Once you yourself online you’ll naturally attract clients who wanna be around you since you talk like their bestie.
The next step is to develop the skills to:
Establish value (no waiting around for them for 30minutes in front of Panera)
Engineer an experience (that makes them so happy they can’t get enough of you)
Set yourself up for repeat work (because that makes life easier)
3 Essential Skills You Need to Have Happy, High-Paying, Repeat Clients
This is for copywriters, designers, coaches, freelancers, consultants, basically anyone who sells services online should make sure they have these skills locked and loaded into their repertoire.
This is what I teach in Be Booked Out because those skills (plus a couple more) are crucial for making sure you have repeat clients who pay you the big bucks and make you laugh.
Working with clients is traditionally seen as a tailored shirt, serious face, and big reports affair but that’s not the case anymore. Your clients want you to be YOU and to have a positive enjoyable relationship with you that gets them RESULTS.
To recap clients want: feel good + results + great experience.
For you to do that without worry though, you need to have the skills to support them.
It’s like parenting but with the ability to learn the skills you’ll need for the next 18 years in advance.
That’s why in Be Booked Out, I keep repeating myself about how you want to make sure you’re learning re-usable marketing skills.
To make your clients happy – you gotta have an amazing client experience set up so that they can follow your lead.
To get the high-paying clients – you need to market yourself and showcase your skills so paying you 2x-10x of your current prices is a no brainer.
To get them coming back for more – you need to make sure you have a way for them to work with you again easily (and that they get great results).
This is all learnable and what I teach in Be Booked Out, since you can’t have a successful client based business with only part of these. You need them all to be a well-paid and happy business owner online.
Pop your answer in the comments: what’s your first priority? Happy clients, high-paying ones, or repeat clients?
Let’s talk about that dreaded point where… you probably napped, or you’re out getting coffee with some friends and… oh shit, no! You just got pinged on Skype, your phone, or in your email being like, “Uh, hey, where are you?” from your favorite client. That sucks.
We’re going to talk about that today because that’s something that a lot of people don’t have an action plan for. It’s definitely going to happen to you if you’ve been online long enough. Everybody fucks up. There’s always a mistake that happens. Let’s talk about what happens when this happens to you, because it is the worst feeling in the world, and definitely counteracts that nap you just had. Definitely something that you do not want to do. Once the mistake has happened, we’re going to talk about how you can fix it.
First, what I want you to do is go and join the “Be Booked Out – 5 Day Challenge“. It’ll help you with other fuck ups like this that are bound to happen if you’ve been online for awhile. At the end of the day, you’re human. You are doing the best you can with what you’re doing. You need some help, especially with marketing.
Marketing is something that everybody needs, but not everyone is good at it. Get my marketing brain, helping your business out, and take this sweet, laugh-tastic (as I’ve heard) 5 day challenge. It’ll help you break through a lot of the stuff that’s stopping and cock-blocking you get from getting clients. That’s really not great- let’s fix it. Sign up by going to the link, bebookedout.com/challenge, and let’s get you back into getting more clients, and getting booked out in advance. Life is so much better when you’re booked out in advance.
This is one of the things that happens. You’re booked out, you’ve got clients, you’re ready to go. You’re loving life, you can take time off… Then either your calendar fucks up, or you fuck up, and you miss your client call. It is the worst feeling in the fucking world. I have done it, and I have to tell you, I would rather be punched in the stomach. It is a horrible thing to feel like you have let your client down, and now they hate you. Or they feel like you’re unprofessional. Or you’ve lost their trust. Losing their trust as a client is a horrible feeling, and is not something somebody wants to do. Let’s talk a bit about that.
