Client calls or meetings are probably not the easiest or most fun part of your day. In fact, they can be downright frustrating. You’re trying to establish a rapport, get to know the person, and determine whether or not they need your product or service — all while trying to keep things friendly and professional.
In order to be a successful consultant, you need to be able to quickly and accurately diagnose potential clients’ problems. This is not always easy, as clients may not always be forthcoming about what is really wrong. Most consultants end up just taking a shot in the dark, hoping that they can figure it out as they go along.
This is not really an effective way or good way to do business.
If you want to be successful, you need to be able to quickly and accurately diagnose potential clients’ problems. This article will show you how.
Here are a few things that are driving away your clients:
1. You’re not available when they need you
If your clients can’t get a hold of you when they need to, they’ll quickly find someone else who is more available. Make sure you’re responsive to their needs and you’ll keep them happy.
A good example of this is if you’re not available for phone calls during business hours. If your potential clients can’t reach you, they’ll assume you’re not interested in their business and move on.
2. You don’t listen to them
If you want to keep your clients happy, you need to listen to them. They know their business better than you do, so take the time to listen to their needs and wants. Only then can you provide them with the services they need.
Not listening could mean you miss important details, misinterpret details or intention, or try to steer the conversation to a specific service you are “selling” because that is popular at the moment.
3. You’re not organized
If you want to impress your clients, you need to be organized. This means having all the information you need at your fingertips, being on time for calls and meetings, and meeting deadlines.
If a client feels like they’re constantly chasing you for information or that you ’re constantly forgetting things, they’ll start to look elsewhere.
An example could be if you are constantly sending reminders to yourself or colleagues about a project, this needs to be addressed.
4. You don’t communicate effectively
Effective communication is key in any client relationship. This means being clear and concise when you communicate, whether it’s in person, over the phone, or via email.
If a client feels like they’re constantly having to guess what you mean or that you’re not being clear, it will create frustration and mistrust.
An example of this could be if you are sending long, rambling emails that don’t get to the point. Another example could be if you are constantly interrupting your client when they are trying to explain something to you.
If you find that you need to work on your communication skills, there are plenty of resources out there that can help, such as books, articles, and online courses.
5. You’re not flexible
Clients want to work with businesses that are flexible and willing to adapt to their needs. If you’re not willing to make changes or adjustments when a client asks for them, it will reflect poorly on you and your business.
An example of this would be if a client asks you to change the date of an event that you are planning for them, but you refuse because “it’s too late to change now.” This will make the client feel like you are not willing to accommodate their needs, and they may take their business elsewhere.
To avoid this, always be open to making changes and adjustments when a client asks for them. This will show that you are flexible and willing to work with them to ensure that they are happy with the final product.
Speaking to the client directly
It is kind of obvious that you need to speak to the client in person. However, there are a few ways you can go about it, among which lets discuss two most commonly followed: Sales call (pitching) and Conversation (pitching in).
Sales Call (Pitching)
Sales calls, as the name indicates, involve a sales pitch. A sales pitch is a formal presentation of your product or service that is designed to generate interest and ultimately, sales.
Typically, they have the following characteristics:
- Well-planned and structured
- Communicate the value of what you is being offered
- Highlighting the specific features and advantages of the product or service
- Delivered in an engaging and professional manner
When planning a sales pitch, although highly efficient, it is limited in its effectiveness. This is because most people definitely do not like being sold to. Additionally, most people have the attention span of a goldfish and are turned off by long, drawn out sales pitches.
This is where the unique art of storytelling plays a role. By using stories in your sales pitch, you can more effectively engage your audience, communicate the value of what you are offering, and ultimately make the sale.
However, here arises the problem of personalization. With a sales pitch, it is you who are mostly talking and throwing information out. It could be about your services, about apparent problems that exist and why the client would need your product or service, etc. There is not a lot of listening going on and you miss two things: The client’s perspective and new information from the client.
Conversation (Pitching in)
Having a conversation with your client affords you a primary advantages right off the bat:
You get to learn about your client. This is essential if you wish to personalize the conversation later on. You build a rapport with the client. If they feel like they are being heard, they will be more likely to respond positively and more openly to you. This will allow you to zero in on your client’s expectations, pain points, and identify long and short term goals and areas that you can start working on that will give the client the maximum benefit.
Conversation also allows you to build trust with the client. If they feel like they can trust you, they will be more likely to tell you what they really want and need. This way, you can avoid any misunderstandings or miscommunications down the line.
Conversation allows you to create the right vibe for the session. By starting off on the right foot, you can set the tone for the entire session and ensure that both you and the client are on the same page.
Lastly, having a conversation with your client puts you in a better position to negotiate. If you know what the client wants and needs, you can better tailor your services to fit their budget and expectations. This way, everyone is happy with the end result.
Here, there are two critical points that we need to discuss: Asking questions and dealing with objections
Asking the right questions is important because it allows you to get information from the client that you would not be able to get otherwise. This information can help you understand the client’s needs better and provide them with a more customized service.
Questions allow you to assess the following:
Asking questions allows you to get a clear understanding of what the client is expecting from you. It allows you to assess what success looks like to a client. What is their ideal outcome? What would they consider a good result? This helps you to set realistic expectations for both yourself and the client.
