It happens to almost all of us fempreneurs – we work our tails off, build a steady clientele… and realize at the end of the month that we still aren’t making the money we should be. This epiphany can lead to the conviction that we need to do something drastic like pick up the phone and start cold calling until we double our client base.
Wait! If you aren’t making the money you think your effort and talent deserve, then there are three easy ways to increase your profit. The best part is that you don’t need to pick up that phone or drive across town to another networking group just yet (although those could be helpful strategies). Your extra sales are already within your grasp!
1) Upgrade a current client
You have probably heard it said that it costs more to gain a new client than keep a current one. Your clients are your best resource for increasing your sales. They have already shown that they trust you and are willing to pay you for your services or products. It may only take a small push or even just a friendly conversation to get them on board for even more of your services or products.
Consider which of your products and services your current clients or customers are using and what else they might want or need. Sometimes your customers are not aware of all you have to offer, and periodically communicating your offerings can help keep you top of mind when and if they need them.
For instance, I almost always recommend that my coaching clients put together a vision board, which can help reinforce their goals every day. Some clients have their vision board done by the weekend. Other clients aren’t sure how to create their board or are nervous about starting the project. For this second group, I always make sure to mention that I offer a vision board coaching session, where I provide all the materials and help guide the client through the entire process.
Another way to educate your clients about your offerings is to highlight one each month in your email newsletter or through social media. This is a simple way to showcase special promotions you have for that product or service and highlight success stories from those who have used them. You might also want to call your best customers and ask them what else you might do to assist them.
2) Raise your prices
Seems obvious, right? You’d be surprised, however, at how many smart, talented fempreneurs stubbornly keep their prices low because they doubt their true worth. Other fempreneurs are convinced that they can’t possibly raise their prices or their clients will balk and leave.
When reviewing your current prices, consider that your costs of doing business—not to mention cost of living – probably have increased since you last set your prices. Beyond the need to survive as a healthy business, the longer you practice a specific skill, the more knowledge and experience you gain, which you then pass onto your clients. Your experience is valuable and worth more than a competitor who has been in the industry for half the time as you.
One way to ease the anxiety or concern about raising your prices is to offer more value to your clients so that your new prices do not elicit sticker shock. Think about how you can add more value without significantly increasing the time you spend on each client. I recently added an online dashboard tool for my coaching clients to track their goals and progress with me. I also provide clients with access to forms and resources, all located in one spot on my website. It makes accessing notes and documents for each client much easier for me, and gives my clients a lot more value. Exploring how to raise your prices through adding more value just might lead to that great idea you may never have thought of when you first started exploring how to increase sales. Go for it!
3) Create a new product or service that your prospects are asking for
As a fempreneur, it is easy to get stuck in an oh-so-cozy comfort zone when it comes to your products and services. To increase sales, however, it might be time to listen to what your prospects are asking for and to stretch yourself with new services and/or products.
With your time already tight, the thought of creating a new product or service can feel gigantic and send you to your chocolate stash, but developing something new doesn’t have to be complicated or require you to get a Master’s degree in a new field. Think about the services and products you already offer and how you can expand from those areas. If you have no idea what your new service or product could be, consider what your customers have been asking for (hint: sometimes they don’t ask directly).
One way I stay in tune with my clients is to use the tools and strategies I recommend to them. This allows me to put myself in their shoes and see what is working and what is not. If this approach is not an option for you, then just ask your clients what they want. Call or survey your best clients (the ones you want more of) and ask them how you are doing and what, if anything, you could do better.
If you’ve brought a client on board to your business, then you’ve already expended a lot of effort marketing to them, meeting with them, and providing them with a great service or product. Use this momentum. Your best clients want to buy from you, and if you are truly giving them great products or services, they won’t balk at a reasonable price rise. They will also be likely to buy additional products or services from you. Don’t waste your valuable time and resources searching for new clients, when the easiest and best way to increase your sales is through the clients you already have!