Turning Appointments Into Sales
Lead generation systems are all the rage these days, but what consultants really need is an effective client generation system instead. Let me explain.
The term “client generation system” may be a new term for you, but one that you should learn well. The reality is, as a consultant, you may only be after certain clients. Your capacity may be maxed out at five or six clients. So, the idea that you’re going to set something up that generates thousand of leads and visits, may be overkill. This approach likely won’t lead you to the results you’re looking for and will create more work for you than necessary. To set up a client-generating system that will help to streamline your efforts, follow the steps below.
1. Set appointment goals
The first thing you need to be thinking is “if I have X amount of clients that I can work with, what’s the number of appointments that I need to get to achieve that number?” The graph below can act as a starting point to get you thinking about your goals. Those number will change based off your rates, products, and services.
Narrowly define your target audience
You want to narrowly define who your target audience is, instead of just going after anybody who has a business. Ask yourself who you can help the most the fastest. This is the group you’ll have the greatest impact on and who you can potentially bring in immediately.
Build your audience
Once you have a target audience in mind, you need to figure out a way to build it up. There are a variety of ways today to do this including advertising, buying a list, or even joining a group.
One of my favorite methods to get this done is by building custom audiences on Facebook. If you have a list of existing customers, you can actually build an audience that looks like your pre-existing list so that you can widen your reach with similar criteria as your original audience.
Create content upgrades
One of the ways to effectively use advertising through Facebook is to create a content upgrade. For example, instead of advertising “hire me” everywhere, you should advertise a solution to your audience’s problem through content. To do this well, you need to address a big, obvious problem. For example, if marketers are having a hard time understanding why their competition is ranking higher in search results, you could provide them with a piece of content titled “7 Reasons Your Competition May Be Outranking You in Search Engine Results.”
To get this in front of your audience, build a blog post around that same topic and include the content upgrade as a CTA promotion to a gated offer within the blog post. It won’t be cold marketing because if your audience clicks on the ad because of their interest in the blog post, they’ll already have an interest in your content upgrade. Once people provide their information to access the content upgrade, it’s your job to reach out and follow-up with these opt-ins.
These are the people who have expressed interest in your topic, so now you can reach out to them and offer to provide some value as it relates to their problem, such as a free evaluation. Do this at no cost or commitment in an effort to build trust. The more a person trusts you, the more likely they’ll be to buy from you.
Qualify with research and set a consulting appointment
You also want to make sure you’re researching who these people are. There is so much you can find with a simple Google search these days, and understanding who these leads are is a great way to qualify them. If you only need a handful of appointments, it’s OK to be selective.
Deliver value and plan
Once the appointment arrives, it’s time to knock their socks off! Show them everything that you could do/would do for them and make it difficult to turn you away based on everything you have to offer.
As mentioned, most consultants only have the capacity to work with a handful of clients at any given time, so creating an approach that allows you to get in front of highly qualified, eager prospects, is really the best way to go. Follow the steps above to better streamline your process and close more sales.
Do you have any tips for turning appointments into sales? I’d love to hear them!
If you liked this post, check out our Small Business Guide to Sales.