Urgency Isn’t a Tactic, It’s Natural… Here’s How to Use It

Here in Central Pennsylvania, it’s cicada season… and allergy season. I don’t normally have it too bad, but this year I’ve gone through some serious stretches of discomfort.

What do you do when you’re suffering from allergies?

You go to the pharmacy.

Natural urgency is the key to helping people understand why they need your product now.

Fun fact: I worked as a pharmacy technician in high school at a CVS. I loved that job.

At the pharmacy, you’ll find a whole aisle full of allergy medication. Some of it makes you sleepy, some keep you awake. Some of it lasts 4 hours, some lasts 24. Some are fancy brand names, some are generic.

There is absolutely no scarcity involved.

Pick from whatever you’d like.

And still… if you’re suffering from allergies, you won’t walk away from the hundreds of boxes in front of you without picking up one and putting it in your basket.

Why?

Urgency.

You see, there’s manufactured urgency and then there’s natural urgency.

I have a feeling that you think the only way to use urgency to sell more is to manufacture urgency–limit the number of spots in your program, add early bird discounts, utilize disappearing bonuses…

(Maybe you’re even envious of the people who run businesses in which they’re essentially selling something as essential as allergy medication.)

And sure, that can work.

But it’s also a bit over-played.

Tapping into natural urgency, though, is never over-played.

Creating urgency for your product or service isn’t about telling people there’s a limited time to buy. It’s not about how many seats are left in your workshop. It’s not about an early bird discount or an arbitrary deadline.

Urgency is about need.

If you want people to feel a sense of urgency for buying your product or service, you need to know why they need it now.

  • People don’t need things now because they’d might like to learn more about what you teach.
  • They don’t need things now because they’re pretty or you’re so excited about them.
  • They don’t need things because they’d like to speak their truth and connect with their inner spark.

Those aren’t the kind of things that would send them running to the store–so they’re not the kinds of things that get them clicking to your sales page.

People need what you’ve created now because they’re ending a 10-year relationship and want to be intentional about what they’re creating next.

They need it now because they’re sick and tired of opening their closets and not having a clue what to put on their bodies.

They need it now because they wake up every morning still feeling exhausted and they’re beyond ready to make a change.

They need it now because they’re completely over holding back their ideas in meetings and watching others take credit for their work.

Urgency is absolutely the key to selling more of what you’re putting out into the world.

But it’s not based on numbers or time. Sure, those things help people make a decision.

Ultimately, however, people buy now because they’ve reached a point of no return. They can’t help but search for a solution to their need and start using the one they find.

What’s going on in your customers’ lives that might make them need or want what you have to offer right now?

Then tell them you understand. Tell them the stories you know are playing out in their lives right now. Show them the vision you have for them and how your product will take them from the urgency their already feeling into a brand new day.

Create a sense of urgency by respecting your customers’ needs and they’ll respond by buying—now.

On Wednesday at 7pm EDT/4pm PDT, I’m hosting a special encore of my popular workshop on 3 Ways to Help People Buy More From You.

—> If you’d like more ways to tap into the reasons people naturally want to buy so you can earn more money and close more deals, click here to register.

Consistency Builds Brands, Complacency Destroys Them: Inside a Recent Experiment

Consistency propels brands. Complacency destroys them.

Photo by Jessica Hill Photography

 

I’ve now been offering the same business coaching program & methodology for over 3.5 years. We’ve iterated & improved the program every time we launch it. We even changed the name once.

But the program and message have remained consistent.

This spring, we had our best program launch ever. It also fell far below my expectations based on our preliminary data.

When we surveyed potential clients who had not signed up, we got the usual answers–but more than anything else, people told us they were tired of taking courses they didn’t use.

When I originally created the Quiet Power Strategy program, I had this objection in mind. I wanted to create something that wasn’t a course and was more akin to 1:1 coaching but helped you create a wider entrepreneurial network at the same time.

But that selling point had gotten lost as the program scaled, the market was flooded with courses, and our audience grew.

I wanted to remain consistent because I believe in the power of the QPS work to solve your business challenges–but I also knew it was time to change things up, to get creative.

I needed to change things up to keep our work relevant, forward-focused, and supremely useful.

So I got really specific with that core objection:

  • Why aren’t people using the courses they buy? (They’re not making time.)
  • Why aren’t people getting results? (They’re not completing the courses.)
  • Why aren’t they executing? (The course teaches but it doesn’t help them plan. It’s focused on lessons, not implementation.)
  • Why are people feeling so burnt out on learning and even their own businesses? (Courses try to solve surface level problems, not core challenges.)

