You probably have a website. And with all due respect, I can comfortably tell you with 99% certainty, from a sales perspective, your website sucks.
Most service websites are like the nasty drunk leering guy at the pub who won’t stop looking at your boobs. All that guy can see is what he wants, and he’s not really thinking about “you” at all.
Graphic imagery I know, but tell me, does your website basically say “HEY! I’M A BOOKKEEPER.. PLEASE PLEASE HIRE ME! FOR THE LOVE OF BUDDHA, I SWEAR I’M A GOOD WORKER!”?
Marketing is all about the art of seduction, and your website has to be an embodiment of this.
1. Offer Something Valuable In Exchange For An Email Address
So we’re going to start off slow.. maybe.. “Hey, couldn’t help but notice you’re here, can I buy you a drink?”. (and no, I was never very good at picking up in bars)
Offer something for free, like a genuinely useful report or checklist that’ll be helpful to your target market. It’s got to be truly useful and desirable though, otherwise it won’t work.
And while you’re giving away free stuff, why not get their email in return? Assuming you’re offering something of value, most people will be happy to make the trade.
With an email address, you can get in contact whenever you like, offering up great reasons why, when they’re ready, you’re the go-to accountant or bookkeeper for their business.
2. Create a low ticket item you can sell your email list on
A lot of people balk at this, but if you’re truly the professional you say you are, then you have a stack of info your target market doesn’t, and that info can be turned into a product.
Great options include a 50 point tax deductions checklist, or 20 ways to minimise your tax this year, 60 ways to increase cash-flow, drop overheads, or any one of the million possibilities out there. Just remember, target this little intro product specifically to your target market. That’ll make ‘em feel special, and they’ll be more likely to take up the offer.
Once you’ve come up with your product, whack it in Word or Powerpoint, brand the bejeezus out of it, and save as a pdf. Do this for your freebie as well, but this one should be more valuable.
Now create a simple sales page selling the product, and whenever someone signs up for the freebie, redirect them through to your offer.
The technical side of exactly how to do all this is beyond the scope of this post, but a couple of useful resources are Optimizepress and X-Theme. Both rock, let you build sales pages, are relatively cheap, and work on WordPress.
If the last paragraph feels to you like it was written in a foreign language, then click here
3. Offer one hour of your time to offer your expertise
People struggle with this one, but I promise you it’s true. If you are the professional you say you are, then your time is worth money, and you should never give it away for free.
So the next step is to create a sales page offering 1 hour of your time for $150, or whatever your hourly rate is. Don’t make it too cheap or it won’t have value, and you’ll undermine the whole “expert” thing you’ve got going on.
There are a couple of benefits to doing this. The first is that you’ll never again have to spend hours on the phone offering free advice in the hopes that someone will hire you.
The second is no-one will pay you for your consulting time unless they think you’re a bit of an expert. So you’re already a bit of a rockstar in their eyes. And deep down, even though you’re both on the call for “advice”, the client is hoping you’re the magic person who can do it all for them and take away their bookkeeping pain.
So always, repeat, always finish off a consulting call by offering a solution where they pay you to do their bookkeeping on a permanent basis. Always!
4. Sell ‘em the whole package
At this stage, you’re no longer that leery guy in the pub. You’re that good looking piece of beefsteak who has done everything right, and said all right things. You may not go home together, but it’s time to put the offer on the table and take your chances.
Remember, you’ve got their email address, so you can always get in contact later.
So offer the best you’ve got. Create a sales page detailing exactly what your premium offer looks like. Include all the details, all of the costs, and of course as many testimonials from your previously happy clients as you can stuff onto the page.
By this stage it shouldn’t be too hard a sell. If your prospect has gone through all of the previous steps then they want your services, or they soon will, and really they’re just figuring out whether they can afford it.
So provide as much value for money as you can, testimonials out the wazoo, and an ironclad get-out-of-jail-free guarantee so they know if it all does goes pear shaped they have a safe exit option.