Asking questions allows you to get an understanding of the client’s needs. This can help you determine what services or products would be most beneficial to them. It can also help you understand how best to serve them.
Discover client’s pain points:
Asking questions allows you to get an understanding of what the client is struggling with. What are their pain points? What challenges are they facing? This can help you determine how you can best help them. It can also help you understand what services or products would be most beneficial to them.
Some questions you could ask include:
-What worries you most about your current situation?
-What would be the ideal outcome of this situation?
-What has been your experience with similar situations in the past?
-How do you feel about the progress you’ve made so far?
Asking questions can also help you build rapport with the client. It can help you understand them better and establish a connection with them. This can make them more likely to trust you and do business with you. Asking questions can help you understand the client’s needs better and figure out how you can best help them.
It can also help you identify any potential objections they might have. Asking questions can also show that you’re interested in the client and their business. It can make them feel valued and appreciated. Asking questions can also help you build relationships with clients. It can help you connect with them on a deeper level and establish trust.
Asking questions to diagnose problems
How to ask the right questions:
Its not enough to just ask questions, you need to ask targeted ones. Targeted questions are those that get to the heart of the matter and help you understand the client’s needs. They should be specific, relevant, and meaningful. It helps also to prepare background on the client, assess them objectively, and create a tentative framework of solutions to discuss with the client.
Some tips for asking targeted questions:
- Listen carefully to the client: This will help you identify any keywords or phrases that you can use to formulate your questions.
- Don’t be afraid to ask follow-up questions: This shows that you are engaged in the conversation and are interested in learning more.
- Avoid yes or no questions: These types of questions don’t provide much information and can often lead to dead-ends.
- Ask open-ended questions: These are questions that can’t be answered with a simple yes or no. They require the person to elaborate on their answer, which can give you more insight into what they are thinking.
Your Client’s Problem Isn’t Always ‘THE’ Problem
Here are some examples of targeted questions you could ask a client:
- Can you tell me more about your business?
- What are your goals for this project?
- Who is your target audience?
- What kind of tone do you want to set with your content?
- What are some of the express challenges or difficulties you’re facing with this project?
- Can you give me some examples of the type of content you’re looking for?
- What kind of topics are you interested in?
- Is there anything else you think I should know about this project?
- Do you have any questions for me?
Asking targeted questions will help you to understand your client’s needs better so that you can create content that is relevant and engaging for them. It will also help to build a stronger relationship with your client, as they will see that you are truly interested in helping them to meet their goals.
How to deal with objections
Dealing with objections is one of the key skills you need to learn when selling products or services. A key fact to remember is that nearly everyone who raises an objection is actually interested in what you’re offering – they just need a little more convincing. Here are some tips on how to deal with objections effectively:
Listen to the objection carefully and try to understand the real reason behind it:
Often, the objection is not really about the product or service itself, but about something else entirely. If you can identify the real issue, you can address it directly. For example, if someone says they don’t have the budget for your product, you could ask if cost is the only issue or if there are other concerns as well.
Be honest but respectful, not just polite:
People can tell when you’re being disingenuous, so don’t try to gloss over the objection or pretend it’s not a big deal. At the same time, avoid getting defensive or argumentative – that will just make the situation worse. Disagreeing with a client or debating is not necessarily a bad thing, provided you do so respectfully.
Acknowledge the objection:
Let the person know that you’ve heard and understand their objection. This shows that you’re listening and trying to see things from their perspective. For example, you could say something like, “I understand that you’re concerned about the cost.”
Be open to feedback:
If a client has an objection, it’s important to listen to what they’re saying and be open to their feedback. It may be that they have a valid point that you hadn’t considered before. If you’re able to take on board
Stick to your point of view and services:
If, after hearing the objection, you still believe that your product or service is the best option for the client, be confident in sticking to your guns. Explain why you believe that your solution is the best one, using clear and concise arguments. For example, you could say something like, “I understand your concerns, but our product is actually the best fit for you on the market because of X, Y and Z.”
If you’re able to effectively communicate why your product or service is the best solution for the client, you’re more likely to be able to overcome their objections and win their business.
When the client lowballs you
Dealing with Price Objections
One of the most commonplace objections that salespeople expressly face is price. In some cases, the objection may be legitimate – the client may not have the budget for your product or service. But in other cases, the client may simply be trying to get a lower price.
If you’re faced with a price objection, there are a few things you can do to overcome it.
First, try to understand why the client is objecting. Is it because they lack a clear budget? Or are they just trying to get a lower price? If it’s the latter, you may be able to negotiate a better price.
Second, try to provide value that justifies the price. If you can show the client how your product or service will save them money or make them money, they may be more willing to pay the asking price.
Third, don’t be afraid to walk away from the deal if the client is unwilling to budge on price. In some cases, it’s better to walk away from a deal than to lower your prices and devalue your product or service.
Remember, you don’t have to accept every offer that comes your way. If a client is unwilling to pay what you’re worth, it’s better to walk away and find a client who is.
By following these tips, you can learn how to negotiate like a pro and get the best possible price for your product or service.
Clients are not always going to be easy to deal with. You will encounter clients who are difficult, uncooperative, and even downright impossible to work with. However, by following the tips in this article, you can learn how to deal with difficult clients and get the best possible results for your business.
If you found this article helpful, be sure to check out our other business articles for more great tips and advice. Thanks for reading!