Beware the masqueraders: why some sales programs aren’t what they seem
I totally fell for it.
A while back, early in my journey of learning how to sell, I watched a webinar about how a successful consultant signed millions of dollars in new clients. Intrigued, I signed up for his program.
After watching all of the videos I sat there, wondering if I had missed something. The whole program was based around his call script, which he gave us with our membership.
A call script.
Assuming for a moment that anyone can follow a call script and have a normal conversation (you can’t), I was left with more questions than answers.
How did he get people on the phone? How did he use the script to actually build a relationship with his clients? What happened after the call? Did he send a proposal? And if he did, what did it look like? What happened if someone didn’t say yes on the phone?
I had his script, but I was in the exact place I was before. I didn’t know how to actually sign new clients.
One of my clients confessed something similar.
She wanted to learn how to sell to new clients, and she’d been enticed by a program that promised to help her get 10 new clients in 30 days. She paid the money and dove in.
She watched a few of the videos and realized that the whole program boiled down to one thing: get speaking gigs, then sell from the stage.
We had both fallen for The Great Masquerade.
There’s a whole lot of marketing, masquerading as selling.
Spend enough time on Facebook and you’ll see that there’s no shortage of people promising to help you sign new clients.
You’ve probably seen them.
“Get 5 new clients on Linkedin in 10 days!”
“Get the landing page template I used to close $5MM in new clients!”
“Get this foolproof way to sign new clients!”
The Great Masquerade takes many forms.
In fact, here’s just a sample of things I’ve seen in the last 30 days promising to help you sign new consulting and coaching clients:
- Writing better landing page copy
- Writing better emails
- Writing a book
- Using this call script
- Using this 4-step Facebook funnel
- Using this webinar template
- Getting speaking gigs / Selling from the stage
- Getting 5,000 newsletter subscribers
- Attracting your ideal client
- Starting a blog
- Starting a Linkedin group
- Cold emailing people on Linkedin
- Getting more Facebook followers
All of these things can be useful tactics for your business.
But they’re not selling. They’re marketing, masquerading as selling.
And there’s a big difference.
You might have seen this pyramid before, it’s commonly known as the Purchase Funnel. It shows, at a high level, how clients move from hearing about you, to signing with you.
In the AWARENESS stage, you’re trying to get more people to know that you exist.
In FAMILIARITY, you’re trying to help people understand what you do and the value you provide your clients.
In CONSIDERATION, you’re trying to help people understand that you’re the best provider to solve their problems.
In PURCHASE, you’re trying to help people sign on the dotted line and pay you the monies.
In LOYALTY, you’re trying to help people purchase again, purchase more, or refer you to others.
All those tactics I listed earlier fall under AWARENESS and FAMILIARITY.
This is where you try to get as many people to know that you exist, and what you do, and perhaps get into your database or newsletter.
This is not selling, it’s marketing.
But signing new clients happens here, in CONSIDERATION and PURCHASE.
THIS is where sales conversations happen. This is where you uncover the real pains your clients are experiencing, in life or in their business, and you identify the best way to solve them. This is where you build the client relationship. This is where your clients sign on the dotted line.
You’ll never be able to sign new clients by going from AWARENESS to PURCHASE, while completely avoiding the sales conversation. That’s magic and fairy dust.
And therein lies The Great Masquerade. Marketing masquerading as selling.
Here’s what it really boils down to:
If you’re hiding from the sales conversation, you’re not selling.
If you’ve already fallen for The Great Masquerade, it’s ok. You’ve already seen that it happened to me.
But I wised up, and if you’re reading this, you probably have too.
If you haven’t yet, (or even if you have), here’s what I’ll say: it can be tempting to try one of these quick fixes. That’s what the Great Masquerade promises.
But they won’t help you actually get better at selling.
Instead of a quick fix, focus on building the skills that will actually help you sign new clients:
- Gaining confidence in your sales conversations
- Leading a great discovery call
- Building the relationship
- Mastering the sales process
These skills are platform-agnostic, aren’t subject to changing algorithms, and are completely recession-proof.
They are skills you can use to sign new clients today, tomorrow, and for the life of your business.
They’re the skills I’m committed to helping you learn.
Here’s what I suggest to you today:
Focus on the sales conversation, where new clients actually start. Learn how to feel confident and gain a command of this critical step.
Focus on yourself. It’s why my program SIGNED starts even before the first contact with a new lead, because how you show up in the sales process starts with YOU. Focus on your unique sales process, your messaging, and unpacking how you feel about selling. Because you can’t fully show up in the sales process if you’re still holding back.
Focus on each step of the sales process, one by one, because selling doesn’t happen with just one touchpoint with a potential client.
Focus on learning a new skill, instead of a quick fix.
I can’t protect you from The Great Masquerade. But I can show you that you don’t need it.
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P.P.S. Whenever you’re ready … here are 3 ways I can help you learn how to sign new clients consistently and confidently:
1. Get on the waitlist for SIGNED.
You’ll get early access discounts, bonuses, and coaching calls with me. Registration opens in November. Click Here
2. Grab my free guide on the three steps to sign more new clients this year.
You’ll get the guide, plus three emailed lessons to help you use each of the three steps. Click Here
3. Work with me privately
If you’d like to work directly with me to sign your ideal clients and create a sales process that works for your business, just email me at email@example.com and put “Private” in the subject line… tell me a little about your business and what you’d like to work on together, and I’ll get you all the details!
A version of this post appeared on my blog.