How to Close the Deal

July 8, 2016

In today’s minisode, we are talking about how to close the deal. We’re talking about what to do and how to be more effective when you’re closing the deal with a client, especially if people seem interested in their inquiry, but then are too busy, don’t have the budget, or just flat-out don’t respond after you give them more details.

Learn More about the Topics Discussed in this Episode
"Closing the deal isn't about scary sales tactics, it's about being a real person."
- Emily Thompson


More from Kathleen

Braid Creative

More from Emily

Almanac Supply Co.


Emily Thompson 0:00
Hello and welcome to being boss. Today we are talking about how to close the deal.

Emily Thompson 0:12
Today we have a question from Jamie in the clubhouse.

Emily Thompson 0:16
And if you guys want to know more about the clubhouse, go to www dot being boss dot club slash clubhouse.

Emily Thompson 0:24
Yeah. And then we'll answer your questions here. So today's is from Jamie, I wondering if this is while you're Jamie, in which case Hi. And if it's any other Jamie Hello, do you do? And she asks, I'd love to hear your favorite tips and resources for closing the deal. A common scenario for me is someone is interested enough when I reach out to engage in a brief email exchange with me, but then either stops responding or gives a dubious answer for not moving forward, given they were interested enough to find out more details, such as we're really busy right now, or we are still finalizing our marketing budget. I feel like I'm either not selling my service as well, or there's something off putting about my pricing. But since the potential client is not responsive, or has already given an answer, I'm not sure how to get quality feedback.

Emily Thompson 1:15
This is a hard one. And I almost asked eMILY if we could skip recording.

Emily Thompson 1:19
you did ask me and I said no, we're gonna do it. And

Emily Thompson 1:24
here's the deal. closing the deal is no joke. And I feel like it's probably one of the most emotionally stressful things about being a service based creative entrepreneur, it really is. Yes. So whenever it comes to closing the deal for me, the main thing that I want to do is just make sure that who I am is coming through in the way that I interact with my potential client so that we're interacting as real people because here's the deal people buy from people, that I'm simply explaining what it is that I do, and exactly what they get like one of my biggest fears in closing the deals is someone misunderstanding what it is that I actually do. So let's say I'm doing branding and business visioning for someone and they think that they're going to come out of the situation with a website that like nothing makes me more stressed out. So really getting clear on what it is I do and what they get and how much it costs is really important. One of the things that I really like to do at braid creative to close the deal, is really visually show my client, what they'll get and what the process looks like. So one of the things I found in closing, the deal is that a lot of potential clients see what you've done for other people, they're really inspired by your portfolio or by the work that you've done. But they get really scared whenever they don't know how you're going to do it for them. So walking them through the process of visually walking them through a case study is so so helpful in closing the deal and showing them that you have a process and methodology for helping them get what they want is a really, really good way to close the deal. And then finally, my final tip for closing the deal is actually being able or being able to walk away from the deal. So having zero desperation in the deal is so important. And even Emily and I were just talking about this right before we hit record. And I almost feel bad saying this because I feel like I have enough security in my business that I can say no. But Emily, you were pointing out that a lot of people have security in their business or you know, even in their life situation, like maybe they have a partner who's really helping support them while they're launching their business and getting off the ground, who still have a hard time saying no to potential clients.

Emily Thompson 3:41
Yeah, or just letting one go. Because I think that sometimes we go hunting a little too hard for the client that we don't need. So yes, I completely agree with all those things that you said. And then I said,

Emily Thompson 3:53
and that's like, that's another point. In closing, the deal is that that's why I love content marketing so much is because I feel like I can plant seeds. And I can nurture them and I can water them. And I can harvest the bounty from that, rather than going out for a hunting kill. So that's how I take desperation on myself is by continually giving it all away for free. This is something we always talk about on being boss. But letting people know like really positioning myself as an expert through the content that I share is a really, that's probably the number one way I close the deal.

