they’re struggling with, that you know what you’re talking about, and that most importantly, you can help them solve the problem. When you show up in this energy of confidence and certainty, that energy that is steeped in the belief that you understand the pain points that this person has, you have the thing that can solve their problem, and you can get them the results that they want, they are listening. They are listening because they are sensing that energy and they’re getting that vibe from you. It is really important that you show up in that energy, in that role as the leader, and that you run that call in a way to get information from them so that you can get clear on what they’re struggling with, and that you can listen to their responses through the ears of your expertise, through the expert ears, which is you. So, first and foremost, when you get on that call, you want to be in thought leadership energy. You want to be in that energy of confidence and certainty.
[07:16] Next is, you want to spend a lot of time listening and asking questions, and very little time just talking. The biggest problem I see in the way that people run consult calls is that people talk way too much. This is a huge mistake. I will share with you that I had a client who was running probably three to four consult calls a week and she was converting no clients to paying customers. Finally, we started to dig in, and I said to her “tell me about the people that you’re talking to you. Tell me about how many consult calls you have a week. All the things,” and they were all there. She was talking to the right people and she had a consistent flow of consult calls on her calendar. When we started to dig deeper, and I asked the question “how long are these calls? How often? How much are you on the phone with them?” She said to me “an hour and a half each.” I almost fell out of my chair. She was on those calls way too long. She was talking and talking, and talking, about things that the client didn’t care about, they weren’t bought into yet, and they were just running too long. They were too unruly. One of the keys to constructive consult calls is that you listen more than you talk.
[08:42] Many times, clients come to the calls with all sorts of ideas. I could tell you, as a business coach, I talk to people all day long. I have tons of consults a week, so many people come to the table with “I’m going to tell you. I’m going to run the call. Here’s what’s wrong. Here’s what I need. I would say 8 1/2 times out of 10, they are completely wrong. They come to the table with all sorts of ideas about what they need, but in reality, they don’t really know, and you know why? Because they’re not the expert. They’re also inside the bottle trying to read the label. Have any of you ever had an experience where you’re so close to it, you can’t see it? That is most of the clients that come to these consult calls. So, what you want to do is you want to be in that thought leadership energy, and you want to ask a lot of questions, and then you want to shut up and listen, and you want to hear what they’re telling you.
[09:41] So, the key to getting clear on what’s going on with your potential client, is to ask questions and listen. The better you listen, and the better you ask the questions, the better you will be able to understand the issues, run it through your expert filter, and essentially diagnose what is really going on with these clients. You can also determine in that part of the conversation whether you really have something that is going to help them, whether your solution is really a solution to their problem, so listening and asking questions more than you talk is crucial.
[10:21] It’s also the best way to understand how to tailor your solution, also known as your offer, your program, your package to their problem, and leverage their words when you’re positioning that solution. So, when you can listen well enough and repeat back to your client, potential client, that you heard them and you’re speaking in their language, and then you connect the dot to the solution and results that they’re going to get, it is so much more powerful. They feel heard, you’re speaking their language, and you’re able to pull that all through and connect the dots. So, listen and ask questions a lot more than you talk.
[11:06] The next piece just dovetailing off of what I just said is, you want to tailor their solution to their pain point and you want to speak about the results that they’re going to get from working with you. So, when you listen, when you ask this question, and you listen to your potential customers, and you’re able to repeat back what they’re saying and their pain point, and I often use the language “So, what I hear you saying you’re struggling with or looking for is…” and I get agreement with that from the client, so they’re either going to say to me “Yep, that’s what I’m struggling with” or “that’s what I said.” Or they might say “no, actually, it’s like this.” They’ll correct you. They’ll give you some clarity. So, when you’re able to repeat that back to them and you’re able to get clear on that, then you can tell them about your solution in relation to that pain point that you just got clarity on, and then you can position that recommendation, focus on the result that they want to get, tailored to getting out of the pain point that they’re in, utilizing your solution, and getting these results.
[12:18] For instance, let’s pretend that someone came to you and said, I actually had a client that actually had this problem once. They were struggling with their time, so I was trying to help them get more structured around their time, because what they were telling me was that they felt like they had no time. They were constantly behind the 8 ball, and they had no time to spend with their children doing the thing that they loved because they were constantly running on this hamster wheel with their business. So, one of the things that I told them was, you need to get really intentional about your time. One of the ways that I do that is I have a weekly ritual that actually is discussed in one of the podcast episodes here, so if you haven’t listened to that about the weekly ritual, I highly recommend it. I mentioned to them you need a weekly ritual, and you need to include in that very intentional time blocks on your calendar to help manage your time, but when I was selling them on it, I said to them utilizing the weekly ritual and time blocking intentionally allowed you to get more time in your week, so instead of running behind this 8 ball all the time, you can instead be spending an hour watching cartoons with your kids in the evening.
