I want you to have a successful business and live your passion. I want you to reach and touch more people. Because guess what, this industry isn’t growing… it’s booming! You’re in demand and I want to see you flourish! Take advantage of the opportunities out there and be a leader within this industry. But, I want to talk to you about The One Thing You Need More Than a Pretty Website, And It Costs A Lot Less!
Let’s talk about investing in your business more strategically. Let’s think about the logical steps you need to take to build a successful business when you’re first starting, versus just throwing things at the wall and hoping for the best. I’ve tried that. It’s no fun!
Maybe you’ve been in business for a year. I know there are a lot of you out there who have been at this for a while, too. Maybe you’ve started and stopped. You’re on repeat!
So you’re juggling the side hustle, along with your family at home. I get it! But I also get that you’re still committed to getting in front of your computer whenever possible. When you do that, do you find yourself saying “Okay, now what do I do, again?”
You’re looking for the steps of action!
And that’s when you pull back. Because this building building thing really scares the beejebees out of you! There is fear. It’s wasting your time. On all the wrong activities!
Or you’re wasting money on all the wrong methods, resources and content. This is where the website comes into play. You just want to get started on ANYTHING that is going to start getting results for you!
Just remember. Fear is normal! You’ve never done this before, so why would you know exactly how to do it? You’re going to experience a margin of error, so get over having to be 100% perfect all of the time. It’s just not going to all be right the first time around.
So where do you start? What action step can you take so you stop wasting time and you don’t stay stuck in the overwhelm and waste your money?
A Business Card
How crazy is that? This is a great item you need to build a successful business, especially when you’re first getting started. And it’s so much less expensive than a website! It’s something that is easily available to all of you. And it can be such a strategic item to help you get started in your business!
When I was first getting started, I was out quickly looking for spaces to rent, potentially in another practitioner’s office. I wanted my own clinic, but step one was to find the space. So right before I graduated, I was out and about, going online, looking for spaces two to three months before graduating. I wanted to find that perfect opportunity.
But I couldn’t find what I wanted. Either I didn’t respect the business owner because it wasn’t how I could see myself running a business that way, or they wanted me to sign a super restrictive contract that didn’t align with the goals I had for my business.
So I was encouraged to just start my own business!
This was when I really took the time I need to find the right space. I finally found one, but we needed to do a build out. Now, I’m graduating and it’s looking like the build out and opening for the clinic won’t be happening until November. And I’m getting stressed.
But, I have about 6 months to really get things right. Most people would focus on getting their website absolutely perfect, than twiddle their thumbs, and wait.
But I got myself a business card, instead.
I started networking and connecting with people in my community. While I certainly didn’t plan on having this six month crash course in opening my own business, it turned out to be the best thing I could have done.
That business card was key! It got me out, connecting and telling people about myself and my business before I was even ready to.
Give yourself a runway, too! Here is why I advocate for that.
I see many of you working on logos, on websites. You’re working on getting your space set up perfectly. You’ve been preparing. But than you’re open and ready, and you’re waiting for the phone to ring with new clients. And it’s not happening.
You didn’t invest any time in building your snowball! You didn’t give yourself that runway to let people know what you and your business were about! This takes time.
Magically having your website go live doesn’t flip a switch and automatically make your phone ring!
It’s so much less expensive and more impactful for your business in the long-run.
Of course, you DO need a website. They are really important, especially for local businesses. They can be a launching ground and where you’re driving people, no matter what type of lead-generation you’re doing. You want to make sure that website is speaking to your target market and the SEO you’re using is getting eyeballs to the pages!
But, I do think there is a strategic order when you’re first starting.
So the ultimate takeaway? Get a business card! And now I hear the objections. Things like:
I don’t have a logo yet
I haven’t decided on my business name
I don’t have a domain
How could it possibly make sense to go about these things in a different order, Michelle?
Those things can all be changed later easily. So what should you put on your business card?