Then I rebuilt our offer to combat each of these objections:

  • What if you had to make time for the program you purchased?
  • What if the format of the program made it easy to complete?
  • What if the program ended with a customized plan in your hand?
  • What if the program was designed to dig deep into the core problems of a business?

What would it look like to fulfill all of those constraints on the program?

I took my initial concept to my mastermind groups: a 2-day virtual planning retreat that took a group of clients through the process from start-to-finish, with support and coaching from me along the way.

They loved it.

We talked about how to make it even better and then I set the first experiment in motion.

Last week, we ran that experiment.

20 clients worked with me for a total of 16 hours over 2 days. We went through the entire process from start to finish. The energy, peer support, and depth of work were astonishing.

We finished Day 2 with 100% completion by our participants.

Inside the Quiet Power Strategy Virtual Planning Retreat

Inside our 2-day Quiet Power Strategy Virtual Planning Retreat — that’s my buddy Tanya Geisler laying down wisdom about the Impostor Complex!

 

The feedback has been effusive:

Screen Shot 2016-07-19 at 12.21.20 PM

While it’s too early to know for sure, I have a feeling we’ll see more results for more members of this cohort than we’ve ever seen before.

I’m not telling you about this so that you want to join us for the next Virtual Planning Retreat–though I’ve got more on that soon.

I’m telling you this because, when things are “working,” we wait to change course until we’re forced to change course. 

We grow complacent about our strategy because it’s what always worked.

Consistency does propel brands.

But complacency can ruin brands–even if you’ve grown complacent around something great.

If you’re feeling any part of your business or life constrict around you, there’s a good chance that making a fundamental change could pump new life into the whole endeavor.

This doesn’t mean you change something on a whim, it doesn’t mean you adjust course because you’re bored, it doesn’t mean you do something different because the shiny object over there is calling to you.

Change it, intentionally, when it’s no longer serving you or your customers.

Use creative constraints to discover a new opportunity.

Engineer a new path forward.

In this week’s episode of Profit. Power. Pursuit., Jennifer Lee gave us an example of necessary change, too. She’s no longer running her popular video summits and she talked about why and how she made that change. Click here to listen or read the interview.

And, if this whole 2-day virtual planning retreat idea sounds pretty cool, click here to learn more about it and sign up to get information on the next enrollment. When you do, we’ll also send you some exclusive free training opportunities.

How to Court New Customers Using Facebook Ads: Behind-the-Scenes of Our Marketing Campaign

How to Court New Customers with Facebook Ads: Inside My Marketing Campaign

I bet you’ve been wondering whether Facebook ads could jump start your outreach, list-building, and revenue.

It seems like everybody is doing it.

Advertising is great. It can fast-track your ability to connect with the right people and grow your influence in the market but…

Most advertisers are going about it all wrong.

Their strategy? It’s the equivalent of going on a first date and then asking the person to marry you on the spot–or at least move in together.That's a dealbreaker! -- How to Court New Customers Using Facebook Ads

**Even if advertising isn’t for you, keep reading. This applies to a lot of the pieces of your marketing campaign.**

Here’s what it looks like:

An ad pops into your Facebook feed with a big promise: “I used to work 12 hour days just to book 2 clients per month. Now I make $150k per year working 2 hours per day. Here’s my exact blueprint.”

Of course, on the next page isn’t the exact blueprint. It’s a landing page asking for your email address.

Who is this person? What do they really do? If I downloaded this blueprint, would I even like what I find inside? What proof do they have that this really works? What proof do I have that any of this is true?

As that scrolls through your mind, you scroll through the ad.

If you want to reach people who haven’t heard of you before, asking them for the equivalent of moving in together isn’t going to work (most of the time).

You need to prove yourself and introduce them to your business first.

Here’s an ad I’m currently running…

How to Court New Customers Using Facebook Ads

This ad is being shown to people who have never been on my website and don’t know me. But they do know and like Danielle LaPorte.

It’s just a podcast interview.

Advertising just this interview has lead directly to new leads and new customers. It’s growing awareness of my brand and warming up a new audience. And…

It’s been super cheap to run.

Now, I could stop there. But why?! Since this ad has been so successful, I want to show people who click on it another ad.

