Imagine you’re in a foreign country where you’re unfamiliar with the language. It’s hard to understand what’s going on and, at most, you understand the occasional word here or there. Suddenly, you encounter someone who speaks fluent English. Being able to truly communicate, to feel understood, and to hear them speaking your language is a breath of fresh air. That’s exactly how potential clients feel when you (figuratively) speak their language instead of in overused generalities like “closing the gap between where you are and where you want to be.”
Christian Mickelsen joins me to teach you all about speaking the language of your potential clients. He’ll also speak in depth about how you can get more clients by giving away introductory sessions, which are partly a sales conversation and partly a sample of your amazing work. Christian is a #1 bestselling author and self-made multi-millionaire who has shared the stage with luminaries including Tony Robbins.
In this Episode
- [01:30] – Christian starts off by talking about his book Get Clients Today: How To Get A Surge Of New, High Paying Coaching Clients Today & Every Day, and explores some of his previous frustration in trying to get clients.
- [04:20] – We hear more about Christian’s path after the breakthrough and mindset shift that he has previously mentioned.
- [07:00] – For the last twelve years, Christian has been focusing on helping coaches get clients. He also reveals how quickly he has helped clients go from zero to six figures, and offers listeners a free gift!
- [08:26] – Christian talks about ways to add more clients and some of the best recommendations in his book.
- [10:25] – Stephan uses himself as an example to clarify what Christian has been explaining.
- [13:54] – We return to the example of a dating coach, with Christian offering feedback on an idea that Stephan suggests.
- [16:33] – After the steps that Christian has already described, what happens next in the process?
- [20:27] – Christian’s business has now reached a point where he has team members do the intro sessions for potential new members.
- [22:01] – What was Christian’s conversion rate when he started out, and what is it now that he’s established this process?
- [24:26] – Stephan takes a moment to clarify what Christian has been explaining about his free sessions.
- [27:10] – How long should a free session be? As long as it takes to go through the whole process, Christian answers.
- [31:01] – Christian talks about the next iteration of his business, as he went from month-to-month to 90 days to six months.
- [33:07] – When he was at the $9,700 price point, how many sessions a month was he offering, and how long were they?
- [35:54] – Christian talks about how much he spends on Facebook advertising to get people into his funnel.
- [36:35] – We hear a little bit of what Christian offers in his free coaching session.
- [40:07] – People do want to hear about what you have to offer, Christian points out.
- [41:22] – Stephan clarifies for listeners that Christian’s intro session isn’t a regular coaching session sample, and points out what it is instead.
- [42:09] – Christian and Stephan roleplay a scenario in which a potential customer objects to the price.
- [44:59] – We hear another roleplayed scenario, this time with the potential customer wanting to talk to his wife before signing up. Christian offers some words of wisdom on how to deal with situations like this.
- [49:11] – Christian is unattached to the outcome of whether people sign up or not, and emphasizes the importance of wanting it for your clients more than for yourself.
- [50:07] – Stephan takes a moment to talk about meeting Christian, and recommends listening to an episode featuring Christian on his other podcast, Get Yourself Optimized.
- [52:37] – How can listeners who are interested in working with Christian get in touch with him or learn more?
In this episode number 117, we’re going to learn how to get more clients by giving away introductory sessions. These could be strategy sessions, they could be free coaching session, but they are sales conversations as much as they are samples of our amazing work. We’re going to learn how to incorporate what our guests calls Magic Phrases into these sales conversations so that we can easily transition to a yes at the end of that conversation and turn that prospect into a client. We’re going to learn all of this from somebody who manages to charge $100,000 for a full day of coaching. Our guest today is Christian Mickelsen. He’s a number one bestselling author, a healer, a self made multimillionaire and a high performance business coach who’s shared the stage with Tony Robbins, Eben Pagan, Dan Millman, and many others. Christian, welcome to the show!
It’s great to be here.
Let’s talk about your book. Get Clients Today, and how you would get clients right away. Not tomorrow, not next week. I love how action oriented you are with putting it right in the title. Yeah, get it today.
That’s right. Get Clients Today. I started off struggling to get clients myself in the early days of my coaching business. I almost quit, mentally quit many times, but this was one moment after I’ve been coaching about two years where I was taking out the garbage and I thought, “It would be easier to just be a garbage man and get a regular paycheck again, than it is to just keep trying to figure out how to get clients.” I was exhausted from working a lot of hours even though I wasn’t working with a lot of clients. I was just trying everything I could think of to try to get clients.
Were these coaching clients or consulting clients?
Coaching clients. Life coaching, I used to do more life coaching, eventually I moved into doing more business coaching. But I had business coaching clients right when I started as well. Because a lot of business owners know that if you want your business to be better, then if you’re better, it’ll make your business better. They have business owner clients initially as well as weight loss clients and dating clients, people who wanted help with dating. But yes, I was taking the garbage out one day and I just felt like, “Man, I should just get a regular job, maybe become a garbage man.” I’ve been falling behind on my mortgage. I was just really stressed out from the whole thing for the last couple of years. Then I talked to one of my best friends. He’s like, “Dude, you can’t do it. You’re too good of a coach. The world needs you. This is what you’re meant to do.” I was like, “Yeah. That’s true.” And then he challenged me to read a book a week. I started reading a book a week for 36 weeks in a row, business books, marketing books, sales books, lots of personal growth books. I realized that one of the things that was holding me back was I was really worried about losing my house. I started thinking about why am I so worried that I’ll lose my house. Obviously, you want a place to live but I was like, “Man, if I lose my house I know I could stay with a friend or family members.” I was like, “What am I so worried about?” I realized that I wasn’t even afraid of losing my house, I was afraid of the shame that I would feel if I lost my house. Once I resolved that and I drew this line in the sand that said you know what, even if I lose my house, I lose my everything, I get to do what I love for a living. I surrendered to whatever is going to happen is going to happen, but I’m going to do whatever I can to help as many people as I possibly can with coaching.