Your phone number
An email address
That’s it! Make sure people have a way to contact you and get out there and network! Don’t let the self-sabotage and fear ruin it. You have to start talking to people and you need to practice talking to people!
Get comfortable with your message and talking about yourself and business. The sooner you do that, the sooner you’re going to see results, aka clients, in the door!
Of course, there are way more steps in this that I’m not able to cover in one blog, but I wanted to give you one thing that you can do right away that will be so effective in your business. And it’s cheap!
Today I want to lay out getting the 4 Steps to Testimonials That Convert. You need testimonials for your business and you want them to convert to more clients, right? While written testimonials are always great, ideally video testimonials are king! So let’s go through the framework that I use in my own business for this.
First, I want to give a shout-out to Jessica, a member of my free Facebook community, Getting Clients in Your Wellness Business! Because let’s face it. Getting Clients = Making Money! Jessica asked this exact question on testimonials and I thought this would be a perfect topic for this week’s blog.
Jessica’s question, specifically, was “Has anyone ever considered using Google forms to collect testimonials? I’m thinking about writing one out so I can just send the link to people who are interested in giving me one. Is there any reason why that would be a bad idea?”
There are a lot of ways to go about this. I’ll admit that when I was first starting out, I knew that collecting testimonials was an important step. But it was so intimidating! I’m sure you think the same thing.
Let’s face it. You don’t want to impose on people. You are afraid they are going to think “that’s ridiculous” or they simply aren’t going to want to help you. But nothing could be further from the truth!
You need this for your business, so you’re going to have to get over it! Plus, when you’re providing amazing outcomes for people, they are going to want to help you! I promise! Who doesn’t want to have that feeling of being helpful to someone. It feels good!
So, I want to encourage your to push yourself to get over this fear and just go in for the “ask”. But first…
Getting somebody to write something up is good. It’s better than nothing! But what is really great is to actually talk to them so you can also get their feedback. It’s huge for your business to have valuable feedback like this and to really dig in and get their story. You want to document that transformation and share this with other clients!
First thing is first… Make the Ask!
Truthfully, I did use a form in my prior clinic for awhile. People would fill it out and while it didn’t have the exact four steps on it, it was similar. It has four steps that helped a client to document their journey. Kind of like a before and after, which is really important in this type of testimonial!
I used this form for awhile and it worked. But when I specifically changed how I approached the testimonials and really started talking to people, that’s when the real juicy goodness started to flow, too!
In this example, I’m going to help you gain that testimonial from someone you’ve been working with for a short time. One to three months, for example.
In my old business, let’s say I would see a client for over 10 sessions over five weeks. That was a transformative journey.
So what is the successful framework? Don’t overthink this! Take action!
Schedule a Follow-Up Chat!
Once you’re done working with a client and taking them from Point A to Point B, ask them for some extra time! Schedule a quick call or some time with them to get their feedback. I genuinely want this feedback, regardless of the testimonial, because I want to get better! I want to know what worked for them and where they got hung up!
Listen to it in their own words, but I don’t want to use the time that they have been paying me for. I want to use MY time for this critical step. That’s really important. It is much more professional if you ask someone to do this outside of treatment time!
Than I go through these four steps, which I send to them ahead of time. I want to make sure they are prepared!
4 Steps to Testimonials That Convert
1. Where were you before we started working together?
Now, just be quiet and let them talk!
2. Where would you say you are now, post working together?
This would be post-treatment, post coaching, post working together in whatever form you collaborated.
3. What did you like the most?
What was the highlight for you about the program or coaching? Details about the treatment and working together that were great were what?
Let them talk!
4. What would you say to somebody who was considering working with me or is on the fence about working with me?
Most of the time people are going to focus on the good things that happened during our time together. But, I do want to uncover things that I can actually improve, as well.
Sometimes, I’ll throw in this fifth question in order to dig a little deeper and uncover some dirt.
5. What Can I Improve?
Everything can be better. And while it may not be necessarily part of the overall testimonial, I want to make sure that I’m able to encourage ways to improve my own services and become better at what I’m doing.