First off the thing that I want you to think about is, what a client thinks when you miss your meeting with them, okay? It’s important for you to think about it from their perspective. It’s going to help you calm yourself down, cause you’re probably going in circles. When a client thinks you’ve missed your meeting with them- and this is just one meeting. If you keep missing your meetings, yeah, you are fucking up big time. If you have missed one meeting with them and you have consistently shown up for all the other meetings, they’re probably like, “Did I schedule this for the right time?” Or, “Oh, I wonder if her calendar fucked up.” They’re not going to immediately assume that you are a horrible human being, and they made a massive mistake hiring you. They’re probably going to think, “Oh, huh. Something must have gone wrong. I hope they’re okay. Maybe they might be in an accident, and that’s not great.”
Your clients are not monsters, especially if you’ve done your marketing right. They’re normal human beings who understand that shit happens. Now, they’re going to hit you up and be like, “Oh, what happened there?” That’s totally normal. That’s what they should be doing. What I want you to think about is, at the end of the day your client just hit you up and say, “Hey, weren’t we supposed to have a call today?” – That’s awesome that they’re a clear communicator, and that they are hitting you up, and making sure that you are there. They’re excited to work with you. They really want to work with you, and they are excited to get started, or keep working with you. Don’t worry. First off, the sky is not falling.
What I want you to say to fix it, to make sure that your clients relationship is solved, is to basically say, “Hey, I’m really sorry. I thought I had this in my calendar, but it’s not showing my calendar.” Or, “I had this, and I just had a brain fart. I’m so sorry. Let’s book it for an hour from now,” if you can fit them in an hour from now. Or, “Tomorrow at the same time.” Making them a top priority in your list of to-do’s is how you can make it better for them. If you are just like, “Oh shit, okay. Well, I can’t talk to you until a week from now,” then that’s not good ’cause you’re the one who fucked up. Make sure to move them onto your priority list and move things around so that you can talk to them as soon as possible, okay? That’s very, very important. If you are having an emergency, you should definitely have a procedure in place, or a “What do you do if things go wrong, or if you get sick, or if you get in an accident,” in place.
At the end of the day, this is just a normal human error where you fucked up. Just apologize, admit you’re wrong. Then say, “Hey, you know what?” Either send them some sort of gift card, say, “Thanks for your patience, I’m so sorry about my mess up today.” Or, give them another session. If you’re a coach, this is a great way for people to feel like you are on their side, and that you have their back for their success. Be like, “Hey, I missed our session, I’m so sorry about that. Here’s another 30 minute session for you to use in the future whenever you’d like. Just book it through my calendar,” and give them the link.
There’s a really good way for you to actually make this a point where people love your business more. At the end of the day, most people think a business gains loyalty or following from people because they do the right thing at the right time, and they’re always right, and always perfect. Actually what makes people love you more is when you fuck up, you admit it, and you do the right thing. That means that they know they can trust you, even in times where you fuck up, or they fuck up, to hold yourself to a standard that most people don’t.
A lot of the time what you want to do is just admit that you have made a mistake, fix it, and make them a first priority in your to-do list. By doing that and saying, “Hey, I’m really sorry. You’re right, we do have it right now. I made a mistake. I can get back to my computer in an hour, does that work for you? Otherwise when I’m back I’ll find you a sooner time, a nearer time, a future time that will allow us to get back together and work on this.”
Definitely, definitely, definitely make sure that you admit your mistake, cause building relationships is based on someone being able to admit their mistakes and move forward, and offer a solution. Present the solution as well and say, “Hey, how about right now? How about an hour from now?” At least they know that you are going to make it right, and that they don’t have to worry about it, or have a big discussion with you about how that was inappropriate. They want this. At the end of the day the clients just want you looking out for their best interest, and that’s a good way for you to do it.
Now, once you’ve done that and you’ve fixed the relationship, you have to fix the machine which is your business. Systems and processes… not my creative jam. I’m more of a marketing person. This is not where I excel. If something goes wrong and something breaks; a client is unhappy, you have fucked up, you need to take a look at how your business and your brain back-end is setup so that it never happens again- unless you get stuck in an avalanche. I hope not, but you like to ski, so maybe it will. What we want to do is take a look at what your policies are in your contract when the client signs on. What happens if you do miss the call, versus the client missing the call? A lot of the time those contracts will only focus on what happens if a client fucks up, not if you fuck up.