So you basically parked the worry. You didn’t worry about the worry anymore, right? Or did you still have to manage that?
I released the worry.
You released the worry.
I let it go.
It is great definition of worry that I heard of recently. Worry is praying for what you don’t want.
Yeah. That’s a great one. I’ve been unconsciously praying for what I didn’t want. I didn’t lose my house but I had been falling behind my mortgage. Anyway, once this breakthrough happened. Inner game breakthrough, plus my friend challenging me to read a book every week and I was reading them left and right. This surrendering like, okay. Look I’m not trying to get a client so I could pay my mortgage. I’m trying to get a client so that I get to do what I love and so I can make a big difference, and certainly, obviously to get money too is a great side effect. But I wasn’t as hung up on all the money. And then I was just trying everything. I was reading marketing and I’m like, let me try applying this to getting coaching clients. Reading all kinds of things. Back in the early days, I got started in coaching 17 years ago, there was no great training for how to get clients for coaches. There was general marketing help, general business advice. Unfortunately, a lot of this stuff that was being taught to coaches in the early days was really bad advice. People would say, “Hey, coach 100 people for free so you can get experience, you get some confidence in your coaching.” I would coach people for free, and they would be flaky, they wouldn’t show up for their sessions, they wouldn’t take any action. I found that if I got clients that actually paid, the ones that paid attention. They’d show up for calls, they’d actually do the work. There’s all sorts of not that great advice and unfortunately, still lots of bad advice for coaches and other kinds of businesses that are still propagated to this day. But eventually, I just kept trying different things over and over, try this, try that, try this, try that. Eventually, I cracked the code and had a successful thriving business, and it could pay all of my bills, and I haven’t had any significant financial worries ever since then. And then I had a handful of coaches come to me and say, “Hey look, can you help me do what you’re doing. I want to have the success that you’re having.” I took on five clients that were coaches and four out of five of those clients, four out of five to those coaches grew their business from zero to over 100,000 a year within 18 months. One of them did it in 72 days.
What? That’s impressive.
Yeah, I know. That’s when I realized that all of things that I learned through trial and error and the school of hard knocks, that I could share with other coaches and they could have coaches, consultants, healers, therapists, whatever, and they could get much better results, much faster results than I got. And then eventually I just decided, okay, I’m going to focus on helping coaches, consultants, healers, authors who want to also add coaching, infopreneurs, online marketers, anybody that wants to add coaching or consulting to their business, on how to get more clients. I’ve been focusing on that for the last 12 years or so, helping coaches get clients. I’ve been coaching for over 17 years, maybe 18 years now. The client who went from zero to six figures in 72 days, actually, I’ve had lost of clients be able to do it even faster. One of my clients recently did it in 34 days. I don’t know the record, maybe like two weeks. Zero to six figures for two weeks, for people who go through my programs and get my training. A lot of my best ideas for getting clients is in my book, which we’re giving to your listeners for free. If people want to get my book which is Get Clients Today, you can just go to getclientstodaybook.com.
Alright. Awesome. That’s a very generous offer to give my listeners a free book, and not just any old book but an awesome road map for people to fill their client roster with a whole bunch of new awesome ideal clients.
Let’s talk about some of these best ideas that you have in the book that we can bring to the forefront in this episode. How would I, for example, add more clients to my client roster? I have both coaching clients and consulting clients, let’s take the coaching side of it first.
Coaching and consulting, to me, it’s similar enough in selling it. Depending on what kind of consulting people do. It’s similar enough. I don’t think we need to separate them out.
Okay. Let’s take one or two of your best ideas from the book. What would our listener do to implement something to get great results?
The first thing you want to do is you want to be able to speak a language of clients. The language of clients is results. A lot of coaches talk in generalities about how they can help people, how to help people get from where they are to where they want to be. But unless somebody’s desperate, desperate, desperate for change, when they hear, “I help people get from where they are to where they want to be.” Or “Help people close the gap from where they are to where they want to be.” That roll off their back like water off a duck because it’s not speaking to them specifically. It’s like being in another country and somebody’s speaking another language, you don’t get it. It doesn’t click with you. If you’re in a foreign country, and as soon as you speak English, which I guess everybody listening must, as soon as somebody is now speaking English, and you’re in a foreign country and nobody speaks English and all of a sudden somebody speaks English. It’s like, “Somebody that can understand me!” That’s how people feel, our potential clients, when you all of a sudden speak their language. Their language is the language of results. You want to talk about the specific results that you can help people get. If you’re a weight loss coach, or weight loss consultant, then you want to talk about how you help people lose the weight and keep it off forever. If you’re a dating coach, let’s say dating coach for women, you want to talk about how you help women find their soulmate, find their soulmate now. If you are a business coach, you’d be talking about how you help people grow their business, skyrocket their profits, double their sales, double, triple, or even 10x their sales and profits.
Let’s say that I’m selling SEO consulting. Let’s say and SEO audit. If I’m talking about these are all the components to the audit, I cover your mobile site, cover page speed, and all this technical stuff, all these content stuff, and I’m not speaking their language because they don’t care about all the components to the audit, they care about what the audit can do for them if it’s going to 10x their online business, then they’re interested. If it’s just a bunch of checklists and things that are documented and detailed and a bunch of ideas, that’s not speaking their language.