Now, we’ve documented their journey! What can we do with it?
Based on the feedback that you’re getting, you’ll be able to hopefully use a majority of this information as a testimonial. But, if nothing else, it is valuable feedback for you in your business.
Even if their story isn’t miraculous or it’s not dramatic or dynamic enough for a testimonial, you’re going to get information that will make it a win-win for your business!
Many times, you’re going to find that the big transformation cases that you just collected, you’ll want to use as a case study with your audience! What a different way to highlight these types of testimonials for your business!
When I’m hearing the information that the client is telling me, I often say, “This has been amazing work that you’ve done and I’d really like to share this. Can I write this up for you just to make it easy? I’ll use your words, but would love to use this as a testimonial. I’ll send it to you to get your approval.”
The key to this is that it helps to make it easy for your client.
You also know what is important to highlight and what can be skipped over. Not that you won’t be telling the truth, but you know that people want numbers and if someone lost 15 pounds, clients won’t know to highlight that specific accomplishment.
Be authentic! Highlight things that you know people are going to be looking to hear!
This, dear mavens, is what you can do to get testimonials that really do convert!
I want to help you turn your passion and desire to help people into a successful business! It’s such a good thing when you are providing for yourself, because you are now filled up, fulfilled and able to reach and touch even more people in your business! This week, I want to specifically talk about how you can Triple Your Client Leads with this Networking Framework!
I want to give a bit shout out and thank you to Beth, who this question came in from.
“I was wondering if anyone here uses Facebook groups to find clients?” Can you participate in a group, answer questions and invite them to talk more if they could be a potential fit for your business?
Communities are a great way to build your business, but not just online communities! Between Facebook groups, LinkedIn groups and offline communities, this can be a hit for you and your business! It could be a paid community, like a BNI, Chamber of Commerce, etc., or something free. Maybe even a women’s or men’s group at your church or somewhere within your community!
So for the purpose of this blog post, I’m not differentiating between either one. The framework I’m going to talk about will work for both. I’ve been there! I’ve been new and joining groups. One of the mentors I followed had great success leveraging online groups to generate client leads!
Therefore, she really encouraged me to do the same thing, and I gave it 110% of my energy. Maybe to a fault, as at times, I’d spend hours in hanging out in these groups. I’ll be honest… I didn’t have success. I didn’t shine and didn’t leverage my strengths that helped me to produce a lot of leads. Every piece I was told to implement, I didn’t finish.
Let me give you the recipe and components that you need to incorporate to make sure you’re spending your time wisely! I want this to be a success for you! You’re going to be able to generate leads and potentially Triple Your Client Leads with this Networking Framework I’m about to lay out for you!
For the record, if this is something you’ve tried before and you didn’t see any success, I want you to honestly evaluate yourself against the framework below. Were you incorporating all of the aspects in the framework? If not, go back and begin to really leverage all eight components of this framework today!
1. Find a Good Fit For You
If you’re spending your time hanging out in places that aren’t a good fit for you, you’re wasting your time! For example, when I was first starting my holistic practice, I networked all over. Anywhere and everywhere! And many weren’t a good fit for me. Many times, I would come up with any excuse possible not to show up.
You also need to pay attention to make sure that the communities you are a part of are giving you access to your target markets. If it’s not a good fit, it won’t be a good use of your time. You wouldn’t be targeting your audience.
If you’re getting started, I would recommend visiting five to ten groups. Online or offline. Checkout a handful of places and than pick one or two that you can really contribute to.
Don’t go wide. Go deep! That’s what makes networking and being a part of a community really successful.
2. Set Goals
Make sure you understand why you’re hanging out in these specific groups. What are you looking for from it? Why are you choosing to show up there, week in and week out, and develop relationships? What’s in it for you?
Clearly, client leads could simply be it, but let me tell you something. I was in a CEO group and the side benefit of being there was more than leads. I wanted to have a place to other high-level business owners who had scaled their teams. Since I was in the middle of having a lot of HR issues, hiring and firing, I wanted to see what others did and how they could advise me. I wanted resources and mentorship, and honestly, just support me through that process.