It’s really good and it helps clients to actually relax a lot if they know what happens if you make a mistake as well, so that they understand that it’s no big deal. If you miss a client call, what is the consequence for you, and what is the consequence for the client if they miss a client call? That’s really good for you to put into your contract so that they’re aware, and that you’re a clear communicator. Things like they might get $50 back, or you might give them an extra session, or it might just be something where you’re like, “I’m sorry. If I miss this session, I’ll make sure to reschedule it as soon as possible in my calendar.”
These are things that you want to make sure are clearly communicated with your clients in advance so that they know what to do, and what to expect when this stuff happens. For them it’s stressful as well. They’re like, “Uh, did I miss it? I’m not going to be able to reschedule it,” et cetera, et cetera, et cetera. Create a template. If you fuck up, create a fuck up template. Basically say, “This is what happens when I miss a call. This is what I’m going to do.” If a client misses, you can do the same thing for a client missing a call. You can do it for basically all of the things in your business. What I recommend is doing it for the ones that are the hardest to write. Right now, when you are not stressed out, when you’re not feeling horrible and guilty, and willing to give away your first born puppy. What is like a reasonable, understandable way for you to write it? If you write these templates in a moment of desperation, or a moment of feeling like shit, what you’re going to do is create a template that actually puts you in a worse position. It’s going to be a giveaway like, “I’ll give you five free sessions.” Because you just want to make yourself feel better, and make your client feel like you value them. Or you might come off as snotty or a dick. Not great. You’re the one who made a mess up. A lot of times people get defensive being beat up about it, but you did, so own it, eat it, make it better.
What we want to do is say, “Okay, what’s the template I’m going to send if I fuck up?” Just having a quick template where it’s like, “Hey you’re right, I’m so sorry. This is what I want you to know. This is what’s going to happen now. We can go and talk in an hour. This is what’s going to do there. Again, I’m really sorry about this. I really value you as a client, I just made a mistake. I’m so sorry.” People usually feel fine about that.
If you have, and it does happen, that you have a massive douche bag client. Your marketing bouncer didn’t make sure that they gave them a pass to get into the club… not great, you’ve gotta change your bouncer. You might have a douche bag client who’s like, “I want to turn this all off. I want to just burn this shit down to the ground. I don’t want to work with you anymore.” That is possible. That sucks, you probably need the money and that’s why you let the douche in anyways. What I would say is, just let it happen, okay? I know you want them to be there, but find a way for you to be treated fairly. You made a mistake, it’s not the end of the world. Your client really shouldn’t be ending the relationship because you missed one meeting, unless it was front of their people or their clients, then it’s a big deal. Still even then, people make mistakes and businesses are built on relationships. If they’re willing to burn it all to the fucking ground because of one mistake, then you need to get out of there anyways.
You really need to make sure that you have this stuff set up in worst case scenario. Honestly, I think if the worst case scenario happens, I’m setup so that I don’t have to worry about this. When everything’s going well I usually don’t create a template, right? When you have things that are going to potentially happen in worst case scenarios, it’s really good just to have this pre-written when you’re in a good frame of mind, and it’s not pressured. Be like, “Okay, what would be fair for my client? What’s fair for me? How do I make sure that they feel appreciated and valued without giving away all of my business to them, without giving them 50% of my business because I feel bad, and I want to feel better pretty quick.”
The last thing is, what the fuck, why didn’t you make it? Was it because you forgot, in which case you need more reminders? Was it because you were sick? Was it because your calendar didn’t work? You’ve gotta fix it, okay? So fix that shit. That fixing the shit happens after you’ve taken care of the client. You’ve taken care of the process, and then you fix the tool. Your calendar is something that only works well if you’ve set it up well. Why did it break? Why didn’t you make it on time? Do an analysis of why that shit went bad, or what got broken. That way when you are going back to it again, you know that you are covered, and you don’t need to worry about it.
