Questions to ask to get clear on what your client needs

The fastest way I know how to sell multiple 4, 5, and 6 figure offers to corporates as a mindset or wellness coach is to stop talking about clarity, insights, alignment and transformation.

Because that’s too vague! 

The reason why so many people use imprecise language like “help you get clarity”, “align people with your goals” or “transform your teams” is that they don’t really know what exactly their prospects need help with and what precise results they want to achieve. 

I have a novel suggestion for this: ask them 😉

Asking prospects these questions does not need to feel sales-y or make you appear desperate if you know the key points you should explore. This is just a simple conversation with a potential client – nothing like a sales script!

And these questions don’t need special corporate language, either – in fact, a lot of them will feel familiar if you are working with 1:1 clients

[tag me below if you worry that you don’t have anyone to ask these questions to and I’ll write a special post on this]

Two things you should know about selling to corporates

Before we dive into the nitty-gritty of the questions you should ask, I need you to understand and appreciate two things about selling to corporates:

  1. While no one likes being sold to in a robot-like fashion, people in corporates are looking for solutions to their problems and are commercially minded. That means they expect that you are selling them something.

    That also means that as long as you demonstrate the value of your offer, they don’t mind being pitched to!

2. They do, however, mind their time being wasted. For them, that includes talking to someone who has no idea about their industry and/or their business. 

There is no faster way to lose a corporate prospect than when they think you don’t understand their industry niche, market place or what their organization is about.

(that is why I insist that my 1:1 clients do some market research first)

Check out this post if you need help with how and what to know about a prospect before talking to them:

Asking the right type of questions: Category 1 (Aspire)

The types of questions you should ask to truly understand how you can help your client are by organizing them into two key categories; aspire questions and the analysis questions

Aspire questions are all about your client’s goals. 

What are they trying to accomplish in their work, within their team and in their business?

What are the goals they are working towards that you could help them achieve?

And what does achieving these goals mean to them – on three levels:

  1. For them individually (how would their work and/or personal life change? – (level 1)
  2. For their team/ their boss /their peers? – (level 2)
  3. For the organization they work in? – (level 3)

For example, if you are a mindset coach who helps people to be more productive, maybe your client will be able to help their team achieve monthly targets more easily with less stress and shorter working hours. 

For them individually, that means they have more time to focus on strategic matters and get to leave the office/shut down their computer earlier (level 1).

Their teams are also happy about getting a better work/life balance and their boss is glad to see that the team is less likely to be heading for burnout and therefore can deal with fewer complaints (level 2).

Finally, the company can worry less about the impact of team burnout which is expensive if people are off sick or leave the business. Even customers might be happier because they have greater confidence in the business’s ability to deliver on promises (level 3).

(Of course, those scenarios depend on who exactly you are talking to in an organization, but they are similar for pretty much all corporates).

Examples of aspire questions

Aspire questions that work well for coaches are things like this:

  • What do you want to achieve as a result of this work we are discussing – what would be your ideal outcome?
  • If things went really well over the next 12 months (or another relevant timeframe) in relation to this result, what would your work/team/business look like? 
  • Why is that important to you?
  • What else would happen as a result of this outcome?
  • What would be the wider impact on your team or your organization? And on yourself?
  • What else should I know about this result?

Asking the right type of questions: Category 2 (Analysis)

The second category, analysis questions, are designed to help you understand your prospect’s current situation in detail. 

Here you find out what is currently happening in relation to the thing you can help them with and what’s standing in their way to achieving their goal. 

This includes finding out what they have tried in the past (because they would have tried something internally first), what it would mean if they didn’t achieve their goal – again to them individually (maybe they won’t get a promotion?), their team (maybe people will leave the business due to stress?) and the business itself (maybe the company will lose employees and customers). 

This could be seen as a simple reverse of the aspire questions above, but it is worth digging deep here because this gives you an insight into what their daily work life looks like which is powerful to build a great connection with them. 

I also recommend that people dig into their prospect’s “WTH” (What The Hell) – this means capturing some of their frustrations, daily annoyances at work that make them want to pull their hair out. 

That could be things like dealing with constant complaints from team members, being cc’d in long email trails because people are covering their backside, slow decision making or a lack of accountability. 

Examples of analysis questions 

Useful analysis questions are:

  • Where are you now in regards to [topic you cover]
  • What’s the worst thing about your current situation?
  • What other things are really frustrating about this?
  • What’s the cost to you of staying in the same place and not achieving what you really want? And to your team/business?
  • What’s stopping you from getting to where you want to go?
  • What have you tried in the past to get to your goal? 
  • Why did that not work well for you?

Of course, you do not fire these questions off one after the other, interrogation-style. 

Make sure you pick a few and tailor them to the situation – this is where the research you have done about the industry and business comes in handy!

As you can see, there is nothing particularly scary about the questions you ask and you may have noticed how they are eerily similar to the kind of questions you would ask your 1:1 clients. 

Having the answers to them means you can be much clearer in your communication with your prospects (and even in your initial lead generation messages) which shows potential clients that you are an expert who truly understands them. 

This fact alone will help you get more opportunities for sales conversations and to increase your conversion rate of prospects into clients significantly. It should even speed up the whole sales process as prospects feel more confident in you and therefore won’t shop around for other solutions to their problems.

What I can offer you

Learning how to ask these questions to get the right insights into your clients (including the mental preparation that means you do it with ease and grace) is one of the things we do in my intensive 3 months 1:1 Land Corporate Clients program. 

This is an end-to-end program where I also work with you on focusing on the right niche that you are excited about working with, helping you with your marketing message so that you attract only those prospects who are right for you, show you how to find and approach prospects so that your diary is always filled and teach you how to create proposals that convert at approx. 80% of the time.

This is the same program that has helped students land a $15k corporate contract for less than a day’s work, get their first corporate client in less than 30 days without cold calling and enable students to generate 2-3 conversations with prospects per week and close to 1-2 new clients per month.

The investment in this program is currently in the upper 4 figures (which will go up towards the end of the year) and it should allow you to get to $100k in the first year with 5-8 corporate clients if you put in the work I give you.

If you’re interested in the program, the next step is to DM me and we’ll have a chat over messenger to see if it’s a good match for your business.

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Miriam Gilbert, founder of Impactfulness Lab, smiling

About Me

With more than 20years experience as a corporate decision-maker and CFO, 8+years running my own 6-figure consultancy I KNOW exactly what goes on in corporate mindsets – and how to sneak into their brain, charm their mind and get them to throw their budget at you.

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