So, client leads may be a side benefit. But make sure to set goals for yourself so you know specifically what you’re doing there!
3. Show Up Consistently!
You can’t expect to truly participate in a community if you never show up. You’re probably not going to meet the goals you set out for yourself, or find those leads you’re looking for. Be an active member! A participating, ongoing, member!
Make sure you go into it knowing it’s more of a marathon, not a spring. I see too many people expecting results very quickly and when they don’t see results in the first few weeks, they give up. That’s not the way to go about it!
4. Be Generous
Be in tune with what other people are asking and be generous. Give your time to them! If they’re asking for help, help them! If they want you to share something like feedback, or to spread the word about an event they are having, give them your time and contribute back in the ways that they are asking for!
5. Provide Value
You have a specialty and an expertise in a specific area. You have a skill set and strengths that are different and unique. Be aware of sharing this value. Don’t just be generous with your time, but conscious about giving your value to the table!
6. Ask For Help
If you’re doing everything you think you should be doing and things aren’t working out, I want you to think if you’ve actually ASKED for help! Need client leads? Tell your community! If you’re looking for an uptick in your business, say, “I’m down. I need some help. Can you guys help me?”
Don’t be afraid to ask and be specific! If you’re an active member and you’re giving value and supporting others, you will receive support and help in return!
7. Connect With People One-to-One
So you’re part of a group. Online or offline. Many are large communities and there is no shortcut for making one-to-one connections. You can’t skip this!
Businesses are built on relationships and the best way to develop a strong relationship and foundation is to connect one-to-one within your community! Take time away from the bigger group and really get to know individuals. It could be people you believe are potential clients, or it could be a business owner you admire. Maybe you are looking for some mentorship and you see this relationship as a potential partner. No matter what type of individual you’re looking for, do it one-to-one!
And don’t forget… it takes time!
8. Once You’ve Made Connections, Follow Up
Make sure you don’t just meet them one time, than flake. You’ve made this investment to connect, so continue the connection! Follow up, stay in touch and continue to reach out!
That, my dear mavens, is how you can Triple Your Client Leads with this Networking Framework!
Let’s talk about how you can work on making money in your business. You should have the successful business you deserve so you can reach out to more people and make the different you’re looking for! That’s the whole reason you got into this business! You want to end the suffering, spread the good word and provide holistic and alternative options to more people. But first… it starts with you building a very successful wellness business, so don’t fall into these 3 Lies You Tell Yourself that are Sabotaging Your Business.
I’m specifically talking about the three lies you tell yourself about your target market. Stop surrounding yourself with myths! This is so foundational to successful marketing. Let’s talk about these self-sabotaging behaviors that you are subscribing to that are killing your business. But most important, let’s work on turning this around by focusing on specific action steps.
1. I’m Just Getting Started
This is you. You’re thinking you just opened your practice, you’re just getting started and you’re not sure who you specifically want to target. I’m brand new!
2. I Don’t Want to Turn Anyone Away
You’re thinking you can help everyone. You want to help a lot of different people. Well, I’ve got a lot of powerful words for that!
3. I Don’t Need a Target Market
You’re telling yourself you’ve tried it and it just doesn’t work for you. You get crickets. You’re doing “all the things”. Um, no.
First and foremost, marketing IS targeted! To have successful marketing, it has to be a targeted message. When you go out into the marketplace and try to be everything to everyone, nobody will even end up hearing anything.
You’re just like vanilla and people keep walking right on by.
What I need you to hear is that even if you’re not sure who you want to target and you’re just getting started, it can evolve and change. But, YOU’VE GOT TO PICK SOMETHING or nobody is going to hear you. You may have already experienced this. I’ve seen it time and time again.
Say you’re new. You go out and make an effort, which is fabulous. You’re out networking, you’ve put up copy on your website and you’re chugging along. But it’s all just so vanilla! It’s so much about YOU! It’s not about anybody else or what you can do for people, and as a result, nobody is responding. And now your confidence is going down.
