Most health coaches offer a free discovery call for new clients. Why? Because working together is an investment on both parts, and you want to determine if you’re a good fit for one another. You’re getting to know your potential client as much as they’re getting to know you.
But a discovery call is much more than just a 20-minute meet and greet. It’s a way to close the sale and turn interested clients into paying clients.
In part 9 of PHCI’s marketing series, we’ll show you how to close leads on your next discovery call.
When you think of phrases like close leads and paying clients, what comes to mind? I’m guessing it feels pretty salesy. It doesn’t have to be that way, though.
Remember, when you’re passionate about what you do, why you do it, and you stay true to your WHY (that’s your deep-down, genuine reason for pursuing health coaching), both the call and the close will feel natural and authentic.
Of course, that doesn’t mean it won’t feel intimidating and awkward at first, but the more you do it, the easier it becomes.
Before we get into our tactics for closing the sale, let’s talk a little about what a discovery call is—and what it isn’t.
A discovery call is about:
- Understanding your clients’ health challenges and goals
- Hearing what’s worked for them and what hasn’t
- Recapping what you’ve heard them say
- Showing clients the value of working with you
A discovery call isn’t about:
- Talking about yourself the whole time
- Pressuring clients to buy a coaching package
- Giving away a free coaching session
- Offering specific nutrition or fitness advice
The last two points are really important. A discovery call is not a free coaching session. You may be tempted to help your potential client right there on the spot with specific recommendations, but trust me, you’re not doing yourself any favors.
A few months ago, I had a discovery call with a woman who had been struggling with migraines. After hearing her story and telling her a little about myself, I jumped right in to telling her about foods that were known triggers for migraines and recommended that she avoid those foods. Guess what? She never made a follow up appointment. Why would she? I gave her a bunch of valuable information for free!
That’s why it’s important to keep your discovery call very top level and let your client do most of the talking. Then, show them the value of working with you and how easy it is for them to get started. And finally, close the sale.
So, how do you close the sale on your next discovery call?
During the first part of your call, outline what you and your client will be discussing so they know what to expect, including how they can work with you. With this in mind, here are 8 tactics for closing leads during a discovery call.
1. Ask for the sale.
After recapping what you’ve heard your client say, and sharing a bit about how you can help, say something like, “I know that you can feel better and I’d love to support you on this journey. Would you like to hear how we can work together?” You probably won’t close the sale if you don’t come out and ask for it, so be confident and ask away.
2. Show your client how you’ll work with them.
This is the time to recommend the type of health coaching package that will suit your client best. Do you want to see them once a week? Twice a month? Once every two months? You’ll want to determine how often you’ll see them depending on the severity of their health concerns and what health coaching packages you offer. At this point, you’ll also want to explain to your client what types of things you’ll be focusing on in each session, what they can expect to accomplish, and how long it might take to reach their health goals.
3. Get them involved.
Ask your client to tell you exactly what they hope to achieve while working with you. Get your client to talk about their specific goals, their motivations, and their timeline. The reason you want to do this is so they’re invested emotionally as well as financially when they buy a health coaching session or package from you.
4. Check their commitment level.
On the intake form for my nutritional therapy practice, I have a section where I ask clients to write down on a scale of 1 to 10 how ready they are to make dietary and lifestyle changes. This gives me a good sense of how committed they are to working with me. After all, if a client isn’t willing to put in the work or make the changes necessary to see results, they’re probably not someone you want to take on.
5. Tell them what it costs.
Another way to say this is something like, “your investment for this program would be….” You might offer a full-payment option as well as different payment plans or discounts, so make sure that information is spelled out in your conversation about costs. And don’t be shy or feel bad about telling clients what your coaching packages cost. This is how you make your living, and your time and experience is extremely valuable to those who need it.
6. See what the hold up is.
If your client isn’t 100% committed or they have objections, this is the time to investigate further. Just remember to keep it conversational. Don’t get defensive, take it personally, or push the sale—this is a huge undertaking for your client, and they likely have some apprehension. Take the time to figure out what their apprehension is. Maybe they’re afraid to step out of their comfort zone. Maybe they’re not sure how to use technology like Skype or Zoom. Or maybe it’s a price thing. Regardless, this is your opportunity to remain confident, compassionate, and understanding so that you can help them overcome their fears or objections.
7. Be clear on how to buy a package.
If your discovery call is through a communications app like Skype or on the phone, direct your clients to the URL they need to visit in order to buy a health coaching package from you. Think of it this way—you’ve done the hard work of securing a lead and guiding them through the discovery call. It would be a shame if the reason they didn’t pursue working with you was because they were confused about how to sign up. Don’t assume they know the web address of your health coaching practice, either. Make it clear so they have the information they need and won’t hesitate.
8. Follow up after the call.
Sometimes potential clients just need time to process everything, and that’s okay, too. If they don’t commit to working with you during your discovery call, follow up with them afterward by sending an email reiterating what was discussed during the call. Remind them of the value of working with you, and the package you’d recommend for them to purchase. Also remind them of the cost and payment options, and give them a deadline to commit. This can sometimes light a fire under clients who remain on the fence for too long.
Even if you don’t close the sale during a discovery call, you’ll likely have gotten them into your sales funnel. You can read more about sales funnels here and here, but essentially, they’re a way to nurture your relationships with potential clients through an email marketing campaign, so that when they’re ready to hire a health coach, you’ll be the one they call.
One more thing to keep in mind—if closing the sale becomes a struggle or it starts to feel unnatural, it might be sign that the person just isn’t a good fit. If your discovery call doesn’t lead to a yes, you might be doing everything right, except this particular client just isn’t right for you, and that’s okay. Over time, you’ll learn to be able to spot where your energy is best spent.
To sum it up…
In order to close the sale during a discovery call, you don’t have to be salesy. You do, however, have to be clear, confident, and compassionate. Your client needs to understand the value of working with you, and how to sign up for a health coaching package. Get them involved in the process, and take the time to address any objections or fears. Finally, be sure you’ve secured their contact information so that you can grow your relationship with them through a longer-term email marketing campaign.
Here’s a list of our marketing series posts in order:
- Two Essential Questions You Must Address Before Developing Your Health Coaching Marketing Plan
- How to Use Inbound Marketing to Win Clients
- How to Build an Irresistible Health Coaching Website
- How to Generate Traffic for Your Health Coaching Website
- How to Use Content Marketing to Gain Clients
- 3 Simple Steps for Converting Web Traffic Into Leads
- How to Use Email Autoresponders to Convert Leads Into Clients While You Sleep
- How (and Where) to Hire Freelance Writers, Designers, and Tech Support
- 8 Tactics for Closing the Sale on Your Next Discovery Call
- How to Delight Clients and Keep Them Coming Back for More
- PHCI Marketing Glossary: 43 Essential Marketing Terms for Health Coaches
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