Everything that you do for your business, everywhere you go, you should always be thinking about getting people onto your mailing list. Building that list is so important to the success of your business.

But, you can't stop with simply adding people onto your mailing list; you've got to take it a step further and get them to actually buy from you. A thousand people on your mailing list is certainly promising business potential, but you need to focus hard on how to convert some of them into paying business.

While you don't try to sell to anyone and everyone, you do want to try your best to sell to those people on your mailing list. Naturally, they're your best chance for a sale because they've expressed an interest in what you're offering.

You've heard the expression, you can lead a horse to water, but you can't make it drink? In a sense, you have to look at the prospects on your list in the same way. You've led them toward your business, and while you can't make them buy, you can make them very thirsty for what you're offering.

In order to do this, one of the things that you need to think about – even before you start building your list – is what your sales process is going to be.

Once people have joined your mailing list, what will you put in front of them that invites them to get their credit card out?

That first offer should make it easy for them to say yes by having a low financial cost and a low emotional cost.

If you set the bar too high, if the only way people can spend with you is by shelling out a lot of money or committing to a long-term program, you are making it harder for them to say yes. It's just too big a jump.

Think of your business as a ship and your prospects are on the dock. You wouldn't expect them to jump onboard straight from the dock – you'd at least put out a gangplank to help them come aboard.

Before asking them to take a huge leap, make a big change, a big investment and a big commitment, give them the opportunity to know and trust you first. Extend the type of offer that will make your prospects feel less vulnerable. An initial low payment offering is fine – just make sure to present something they can buy.

Keep this in mind, as well: The best time to have someone buy is immediately after they've signed up for your free offering, whatever that may be. When they sign up for it, they automatically join your list.
The instant that happens, put an offer in front of them. That will separate the people who are serious – the ones who are willing to invest – from the browsers.

The prospects who are willing to invest are proving themselves to you, and should get better and more offers from you.   Don't spend too much time on the browsers until they indicate that they're serious.

So think about a low-cost, low commitment initial offering, and then present it to people right after they join your list. That's the time when most of them are ready to buy.

Bernadette Doyle specializes in helping entrepreneurs attract a steady stream of ideal clients. If you want to get clients calling you instead of you calling them, sign up for her free weekly e-zine at http://www.clientmagnets.com

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