In the past, a big part of what made a coach successful was their ability to stomach the uncomfortable sales process.
These coaches didn’t mind dealing with the typical roadblocks from prospects in sales appointments – roadblocks like not enough money and bad timing.
They didn’t mind dealing with the pressure. And make no mistake, there’s a ton of pressure on everyone involved in the sales process. There’s pressure on you to perform well in the meeting. There’s pressure on the prospect to make a commitment. And there’s pressure on the whole appointment to deliver the numbers you’re after.
While the traditional way of selling works for some, it definitely doesn’t work for everyone. Most coaches aren’t comfortable with the old way of selling and desperate for an easier way.
When I started, I was deathly afraid of two things. I was afraid of selling because I didn’t want to be rejected. I was also afraid of asking for money because in our family, we never really talked about money.
Because I was scared of selling and asking for money, I decided that I’d just get good at marketing. If I could do that, then the marketing would do all of the heavy lifting for me and selling would be easy.
I realized that what I was really after was a way to flip the traditional sales model upside down and take the pressure out of selling.
That’s when I added Application-Selling.
Application Selling is the selling technique I use everyday. My most successful Blackbelt coaches use it constantly as well. Here’s how it works:
The 3 Keys To Creating An Application-Selling System
Teach Them What To Want
In your marketing, your job is to make two things crystal clear to your prospects.
- Here are the results you want
- Here’s how get them
Yes, it’s that simple.
In the movie Inception, the main characters get into people’s dreams and plant an idea. This is a great metaphor for what we want to do in our marketing when we’re application-selling. We need to facilitate their information gathering and decision making process. We need to get inside their head (figuratively, of course) and set the buying criteria.
You can do this in any type of marketing.
Sending out an email newsletter? In the email, teach them what to want by stressing the importance of getting the results you offer.
In a video blog, podcast, speech, live event, webinar – or whatever else you use to market – your job is to ‘seed the need’. When you’ve planted that seed, they’ll be hot for what you’ve got.
Now, tell them how to get it.
In every sales appointment there’s a prize, and there’s someone who wants that prize. Become the prize. -Taki Moore [Tweet This]
Reverse The Roles
In every sales appointment there’s a prize, and there’s someone who wants that prize.
In traditional selling, the prospect (or their money) is the prize, and you’re the one who wants it. You’re the hunter, they’re the prey.
Unfortunately, that leads to a whole lot of crap on your end! It means you’ve got to put up with their objections and excuses while they’re stalling and negotiating. And you have to work around their high-maintenance behavior. This doesn’t help you and it doesn’t help them.
If you’re the needy one when you sign on a client, how well do you think the coaching relationship will go?
We need to reverse the roles.
There’s a great book by Oren Klaff called Pitch Anything. In a nutshell, it talks about becoming the prize. You need to become the walking, talking, deal of a lifetime by understanding the cost of not doing business with you.
Think, “What will it cost them if they don’t hire me?”
Reversing the roles only truly works if you’ve taught your prospect what to want in your marketing. The clearer you can be about the value you’ll bring before you ever get to the sales appointment, the easier it is to be in a position of power.
Be the prize.
Assess Their Audition
Most coaches walk into a sales appointment trying impress their prospects. In application-selling, you should go in looking to assess the prospect.
So, you’ve taught them what to want. You’ve seeded the need and you’ve got them hot for what you’re selling. Your mindset isn’t needy because you know you’re the prize.
After that, when you’re booking a sales appointment, give them some homework to do – some kind of an audition. This can be a written application (the ‘application’ in ‘application-selling’), online form, email questionnaire, etc.
Once they send it to you, do a 10-15 minute call where you assess their audition.
This isn’t just for show. You want to assess what kind of client they’ll be. Are they an A-grade client? Or, are they a B, C, or D-grade client?
If they’re not A-grade (or at least have A-grade potential) then it’s not a good fit for you, and you can move on gracefully. If they are great fit, then go forward with a sales appointment.
The Benefits of Application-Selling
When you get this right, it transforms your sales process.
In sales appointments, there will still be objections. The only difference is, you’ll be the one raising them. What if you weren’t the one desperate for a “Yes” in a sales meeting, but the client was.
Then you could say, “I just want to make sure we’re a really good fit here. I’m a bit worried about X, though. Tell me more about that. Are you sure we’re a good match?”
This puts you in a place of authority.
It relieves the pressure from the sales appointment because now, you aren’t the one pushing for the sale. They are!