It’s really actually great that your processes break, because when something breaks in your business, it’s a really great opportunity for you to learn, evolve, and grow. Basically if you are not breaking it, you’re probably not getting enough clients in, and you’re probably not taking enough risks, and pushing yourself out there. It’s not so bad, it’s actually a good point where you can learn a lot.
Again, what about if you’re sick? You miss a client cause because you’re sick. It’s a little bit different, right? It’s not really a mistake, you’re just really fucking … You’re sick. You’ve got the flu, you’ve got the bubonic plague. Whatever you got, it’s pretty horrible. What I would recommend for this is to put all your clients on a newsletter list. If you have Active Campaign, Convert Kit, whatever, pop your current one to one clients who are scheduling sessions. Satori does this where it will allow you to put people on a certain mailing list so that you don’t need to worry about updating it all the time. Then when you are sick, send them out a standard template email where you’re like, “Hey, I’m sick. I’m so sorry. I won’t be able to make sessions for the next three days. Reschedule your session here, and I’ll see you in a few days time.” The other thing you can do is just be like, “Hey, I’m not going to be able to make it for three days. Once I get back into the office I will totally take care of all this and let you know.” Basically by communicating with your clients in advance, they appreciate that. When you’re sick, it’s usually best when they don’t expect long lead time. It’s 12 to 24 hours max. Letting your clients know that is really great, and they’ll totally appreciate it. They’ll definitely be on your side because nobody likes to be sick.
What I really want you to do is make sure that when things go wrong in your business, do not freak. This shit happens to everybody. Everybody has fucked up somehow. What I want you to do is definitely make sure that you have your check on your side, okay? That you have your contract clearly explaining what happens when you fuck up. I would definitely make sure that you write those forms/templates/emails now so that you do not give away all of your possessions because you feel bad, and you want people to feel better, and you don’t feel like you’re a professional anymore. Feelings fuck up things for your business. What I want you to do is take that out of the equation right now and go fix it, alright? Do me a favor. You’ve probably got a little anxiety. Go check your calendar right now. Where are you supposed to be?
I am Halley Gray from Evolve and Succeed, and this has been Braless On Couch. Make sure to join the Be Booked Out Challenge. It is going right now. You can signup right away, and it’s over at bebookedout.com/challenge. It’s basically five days of me emailing you saying, “Hey, is this broken? Hey, here’s how you fix it.” Go ahead and join. I will teach you the five common mistakes people are making right now that you can fix so you have multiple clients booked in advance.
Don’t wait for the clients to come to you, bring them to you with your words.
That’s the key factor that’s allowed me to grow – double, then quadruple – my business over the years. From anything between 2k of sessions in 72 hours to 36k of clients in 2 weeks, launches have the ability to fill up your business for months in advance.
The average Jo/Joy/Joe doesn’t care about your packages. It’s your job to make the right peeps give a shit with your marketing.
It’s a dedicated set of blog posts/Instagram posts/newsletter emails/etc over a specific period of time with one goal: to sell a certain number of your coaching/design/copywriting packages.
How the eff do I launch my services?
Launch your most expensive/top-level service first.
Buying a $$$ package becomes so much easier once they’ve gotten stirred up about the $$$$ package. Always go from high to low when presenting your offers.
Decide on the length of your launch.
I’ve had equal success with short (72 hours) and long launches (2 weeks) when it comes to services. For higher level services I’d recommend starting with the 2-week launch to get your feet wet.
Remember who you’re talking to.
Your top-level service is for a different person then your entry-level offer. Remember how those two clients are different and how you’ve created something to fit their different wants. You’re going to use that in your content.
Engineer the content.
Content = social media posts, blog posts, videos, cartoons, etc. All of these need to work together to answer the following:
How will this change your client’s business/life?