Exactly! Their language is the language of results. Let me help you get 10x of traffic. Double, triple, or 10x your traffic, your leads, and your customers. That’s the kind of words that are going to appeal to the business owners who are interested in SEO services.
But what if the person that’s listening is saying I can’t make those kind of guarantees, especially in SEO, you got to be careful that you’re not guaranteeing certain rankings or whatever because that gets a little sketchy. I guarantee number one rankings or whatever and then they do all sorts of shady stuff.
I don’t know necessarily. Let me dial it back to something that’s more like a life coaching situation, then maybe we could see how it could apply over. One of the things that I talk about in the book is once you’re speaking their language, then you want to make a great offer. The best great offer for a coach or consultant is a free consultation. But when you offer a free consultation or free audit, or whatever the case may be, that in it of itself isn’t that exciting. You want to use the language of results that your clients are looking for when you describe your free consultation or your free coaching session offer. If you’re a dating coach, instead of offering a free 30-minute, no obligation coaching session, you could offer a free find your soulmate now coaching session where we’ll work together to create a crystal clear vision for the kind of man that you’d like to attract and the kind of relationship you’d like to have together. We’ll uncover hidden challenges that could be sabotaging your success with men in dating and you’ll leave the session renewed, re energized, and inspired to finally find the man of your dreams once and for all. Obviously, that’s going to be much more enticing than just offering a free 30-minute no obligation coaching session or consultation. The question that a lot of coaches will say, “I don’t know. I can’t guarantee that you’re going to find your soulmate now. I don’t know that they’re going to expect to find their soulmate now on a free consultation, on a free session.” It’s a find your soulmate now coaching session, finding your soulmate now consultation, whatever you may want to call it. It’s for people who want to find their soulmate now. It’s not necessarily a promise that by the time you leave, you’re going to have your soulmate. Unless you’re a male coach, and you’re single, and all of a sudden you’re soulmate is the first thing of the session with. Nobody’s expecting it’s going to happen right on the call, is what I’m saying.
Or if you offer a business explosion coaching session. You could do a traffic explosion coaching session, what you might want to offer. You don’t have to talk about it’s not a promise, it’s like who wants a traffic explosion? Well great. Let’s get on the call and let’s see if I can explode your traffic. Right?
Yup. Let’s use the dating coach analogy again. What if I wanted to promote as my free coaching session a dating profile audit? You show me your dating profile and I’ll rip it apart in a gentle way and help you to see all the weaknesses and all the missed opportunities so that you could find your soulmate today or right away.
That could be good too but I think it’s so specific that you may miss out. I have a program called Free Sessions That Sell With Client Sign Up System. It’s exactly what to say and do during a free consultation or free session so that people sign up to hire you right on the spot. While doing that audit might create some value and also open up some pain, it could be too pinpointed and may not move them enough to actually sign up and work with you. I’m not saying that it couldn’t work. I’m just saying it may not be the most effective way to run an initial consultation or initial session or free session. It may not be the best way, the most highest converting way to do that session.
Okay. Fair enough.
It could be something you also do during the session, it might be one more piece of what you offer. But one of the challenges with an audit like that, especially for women and dating, you’re going to critic their profile, A, you could open them up to get defensive. They’re going to feel criticized. You got to be really careful about how you do these kinds of things because you don’t want to do anything that makes people feel defensive. You want to do things that is 100% helpful. Then the other problem with doing this is if you audited somebody’s online dating profile and then basically give them all these tips for what they need to change, they might think, “Okay great. I’ll go change those things. Thanks for your help.” And then they don’t hire you because they feel like they already got a lot of the help they need. They certainly, of course, probably need a lot more help and they may or may not know that. But even if they did know they needed more help, they might feel like, “Let me just see what happens now with making these tweaks to my online dating profile.”
You basically shoot yourself in the foot, you give them some free advice and they feel like they can take it from there on their own. We got to speak the language of the client, make a great offer based on that language of results, the language that the client cares about. Then what? You’re going to make an offer, the consult, the session, and what’s the magic that happens next?
There’s two pieces of magic that happen next. Number one, you want to get that offer out in front of as many people as you can, as many highly qualified prospects as possible. This is where you take the fruits of your labor, of speaking their language, turning it into an offer, and you actually put this offer out into the world. There are a lot of ways to do that. If you already have an email list, you can send a free session offer to your email list. I would highly recommend anybody who has an email list of respective clients that you make a free session offer because so many people are just doing all these stuff for marketing, maybe growing an email list but then now they’re on the list, they’re just waiting for the client to be in pain enough to think, “Oh, wait a second. You are a dating coach, maybe you could help me.” So you want to put these offers in front of your clients on a regular basis. If you have an email list, that’s a great way to do it, you could post it on social media, you could post, “Who else wants to find their soulmate now?” Especially if you do this work regularly and have a lot of clients that have had success. You could say, “One of my clients, Betty, just got married. Are there any other woman out there who are single, who are wanting to find Mr. Right or find their soulmate or whatever. If so, just type yes below and we’ll setup a time to talk. Private message me or type yes below and we’ll setup a time to talk.” And then all of a sudden you’ll get a bunch of people saying, “Yes, I want to have a session with you.” And then you can either have a session with all those people or you could pre-qualify them by asking a bunch of questions to see how committed they are, how important it really is for them to get this area of their life handled once and for all, to get into a great relationship.
Isn’t that very important? Because you don’t want a bunch of tire kickers wasting your time.
It is and it isn’t. It depends on where people are in your coaching business. If you’re a newer coach and you don’t have a big email list of prospective clients, then I would recommend having sessions with pretty much anyone just because it gives you more experience enrolling clients. Not more coaching experience but it gives you more practice to be able to do Free Sessions That Sell so that you can actually sign up clients.
