How NOT To Fall At The Last Fence

As Independent Professionals we generate attention and interest by focusing on results and benefits, not on the process. But that's not enough to actually make the sale. The initial reaction we get from our marketing message is key. We've put in the work on our audio logo … it's powerful. We have the attention of an ideal client … they're interested. But then they start to get analytical and ask themselves questions. For many self-employed professionals this is where it can all start to fall apart.

Your prospect begins to wonder: "How does this work?" "Will this work for me?" "How long will it take?" "Is that really possible?" "Who else has done it?" "Can they prove it?"

If you do not answer these questions, you're going to fall at the last fence.

When marketing your services, the biggest challenge for you should not be finding your ideal clients and getting their attention. If you take the right steps to create a powerful personal marketing message and get it seen and heard by those in your target market; that's relatively easy. The biggest challenge is to prove that you can produce the results you promise.

And when most Self-employed Professionals are asked to prove that they can deliver results guess what happens? Believe it or not, they start to talk about the process. They talk about how they do what they do.

"You can reduce costs by 27%?" … "Great, how do you do that?" "Well we gather all your information together and then we use this great new piece of software called Ezymaster that
collates and analyzes …. blah blah.

Is not that interesting … No it's not

I promise you, a prospect for your services is not looking for that kind of answer – almost never! That's not proof. In fact, it sounds a bit like you're hot on how, but cool on results.

What your prospect is probably wondering is:

What companies have you reduced costs by 27% or more?

Were these companies similar to my company?

Was the process relatively easy or long and involved?

Did it take up much of the owner's time?

How long did it take to get results?

How did they measure the actual results?

If you can not answer questions like these , as far as your prospect is concerned, you have no proof that you can deliver and they've lost interest.

You must answer questions like "How do you do that?" by giving an answer that persuades. The easiest and most powerful way to do this is through "Success Stories" which will make a solid case for your services.

You could say something like:

"The best way to answer that question is by telling you about a client we worked with recently. They were in the same industry as you and were frustrated with rising costs and were looking to make savings so that they did not need to put up prices to their customers. We did some assessments (they're not interested how) and then helped them make some changes that would make then significant savings ".

"Within six months by conservative estimates, we'd saved the company 27% on their overall running costs compared to the previous six month period".

Whatever the results, facts or figures for your particular business, if I were you, I'd spend a lot of time developing and practicing these Success Stories until you can tell them with confidence and clarity. Your success as an Independent Professional might just depend upon it.

Copyright Anne Duncan 2006