How could they take the first step without you?
Will it work for them? Have you done this?
What should they expect?
Why’d you put it together this way?
What’s the big picture they need to see?
The fundamental role of all your posts/videos is to lower hesitations and resolve obstacles for the person buying. You need to step into their Hannibal Lector snack and see the world from their eyes.
Each offer should have its own sales page. That helps to keep the reader’s focus and increase the likelihood of them buying it.
All of this extraordinary learning they’re doing is worthless without wrapping it up with what they should do next. Examples are: ‘Pop your email in and I’ll send you a free workbook’, ‘Click here to secure your spot’, ‘Go here to learn more.’ The human brain loves being told what to do because it makes the decision-making process easier – yes or no.
Get your tech sorted.
My fave way of selling services is Satori + my WordPress site. Satori allows you to set up packages (vs ## of calls) and it’ll take care of the scheduling, payments, contracts, call reminders, questionnaires with one click. I copy/paste the button code, slap it on my sales page, and I’m good to sell.
All this work can be done ahead of time, that way you show up to answer questions and do scopes live to let people know about it. Definitely schedule the social media content in advance for sanity’s sake.
It doesn’t matter what industry you’re in or how long you’ve been in business, you gotta launch. I go into greater detail about launching your packages (you can unlock that here).
Launching your packages is a crucial part of my method for getting you booked in advance.
Be Booked Out is an 8 week LIVE program that takes you through my proven method of getting you clients booked months in advance.
Your first coaching client is the most strenuous and MAGICAL of clients because more often than not you’ve been fumbling blindly to get someone, ANYONE to sign up then BOOM! They sign up and your life is full of smizes (eye smiles).
You’ve been trying to ‘sell’ your free sessions, free website design, free courses and getting no clients.
You write, promote, and hustle hard but nada, zip, zero.
Every time someone comes to me saying they can’t even sell their free stuff, I tell them to put a price tag on it. When a client is asked to pay for your services they instantly value it WAY more then when it was free. That’s because our brains associate higher value with higher price points (even if it’s the same thing for a higher price – check out #5 + the turquoise jewelry case study).
Adding a price onto your services isn’t enough to bring in Coaching Client #1 though, you need to do these three steps to make it happen.
Step 1: Being helpful up close
The problem most people have with their blog advice is that it’s too vague which means it swings and misses whenever a new reader shows up. So you’re going to go into FB groups, Twitter chats, Persicopes, and webinars and give super SPECIFIC advice to every person who asks you a question.
Where are the clients at?
The best way to connect with them is to get to know them in their natural habitat. This is why knowing WHO you’re targeting is vital because if they’re an online business owner maybe they’re in business FB groups, if they’re a mom on the run maybe they watch Scopes in the car, if they’re a teenager then master Snapchat.
How to find the right place: if you’re not sure where your peeps are hanging then you’re targeting the wrong person. Take a look at who you already know (and chat with) online and make services for them.
How to make it work: go in, ask questions, LISTEN, answer other people’s questions, make friends.
Step 2: Write a compelling sales page
You NEED to master writing sales pages (the marketing way) because they turn strangers into clients. This one page is the keystone to making profit online. It allows you to test your service and package ideas quickly and effectively. I often will come up with a new service and have it up on my website within 24 hours. It can create thousands of dollars in new client work if written right.
There’s no shame in asking for help online especially if you’re the sorta person who gives heaps of help/support/value before asking (ahem, step 1).
By asking for help you invoke the feeling of usefulness, and helpfulness in the peeps around you (again only works if you filled up the friend bank first). PLUS, people like DOING favors more than receiving them, it engenders positive feelings towards you.
Ask for help but make it EASY to help you, use Click to Tweet so it’s only one click of effort for them.
How to ask for help: Add this blurb to a FB group and your custom Click to Tweet links.
“Hey! I’m super pumped about my new package but I need help getting the word out there. If you could spare a share, I’d really appreciate it.