Right. You improve your conversion rate by getting more practice and trying more things and seeing what works.
Yeah. Just following the process and getting it dialled in. Plus, when you screen people out, 100%, you’re going to screen out actual people who would’ve hired you. If you try to screen out tire kickers, you’re going to also screen out some clients. The good news is as you get rocking in your business, as you get lots of more clients, then you just want to decide how open can the floodgates be. When you’re brand new, you don’t have a lot of leads yet, like boom! Keep the flood gates wide open. If somebody has a pulse, if they can fog up a mirror, boom! Have a session with them. If you’re more seasoned in your business, if you already have half full or more, and you have room for a handful of clients, then time might be a more important thing than money right now. If time is more important than money, then you want to make your sessions convert like 80% or higher, and you can pre-screen folks and only have sessions with the hottest prospects, now you’re going to get 80% or more of the people that you talk to are going to actually sign up. That’s a great use of your time. But if you don’t have a lot of prospects, then screen out people. And then as you grow even more, then you may grow a team of people that do coaching or consulting and even a team of people that do the intro sessions for you. In which case, then at some point you might open this picket back up and have a little bit weaker criteria of who you have session with.
Is that where you’ve gotten your business to, where you have your team do the free sessions?
Yeah. I think we have over 50 people on our team, we have I think around 18 or 20 coaches on our team, and then we have an intro session team of people who do intro sessions.
It’s not the same people who do the regular coaching sessions once you sign up with your team, your system, you actually have a specialized team that just does the free session.
Yeah. I feel like anybody can learn to be good at signing up clients. I started off really bad at signing up clients. It took me a long time to develop this process, this Free Sessions That Sell process, to get people to sign up consistently. Now, I’ve talked to thousands of people all over the world, in all different countries, all different niche markets, and it works like a charm and a lot of people, their very first time doing it, they get clients. Some people, they might need to do a handful sessions before they get clients. But it works really great even for people who’ve never sold and don’t consider themselves salespeople. However, for people who do have a lot of sales experience, they really enjoy the sales process, we found that in teaching them how to do free sessions that sell, those people tend to do even better and convert people better than just a lot of coaches might.
Okay. When you said you were really bad at it when you started, what was your conversion rate at the beginning when you sucked? And what was it after you’ve established this process?
The very first time I made free session offers, I did it at a talk that I gave, I got 38 intro sessions. My session was not a super hot offer, like I talked about how to do here. I didn’t know how to do that. Just offered a free coaching session, that was it. “Who wants a free coaching session?” That was it. I got 40% of the audience said yes to having a session with me. I have 36 of these session, and out of these 36 sessions, I got 6 clients. Here is the thing too, comparing conversion rates, you can only do it when it’s apples to apples. I can’t do it apples to apples because 6 out of 36, let’s say it’s 18%. Here is what else, back then I would sign clients up on a month to month basis. They weren’t even committing to six months or a year of coaching which is what I teach people to do now, is that when you sign up a client, sign them up for a bigger package. Don’t sign them up for a short package or a month to month package. That’s the first thing. The second thing is, I was charging very, very little for my coaching. I was starting $195 a month for coaching and on a month to month basis basically. Making those six sales was not…
Not so impressive.
Not so impressive. Not only did it take me a lot of session to get any clients, they weren’t committing. I had no idea what I was doing during those sessions. I just knew that somehow I’m was supposed to give away free session and get clients. What people used to teach back in the day to during your free session was this wheel of life, have people assess themselves kind of like what you’re talking about, in all these different areas, rate yourself on a scale of 0 to 10 in your health and fitness, rate yourself on a scale 0 to 10 on your relationships, and your money, and your career, and your fun, and your spirituality. That’s the kind of stuff I used to do. That doesn’t work very well. I had to do tons of sessions but eventually I realized that what creates even more value for a client is seeing where they’re at and seeing what their challenges are, and then explaining how what you do is going to help them overcome their challenges and achieve the results they want. That’s the basis for how I do free sessions itself.
Basically you’re identifying for them the challenge, the situation that they’re in and how sucky that is, and also the desired end state that they’d like to be in but they aren’t in yet, and just emphasize that for them.
Yeah. Through asking a series of questions. It’s a very coaching oriented process. I like to think of it as like we’re on the same side of the table, I’m coaching them and helping them by asking these questions versus sitting across from the table, trying to talk them into something. The other thing that’s really critical too is how you explain what you do. You want to be able to explain what you do in a way that matches up with what they need and what they want, and that was one of the things that took me a long time to crack the code on. In the early days, I was doing session after session after session after session, I have tried this, I have tried that, I tried this, I tied that, and eventually, it developed into this process called free sessions itself. A lot of the challenges I had back in the early days wasn’t just not knowing what to say and do during the session, what was also feeling weird about talking about money, asking for the sale, all that stuff just felt really uncomfortable. Eventually I created this process of free sessions itself, not only is it really effective at getting clients to sign up right on the spot, and not only does it create a lot of value for the clients but it also feels really good for both you and the client. Because you’re not putting pressure on them. The pressure is coming from inside of them to go, “Oh my gosh. I really need your help.” In terms of my conversion rate, these days, as your conversion rate gets higher, you can start raising your rates. So then the conversion rate might go lower, and then maybe you you’ll get more confidence at your higher price point, maybe you’re now qualifying prospects better. To me, the whole conversion rate thing is definitely something you want to measure but it’s hard to compare unless you’re selling apples to apples. Right now, I don’t even coach clients for a year to time anymore. I only do VIP days with clients and clients pay $100,000 to work with me for a day.
