This is a bit of a departure for me since I usually write about techniques. But we need clients to do those techniques on! I’m knee deep in a brand new venture, “How to Create a Waiting-List Practice” which is being beta-tested right now. Here’s an excerpt from the training manual.
Recently I had a “sales” conversation. It was a serendipitous chance encounter with an acquaintance of mine at the gym. I was having a knee issue and my PT suggested I use the stationary bike instead of the treadmill. On the bike next to me was a man I know socially. We struck up a conversation. I said that I don’t really like the bike but I was obeying my PT. Commiserating with me, my acquaintance said that he thought he had a rotator cuff injury.
I asked him to tell me more about his symptoms. He did. I then asked him some direct questions: “How is this impacting your daily life? and “What is the one thing you’d like to be able to do that you can’t”. I gathered information.
After hearing his answers I concluded we were a good fit. I explained that I was a massage therapist and specialized in rotator cuff injuries. He jumped on it and asked if I had any openings that day. One of my clients had canceled so I was able to fit him in. He bought a package that day!
Notice that I listened deeply before I ever mentioned I was a massage therapist and have a strong skill set in treating rotator cuff injuries.
Below is a guideline to effective communication to prospective clients. This heart-centered approach is a perfect match for LMTs! (Adapted from Tommi Wolfe’s Top Business Coach Training.)
- Mindset: Approach the conversation with a spirit of partnership and wanting to help your potential client. You are the professional. You are there to help your client, not to sell. You are not there to be tested, to be affirmed, or to offer a “try before buy” session.
- Listen: Spend ten minutes deeply listening to understand the prospect’s situation before you even dream of talking about what you can do for your prospect.
- The Gap: this is critical! You need to help your clients see their problems and what is not working. This is probably the most important step because if they see the gap and know you are the solution the rest is easy. So many people walk around for years with limited range of movement and pain and never seek treatment. Ask questions like: “How is this impacting your daily life?”; “How is your sleep – are you able to get enough rest?”; “What is the one thing you’d like to be able to do that you can’t”; “How long have you had this condition?”.
- Imagine: Turn the conversation to an upbeat, positive place. Help the prospect envision how awesome their life will be after their injury/issue has been addressed: “Tell me what your life would look like if you were pain free and full range of movement.”
- Can you help?: Be honest with yourself. Is this someone you can help? If you can’t let them know.
- If you can help: Tell them, “I think we are a good fit. When would be a good time to get started? I have openings (suggest some dates/times). Then be quiet!!!!
- Remember: this is NOT about you and whether you are good enough. It is about the prospect and whether they are ready to make the investment. This mentality will help you stay detached and not pursue. You will stay powerful.
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