The answer to this question depends on whether you mean “hard” in the sense of effort or if you mean conceptually hard.
Let’s take the first meaning: does it take effort to sell to corporate clients? Well, yes, it takes focus, taking action and persistence to make it happen.
These are very much the same qualities that you need to be successful when selling to any individual.
If you mean conceptually “hard”, then the answer is no, it does not need to be difficult to sell large contracts to corporate clients.
If you have a robust framework and put the basics into place, selling to corporates is no harder than selling to individuals – it just requires taking action, focus and persistence.
What’s required for me to sell to corporates?
The framework and basics that I talk about are quite simple – but neglecting them (or chasing after the next great idea or shiny solution) is the single most important reason why you might struggle to work with corporate clients.
When people tell me that they are struggling with any aspect of their corporate client business, I always take them through the basics and we can usually pinpoint where things are going wrong in just a few minutes – often just through conversations via messenger.
So what are these magical basics? (actually, there is nothing magical about them, in fact, they can seem a bit pedestrian and unsexy, maybe that’s why people don’t stick with them?):
1. Find your niche and stick to it
– Sticking to one industry and doing the research on what’s going on in that industry and in the companies you’re reaching out to is a non-negotiable for success. Sure, once you have plenty of corporate clients, you can expand your niche, but at the beginning and until you have all the clients you want, stick to ONE industry niche and do the research.
Why? Because you will need to be knowledgeable about the industry and reach out to people – that takes time, so if your niche is too broad, you’ll stretch yourself too thinly.
If you need a reminder of how to do this research effectively, here is an article on how to do so: https://impactfulnesslab.com/how-do-i-know-what-pain-points-my-corporate-prospects-have/
And here is one on how to select the best niche for your business: http://impactfulnesslab.com/what-is-the-best-corporate-niche-to-choose/
2. State clearly how you can help your client
– Be clear about what benefits your work brings to your client. What exact problem do you solve, who do you help and what outcome they will see as a result of working with you? Corporates will not just hire you because you are a nice person. And they are being bombarded by people trying to sell to them, so being clear and specific is essential to get their attention.
Knowing the value of the problem you solve also means you will know exactly what to charge.
Here are a couple of articles that give you some more detail on how you can make $15k for a few day’s work as a mindset coach with corporates: http://impactfulnesslab.com/here-is-how-you-can-land-a-5-figure-contract-with-corporate-clients-if-you-are-a-mindset-coach/
And another on how to work out what to charge your clients: http://impactfulnesslab.com/how-much-should-i-charge-for-my-work/
3. Forming a consistent strategy
– Create a simple but consistent strategy that gets you in front of your ideal corporate client. I recommend an approach that combines reaching out to potential clients (outreach) and getting them to come to you because this will give you the fastest results. You can find all the details in this post:
4. Converting your clients
– Of course, the final step is to convert your prospects into paying clients. There are many myths and misconceptions about effective sales conversations, with gurus promising you the ultimate format that is 100% guaranteed to work every time.
With this much hype, it’s no surprise that those of us who are less natural salespeople feel weirded out and worry that we don’t have what it takes to sell to corporates.
But the truth is that if you focus on your client and how you can help them, focus on the benefits of what you do and give them some of the how (without overloading them with too much information), you can have just a simple conversation and walk away with a client – no sleazy sales tactics needed!
What can be achieved from following these basic steps?
I do have a broad framework that I use – not a script but an outline that makes sure I ask the right questions. My students find it super helpful – leave a comment if you’d like me to create a post on this topic.
These “basics” have enabled me to build a 6-figure business working part-time around my young son, allowed one of my students to land a $15k contract for 3x90min group coaching sessions, got another student her first corporate client in just 4 days before she even had created her full program and helped a third one triple her prices with an existing client who then asked for more work at the higher price!
As you can see – it is not conceptually hard to sell even larger contracts to corporate clients.
But where many people falter is actually the focus, taking actions and being consistent part.
Common mistakes people make
Too often, people stop paying attention to the basics and lose their focus.
For example, instead of sticking with one industry, they start to flit from one to another. Say they initially decided on rising women stars in technology firms but then considered working middle managers in retail, only then to move to heads of departments in financial services.
Of course, it’s fine to change your industry if your initial choice is not inspiring you, but this decision needs to be a conscious one and has to include all the background research that allows you to position yourself as an expert, lets you create the marketing and outreach messages, enables you to create customized offers and develop the right network.
But constant, rapid changes don’t allow you to do all of this, which means you can only talk in generic terms about what you do and the generalized benefits of your work. This means it becomes harder for you to attract and convert corporate clients.
Another example of where people often don’t apply the basics is in their outreach strategy. Instead of being persistent, using their network, applying referral best practices and following up in multiple ways, they stop at the first hurdle, such as their emails or phone calls not getting through to their prospect.
Of course, if you limit yourself to one attempt of reaching one person in an organization, you are limiting your chances of converting them to being a client and as a result, you’re limiting your income potential.
What I can offer you
Because people are finding it difficult to stick with the basics, I have developed my 1:1 program where I provide accountability, booty-kicking and cheerleading energy that keeps you on track – because implementing these basics is the fastest way to win corporate clients worth $5k-$15k for a few hours to a few days work, and getting repeat work in ranges worth multiple 5 and 6 figures.
In my 3 months 1:1 program, I work with you on focusing on the right niche that you are excited about working with, help you with your marketing message so that you attract only those prospects who are right for you, show you how to leverage your network without ever worrying about being sales-y or desperate so that your diary is always filled and teach you how to have simple but effective sales conversations and create proposals that convert at approximately 80% of the time.
I also help you to clarify exactly what outcomes you can bring to large businesses, their value and how to calculate and communicate the emotional and rational benefits so that 5-figure contracts become an easy yes from your prospects.
🎯 Following my program you should be able to generate 2-3 conversations with prospects per week, typically starting in email/LinkedIn messenger, then moving to discovery calls and closing 1-2 new clients per month @$5k-$15k while delivering repeat work at $8k-$25k+.
If you’re interested in the program, the next step is to DM me and we’ll have a chat to see if it’s a good match for your business.