Holy cow, that’s the highest priced VIP day I’ve heard of so far. $100,000. When was the last VIP day that you did for a client?
Couple of months ago? Maybe two months ago? Two or three months ago. Something like that.
That’s impressive. Nicely done.
I just had someone sign up for one few weeks ago, and we haven’t had it yet. I actually had two people sign up for a VIP Day just a few weeks ago. I don’t have them on the schedule yet but they’re already paying. We’re paid.
Very good. That’s nice. How long should these sessions be if you’re going to do a free session? Is it 15 minutes? Is it an hour?
I’d say however long it needs to be in order for the client to go through the whole process. And have them make a decision at the end of the conversation whether that’s to move forward or not, the most important thing you want to have happen is for a decision to be made even if it’s a no. Most people are afraid of the nos. Nos are way better than maybe’s. Maybes, that’s just a dangling thread that plagues many coaches or consultants or business owners. It like, “Oh follow up with me. You know what, let me think about it and follow up with me next week.” And then you follow up with them and then the next thing you know you’re chasing them, calling them, emailing them, and they’re like running away from you now. Because they don’t want to say no. Occasionally, people will say they want to think about, we’ll actually come back around. But it’s pretty rare. 80% of the time, people that are going to sign up are going to sign up on the spot. You just want to help people make a decision. That’s one of the things that I teach to do is just to help people make a decision. One of the most important thing is that you want to come from a place of when you’re talking to a prospective client, you want to come from the mindset that I want them to sign up for coaching or consulting or whatever it is that you do, I want them to sign up because of what it will do for them far more than what it’ll do for me.80% of the time, people that are going to sign up are going to sign up on the spot. You just want to help people make a decision. Click To Tweet
If I get another VIP day, that’s great for me, I’ll make another $100,000, that’s nice. I definitely appreciate that. But I think about what I can do for a client and how much we can rock somebody’s business even in one day. Often times we’ll split up a VIP day into two half days just so we kick some major butt on one half of the day and then they go actually implement that and then come back a few months later and do another one. But I want it for them more than I want it for me. I work part time, we did over $5 million in sales last year. One more client, great. Next goes from $5 million to $5.1 million. That’s great. $5.1 to $5.2. That’s good. I usually only do three or VIP day clients in a year.
Right. Even though it’s a high price, and high value, it’s just trading hours for dollars.
There’s nothing wrong with that. It’s a great way and so much upward mobility in business. For me it all starts with getting a handful of high paying clients, and just really dialling it in and growing from there.
Here’s the thing. There’s nothing like SEO to grow your business, it’s the gift that keeps on giving. I know this, you know this, we all know this, right? But I see so many people get stuck and spin their wheels, and spin their wheels some more and get nothing done. Or they finally get something done but it’s the wrong thing and it doesn’t benefit their SEO one bit. But what if there were a quick and simple system I can walk you through so that you finally get some traction. Would you be interested in that? If yes, go to marketingspeak.com/challenge for a free five day challenge I’ve made for you because I want you experience success with SEO. You’ll learn some cool tools, you’ll get into real action to jumpstart you traffic and sales using easy to implement SEO insider techniques. Again, go to marketingspeak.com/challenge to crush this. Now onto the second half of our interview with our guest. When you started, you started offering these coaching sessions, free ones and you weren’t so good at it, and you had them month to month, and you’re only charging under a couple hundred bucks a month. Then you morphed it into something different. What was the next iteration? Was it getting them to commit to a six month package, was it to increase your rates?
Yeah. I just had tweaking things. I went from doing a month to month to 90 days, and lo and behold, clients stuck around longer. They’d stay for 90 days and maybe they’d even stay for longer. I would do 90 days start and then month to month after that, then I moved to six months at a time, then I moved to having clients sign up for a year. Wow, this is so much easier. Less client churn just makes things so much easier when you don’t have to keep worrying about where you’re going to get your clients from because they stick around. Also then raising rates, yeah, I went from $195 a month to $297 a month to $397, $497, $597, eventually, $700 a month, then $1,000, $1,200, $1,500, $2,000. Actually I went from $1,500 to $1,797, $1,997 and onto the $2,497, and eventually $5,000 a month, then actually $10,000 a month. Actually I think it was $9,700 a month, then I’d sign up clients for a year at a time and that’s where I tapped out of in terms of doing coaching clients for a year at a time and then just other things were happening with my business where it’s like I don’t know if I want to take up any more of these $9,700 a month client, even though it’s $100,000 a year, again, that’s a lot of hours that’s going to have that appointment. Everything depends on where you’re at in your business. You want to just think of it as like turning the dials. Dial up the pricing, turn the dial on how open the flood gates are for how many intro sessions you might get, then maybe at some point you’re hiring other coaches to do the coaching because you have so many clients, then maybe at some point you’re hiring other people to do the intro sessions for you because you have so many intro sessions. Business in general, it’s a living, breathing fluid thing. It’s very dynamic. You just want to do your bestest damn type of things and keep evolving as you grow.
When you were doing the $9,700 a month price point, how many sessions a month and how long of sessions were you offering for that $9,700?
I would do three 45 minute sessions a month.
I think what I would do is I promise three 30 minute sessions a month but I would allow sessions to go over sometimes, as much as 45 minutes.
Got you. Were you requiring people to pay up front for the year?
Yes. They could do either way. They could either do monthly at $9,700 a month or they could full pay and the full pay, I think this is where I probably did different things at different times depending on if I really wanted the full pay. Anyway, I did some full pay that probably like $79,997 or something. Maybe $89,000.
So you offered a discount to full pay.