[13:35] Now, what my client doesn’t want to buy is a time blocking system, especially for someone like this particular client who the structure of that feels like suffocating. If I tried to sell them on a time blocking system and spoke about it in those terms that weren’t their words, it would not resonate with them, but when I’m talking about it as a system or as something as a tool that could help them rein their time in so that they can spend an hour a day watching cartoons with their children, now they’re listening because the result, the watching TV with their kids is what they want. The pain is the spinning in the mismanagement of time. That is the key. So, if I repeat back to them “I hear that you’re spinning and you feel like you’re constantly behind the 8 ball with your time, and what you really want is to be sitting, spending time with your children, you should consider this tool that I use, the weekly ritual that allows you to be intentional with your time, and that can get you faster than ever on that couch with your kid to watch cartoons every night.” Now they’re listening, and now they can connect the dots. So, I can’t stress enough how important it is to stay focused on those results that they will get, not the features, and that you’re making the recommendation or the offer, that solution, it’s connected to the pain point, and what the client is experiencing.
[15:08] So many times, I see people step out of that thought leadership energy, they barrage the clients with all these features of all these options, and then they put the client in the position to come up with a solution to the problem during the call. That is a losing battle. They want to hear from you, they want your perspective and your expert opinion on what they need, and you don’t want to make them do the work. So, you want to pinpoint that pain point in their words, you want to tailor the solution to that pain point, and you want to speak to them in terms of the results, and you want to offer them a solution, “here’s my opinion, here’s what I would suggest you do, this, this, and this. What do you think?” The more confused someone gets, the more options you give them, the more they will never buy from you, and if they can’t connect the dots to what they’re struggling with what you’re offering and what the result is going to be, they will not buy from you. They will be too confused to be able to move through that process with you.
[16:18] Last, but not least, the real selling starts with the objections. So many people fear objections. They dread them. It’s one of the top reasons people give when asked about why they don’t like consult calls or selling. They’re always worried about getting the objection, and it’s also one of the top reasons people can’t convert potential clients to paying customers, because they’re in this fear of the objection. They don’t want it to happen and they don’t know how to handle it, but here’s the beauty of objections – they are a gift. I am going to repeat this for the people in the back. Objections are a gift, because when someone gives you an objection, they are telling you exactly what is keeping them from buying your product or service, and the more that you can understand the objection, the more that you can predict what they could be, the more you successfully navigate those, and you could help people move through those objections and overcome them, the more clients you will be able to convert, and the easier it will be to convert them. So, you want objections to come up.
[17:25] I know people are listening to this podcast right now and they’re like “Jess is crazy. I might have to hang up. I don’t want objections,” but I’m here to tell you, yes, you do. Yes, you do. Right now, your brain is just on autopilot and in this habitual place that objections are bad, but you want them, and most importantly, you want them to come up on the consult call, because when someone is speaking to you on that call and they tell you an objection, you can actually help them overcome it. You can navigate it and it is so much easier than trying to do that off the call or after the point, or worse than anything, they don’t bring it up at all and you can never overcome it. So, then you’re just out of there, and then there’s no way you can reconnect with them.
[18:13] There are so many incredible things that you can do with these objections, once you start to collect them and understand them, that goes far beyond the consult call, so you want to really listen and welcome those objections. The selling starts with the objections, and that is really where you can partner with your potential client with no agenda to help them get through that, and that’s where it builds trust and confidence in that consult call. So, real selling starts with the objections, always. Do not be afraid of those objections coming up, because once you can navigate through them, that is really where all of that magic happens on that consult call.
[19:01] To recap, conducting a consult call is about helping people. Understanding your role on the consult call, and being in leadership energy is crucial. You need to ask questions and listen much more than you talk in order to determine your clients’ needs so that you can position your solution in relation to their needs and their pain point. You want to always tailor your solution to the pain point and you want to talk about what the person will get in terms of results and not features. You also want to stand in that leadership energy and be the leader, and offer them solutions on that call as you connect the dots, and you want to always remember that real selling starts with the objections. Objections are a gift, and that is where all of the magic happens. Having a thriving business is dependent on not only having a strong offer, which I talk about all the time, which is the cornerstone of any business that makes money. No exceptions, but it’s also being able to sell your potential clients on your offer and to be able to convert them to a paying customer.
[20:20] It is not enough just to have a great offer. You need to be able to run those consult calls or that conversation, sales call, whatever it is you want to call it, with ease and structure so that people can see how your solution, your offer, solves their pain point and gets them the results that they want, and the more that you do this, the more that I have seen my clients do this, the better I have gotten at this, the more my business has flourished, the more fun it has become, and the easier it has been to move people through that funnel, and frankly, to help them get through the pain and the things that are keeping them stuck, and what is more beautiful than that? Helping people get out of that rut or that stuckness, or get the solution to their problems so they can move on and live a happier life, have a thriving business, or whatever it is that your gifts, your offer, solves.
[21:19] This is such an important piece of my business that I have actually created an entire training called Consults That Convert that dovetail with this podcast, so if you’re interested in digging deeper and getting your own personalized training around consults that convert and getting an amazing workbook that also takes you through this process, please head over to www.jessicamillercoaching.com to get your free webinar and get that workbook so that you can work through each one of these steps, with me as your guide every step of the way. At the end, not only will you feel more confident about the consult calls that you’re running and how you’re engaging with your potential clients, but you will also be converting clients through those consult calls with ease.
Till next week, everyone. Have a great week.