By Karyn Greenstreet
Today’s blog topic comes from a mastermind group meeting we had yesterday with a group of small business owners.
James was asking about how to convert a prospect into a paying coaching client after they’d done a free coaching discovery session together.
While James’ Hot Seat was about doing free coaching sessions, you can also use these ideas if you do free mastermind group meetings, free classes, or free mentoring meetings as part of your marketing and sales funnel.
The first step is to determine your purpose for offering a free session. Are you intending to ask this person to become a client at the end of the session? Or is the session simply a demonstration of what it’s like to work with you, as a way of educating your audience?
For instance, in yesterday’s Taste of a Mastermind Group meeting that James was in (you can get the recording here), my purpose for offering a free mastermind group meeting was to demonstrate what a real meeting looks like. I had no intention to ask the audience to become members of my mastermind group. But in James’ case, his free coaching session IS a prelude to asking that person to become a paying coaching client.
And that makes all the difference in the world! When you know the outcome you want, you can design your entire process around that goal.
Previously, James had been inviting people to a free coaching session through the connections he was making at his local Chamber of Commerce.
But he wasn’t saying to them before the meeting, “If you’re curious about coaching and would like to see what really happens in a coaching session with me, let’s set up a free session. If, at the end of the session, we both think that we’re a good fit for each other, we can discuss which of my coaching programs is best for you.”
In this way, he’s setting the expectation that the purpose of the meeting in advance, and only those people who are interested in possibly working long-term with James would request a free session.
In our mastermind group meeting yesterday, many members had super suggestions for James about how he could approach his marketing and sales funnel differently. Here are some of their ideas:
As you can see, there are many ways to convert a prospect into a paying client for your services, but you need a well-planned marketing and sales funnel, and clear goals for each step within that funnel. You can watch the full mastermind group meeting here and get the rest of the tips the group offered James around sales and marketing.