Oh yeah. We always want to offer a discount for full pay. I’m a huge fan of full pays nowadays. One of the reasons why I wanted more because that was growing it and getting clients at $9,700 a month was great. I started feeling like oh do I really want to commit? Even though they’re committed for a year, if I wanted to not necessarily stay with them for the whole year. If they full pay, I say we’d rather have the more money even if there is less security that they may or may not complete but I’d rather get paid more. Generally, full pays are better. I highly recommend full pays. It’s great, inside the books, Get Clients Today, which again, we’re giving away for free. I also talked about other ways to get your offer in front of people besides just email or just from social media, you can run ads, there are all sorts of other cool ways to get your offer in front of people, and there are lots of other great strategies in the book.
Awesome. You are eating your own dog food, applying those strategies and tactics that you have in the book, like you’re running ads on Facebook, on Google, on LinkedIn.
We run ads on Facebook and now, eventually, people, coaches might want to create online training programs. You could go straight into coaching, you can run an ad, your ad could be, “Hey have a session with me or apply for a session.” An application to apply for a find your soulmate now coaching session or whatever. Your ad could be for them to get a free report, 10 ways to 10x your web traffic, your free web traffic, or whatever it may be, three ways. You could offer a free report or a free video and your ad could run to get people to opt in and get on your email lists so that they can get the free giveaway. And then once they get the free giveaway then you can offer the intro session if you want to. Or you could even sell the intro session. That’s another way to determine how open are the floodgates. If you only offer intro sessions, if people have already purchased something, then they’re already highly qualified.
Yup. How much do you spend if you want to share that or if not, that’s fine. How much do you spend on your Facebook advertising to fill the funnel at the top?
Facebook ads is just one of the ways that we get traffic and I would love to spend more. Honestly my checkbook is open and I will spend as much as I possibly can as long as I’m breaking even or better on my Facebook ads. And also, Facebook ads are changing so much that even if I said what I was spending now, that might change a week from now.
Yup. Fair enough. Alright. I’m very curious to hear some of the things that you say and do in your free coaching session. I know that’s part of your program. Give us a little sample of what some of those things would be.
It’s an entire system, entire process. I highly recommend people get it. We do a launch for it once a year.
What’s the name of it again?
Free Sessions That Sell, The Clients Signup System. You can go to freesessionsthatsell.com to check it out, to get more info about it. But yeah, Free Sessions That Sell, it’s a complete system from A-Z, it’s a script for exactly what to say and do during the intro sessions that clients will signup right on the spot. It’s filled with a lot of what I call Magic Phrases, things that you could say that just make things so much softer, so much easier, create zero resistance. One of the great things about Free Sessions That Sell is that it helps people feel like they’re being coached and not like they’re being sold.
Yeah, that’s important.
There’s some great magic phrases in there that really help keep people feeling connected. I’ll share one of those with you, which is after you’ve done the first half of the session, and then you want to start telling them about your program. First mistake that a lot of people make with their intro sessions is they just go straight to, “Hey, let me tell you about my program.” Or another mistake people make is they’ll just go do some coaching, we’ll do some free coaching, and they never tell them about their program. I remember, I tried so many different things, I would try doing a coaching and not bring up my offers at all until somebody asks. Sometimes they would ask, and I was like, “Oh wow that was great.” I just waited for them to ask, and then I told them. And then sometimes people would never ask. They’d just be like, “Okay, thank you for the session.” There’s so many mistakes that people make during into sessions, definitely so many mistakes I used to make during intro sessions. But one magic phrase that’s really great and that I’ll share with everybody right now is to say this, “I have a program designed specifically to help people overcome these sorts of challenges and achieve these kinds of results that you’re looking for. Would you like to hear a little bit about it?” That phrase is just so soft and so subtle because it’s like they just told you what they want and what they need, and now, you’re not trying to force anything down their throat, you’re asking if they want to hear it. It’s really permission based selling. Because this concept, years ago people talk about permission based marketing, where you get permission to market to them, which is what email marketing pretty much is. People are opting in, they’re saying yes, send me information. It’s permission based selling. Basically it’s like, “Would you like to hear a little bit about it?” Then if they say yes, then you say, “Okay, this is how I work with clients. Does that makes sense? Would you like to hear a little bit more?” They may say yes. “Do you want to hear about the next step?” “Yeah. Please keep telling me more.” “You know what some people want to know at this point is what the investment is. Would you like to hear that?” They might say yes. This whole process and a mindset, a lot of the training in the free sessions itself is the mindset. You want to get your head right so you’re not worrying about your fees, you’re not talking about the money.
Your voice doesn’t rise an octave when you’re going to the pitch.
This magic phrase is in comparison with or in contrast to the let me tell you about my program where you’re just shoving it down their throat, you’re not even giving them the opportunity to say I want to hear about it.
Exactly. People want to hear about it. Somebody might be, I don’t know if anybody is worried, but if anybody is worried that he’ll say, “Would you like to hear a bit about it?” And then you may be worried, “Oh my gosh, what if they say no?” I have never had anyone say no. Maybe one time ever, somebody’s like no. That’s probably because there is something wrong earlier in the session that they didn’t pick up on, maybe they were defensive at the beginning or something and I didn’t help lower their defensives so that they could feel like they were on the same page right out of the gate. For the most, 99.9% of the time, you’re doing intro session, if you ask them, “Would you like to hear about it?” They’re going to say yes. They’re going to say, “Yes. I want to hear about it.” There’s a lot of other great magic phrases in there, that’s a great magic phrase for how to ask for the sale, how to ask for the money, there’s great questions to ask. When people might say, “I need to talk to my spouse. I need to talk to my business partner.” There’s great magic phrases for how to handle that so that people can still make a decision and move forward, and often get the client and get the commitment right on the phone, even before they go talking to their spouse or partner. There’s a lot of great stuff in there. It’s all soft, and subtle, and gentle, and works like crazy.