Click to Tweet link
Click to Tweet link
Click to Tweet link
Thank you so much in advance!”
The strategy: by asking for the share vs the sale you allow people to engage with your offering. I find that the majority of your clients will come from the people you’re asking to help share it.
Once you have that first sweet coaching client in the door then you can start getting booked out. I find that you need to get paid to do the work first before knowing if this is the right business model for you. It’s standard to keep evolving your coaching practice till you find the perfect mix of what you find easy to do with what people will pay you to do for them.
I can teach you to get months of clients booked in advance and lining up to work with you in Be Booked Out and it starts on March 1st!
RANT ALERT. Click away if you’re not comfortable with strong opinions, accurate information, and casual use of swear words.
There’s something about sales pages no one is telling you – you should be writing your sales pages like the person reading them ALREADY wants to buy.
Those long ass videos? Irrelevant. The rhetorical questions? Off-putting.
Trying to force them to care? A waste.
The people who are reading your sales page are those who have already self-selected to be your clients. They’ve said ‘yes’ to the blog posts you’ve written, they felt like you got them in your videos, and they are taking the next step to move forward with you.
So to land on a sales page that treats them like a distant stranger vs a business best friend? Cold water on a hot prospect.
Here are three easy ways to make your sales page get more clients in the door:
1. Talk to them like they want it
Sometimes you find it hard to picture a stranger wanting to buy your services. You get all full of queasy self-doubt that stops you from moving forward and you begin to doubt your perfectly wonderful service. TOTES NORMAL. What I want you to do is write your sales page like the person on the other side has already told you ‘TAKE MY MONEY’, your sales page will come across as confident, close, and compelling. Trust me, it works.
2. Drop ‘imagine’
My creative writing teacher once drilled into me “show, don’t tell” to evoke emotion in your reader and when it comes to sales pages you want your potential client to FEEL something – hope, enthusiasm, excitement, confidence – so that they’ll take the action you want – clicking the buy now button. You can’t do that though if you keep using weak language like ‘Imagine your life as a cheese model’. Ummm no, that’s not their job to figure out what that looks like, that’s yours. Take out all ‘imagine’ phrases and take the time to ‘see’ what the end goal looks like for your potential client. Hint: it’ll look like the successes you’ve had with past clients.
3. Stop hiding your buy now buttons
This fucks me off more than anything else because you’re shooing away money when you make it super fucking hard to find your ‘buy now’ button. You’re hiding it by choosing a color for it that camouflages into the background or making it super fucking tiny or only having one at the very end of a never-ending sales page. Buy now buttons are invitations for your client to get started and you should never make getting started hard. Add multiple buy now buttons throughout your sales page to make it easy for clients to give you their money and get the results you’re promising.
Bonus tip: You do not want to distract your potential client when they’re on your sales page. Absolute focus must be on them clicking that button. There are three common fuck-ups when it comes to this.
Videos on your sales page – you’re distracting your potential client from buying your package when you give them a 5 minute video to watch first. First off, NOBODY is watching that video all the way through and second, they already want what you’re selling so what do you have to talk about?
Side-bars – my Be Booked Out students have often heard me rant about side-bars but particularly on sales pages there should not be anything competing for the reader’s attention so scrap the side-bar on your sales pages (actually all together but that’s a different post).
Pop-ups – we all have shorter attention spans these days and so we need to rush to get vital information into our readers’ view. A pop-up will ruin that delicate cone of concentration that you rely on to get them to hit the buy now button. No pop-ups on sales pages, they’re a shiny cockblock for sales.
Kimber Lee – Halley is truly a sales page ninja! Without promotion or consults I have been able to get my highest offering sold, just based off my sales page, twice! I followed her formula for my other sales pages and just like magic paypal was alerting me of payments made for my programs.
Halley is truly a sales page ninja!Without promotion or consults I have been able to get my highest offering sold, just based off my sales page, twice!