I hear it all the time:
I don’t want to be too pushy.
I don’t like selling.
And I get it!
Let’s face it, selling your services can be awkward, especially for a yoga teacher or spiritual entrepreneur.
Maybe you associate any kind of selling with grasping or greediness.
Maybe you feel shy or uneasy about discussing your classes, services, and products.
Or maybe you’re worried your students will think you’re a sellout, and that you’ve become part of the big yoga money machine.
But the thing is, without selling, you don’t have a business. Being able to effectively make sales is … well … it’s kind of important!
There’s no way around it, doing a little self-promotion is necessary to get the word out, to get people in – or on the yoga mat, where the magic happens.
That’s why today I want to talk about how you can overcome your fear of being a sleazy salesperson and instead become a better marketer.
#1 Build the connection
When it comes down to it, selling is all about relationships.
When you take the time to connect with someone before you share your offers, you have a much higher chance of converting them into a customer.
Nothing feels worse than when it seems as if someone only cares about our money, so make sure you don’t make your potential customers feel like that.
That’s the most important part of the sales process – building a relationship.
You want to get to know them, share inspirational stories, and build a trust-based relationship before ever considering trying to sell them something.
You do that for example by sending out a regular newsletter to your audience where you share great value with them, consistently.
If you have an email list and your subscribers haven’t heard from you in 3 months, and suddenly you’re sending them daily emails asking them to buy, they can’t help but feel being sold to, and not in a good way.
Another great way to build connection with your audience is to ask them questions. And then be genuinely interested in the answers they give and get back to them.
Bottom line: make yourself easily accessible so that your customers feel wanted, appreciated and beautifully cared for.
#2 Sell a transformation, not a product or service
Here’s the hard truth:
Nobody cares about coaching, yoga, healthy recipes or consulting services themselves.
People care about what a service can do for them.
When you’re writing your marketing materials, ask yourself: What result am I promising? What transformation will my students experience?
Here are a few examples.
- You don’t sell a mattress. You sell better sleep.
- You don’t sell a yoga class. You sell the feeling of being relaxed and calm after a stressful day.
- You don’t sell a massage. You sell feeling good in your body again.
And then, you create stories around this transformation. Share testimonials or talk about your own transformation. Give your audience something to inspire them, and that they can relate to.
#3 Believe in what you’re selling
You need to be pee-your-pants excited about the stuff that you sell and believe in what you’re offering 100 percent.
Because if you don’t? Then you’re probably not going to feel very confident about it, and that lack of confidence will show through in everything you communicate.
If you don’t truly believe in whatever it is that you’re selling, you need to put in some changes.
Do you feel your offering lacks value? Then work on that until it has more.
Not sure if it will truly benefit your audience? Ask for feedback or offer a “beta” version for free to your most loyal students so that you can get their feedback.
Enthusiasm is contagious, but so is boredom. If you don’t deeply believe in the potential of your idea to help people, then others will simply not be lining up to buy what you sell.
#4 Be authentic
This is such a buzz word, right? I mean, what does it really mean to be authentic?
Here’s how I see it. People buy from people they like. If you’re hiding behind a brand name, if you’re not sharing anything about you or your personality, you won’t be able to connect with your audience and it will affect your sales, big way.
Put yourself out there. Share your story, what brought you to where you are. Share what’s going on in your life. Use not only professional images but show the real you for example in live videos.
Whatever you do, you want to use your own words and also use language that will really resonate with your audience.
Don’t follow a script of what you think you should say if it doesn’t actually sound like you or it makes you feel uncomfortable.
Instead use the exact words and phrases that your audience actually uses so that you can sprinkle them into your copy.
#5 Provide value
You can’t go wrong when you’re genuinely focused on trying to be as helpful as possible. Because when you’re focused on simply serving (not selling), by being as helpful and amazing as you can, when you DO have something to sell to your audience it will come much more naturally!
Plus, when you focus on supporting people by giving free value, then they will want to return the favor by supporting you, too!
Make sure that you’re creating valuable, free content, answer questions, respond to comments and genuinely care about serving your audience first and foremost.
This emphasis on Seva is both yogic and good business, and it’s a great way to get comfortable sharing your services or products.
#6 Always tell the truth
You should use marketing techniques like restricting your offer or making it available only for a short time.
Simply, because this really works.
With offers that never expire there’s no sense of urgency, and we can always get it later. Only ‘later’ never comes, and you still have to buy your ramen and watch your Netflix and pay your rent, yes?
Give a client who’s on the fence 24 hours, 3 days, or 1 week to act.
Whatever the time frame, it’s much more likely to work than making an open-ended offer.
People buy when they a.) can’t handle not having something any longer, this applies for things like, I don’t know, toilet paper or tooth paste but surely not for an online yoga course — or b.) when they’re up against a deadline.
Deadlines motivate your peeps to buy like teasing them with products, lovingly offering them services, and giving them all the time in the world simply can’t.
Another human trait is that we always, always want what we can’t have. The scarcer something is, the higher the demand.
Authentic scarcity can help your customers overcome this, “Eh, you know what? Let me wait and think about it,” thing that we all do. But please remember, this has got to be honest and real.
So, how do you do that? Scarcity is when there’s a limited or diminishing quantity of a thing. If you provide a service, you can’t work 24 hours a day, so bookings are limited. The same applies for space in a yoga class or on a retreat. You’ve just gotta say so and make it really clear as you sell out.
Here are a few examples:
If you’re offering a yoga retreat and there are only a few spaces left, state this on the website, for example “only 2 single rooms left”.
If you’re offering coaching, let people know how many spaces you’re offering per month, or if there’s a wait list.
But you’ve got to be truthful. Urgency and Scarcity are only cool if it’s actually true. Please do not fake them.
If you follow these strategies I’ve just outlined, you’ll be able to promote your offers and services much more easily without being pushy or “salesy”.
Shift the sales approach to a place where it’s no longer about selling anything.
Instead, make it about relationships. Make it about getting to know your potential customers, about providing them value (whether they buy from you or not), about giving them information and knowledge about what you’re selling and make it about giving people an overall positive experience when they interact with you.