Does the word “sales” make you cringe?
Why is that?
Is it because you’ve tuned in to this narrative that selling is dirty? Is it because you have a negative mindset that sales are manipulative? Do you feel dishonest about selling?
I want to encourage you to shift your mindset around sales.
I’m a sales coach. Now, before you shift tabs and leave this blog, I want you to listen. When you shift your mindset around sales, you can open a world of opportunities and possibilities in your creative business.
You don’t have to feel dirty about selling; you can use sales to build relationships and sell to your client market.
What selling isn’t.
Before I jump into how sales can be beautiful and how to shift your mindset around sales, I want to focus on what sales isn’t.
There are countless stats and studies about all you need to know about selling, but so many of these sites don’t focus on the power that sales has.
Selling isn’t scummy.
Selling isn’t manipulative.
Selling isn’t bad.
Now, in saying that, selling can be scummy, manipulative, and bad. As a sales coach, I’ve seen sales done really poorly. I’ve seen people be dishonest and lie to get a sale, but that’s not what genuine selling is.
What sales is and why selling is beautiful.
There are so many different words to describe selling. Some of these words are encouraging, like “creativity,” “serving,” and “super rewarding,” but then people also view sales as “difficult” and “challenging.”
I think that all of these words can be true for sales.
In case you haven’t gathered it, I love sales.This isn’t only because I’m a sales coach. It’s because I love how sales can completely change the trajectory of someone’s business, and when done well, sales can be incredibly beautiful.
Every opportunity you have to sell is an invitation to grow your business and help someone.
When you are an expert in an industry, you have the ability to gift people with your knowledge. When you sell to someone, you’re helping them.
Helping people is beautiful.
When you shift your mindset around sales, you begin to understand that selling isn’t this scummy and manipulative thing. No, it’s this beautiful and loving conversation where you learn about where someone needs help and then provide them with a solution.
Here’s an example:
You’re a brand specialist. You jump on a call with a prospective client. They share about how they’re struggling to land on their branding. They have some ideas, but every time they try to bring their ideas to life, they find that it’s missing something. They want to communicate to their client market through their brand to share about their business, but they’re not confident in any of the designs they’ve created and need help.
This is where you come in.
You ask them specific questions about what they have in mind, gain a deeper understanding of their business and their branding needs, and then pitch them an offer. You negotiate with them and land on an agreement that works for both of you.
They’re excited because they’re confident that they’ll finally have a branding strategy they’re excited about. You’re excited because you love what you do and want to help them.
It’s a win-win.
It’s also a sales call.
What about that situation feels manipulative or scummy?
None of it!
It’s a beautiful conversation between two humans. One is in need, and the other one is able to help!
I get it. As a sales coach, I hear all the time,“But the conversation doesn’t always go like that!” But why is that?
How to shift your mindset around sales.
Okay, so you understand what sales is, what it isn’t, and how it can be beautiful. But how do you actually shift your mindset around sales so that you’re excited about it?
One of the first steps to shifting your mindset around sales is to recognize the benefits of having a positive mindset. Once you can understand the why, it’s easier to actually do.
Having a positive mindset will allow you to stay open to new opportunities and excited to explore with potential clients. If you’re constantly approaching sales with a negative mindset, it’s going to be hard to be excited about the potential of each meeting.
You may also risk your negativity impacting the tone of the meeting. If you hate sales and don’t want to have a sales call, your potential client may pick up on that and not want to work with you.
But then, how do you stay positive?
Recognize that you are helping people.
When you get on a sales call, take time to listen to the needs of your potential client. During the meeting, ask yourself if you’re equipped to help them with their needs. Then share with the client how you could help.
This is just a simple conversation.
Right now, you just need to worry about whether or not you can support that person by assisting with their problem.
Note: this relates to both products and services—both can serve a need.
I’ve said that sales can get scummy. That’s when you’re having a conversation with a potential client, and you’re trying to sell before being invited to, or when you’re not listening to their needs, or it can happen when you’re dishonest about how you can help them.
When you view sales as “I want to help this person,” you are able to create a positive mindset that will prevent you from accidentally switching to a “scummy salesperson.” When you help someone, you have their best interest in mind.