Anyone who’s been on my website (including folks who clicked the above ad), might see this ad pop up in their feed:

How to Court New Customers Using Facebook Ads

This ad takes people to the full text of my latest mini-book. There’s a larger call to action for an email address, but anyone can read the full text there. And when they do, they get delighted with GIFs!

The interesting thing here is that this “landing page” has a conversion rate of between 40-70% depending on the day. Even on a page that exclusively asks for an email address, I’d still consider those numbers a victory.

This ad is performing incredibly well–and I know I can make it better!

Finally, anyone who clicks on this ad and visits the landing page for the book is moved into a third ad set. They get shown this:

How to Court New Customers Using Facebook Ads

This is an ad for our membership community. I’m not asking for a sale here, just an email address to get a personal invitation to the community.

See how each of these ads takes a new prospect further and further into my world?

Now, like I said, you don’t have to use advertising to take advantage of this approach. Think about it every time you write a blog post.

Some blog posts are for people who know, like, and trust you already. Some are for people who have never heard of your business before.

Same thing with webinars, podcast episodes, videos, etc…

If you’re trying to reach new people, make sure that the content you’re creating and promoting is geared to someone who doesn’t already know, like, and trust you–but has an interest that overlaps with what you do (like my interview with Danielle).

Ready to apply this to your own business?

Start with a piece of content that has already received a bunch of “shares.” (Bunch, of course, is relative.)

Shares are a great indicator that people think the content is valuable to others outside your sphere of influence.

Then you can:

  • Place an ad for that piece of content.
  • Ask your friends to share it with their networks.
  • Put it on a regular schedule in your social media feed.

Give it a try! I think you’ll like the results.

For more on this topic, listen or read my interview with Lori Allen, Director of Great Escape Publishing. She’s a master direct response marketer. I asked her about how her company approaches this task–and about so much more! Click here to read or listen.

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3 Ways You Should Be Following Up to Maximize Your Profit

3 Ways You Should Be Following Up to Maximize Profit

Note: I’m not condoning sleeping 3.5 hrs per night. Just remember that your potential customers might be.
And… they may not see all your emails or updates.

Here’s a mantra I’ve been making all my clients repeat this year, so I want you to start repeating it too:

Follow up, follow up, follow up.

When was the last time you sold something to your audience? Last week? Last month? Last quarter? (If it was more than that, we need to have a different talk.)

How many times did you follow up with your audience after you made the pitch? What did you say in those follow-ups? How direct were you?

I’m seeing too many business owners leave money on the table–and leave lives unchanged–because they’re not following up.

In our last big campaign, I sent 3 “last chance” emails on the final day of promotions. 50% of our sales happened on that last day. About 30% of those happened between the 2nd and 3rd email. Yes, a few even occurred after the 3rd email.

Before that, I sent out testimonials, video case studies, FAQs, and additional content to educate readers.

All of that was  after  we made the initial pitch.

Look, I know you don’t want to annoy your readers, fans, and subscribers. But think about how busy you are, how many emails you miss, how many opportunities you’ve beat yourself up for missing in the last few months. 

They’re facing the same thing. 

If you don’t follow up with them, they can’t buy. If they can’t buy, they can’t experience the transformation–big or small–your offer will create for them.

Now, I’ve already mentioned 1 kind of follow-up you need to employ: the Pitch Follow-Up.

Here are 2 more that you’ll want to add to your repertoire to maximize future sales. The good news is that they can be completely automated so you don’t have to do any extra work.

—> I’m hosting a free training on 6 Marketing Automations You Need Today on Thursday, July 14. Sign up here.

1) The Up-Sell Follow-Up

Customers who buy from you once are 2x more likely to buy from you the next time you make an offer. That’s true even immediately after they’re first purchase. 

Your customer has just expressed a specific need. Do you have something else you could sell that further helps to fulfill that need? Maybe it’s 1:1 consulting, a video course, a consultation with a team member, etc…

Follow-up with another offer.

We recently put this Up-Sell Follow-up in place to suggest our entrepreneurial community, The Lab, to new customers. Just 3 quick emails to point out a few of the benefits of the community and tie them to problems we know those customers have–nothing fancy.

3 Ways to Follow Up with Your Audience to Maximize Profit

The application is simple: people who buy certain products are tagged in our ConvertKit system with a label that triggers this automated email sequence. It happens automagically. Even if it only increases sales incrementally, those are sales I don’t have to work harder for and those increments really start to add up!

2) The Referral Follow-Up

I’m often asked how to get more referral business–or how to turn referrals into a dependable system.