That’s awesome. I want to roleplay a little bit of this with you. Before we do, I think it’s really important that our listeners understand that this intro session is not a regular coaching session sample that you’re giving them. This is engineered as a sales call that is stretching the gap for them between where they are now, and where they want to be so that you motivate them to take action rather than just giving them some things to work on that they’re going to be very appreciative for, that’s not the point, and if you’re doing that you’re just blowing it.
Let’s try to roleplay a few different scenarios and see how this would actually apply in the real world. Are you game?
Okay. I am interested, Christian, this sounds really good but boy, your price, $100,000. I can’t even imagine spending that kind of money for a single day of coaching, a VIP day. I spent $15,000 on somebody for VIP day, and I didn’t get the value. It was okay but it was not worth $15,000. To put that kind of money, $100,000 on the line and then to be disappointed would just devastate my business. I don’t know, this just doesn’t seem like it’s going to fit.
Yeah, maybe it’s not.
Okay. Convince me that this is a good value.
I can’t convince you of anything. I’m not here to convince you of anything, frankly. This is where jumping in at the end is a little tough because basically everything I would say would be based on everything I would’ve heard earlier, for the most part. You did say you wanted to do this, you did say you were struggling with this, and if we were able to in this day, if we will resolve all those challenges, and if we were to break the day into two half days so we could resolve so many of these challenges in the first half of the day and get you rocking and then come back the second half of the day, also help get your plans, get everything ready to rock, so that after that first half day you hit the ground running and you’re ready to rock and roll and kick some major butt. And then we come back into another half day in four months or so and see how you’re doing, fine tune everything. That’s what I might say and then I’d say do you think if we’re able to do that, will that be worth it? It’s not worth it for every business. I do have some newer businesses that sign up for an intro session, a VIP day with me, and then some of the clients that sign up for me have multimillion dollar businesses. If you have a million dollar business, or a multimillion dollar business, and $100,000 investment, if I help you release all these blocks or help you tweak your marketing or whatever, we could potentially blow the lid off of this thing and really, sky’s the limit. To address the concerns of the VIP day with someone else, I would say every coach is different. I don’t know who you had that session with, but obviously the fact that people pay me $100,000 to work with me for a day, I definitely know what the heck I’m doing and I don’t know if that coach does or doesn’t. Even if he could only charge $15,000 for a VIP day, I might say, is maybe good but I don’t know, it may not be that great. I could see you how you can end up being disappointed.
Yeah, yeah. Tony Robbins charges $1 million to work with him.
And a percentage of the profits.
Upside. For sure. You know what, I’m going to let you keep 100% of the profits, 100% of the upside with my VIP days. I’m actually quite a bargain.
Okay. I’d love to sign up with you and I am not going to make a commitment before I talk to my wife about it.
Yeah, no problem. Take as long as you want to think about it. That’s like the opposite of what I said earlier. We want people to decide right on the spot. What I do if I’m having an intro session with someone, they get special pricing if they sign up right on the spot. That is the enticement to this side now. Let’s assume that instead of $100,000 for a day, that I charge $125,000 for a day. And let’s assume that my special pricing for people who decided to go for it right on the spot is that it’s just $97,000 even, instead of $125,000. You save over $25,000. What I say is you can take as long as you want to think about it and if you want to take advantage of the special pricing, then you would want to sign up right now. If you need to talk to your spouse, then what I would suggest, what some people do is, this is a good way to do it, this is another one of these little magic phrases. What some people do is they just go ahead and get themselves registered now to save the special pricing, and then they go and talk to their spouse, or business partner or whatever, and then after they talk to their spouse if for some reason it’s not going to work, they just let me know and we just void out the transaction and you’re never billed.
I like that. That’s good.
Yes. And then what else you can do is you could ask questions like, “Let me ask you this. If your wife is a yes, are you a yes, or do you still have concerns?” Because we want to find out that it already takes pressure off when they say, “I need to talk to my spouse.” “Oh yeah, of course. That makes total sense.” You don’t want to say, “Don’t talk to your spouse.” You just want to say, “Yeah, of course.” But then you want to check in and the pressure is gone. “Oh okay, he’s going to let me go talk to my spouse.” Of course I’m going to let you if you want to. You can’t force anybody to do anything. What we want to do is we want to find out where are they. If your spouse is a yes, are you definitely a yes or you still have some concerns? And they say, “Oh no. My spouse is a yes, then I’m a yes.” “Great.” “If your spouse is a no, then what happens?” “Then I probably can’t do that.” Tell me what that’s going to be like if you can’t move forward because of your spouse. You gotta do some coaching with them on it.
Yeah. This is just really good. This is future pacing stuff. I love it.
Then you can go to the whole what some people do is they go ahead and get registered now and then they go talk to their spouse and confirm, “Oh hey, I’m going to do this if this is cool with you.” Versus going and chucking and then you coming back and then they lose the special pricing. There’s so much you can do in any situation. But the most important thing is the mindset where you’re coming from and the whole conversation that you need to be like water. You need to be able to just flow with the situation, you need to be like, “I’m here for you. I’ve got this amazing thing. It can really help you like crazy. I’m so unattached. If you sign up, great. If you don’t, I’ll be sad for you, I’ll be bummed that I don’t get an awesome client to work with. Certainly the extra money would be great but I’m bummed for you if you don’t say this out loud. This is your mindset insight, because this is how I really feel. If a client hires me, I’m so excited for them. I am so excited for them whenever a client hires me. What’s possible for them, what opens up for them now that we’re going to work together is so amazing. If we don’t work together, those get off my back. In the early days when I was struggling to pay my mortgage and I was like, “Oh my God, if I lose my house and all that angst about the money and all that stuff.” Once I let go of all that stuff, you know, I’m great, I’m fine, whatever happens to me. Even the fact that my business is doing so great is great, but even if I wasn’t in a great place financially like I am today, I’m at peace about whatever the future holds for me, my financial life, I’m not beholding any one client that like, “Oh my God, I need this client so bad. If they don’t sign up, my world could end.”