Emily Thompson 4:27
Yeah, definitely. And I think I do think like from an outsider watching braid do work because I've worked you guys do it for so long. You guys are such a special case, in terms of clients just fall into your lap at a really glorious kind of way. And I think it's because of the way you've positioned yourself and the product that you've or the process that you've created and also the marketing that you do. But for a lot of us it's very, very different. So from the other side of things, I think that one of the best that one of the best tips that I can give and something that you alluded to that you guys do is the kickoff call. So Jamie, you say here that doing a brief email exchange, sometimes you have a hard time getting much further than that, instead of doing and wasting any time doing a brief email exchange get on a kickoff call, like if they are interested, interested enough to get on the phone with you, you are then able to show them that you're a human being I feel like too often people go shopping around for for whatever it is, and lose sight of the fact that the people that they are shopping for are actually people. So one of my very favorite things to do is get on the phone with any potential clients. And you can do multiple things in this phone call. One, you're kind of interviewing them to even see if they are a good fit for you, too, you're able to get some really good insights into what their what their project would be like. Because you can get an idea of problems. And do you're totally showing them that you are the boss of what it is that you do, and you're making them love you way more than you ever could in any short email exchange. So I would really recommend before ever doing any, like a part of your client onboarding should be they send you a contact form the autoresponder as if you are interested, then schedule a phone call, or if it's on your autoresponder, the first email that you should send is thank you for being interested in working with me. Schedule a phone call, you can use acuity scheduling, do this very, very nicely. And then from there, get on the phone call and show them that you're a real person and that you're a total badass boss at what it is that you do, it will make it much easier for them to say yes. And a lot harder to say no, if they are the right fit for you.

Emily Thompson 6:35
I have a question. Hmm. Before that kickoff, whenever you get on the call with them, do you let them know your prices first, because I do, I don't want to get on the phone with someone if they are already opting out because of my prices.

Emily Thompson 6:47
Sure. So I actually currently have it on my website, what my prices are. So I have like a starting from range there. And so they at least go into phone calls, having a really good idea of at least where it begins. And then if a client asked me about it, I'll talk numbers on the phone. But I usually send the final numbers after we're off the phone call that way the numbers are like the money part of it isn't convoluting, the connection that we have on that phone call, and then I send them in a PDF what my prices are afterwards. And then we have the money conversation. And then that's where I think a lot of these objections are coming in for Jamie where you know, you send the info. And then you either hear crickets, in which case, send them emails asking open ended questions, ask them what it is that you are not telling them and that they need to be told. Ask them what what specific problems are the most important that they get solved quickly, ask them open ended questions that will get a conversation started. Because once a conversation is started, you have control over where it goes, which is much better than not having one going at all.

Emily Thompson 7:56
I love that advice so much. It's actually even something that we were talking about in our offering podcasts like a boss, where sometimes the questions that you ask if you have a podcast and you're interviewing someone, sometimes the questions that you ask, say so much more about your perspective and your point of view and what you do than necessarily kind of the answers that you give. So I love the idea of bringing that into business too. And asking open ended questions that really position you as knowing your shit.

Emily Thompson 8:24
Yeah. And again, getting that conversation started. And also just creating some sort of follow up timeline that you are comfortable with, I think is really important. So often, people will contact you and then forget that they contacted you or simply have way too many things on their plate to remember the fact that they have started a conversation with you. If you are there like gently reaching out every like week or two weeks for as long as is comfortable for you don't do this forever. Like it's fine to not do it forever. But do it enough times that you feel comfortable until you finally get a no i think that I've had multiple clients booked me Two Three months later and say thank you for like keeping me at top of mind enough to keep reaching out because I needed you I just needed to get my shit together first, or whatever it may be. I think that having a very gentle and authentic and genuine because remember you had a phone call with them, you know things about them. You can you can initiate conversations, having a good little follow up series. And reaching out occasionally is a really good way to sort of close some of those deals and continually asking those open ended questions because they'll tell you if you're getting nose without good reasons or getting weird nose that you don't understand or simply having people not emailing you any further. The reason you're getting those objections is either one they're not the right client for you, which is totally game like they can go or two they don't understand something about what you're doing. livering or they're unsure about something that you're delivering. So your job then is to find out what that is. And either let them know that it is something that you can solve, or that is not in which case they can go. So be continually helping them, showing them that you are a total boss and a cool, nice person. But all within around that is comfortable for you. closing the deal isn't about scary scale sales tactics, it's about being a real person and offering your helpful services to those who need it, to the extent that you convince them, that it's time for them to invest.