Clients notice when you are doing your best to provide them with help rather than trying your hardest to land a big deal. You’re allowed to be excited about the deal because it will make you money and provide you with more experience, but if your only goal is to make money from this person, then you’re going to miss out on the opportunity to support them.
Supporting someone in need is beautiful.
Once you’ve had a conversation with the client, and they’ve shared about what they need help with, you may find it hard to transition from “this is how I can help” to “so, are we going to do this thing or not?”
If the client says that they’re interested in your help, then you can ask for the sale. Try these questions instead of, “So, do you want to work with me?”
“Do you feel that we can solve some of the problems we discussed?”
“After meeting with us, do you feel we are the right fit for each other?”
“How would you like to proceed with your project?”
These questions will help the client confidently decide if you’re the right person to help with their problem. This will also help you feel confident in knowing where the client is at and how they’d like to proceed…it’s all part of the conversation that you’re having.
How can I practice this?
Just try it!
On your next sales call, approach the call as a conversation.
Spend time listening to your client’s needs, and when they’re done sharing what they need, you can share how you might be able to help.
Remember that you’re both human beings. You’re both there for a reason. They need help. You (likely) can help.
Entering into the call with a positive mindset that selling is beautiful will allow you to have an honest conversation with them about how you can solve their problem.
If you have the skills and experience to solve their problem, they’ll be excited to work with you too!
It’s just a simple conversation. Nothing scummy is going on. Rather, it’s just humans helping humans, and that’s something that is beautiful.
If you’re interested in learning more about how to sell, then you should check out The Winners Circle. This coaching and mastermind is going to teach you how to raise your prices, land more clients, and start making the income you desire.
Selling doesn’t have to feel wrong. When you learn how to sell well, you can get excited about the thought of a sales call and eager to help a potential client. Shifting your mindset around sales will allow you to be excited and confident in your sales calls.
Selling is beautiful.
Since you’ve gotten this far in the blog, then I also recommend that you follow me on Instagram if you’re looking to learn more about how to grow your creative business.
On my page, I share about how to grow your business, land high-ticket clients, and more. Through my years in business and as a sales coach, I have learned so much. I’m passionate about taking my knowledge and sharing it with creatives like you!
If you found this blog helpful, follow me, and send a dm! I’d love it if you said hi.
What does your price say about you?
If you walk into a shopping mall, you’re going to see a variety of stores that sell similar things. Let’s say you’re shopping for shoes.
There are going to be stores that only sell shoes, and they’ll have a lot of shoes and a variety of shoes. Then there are going to be stores that sell a little bit of everything, including shoes, and these shoes will be really inexpensive (like a dollar store or Pound land).You’ll also find stores that have a few shoe options, but they’re luxury shoes.These stores all sell shoes, but they all take a different approach.
The pricing of one product or service can range dramatically. How is your price positioning you in the market?
Are you the dollar store of graphic design or the Rolex of copywriting?
What story does your price tell? Are you communicating with your target market, or are you landing outside their scope(either above or under)?
Understanding how your pricing impacts your business can allow you to confidently set your pricing in a place that will allow you to find your target audience.
What is “price positioning”?
I love how this article explains it, “Price positioning is the act of setting a price on a particular product/service that is within a specific price range.The price positioning shows where a product is positioned as regards to its competitors in a particular market as well as to the customer’s perception.”
Price positioning is where your pricing lands in the market, and it’s important because it communicates to your market.
Your pricing tells a part of your story.
What story does your price tell?
Every price tag tells a story.
It shares about the quality of the product or service, but it shares about so much more as well.
If you run a creative business, your pricing is going to share your experience. Your prices indicate if you have education in your field or if you’ve been in it a long time. Someone is going to assume that a new graphic designer with no experience is going to charge less than a graphic designer who graduated from grad school and has ten years of experience.
Your price can help someone feel confident in your services, or it can make someone question your credibility.
If you price yourself high, you may be labelling yourself as luxurious, but you could also be labelling yourself as unattainable. Meanwhile, if you price yourself too low, you could be attracting the wrong type of customer who is going to cause you a major headache.
You likely want your pricing to land in a place that communicates your experience and education while also staying competitive in the market.