The easiest way is to ask. The easiest way to do that is by automating it.

You can set up a short sequence like the one above or use a tool like Boomerang  or Zapier to send referral emails a short time after a client completes with you.

Now your ask is just another part of the process your clients or customers go through in the course of doing business with you. 

And, of course, this doesn’t just apply to service-based businesses. If you have a product-based business, you can ask for referrals, too. Just ask your customers to share your product with friends who might like or need it.

Are you sold? Choose one of these follow-up techniques to implement in your business now.

Connect More With Your Audience By Doing Less: 6 Marketing Automations You Need Today

Want to supercharge your email marketing so that you can create more human interactions with less work? I’m hosting a live workshop with Darrell Vesterfelt from ConvertKit on how you can do exactly that. Click here to register FREE of charge.

How To Talk About Your Products or Services to Generate More Sales

First of all, never badmouth synergy.

“First of all, never badmouth synergy.” — Jack Donaghy, 30Rock

Ever feel like you get tongue-tied when it’s time to talk about what you sell?

Yeah, it happens to the best of us (seriously).

Here’s a better way to do it.

What do your customers ultimately want?

More money? More confidence? More me time? Less hassle? Less confusion?

If you can simply say…

“We offer ________ (your product or service) which helps _______ (your customer) do _________ (what your customers want in their words).”

….you’ll start many more conservations that end in sales than you do now.

Sound simple? It is. Truly.

Here are some examples: first, my friend Andy Hayes who runs Plum Deluxe (and is this week’s guest on PPP):

“We offer a monthly tea subscription which helps busy professionals create more moments that matter.”

Here’s one for Tanya Geisler, a leadership coach & Impostor Complex expert:

“I offer programs and coaching that helps high-performing women identify and achieve their biggest goals.”

And here’s one more for my buddy Megan Auman, a designer & metalsmith:

“I design jewelry that helps professional women show up to everything from board meetings to sales presentations to PTA meetings with the utmost confidence.”

The reason this works so well is because our products and services are merely tools that customers use to get what they want. You don’t need to explain your life philosophy, you don’t need to list our your company values, you don’t even need to explain your process (until they ask).

Definitely don’t use the word synergy. (Or any other industry jargon your competitors are spewing.)

All anyone cares about at first is how your product or service is going to help them get what they want.

When you open a conversation about your product by tying their ultimate desire (or one of them) to your product, you’ve created a context in which they’re open to hearing more. That’s huge.

Now, if this sounds like a “beginner” lesson, I assure you, it is not.

Look around and you’ll see all sorts of businesses that resort to spending tons of money on advertising and annoying marketing practices just to avoid making a simple statement about what their products or services actually do for people.

Don’t be like them.

I’ve also noticed while working with businesses like yours trying to break through to the next stage that refocusing on a simple statement of what they do can make all the difference in the world for identifying new opportunities.

You could completely change the way you see your business (and how it makes money) just by getting clear on what it is that you actually help people do–just like Andy did when he created the tea subscription service for Plum Deluxe.

Give this simple script a try this week and see how it goes! Let me know when you do.

 

Don’t Make This Crucial Branding Mistake In The Name of Growth

Wanna make more money? Do something new! Right?

Wrong.

It’s tempting to think that putting out another new product, repackaging your services in another cool way, or adding yet another new social media platform to your bevy of options will help you rake in more cash.

9 times out of 10, this is completely false.

The #1 branding mistake I see business owners making when it comes to their brands (and their business models) is thinking more equals better.

“More” most often means diluted.

More doesn't mean better when it comes to your brand or business model.

22 Immutable Laws of Branding by Al Ries & Laura Ries

 

Another product people just don’t quite get, another form of content they don’t feel the need to keep up with, another message that doesn’t quite hit home. 

What if you put all your energy into staking a claim on just 1 thing?

1 product, 1 service, 1 form of content, 1 message…

You might turn a small initial success into a $2.5m product.

You might publish a book that keeps the speaking gigs rolling in year after year.

Or, you might launch a podcast that skyrockets to the top of the charts and commands higher sponsorship fees than podcasts with larger audiences like this week’s Profit. Power. Pursuit. guest, Kathleen Shannon, did.

You’ll definitely have a stronger, more recognizable, and more profitable brand than you did before.

The key to a stronger brand, a bigger pay day, and more credibility in your market isn’t more, it’s more focused and more consistency.

What are you going to edit out of your brand or business today for the sake of focusing on the 1 thing that will get you where you want to go?