Emily Thompson 10:36
One thing that we do whenever we're closing the deal, whether it's with our one on one coaching clients, or with our branding and business, visioning clients, or even sometimes our sponsors for being boss, because it looks different in many different business platforms, is we kind of give some stuff away for free. Like, no matter who I'm on the phone with, I don't want to waste 30 minutes whether or not they hire me or not in a kickoff call without letting them know, at least one actionable tactic that they could do to improve their business whether or not they hire me. Yes. And I think that goes back to that farming, not hunting, and it goes back to giving it all away for free. And I think that's something that you do kind of like a pre closing the deal with three and 30, which is every month you offer 30 minute free engagements as a way to really nurture your tribe. So I think that you started to touch on that. But I just wanted to make it really clear that making sure that you're giving someone some actionable tactics and advice that will help them improve their business, whether or not they hire you is a really great way to close the deal.

Emily Thompson 11:42
Exactly in the in the email that I send after I have a kickoff call with someone the one that tells them their prices, it's also a little bit cocci. In terms of Alright, here are the things that you said you are struggling with, here are the things I can help you with, here's a super actionable task you can do right now. And if you want to hire me, here's what here's what it looks like. And going at it that way makes you look like such a boss that people will be like clawing to get into your client roster.

Emily Thompson 12:09
Or they'll be apologizing to you for not being able to hire you examine they might buy something else that you have to offer at maybe like a lower price point. Or maybe they'll hire you in the future whenever they decide to go with someone else for that's maybe cheaper.

Emily Thompson 12:24
I have had multiple times that happen where someone has decided to go with a cheaper option and come back to apologize and or hire me later because they went with something else. So So absolutely, there are several tactics there that you can do. I think the biggest one though, is to go into this with an educational mindset like you are there to educate your client, one, that you are the boss to help them if you are indeed the boss to help them into about your services and offering enough that any questions that they could have that could be leading them to a no or not wanting to respond is answered. So that if they aren't responding or if they are saying no, it's not because they don't understand what you do, but it's because they really aren't the right fit.

Emily Thompson 13:07
Well, I love talking about closing the deal. I knew I was afraid of like having this conversation. I think because it truly is like one of those things that still even five years into it is always going to feel a little bit scary and a little bit vulnerable.

Emily Thompson 13:24
It is it is and honestly one of again, one of my favorite tactics for this is have some really good email templates. Like you can create some seriously solid email templates where you are copying and pasting some really personable like notes and actionable to do's that will systemize the insane emotions that come into selling your own expertise. So that you can just do it and you can get the job done, you can get paid to do it. Hey, web designer bosses, Emily here with some exciting news just for you. As you may or may not know apart from being the CO boss here at being Boss, I have gained the expertise that I bring to this podcast by starting and growing my own web design business in the show biography. I have spent the last six years launching websites for other creative entrepreneurs, building my business from scratch to the healthy and profitable web design business that it is today. And now I want to help you rock your web design business to to do this I have created some free trainings to share my web design business secrets with you. In these trainings, I'm sharing my top tips for running a bad ass web design business. My must haves for closing more client deals and some secret juice for managing clients and launching websites on time. It's some seriously good stuff. Join me for these free trainings at I N D I E. I'll see you there. Did you like this minisode Be sure to check us out on our website at being out. There you can find more from being boss including our full episodes minisodes and blog posts. And while you're there, be sure to sign up for our mailing list so that you can get access to behind the scenes and exclusive content from Kathleen and myself to help you be more boss in your work and life. Do the work be boss