Entrepreneurship

The Right Approach to Getting New Clients

June 24, 2013
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Photo Credit: Jeremy Brooks via Compfight cc

In business, I’ve learned you need to have the right approach to getting new clients and building your business.

It’s so easy to be focused on needing to make money, especially when you’re just starting out. The way to make money, however, is to figure out how you can add value to the lives of those in your target market. Do this, and the money will follow.

At first, when offering our free classes for our music school, my approach was, how can I get the most students enrolled the fastest?

I soon learned that this was an awful approach and if I continued the classes with this approach, they would just come across as a big sales pitch for the business.

Instead, I focused on how I could make the classes really helpful and valuable for the parents and students, regardless of whether they enrolled or not.

This method has worked wonders. The parents and students see the great value we offer from a free class, and become confident that they are going to get that much more value from paid lessons.

So, lesson learned, rather than thinking about how to make more money or get more clients, the better approach is to think about how you can help and add more value to the lives of those in your target market.

What has your approach been? Do you need to reconfigure and get back to helping people and adding value?

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16 Comments

  • Reply Ann Musico June 24, 2013 at 6:36 am

    I totally agree Michael. I offer a free health assessment which includes a 30 minute consultation with me and then a written Next Step Action Plan and free gift – with no obligation to go further with me as well as a free 7 Day Challenge people can do on their own that is content rich. My heart is to give people information and help immediately and to let them experience what it would be like to work with me.

    • Reply Michael Good June 24, 2013 at 7:35 am

      That’s great, Ann. It sounds like you’re giving lots away which reminds me how I hear some entrepreneurs, especially in the online space, say they try to give 90%+ away for free!

      • Reply Ann Musico June 24, 2013 at 7:37 am

        Thank you Michael – trusting it is the right thing to do.

    • Reply Alex Barker June 24, 2013 at 8:27 pm

      I really like that idea Ann. In my spare time (no such thing) I work on a career seminar. I might morph that into something more… 😀

  • Reply Alana Mokma June 24, 2013 at 8:36 am

    I’ll have to think about this one. Last week I hosted a free workshop at my house to help a specific group of people discover their passions. It was really fun and my original intention was to be helpful only. My mind did start to go in the direction that if I were to host a few more, I could start charging more for the service. This post is making me considering a different approach. Perhaps this workshop continues to stay free but may be some sort of a per-cursor to a larger service.

    • Reply Claudia Good June 24, 2013 at 5:40 pm

      Love that you are doing this Alana, what a great idea!!!

      • Reply Alana Mokma June 25, 2013 at 9:06 pm

        thanks Claudia! I had SO much fun that night! I wasn’t sure what to expect – esp with it being my first workshop. I loved hearing a couple examples of passions that a few of the participants came up with. Some were mind blowing. 🙂

    • Reply Michael Good June 25, 2013 at 3:27 pm

      Alana, love the workshop idea. How do you think it’d work if you kept the workshops free to drum up attention and get people aware of you and then have something on the back end like personal or group coaching?

      For me, I’ve noticed the inquiries and enrollment really slows down when I stop providing the free value (i.e. the free classes).

    • Reply Michael Good June 25, 2013 at 6:16 pm

      Alana, you have to read Dan Miller’s post for today. It’s along the same lines and is really great.

      http://www.48days.com/2013/06/25/how-can-i-grow-my-client-base-and-make-money/

      • Reply Alana Mokma June 25, 2013 at 9:08 pm

        lol. How awesome that his post lined up perfectly with your topic today! I checked out his post and I like it. Now to grow to a 50,000 person tribe. 🙂 My readership is growing – each week I have more and more people telling me they are following, which is exciting! I’m going to think more on this approach. J and I have a long drive coming up, so it would be a perfect time to brainstorm various ways to serve and new products. 🙂

        • Reply Michael Good June 25, 2013 at 10:05 pm

          Yeah, 50,000 is quite a bit. Dan’s example goes to show how powerful a following is!

  • Reply Alex Barker June 24, 2013 at 8:26 pm

    Confession time, Michael: Money is a part-time motivator and a full-time distraction. He reminds me everyday that he is number one priority. He reminds me of his benefits, how he promises to expand my ideas and bring even more success. He reminds me that he is the bottom line.

    I listened to Gary Vander Chuk today and he spoke about the value you add equals how much money you should be paid. My commute was silent this morning as I thought, “How can I provide amazing value?”

    • Reply Michael Good June 25, 2013 at 3:31 pm

      Alex, I think money is a big motivator for most everyone (I know it is for me!). That’s why I need to remind myself to focus on helping and adding value. Sure, we need an economic model, but then to a certain degree, we need to forget about the money.

      Love it, Alex. Keep up the great work.

  • Reply Tom Dixon June 25, 2013 at 9:33 pm

    I do a free initial coaching session…which 9 times out of 10 results in a paid coaching agreement. The difference is I don’t hold back on the freebie…I treat it exactly the same as the paid versions. I also don’t hard sell – we can still be friends if we don’t end up working together. I have a long way to go, but that is where I’ve started.

    • Reply Michael Good June 25, 2013 at 10:14 pm

      Tom, 9 out of 10 is an amazing closing ratio. Well done! I’ve learned the no-hard-sell approach works well too.

      Keep it up. If your closing ration is that good, all you have to do is increase the number of your free initial coaching sessions and your schedule will be full in no time!

      • Reply Tom Dixon June 25, 2013 at 11:00 pm

        Thanks for the encouragement. It is a slower process than I would like, but I’m getting there. The good thing is I love my day job too – so this is overflow!

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