Instead, make it targeted. Make it very helpful for that target because it’s going to build your confidence. You’re going to have a much stronger message and you are going to show up with more confidence, which people will respond to!
So stop telling yourself you don’t need this! Maybe you don’t even know you need this, but you do! I know it can seem limiting to just pick one lane. You’re not sure whom you want to target.
You can evolve naturally over time!
But you definitely need that targeted marketing message to get people’s attention. Once you get their attention, you can start talking to them a little bit more in-depth about what they’re looking for and how you can help them.
This can bleed into the other component that I hear people say a lot – “I can help more than one person! I would love to help more than one person!”
Fabulous! If the phone rings and they’re not in your target market and you want to take them on, I say abso-freaking-lutely! I’m not talking about who you’re going to say yes to in your practice. I’m talking about teaching you that you have to have a targeted and focused message to be more powerful for your business.
Because not being focused doesn’t produce long-lasting results. It’s a foundational step in your business!
The interesting thing about this is that you feel like you’re excluding people. But, because you’re showing up in the marketplace so powerfully, clear and consistent, more people end up being attracted to you outside of that market. It’s just the way it works and you’ll have to trust me on this one!
A colleague of mine has a brand that is “Leadership Girl”. She markets to women, but ends up having tons of guys come to her. It’s because she’s so effective at marketing and social media, and she can decide if she wants to say yes or no. But the key is the target!
This can ultimately bleed into you saying that you’ve tried it and it doesn’t work. You’re saying, Michelle, I’m still getting crickets! I’ve had clients in your shoes. I get it. But here’s the problem: You’re not going deep enough.
Let’s say you’re someone who went through a one-page worksheet on identifying your ideal client. You found it from some “guru” and was a free download. Well… you’re probably not going deep enough! Or you haven’t taken what you learned and crafted it into a powerful message that is consistent.
If you’ve done some of this work and aren’t getting any responses, go back and look at the elements again!
Did you go deep enough?
Did you craft a message that was in their language? Not the “wellness speak”. In THEIR language.
Have you been doing it consistently?
It really does take some time.
I’ve done this. I’ve done it poorly, just like some of you. But now I’m rocking it! It works! I had to learn the hard way and I want you to avoid my mistakes. I’ve implemented it for my own business, for my clients’ businesses and I’ve learned from the gurus. The people whoa re getting real results, seven figure results, in their businesses.
So where do you start with this? Let’s talk about actionable information you can use. You need effective marketing and that begins with great targeting.
Do the research! I’m doing research day-in and day-out, week after week. Understand their language and what they are struggling with.
I know that can feel overwhelming, so let me give you one of two options that I want you to implement.
1. Go To Amazon
Look at the book section and type in your topic. Look at the bestselling books in that niche and head over to the review section to read what individuals are experiencing. This can be powerful and transformative to learn their language. I will copy and paste this language into a spreadsheet, so it’s readily available moving forward.
2. Forum Research
Head over to Google and type in the topic you are looking for. For instance, type in fibromyalgia, the plus sign, and the word forum to find forums related to the topic that you’re tagging. Now look for their pain points. Copy and paste this language into a spreadsheet and start looking for commonalities in there!
These are the first couple steps to do to really dig into your target market. It will put you in a position to understand what they’re struggling with, as well as to craft the perfect message to reach them. A powerful message that you can use when introducing yourself locally, one-to-one, at a networking group, speaker events, etc.
Use this information in the copy on your website! You will use it when you create an opt-in for your website. You’re going to use it on social media. You’ll use it to come up with topics on your blog.
You’re going to basically use it every single place you go and it will be the foundation to truly creating marketing that is effective in getting results for you and your business!
Ready to focus on what really can get your next client in the door? That’s easy… Focus on THEM, not you! So what do I mean by that? Your #1 Focus To Get Your Next Client is easier than you think!
