In a recent Queen of Business mastermind call, one of my clients (Queenies) asked what to do when you have clients come onto a discovery call and turn out to be time-wasters.

If you’ve been in business for any length of time, you’ll know that this happens. Sometimes people do their research around who to work with. You’ll also have those people that want to get some free coaching on the call. To help you overcome this issue, I’m sharing the three simple strategies we discussed.

Your time is precious. You’ve got a queendom to run after all! You want people that are ready to work with you, not trying to get free information/advice.

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Here’s 3 simple ways to reduce the amount of people taking up your time:

  1. Create a filtering system / selection process

What do I mean by this? Create a form on your website that asks your potential clients a series of questions. You want to understand the following:

  • What they are struggling with
  • What they hope to achieve by working with you
  • Their level of commitment

I have to say that my favourite question of all time, is one that my then coach, Adrienne Dorison, gave me:

‘How committed are you emotionally and financially to working with me right now?”

You need to know the level of commitment that this potential client has. This question cuts to the chase, and allows you to find out whether they’re going to be a good fit for what you have to offer. It stops time wasters because in that question they will usually share with you what level of budget they have and whether they are ready to commit financially or not. It’s not just about the money though. You want to know if they’re ready emotionally too.

I like to KISS – Keep It Simple Sweetie – I just ask 4 questions now:

  1. What ONE key thing would you like to discuss on our call today? (It keeps the call focused)
  2. What have you done so far to resolve your current issue? (This tells me if they are action-takers or not)
  3. How committed are you emotionally and financially in us working together? (The golden question)
  4. Is there anything else you’d like to share with me in preparation for our call? (This allows them to share important detail with me if they want to)

Sometimes, clients will share a story with you about how they’ve worked with other coaches and they haven’t got results.

It’s quite possible that this is because they weren’t ready, rather than it being down to another coach(es) poor skills. If someone bemoans people that they’ve worked with in the past, treat this as a red flag.

Once you know the answers to this question of emotional/financial commitment, you can then decide whether to carry on with the call, or adjust the length of the call if necessary.

Let’s say that they complete the form and tell you that they’re working to a £200 budget (change the currency to whatever works for you). You might know that your services start at £500.

You can then send them a link to a page on your website with your pricing and services. In the email, you can explain the entry point of your pricing structure. You both then may decide that it’s not worth holding the call. You can then consider sharing a link to free resources that you’ve created. You could also introduce them to someone that can help based on the budget they have to spend.

Remember to review your questions from time to time, and adapt where necessary.

  1. Put your pricing on your website

For some people, putting your prices on your website is a controversial thing to say. I would much prefer to know the price of something to enable me to make an informed decision about whether to buy or not. I don’t understand why you wouldn’t put your prices on your website. I don’t see the need for secrecy. Maybe that’s just me!

I encourage you to put your prices on your website, because this allows your client to decide if they want to find out more about you, and whether to book a call to discover if you’re a good fit to work together. The potential pricing barrier has gone, so that’s one less obstacle that you have to overcome on that discovery call. That’s a win: win in my book!

When a client checks out your pricing, they have a decision to make. Can they afford you right now? If not, then maybe they’ll pull together a plan to make it happen. They are less likely to jump on a call with you and waste your time, and they won’t be wasting their time either.

  1. Set expectations at the beginning of the call

As you get on the call with this prospective client, set it up as a sales call. Check their understanding and expectations of the call with you. Explain that this is a sales call, and you’re talking to find out if you’re both a good fit for each other. Tell them that once you’ve taken them through a few questions, you’ll be sharing ways in which you can work together.

Another method to manage expectations is to remind them at the beginning of the call how long you’ve allocated for your discussion. That way you’ve set a boundary around how long the call will last. This is a pretty standard method for coaching calls, yet, it also works great for all calls. This way, you won’t overrun. Once you manage expectations you’ll find the call will be a lot easier.

Here’s a bonus tip:

Get clear on who/how you help

When you’re super clear on who you serve, how you help and what you offer, the more clarity people will have when they talk with you and check out your website. I know it sounds basic, but it’s important.

For example, my dreamie clients are action-takers. I know that if someone comes on the call and says they find it hard to take action, they will not be a good fit for me. I know I will get frustrated because I love working with people that aren’t full of excuses, and aren’t afraid of doing some work.

When you know this about yourself, you’ll find it much easier to recognise your own dreamie clients when you talk with them.

When you’re clear on how you help and your services, it becomes clear whether you have the right services to offer your potential client on the call. If you don’t, then share that with them, and end the call. Again you could introduce them to someone that can help.

Finally, here’s a quick reminder of the three top tips, and the bonus one of course:

  1. Create a filtering system / selection process
  2. Put your pricing on your website
  3. Set expectations at the beginning of the call
  4. Get clear on who/how you help

If you enjoyed this blog post, check out my Discovery Call Magic programme, where I take you through a process to create discovery calls just like magic. Want to save yourself some money? Join my tribe – Get access to a fabulous 40-minute Create Content Like a Queen training, and an amazing one-time offer to purchase the programme at a fraction of the cost.

You don’t need to be a Queen on your own. If you want support, check out my Straighten Your Crown Sessions.

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