Pricing isn’t a race to the bottom, but to stay competitive, you also don’t necessarily want to race to be the highest priced in your industry.
So, how do you determine your pricing?
We all know the importance of market research, but how do you take this market research to actually determine your pricing?
Let’s say you are a social media manager.Through your market research, you learned that everyone is charging £30 an hour. If you charge £25, does that position you as cheap or accessible? Will that difference put you in an inferior place, or will it be advantageous to you? What if you charge £35 per hour? How will that impact your position?
Positioning your pricing isn’t about racing to the bottom. I’m not telling you that you need to work for nothing in order to be competitive. Instead, I’m telling you that spending time researching your market and learning about the need will help you better understand where your pricing should land.
When you can understand what other people with similar experiences and abilities are charging, you can then determine what makes the most sense for you.
In your research, pay attention to how people’s pricing makes you feel. Does someone’s hourly rate make you raise your eyebrows and question it? Or does someone else’s hourly rate make you go, “oh, that’s too cheap”?
There are always going to be people who are charging less than you, and there are always going to be people who are charging more than you. It’s your job to determine where you land and what that will communicate to your potential buyers.
People tend to think that having the highest pricing is always going to be the best, but that’s not always the case. If you’re the highest priced in your industry, you may be at risk of deterring potential customers or communicating something about your brand that isn’t entirely true.
One thing that’s nice about running your own business is that you can always change your prices! If you find that you’re getting too much work and you can’t keep up, bump your prices up! If you find that every sales call you have people are sold until you tell them your pricing, then you may want to reconsider what your pricing is communicating.
If you find yourself in the situation where people keep jumping ship when they hear about your pricing, it may be less about what your prices are saying and more about how you’re sharing your prices. It may be helpful to consider sharing your prices earlier on or try asking someone what they would expect to pay. You’re allowed to negotiate your pricing too!
There are different strategies that will help you determine what pricing makes the most sense for your business goals.
Economy pricing is all about offering low rates to increase brand awareness. Economy pricing is often used by businesses that can afford to sustain a lower profit. They’re able to then sell more at a lower cost, and their low pricing gives them a competitive advantage. One of the disadvantages to economy pricing is that it’s often a race to the bottom, and it can be a very competitive race.
Price skimming is when a business sets its price high initially and then lowers its price later on. This strategy helps secure clients at the beginning who are willing to pay more, but then the lower price makes the product or service more accessible for people later on. This could risk ruining a brands reputation by making them seem distrusting.
Competitive pricing is “the process of strategically selecting price points for your goods or services based on competitor pricing in your market or niche, rather than basing prices solely on business costs or target profit margins.” Market research can help you develop a competitive pricing strategy.
Penetration pricing starts with a low price and then increase to a higher price. You’ll see businesses everywhere use this strategy (I do with early bird discount offers!). Penetration pricing gets people to act fast, but the challenge is that if you price your item too low at the beginning, you might make it seem less valuable than it is. You may also risk selling too much at the discounted price (though there are ways to combat that).
Premium pricing is when a brand sets a higher price to achieve a higher profit. This strategy is often used with brands that portray themselves as luxurious, and when done well, it can be successful. One of the risks of premium pricing is that with a higher price, there often come more expectations. You also risk people turning to lower competitors in the market who are more accessible.
It doesn’t matter what pricing strategy (or combination of strategies) you use. What matters is that you understand that your pricing impacts how people view your brand and that you know where your pricing is positioning you.
Spending the time to determine what your prices should be can help you better understand your brand and what you can offer your clients. Your price is already telling a story, so it’s going to be helpful to learn what that story is and how you can rewrite it (if necessary)to better reflect on who you are and what you do.
I recognise that creative business owners don’t always like to talk about money and sales. This is one of the reasons that price positioning can be hard. How do you know how to position your prices if no one talks about money?
This is one of the reasons I’ve decided The Winners Circle. This course is going to teach you how to raise your prices, land more clients, and start making the income you desire.
While you’re here, follow me on Instagram. I’m a sales coach with a passion for helping businesses reach their full potential. On my page, I share about how to grow your business, land high-ticket clients, and more.
If you found this blog helpful, follow me, and send a DM! I’d love it if you said hi.