February 2014 Featured Article
Getting Your Clients to Experience the Transformation
This is especially true for Expertpreneurs™, who dedicate their lives to helping others. Whether it be through life coaching, speaking, publishing, business consulting, or other expert industries, we help people transform their lives.
However, you have to show that dedication from beginning to end.
Earlier, we discussed how to build your product with your prospect's best interests in mind. Something they will desire because they know through communication it will help them get to where they want to be.
But what do you do once they've purchased it?
If you ignore them, a lot of things could go wrong. The excitement could go away after a few days, they might give up, and they may even turn on you.
Winning a customer back after that is nearly impossible, and puts you at risk for a reputation you probably weren't looking to have.
So, I'm going to show you what you can do to ensure your clients not only experience the transformation you promised them, but recognize how much you truly care.
You'll learn the difference between the philanthropist and the greedy businessperson, and why you want to be the former…
Tips and tactics on how to help your clients help themselves…
And how to get glowing testimonials without much extra effort…
Which Side of the Coin Are You?
How you handle customer interactions after a purchase determines how people perceive you. Even with a perfectly crafted product and irresistible offer, customers will quickly turn on you if they feel they've been forgotten, or cheated in any way.
When they reach out to you and get no response, it will cause a problem. You have to make the commitment to be there for them.
If you don't, this may not be the right career for you.
As an Expertpreneur™ myself, I want to work with people who truly care about helping others. Those who will go the extra mile to ensure customers experience the transformation they promised.
Saying that isn't enough, though. You have to show it and live it.
If you release a product and disappear, ignoring those who purchase it, you will be perceived as aloof and uncaring. However, if you follow-up after the sale, encouraging clients to consume the product and contact you with concerns, they will believe you care.
If someone contacts you regarding a return and you don't respond, you will destroy their trust. But, if someone is there to talk to the customer and help them through the return (or even see if they can convince them to give it another try), then you appear committed.
If you run a live event and spend the entire time pitching new products and affiliate offers, you will be accused of trying to squeeze every last dollar out of your clients. Conversely, if you provide useful, actionable information, people will respect you and speak positively about their experience to others.
These comparisons may seem obvious, but you'd be surprised how many people conduct business this way.
Google a few of the classic internet marketing leaders, and you'll see how people's perceptions of them have changed over time. “Guru” has become an ugly word.
Success makes it more and more challenging to connect with individual customers. That's the reality of it. Yet, many still manage to make it work. And you can too.
I'm asking you to make a commitment to yourself and to your clients. That you will always put the needs, problems, desires and aspirations of those you wish to help first. The money will come; as long as you remain connected to my world, I'll make sure of that.
And with that commitment, I promise you will not only run a successful and prosperous business, but enjoy the satisfaction of a large and dedicated “fan base” who believe in you and experience real transformation, thanks to your efforts.
Getting the Job Done Right
Since you are helping people transform their lives, it is deeply important you see their transformation through. Not only because success stories are integral to spreading your word and your business, but also because that's the true mark of your success as a coach, consultant, speaker or author.
The unfortunate reality is… the 80/20 rule applies to almost anything in life. It's likely that 8 out of 10 of your clients won't complete the product or program they purchased from you.
However, there are many things you can do to reduce the likelihood of them not achieving the promised benefit of your product or service. And reduce returns.
First of all, as I've said time and again, you must congratulate them on their purchase. Preparing a strong follow-up to a purchase reduces buyer's remorse, and reminds them of why they bought it in the first place. While affirming that they did indeed make a good decision.
It should also encourage them to contact you if they are ever in need of assistance.
To take this a step further, as part of your product or service, you could offer a recurring Q&A call with clients for a predetermined length of time. Perhaps once a month for six months. So they can call in to have their questions answered.
Not only does this encourage them to reach out if they're feeling doubtful or having difficulty with something, but it also holds them accountable to keep working through the program. They won't want to be behind the other “students”, or be viewed as a “bad student” by you, their trusted advisor.
The next level to this would be setting up a moderated forum or a Groupsite for them to chat amongst themselves. With you chiming in when a big discussion starts up.
Connecting your clients to each other is another way to keep them involved with your program and brand. They will form their own mastermind groups and discuss their issues with others who are going through the same experience.
This will benefit your business in a few very important ways: you'll connect deeply with people who are passionate about the transformation you promised. Moreover, you'll learn a LOT about your ideal customers. How they speak, what they are thinking, and what is troubling them the most.
Allowing you to provide better support down the line.
Last but not least, you should follow up with unexpected emails and even phone calls, depending on the level of commitment the product requires. People will absolutely love hearing from you, and appreciate your personal attention.
You'll have communicated all along the way, helping them reach their goals. And when they finally feel their lives are what they've dreamed of, you'll be the first person they share that with!
Which is both deeply satisfying, and great to use in your marketing later on.
But sometimes it does take a little bit of prodding to get the full story from people. Perhaps they're busy, or even a bit shy, and don't want to talk about it.
One thing you can do is send out a report card periodically throughout the duration of your coaching or course. Encourage them to not only grade themselves and their growth, but grade you and your product or service.
This will accomplish a few things: you'll break down the barrier of self-evaluation by letting them constructively critique you. You'll encourage communication and growth. And, most relevant to testimonials, you'll be tracking their progress in tangible words or numbers.
Once you've reached the end, contact them. You can connect through email, or social media, or even direct mail or by phone. Talk to them about the report cards. Discuss their journey, encouraging them to analyze their results as they've gone along.
Through this process you will get a lot of insight to the effectiveness of your product or service, and get real stories of their transformation as they progressed through the course.
You'll also bypass the phenomenon of people not recognizing their own growth. They'll see in black and white how things have changed for them, and feel a sense of accomplishment.
Another simpler method would be to send out a survey at the end, asking a few key questions. Make it a call-to-action to see where people are and how they did. You'll probably get some responses from people that may not have been as vocal while working through it.
Now, before you incorporate testimonials into your marketing materials, you have to make sure your clients know and agree to your using them. The most effective ones have names, locations, results from using your product or service, and even pictures attached to them. But if your clients are uncomfortable with anything, you must consult them before using their comments in your marketing.
Their interests come first.
Be sure to ask for written permission (can be in an email), so there's no “he said she said” later. Double confirm everything before taking any action.
Again, if you are doing everything right and truly working with passion and care, these little things won't be a problem. But you should always cover your bases. It makes it easier in the long run.
The Best Kind of Work
Truly, taking the time to see your clients through their transformations is the most rewarding experience you could ask for.
You'll develop wonderful relationships, get strong advocates for your business, and honestly, make more money. People will spread the word about how wonderful you are to anyone who will listen. Because you're making a real difference.
Much better than earning lots of money and not helping others, right?
While these tips require extra time and effort on your part, they will help you stand out from the crowd. So, with your next coaching session, product, service, or course you release, try to incorporate at least one of these methods.
And do a report card for yourself, tracking the difference doing this makes in your business. I think you'll be pleasantly surprised.