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The Art of the Soft Sell: How to Get the Click Without (Really) Asking for It

  • By Pam Langord

Confession time for yours truly! When I started back in 2013, I decided I would never sell anything. It totally wasn’t me, it made me soooooo uncomfortable to even think about it. I drew a line in the sand and declared that I could be a success on just my skills and reputation. I’m mean, I’m very good at what I do. (If I do say so myself 😉 )

Uhhhh…. Yah right!!

After a year of struggling and beating my head against the wall, I decided that maybe there was something to this whole selling thing. But man! I’m not the aggressive type and I’m anything but pushy. And I so don’t want to have to become that person in order to succeed. You know the one I mean. We’ve all seen those old-style sales pages filled with yellow highlights and screaming red “WARNING!! TIME IS RUNNING OUT!! BUY NOW!  BUY RIGHT NOW!!” buttons. Talk about a turn-off. That is the method that makes me want to bury my head in the sand and just hope clients come and find me some other way. And truth be told, when we think of copywriting, that’s often the vision comes to mind. YUCK!!

But I knew I had to find ways to get out there so clients COULD find me. What I discovered as I scratched deeper was that while that style of sales page can be effective, it’s not the only way to make sales. WHEW!!  Big relief here.

In fact, by taking a more subtle approach, you might generate more interest—and potentially more sales.

Hmmm….. Subtlety – I can do that.

So what did I discover while scratching the underbelly of the online marketing world? (Somehow that suddenly sounds like I’m scratching the belly of a big furry cyber critter – like one of my girls. LOL!!)

Here are a few ways I learned I could stimulate interest and connect with more of my ideal peeps without having to sell my soul.

Stories Sell

One effective way to entice your peeps to click through to your sales page is with stories. Everyone LOVES a good story. They can be your stories or those of other people, it may even be a fictional character. The goal is to help your readers to see themselves in the same situation.

Did you help a client turn her chaotic household into a calm oasis with better organizational skills? Woohoo!!  Go YOU!!!  Her story on your sales page will get more clicks than all the yellow highlights and screaming red text you can buy.

How about that time you trashed your entire business plan and started over because you discovered you simply weren’t passionate about what you were doing? Yup!  I know a few peeps that can relate to that one. Your potential business coaching clients will be anxious to learn how the story turned out and will click through without you even asking.

That’s the power of stories, and you can use them everywhere: in your blog posts, in your emails, on your sales pages, and even in videos and on social media.

Be Genuinely Helpful

Want to build a reputation as the go-to person in your niche? All it takes is to help people. Natural stuff for all you coaches out there since our mission is to help people, right?

How, do you ask?

Well my little grasshopper, start by answering questions in your Facebook groups, maybe volunteer to speak to groups who need your advice, write blog posts about the most common sticking points or hurdles your clients (and readers) face. (This is one I LOVE to do!!)

By volunteering your time and knowledge, you’ll develop some name recognition and attract a wider audience of potential customers who just may need your services in the future. Who will they turn to? Why yes – it’s that very helpful person who went out of her way to offer assistance in the past. (Sounds like a win-win to me)

Now I’m not telling you to give away all your time. That’s just silly! But if you really want to show off your expertise, you really can’t do better than a little volunteer work. Not only will you make an impression with the person you help. But chances are good she’ll share with her friends who will share with their friends, and so on, and so on. Get my drift?

Of course, this doesn’t mean that there is no place in your business for a strong call to action. “Click here to buy” and “Learn more right now” are still useful (and even necessary) on sales and opt-in pages. Sometimes you just have to do it. The key is to know when to be subtle, and when to offer a bit more hand-holding.

So what’s my point with all of this? So glad you asked.

The fact is, you can promote (a.k.a. Sell) without having to sell your soul. Be authentic. Be truthful. Share. Be subtle. Tell stories. Find the formula that feels right and lets you share what is so amazing about you!

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