By Richard Fletcher is a business coach from Preston, England.
- Richard shares his very best tip for quickly raising your game in sales.
When I tell people that my conversion rate is around 83%, rather than the “gold standard” of 25%, I immediately have to show them the paper trail to prove it. Even then they sometimes have a hard time getting their head around this number. This is understandable and I don’t mind letting people examine my methods and results in detail, but it goes to show you how limiting some of the advice from so-called experts can be.
Is there really a tip, a single piece of advice that you can implement today, that will more than double your conversion rate? After all, that’s what all of the adverts and manuals and gurus promise you, only they’re never all that up-front about the secret to getting to a solid yes. Is it possible that you could read this tip in an article right now, and then just go ahead and try it out yourself, perhaps even today?
Going back many years, I was the kid who had to explore, poke, prod and understand everything from computers to hornet’s nests – even when that meant getting messy or landing in trouble. I’m exactly the same today, only now I’m examining, exploring and testing concepts in the world of business. I like to push each technique or piece of advice or wisdom to its limit, just to see if it still holds up. Nothing in the world of business is sacred, and all techniques can be improved and refined.
Because I spent a long time dismantling and rebuilding my approach – deconstructing every aspect of it and holding it up for closer inspection, I now speak to fewer clients but convert more of them. These are also the “right” kind of clients – they’re confident, they’re happy to spend the money and they immediately start to see results. This cuts out an enormous amount of extra work and stress. I’ve neatly by-passed the tyre-kickers, and the well-meaning folk who, with the best will in the world, aren’t going to get there for whatever reason.
The tip itself is very simple, but I encounter resistance whenever I suggest it. The tip is simply to serve up an important piece of vital information very early on in the conversation, instead of saving it for dessert. The resistance comes from the mindset surrounding it, because of the sheer amount of time and money that people have invested into doing things a certain way.
This information isn’t the nuclear codes or the location of the Maltese Falcon. No lives are at stake here, and it’s not that big of a deal – unless you’re rigidly stuck in a certain sales mindset that sadly went out of date a couple of years ago. If you’re building tension and excitement, revealing important details last and then fear-of-losing the ever-loving daylights out of your clients in order to make your 25% conversion rate, then you’re probably annoying and alienating the remaining 75%.
The truth is, high-ticket and experienced and clued-up clients i.e. the kind of people that make things like coaching a dream job, are highly suspicious of this method. However, people are still using it, and they’re still teaching it and recommending it like it’s the latest thing and most effective strategy too. It isn’t.
If you haven’t guessed by now, the tip is to lead with your fee instead of revealing it. Own your fee. Let everyone know what it is. Hiding your fee puts you in the same bracket as chancers, and people who qualified in their field last week and got their friends to write them testimonials. How are high-ticket and knowledgeable clients supposed to tell you apart from someone that’s going to keep lowering their price out of desperation until they get a bite? They can’t tell you from them, so they’re going to go elsewhere, to someone they feel more secure about.
Leading with your fee and being up front can get you business from those looking to buy, and put off those that aren’t prepared to put their money where their mouth is. The best part is, this advice is free, and you don’t even have to change your website or sales literature to put it into practise – although if you implement it in your own strategy, then I’d love to hear all about it.