Yeah. You’re unattached to the outcome.
Totally unattached, totally at peace regardless whether people sign up or not. That’s the best place to be in. Knowing that you want it for them more than you want it for you, then you take a stand for them, you could be like, “Look, I don’t need you to sign up for coaching. You need to sign up for the coaching.” You don’t say it like that. But you have that mindset like, “I’m going to keep asking you questions because I want to open you up so I can help you with all the things that you talked about that you need help with. I know I can help you.” You want them to get coaching for their sake, not for your sake. It’s a huge difference.
Yeah, because then you’re just in a place of service.
Totally in a place of service.
Instead of trying to get what you want to get.
Yeah. I don’t need any clients to sign up. If I had no clients sign up with me at all, that would be a problem. But any one specific potential client is irrelevant for me whether they sign up, it’s very relevant for them.
Right. You really do come from a place of service in every aspect, it’s not just free sessions. It’s part of who you are. Remember meeting you for the first time when we were part of Tony Robbins’ Platinum Partnership, and you’re just very giving with your time and just a genuine guy. You’ve got such amazing technologies, processes with Peace Process and the Instant Miracle, which we didn’t cover at all in this episode but I will direct listeners to episode 101 of Get Yourself Optimized
on my other podcast where we went into that in some detail. It’s just so powerful what you can do just through muscle testing, just through these two processes you’ve come up with, the Peace Process and Instant Miracle is just so, so cool. You’re an impressive guy, Christian.
Thanks man. I really appreciate it. I live to give. I love to give, I live to give, and that’s one of the reasons why we’re giving away my number one bestselling book Get Clients Today. I teach make a difference marketing, you want your marketing to make a difference too. The more giving you are, the more people love you, love your stuff, open your emails, take advantage of your intro session offers. What we do changes people’s lives. With your coach, your consultant, your businesses, you change a business, you change many people’s lives. You help a business grow, you’re going to help that business owner, you’re going to help their family, if they hire people you’re going to help their employees. I have over 50 people on my team. The more I grow my business, the more people I can add to the team. Business is such a fun game to play, it’s one of the most generous things that you can do is to have business and offer service or product that helps people and changes people’s lives.
It’s like all microcosm and magic happens inside that business. I know people have gotten together and gotten married from my business that I’d setup. They had met each other through my company and now they’ve got a family. I played a part in that. Pretty cool.
Alright. We’ll close this interview out. Again, the website for the free book is getclientstodaybook.com and if somebody wanted to work with you directly, do the VIP day, where should they go for that?
They should still go to getclientstodaybook.com just to see more about what I’m about.
And you also have that program Free Sessions That Sell. That’s freesessionsthatsell.com if they’re interested in that as well, right?
When does that program open up?
It opens up late January, later this month.
Just go to freesessionsthatsell.com, even if it’s not January we always have free resources available there that teach some of the Free Sessions That Sell even if it’s closed. If they’re interested in the inner game work, you can go and check out instantmiracleexperience.com. Hopefully we get to meet, hopefully you get to come to one of my live events, maybe we’ll end up working together, maybe we’ll do a VIP day together. Who knows?
Yup. Awesome. Alright. Thank you, Christian. Thank you, listeners. And now it’s time to take action, the show notes are on marketingspeak.com, the checklist of action items to take which we do for every single episode based on the content from the episode is also available at marketingspeak.com, and go to www.getyourselfoptimized.com and listen to episode 101 and hear a different side of Christian where he talks about some pretty cool, almost mystical sort of stuff. It’s pretty awesome. Lots of action items for you to take, go ahead and take them, make your life better, make your marketing better, and make a difference for a lot more people. This is Stephan Spencer signing off, we’ll catch you on the next episode of Marketing Speak.
Your Checklist of Actions to Take
☑ Acquire skill and mindset improvement through coaching or training so that I can be a better entrepreneur.
☑ Don’t let fear hold me back from doing what I truly love. Worrying takes up energy that could be spent on positivity.
☑ Work not only for money but also for the feeling of fulfillment. Fulfillment comes from helping and impacting others.
☑ Speak the language of my clients. Communicate in a way that will make them listen to and understand me.
☑ Offer something valuable for free to get my potential client’s foot in the door.
☑ Improve my conversion rate by trying out different strategies and testing out what truly works.
☑ Keep my clients longer by changing my subscription length from monthly to quarterly so that I can build stronger, more trusted relationships.
☑ Encourage my potential clients to be more invested in my offers by giving a huge discount on full payment plans. This will convince them to invest in the full package.
☑ Be subtle when doing my sales pitch. Use magic phrases like “I have a program that can help solve your problem. Do you want to hear about it?”
☑ Grab a copy of Christian Mickelsen’s book Get Clients Today and start applying his tips to my business.
About Christian Mickelsen
Christian Mickelsen is the #1 best-selling author of “Get Clients Today”. He is a self-made multi-millionaire, business coach and healer who started from nothing and worked his way up to stardom in the coaching and personal growth world sharing the stage with Tony Robbins, Eben Pagan, Reid Tracy, Dan Millman, and many others. He’s on a mission to heal the world!