This business that you’re building isn’t about you. When you took the leap to follow this passion, you had your own struggles. Maybe you had a health struggle and now you want to share the message on how to overcome it. You want other people to not struggle with it! You want to show them that there are alternative, holistic, natural options to heal themselves, right?!
But somewhere along the way, you started to lose your focus on that. You lost your focus on the people you want to help and you started focusing on you!
Think about that.
It’s showing up day in and day out as you build your business. There are two things that I see.
1. People who totally withdraw
If this is you, it’s showing up in the form that you are afraid to put yourself out there. You are just sitting there waiting for the phone to ring, but it’s not going to happen.
2. People who focus on perfection
You’re spending hours, maybe a whole week, writing and rewriting content for your blog. Or you’re being rigid with your to-do list and won’t consider yourself “ready” until that list is checked off.
In any of these situations, it’s simply not true!
There is the other side of the spectrum, too. Maybe you’re putting yourself out there, but your pain point is a bit different. You’re using all of the “me” language instead of the “you” language in everything that you do.
You’re hustling, you’re networking, you’re putting yourself out there. Awesome! But when you introduce yourself, you’re focusing on you and not on them. You’re talking about your credentials, your modality, all about the fabulous things you can do. It’s not about what the client wants or desires!
It can also show up in your online channel. On your website, for example. When a potential client lands on your website, they see tons of examples of what it’s all about, and they are learning all about you. But… they are not seeing what they want or what they desire. They are unsure of how you could actually help them.
Same thing with your writing in your blogs or emails. You include a lot of wellness speak. People may not know what that is! It’s not plain English. It’s not speaking to your client about what they want and desire. You’re using “me” language.
They want to know how you can solve their problem!
If you can talk about their problem in their language it’s going to be so much more powerful!
But why do you do it? You’ve forgotten about your passion and you’re not showing up in the right format for potential clients, but why?
It’s the fact that you’re new. You haven’t seen the level of success that you want and your frustrated. Sometimes you just don’t know what you don’t know!
If you’ve never done certain things before, it challenges your confidence. You’re looking around trying to compare, but you’re just not sure how to do it! I get it. You’re letting fear take over. You don’t want to look stupid in front of peers, colleagues, to potential clients. You’re afraid of making a mistake or of failing. But you can turn this around!
You have to start thinking about how bad you really want this! It all starts with ending your self-sabotage. Stop the language in your head telling you that you can’t do this!
Introverted? I don’t want to hear it! Most of us are introverted in the wellness business. That’s the profile! Many people are shy. Everybody is challenged with money. Everybody is challenged with time. Stop the self-sabotaging behaviors and look for where those negative thoughts live in your brain.
So how can you overcome this? Stop thinking about your limiting behaviors. Stop the self-sabotage. Get yourself out there!
Get targeted with your message and get rid of the “me” language!
To do this, you need to understand and define that target market! Do the research and understand what they want and desire. Than you need to craft your message. Just a few simple sentences of how you’re going to introduce yourself. And I promise you, it’s not this:
“I’m a licensed acupuncturist. Acupuncture has been around 3,000 years and the needles are hair-thin”
This is all “me” language. It has nothing to do with the clients that you want to attract!
The last thing to focus on is to work a little seed to plant for yourself. I know many of you are disappointed because you’re not getting the results you want and it’s affecting your confidence. Reset your expectations!
I really want you to think about who you are comparing yourself to. If you’re investing 10hours a week and building your business and you’re comparing yourself to someone who is only spending 8 hours a week, that’s not apples to apples. Stop setting unrealistic expectations for yourself!
Building a business takes way ore than six months. Start thinking about this as a long-term play that you’re in for the long haul. You want to look for the trend of growth in your business. Give yourself three years. I’m serious!
At first, you’re trying to get a few clients. Than, you are working to get consistent clients. And consistent clients equals a longer-term game. It doesn’t happen overnight! Nobody talks about how long it can take, but it does! Set clear expectations for yourself and your business!