Posted: Wed 6th Oct 2021
Enterprise Nation adviser Rachael Howourth provides an in-depth guide for when you're ghosted by a potential client. Just what do you do next?
Had a great sales meeting? Your potential client has said they’re going to come back to you then…nothing?
It’s so frustrating
Has it happened to you, and you’ve been left wondering what went wrong?
I want to share 3 top tips for this scenario:
1) Prevention is better than cure
Try and prevent your customer from ghosting you because that’s better than fixing it.
Perhaps you need to ask better questions on the discovery call to ensure you’ve drawn out from your ideal client what they want and why they want it.
My golden rule is to create desire and urgency on the discovery calls. It’s not enough for them to want it, they’ve got to want it NOW.
2) Ask those open questions
WHY do you want the outcome you’ve described?
WHEN do you want to achieve it by?
HOW are you going to get there?
WHAT does the result that you’re looking for look like?
WHAT is the transformation that you are looking for?
Who, what, which, why, how, where, when? These are all words to use to create those open questions.
Some examples are:
“Describe to me what you need the future to look like for you...”
“Paint me a picture around the result that you are looking to achieve...”
3)Always agree next steps
The reason that you're being ghosted is perhaps that you've allowed the call to end in a way that's like: “yeah okay, so I'll give you an email tomorrow, yeah okay, bye.”
And then nothing because you haven't agreed the next steps.
Okay, so let's say you weren't able to avoid it!
Now, I'm going to give you some tips on how to follow up:
So, you wake up on the day where you think that your client’s going to pop into your inbox and say: “I want to go ahead”…and still nothing.
And you have these thoughts going around in your mind, right?
🤔 “I want to chase them up, is it too soon?”
🤔 “Will I sound like a nag?”
🤔 “Will I send them running in the other direction if I chase them up now?”
🤔 “Should I wait until tomorrow?”
🤔 “What should I actually ask them when I chase them up? How does it need to sound for it to not sound salesy, or pushy?”
These nagging thoughts aside, the fact remains, you’ve got to follow them up. Because if you don't follow them up, you're never going to know why they didn't buy on the day. You're never going to know whether you were a good fit for them, but perhaps they just needed a little bit more help to make a decision.
So, my invitation for you is to get out of your own head. Stop telling yourself that following them up is going to make you sound salesy.
I'm going to give you a tip on how NOT to sound salesy.
If you follow them up and say: “when are we going to work together?” or “have you made a decision yet?”
Yeah, that sounds like you're following them up and you're chasing them.
I’d swap that out and make that follow up more personal. Talk about things that you talked about during the discovery call, refresh their memory about what they told you that they wanted and why they wanted it.
And instead of chasing them up in a nagging way, chase them up with some value - maybe give them access to a freebie that you think might help them.
You’re not being salesy by doing this, and I want to remind you if somebody says “no” to your invitation to work together, that doesn't mean that they don't like you.
It doesn't mean that you're a bad person.
It doesn't mean that your programmes are rubbish.
It doesn't mean it's not worth the price tag and that nobody else is ever going to buy it.
These are the things that we tell ourselves when we get ghosted because the longer that it goes on, the more that we get that little voice saying: “it’s because your programme’s rubbish”, “it's because it's too expensive”, “they didn't like you. You didn't come across as warm, you weren't friendly.”
The longer that that ghosting goes on, the more that you get in your own head.
Remind yourself, your programme is good. You’ve had clients that have gained value from it, you've got testimonials, you've got years of experience. Don't let the fact that one client hasn't returned your call make you suddenly start doubting everything.
So, when it happens, (because let's face it, we all get ghosted sometimes, me included, it's going to happen) remember, the best thing that you can do to stop it happening is to agree with them during the discovery call when you are going to speak again.
If they say: “I need to talk to my partner” (I have people say that to me), there will be coaches out there that would tell you at that point you should turn up the pressure.
They say you should be asking them questions like: “well, who's going to come on the coaching, you or your partner? Why do you need to ask your partner, it's not their coaching it's yours, are they a shareholder in your business, why do you need to ask them?” 🥴
No, my advice is don't ask them any of those questions - do not turn on the pressure at that point. All that's going to do is alienate them. All that's going to do is make you come across like you're just looking for a sale, and that is not the relationship that you want with your client.
Why would you want to start off your relationship with them on that basis?
If they say that they want to speak to their partner, show empathy: “I understand that. I'm guessing that your finances are joint finances in the household. So, I understand why you want to speak to your partner. When should we arrange to catch up again? Should I give you a call at midday tomorrow?”
If you have struggled to deal with being ghosted by a customer, or maybe you're struggling to convert your discovery calls - you get right to the end of the call, and then you just can't quite get it over the line?
Send me a message and I'll offer you some tips or advice, something that's more specific to exactly what's going on with your situation.
Make sure you connect with Rachael today for more expert advice and business support.