Are you afraid to ask for money?
Have you ever had to ask someone to return a tool or other borrowed item? For most of us, it can be an uncomfortable situation – especially if you’ve already asked for it several times. Asking for money from a client or customer can also be uncomfortable, even though you’re providing valuable information. This is especially true for new entrepreneurs who may be unsure of the real value of the information they’re providing. The consequences include giving your information away for free – or at a highly discounted price – and never getting your business off the ground floor. You may wonder why customers don’t simply hand over payment when they’re helped without being asked or invoiced. You need to feel more confident about closing the deal and asking for the payment you deserve. Understanding the Value of Information There are dozens of online entrepreneurs who get paid very well for the information they research and provide. These successful entrepreneurs have built their businesses on the quality and uniqueness of the information they offer and aren’t shy about setting a price and expecting to be paid. They know their worth. If you’re afraid or lack the self-confidence to put a price on your entrepreneurial efforts, you should begin to understand the value of the information you’re providing by doing some simple research. First, understand that people are willing to pay for well-thought-out and researched information that will help them in their own endeavors. See what other marketers are charging for their own products and pay attention to how they ask for payment. Also, research the quality of information provided on other sites. When you know you have a quality product, you’ll be able to promote it much more effectively. Pay attention to the type of information people are offering, too. Some products may be seasonal (such as Halloween costumes) while others are called evergreen, meaning that they can be promoted throughout the year. Your marketing campaign for each product should be based on the latest and most accurate information. Be crystal clear in your efforts to encourage clients and customers to pay for the information you provide. When you’re specific, you come across as more confident and will build trust within your customer base. Your customers want to know they’re getting monetary value out of the information you’re providing, so it’s necessary for you to communicate that message before asking for payment. Once you have the inner self-confidence that you’re offering a product of value, you’ll have less fear of asking for money - and your customers will be more willing to pay for a product that is unique and well worth the asking price. There Will Always Be Freebie Seekers Some people just can’t seem to help themselves from wanting to haggle down the price of anything from a used car to a piece of penny candy. They can be difficult to deal with and you can choose to send them to other sites – or use some special strategies to turn them into paying customers. Freebie seekers are everywhere and in every line of business. They can test your patience and drain you of valuable time. No matter how wonderful your product is and how much effort you’ve put into it, the freebie seeker just seems to want it for nothing. Actually, they may not be as concerned with price as with the value they’re getting for their money. If you can succeed in making them understand how your product can help them with their own business efforts, they can become your most loyal customers. One way to turn a tire-kicker into a paying customer is to offer a free trial or introduction to the product before they move up to the next level (payment for the full product). Car dealers let you test-drive before you buy and books usually provide a summary of what the plot is on the back cover. The same theory works with information products. Many times, a test-drive is all it takes, but there may be some freebie seekers who need a bit more prodding. Try offering extra tips and advice on how to use your product – tips they won’t find with other, similar products. Provide testimonials and other information that will help them feel more confident about purchasing the product. You can also involve the customer in the price negotiation. For example, you may offer prices for different levels of information. A beginner with a small budget can purchase Level 1 and purchase Level 2 when he feels he’s ready and when he discovers how unique and helpful your product is. Assume at first that your freebie seeking customer is only looking for value in what they purchase and once they realize the worth of what you have to offer, they’ll happily pay the price. But if the freebie-seeker begins to take up too much of your time and effort and you’re giving away too much – direct the person to other links and sites where he can download information or advice for free. It’s likely that the would-be customer won’t be satisfied with the quality or quantity of the free information and will return to your offer. Know Where to Direct Tire Kickers One way to turn freebie seekers into loyal customers is to try to help them without giving away your own products. There are many informative blog posts and free reports you can direct them to for a download and when they want to level up, they’ll remember you as a helpful resource. If your opt-in email lists contain freebie seekers who don’t add anything to your profit margin, quit paying to have them on your subscriber list. To weed them out, stress in your emails that you are creating a product or service for sale – and that it’s unique and informative. Offering an introduction to a product and what it contains and how it will help is often a good way to push the tire kickers into a decision to buy. But there are some freebie seekers who won’t be satisfied no matter how much you give away. These are the ones you need to weed out for good – otherwise they’re a drain on your time and effort. Paring down your customer list is a good way to get rid of the tire kickers and save you money and time. The quality of your list is actually more important than the quantity and can help you generate more sales on a regular basis. Target the people who are truly interested in what you have to offer and understand the value of what you’re offering and pamper these people on your list more than anyone else. When you gain a freebie seeker’s trust that you’re honestly interested in helping them find their target product (even if it isn’t yours), they have the potential of becoming happy and loyal customers to you in the future. Then, there are the tire kickers who are not at all interested in paying a fair price for a product or service – they’re only out for the free offers. After you’ve tried to help them and they still come back for more freebies, take them off your list and send them on their merry way with a list of free sites that might help them – like YouTube. Remember that the true sign of a freebie seeker is one who signs up for every free offer you have, but has no intention whatsoever of ever paying for anything and opts out as soon as they’re asked to pay. Those people can cause you to become discouraged with your marketing campaigns and you can’t judge your efforts based on the feedback you receive from them. The freebie seekers are attracted to the word “free” like bees to honey, so watch your wording, factor in the tire kickers in your marketing efforts when necessary and don’t waste too much of your valuable time catering to their demands. The Problem Is Similar to Asking for a Raise Proving your worth to a boss is sometimes difficult when you work within a large company. You may rarely see or interact with the person responsible for giving you a raise in pay because there is a supervisor (or several) to contend with first. When you have your own business and offer a product or service for sale, you’re faced with a similar situation. A potential customer doesn’t see you researching and working hard on how to offer the best quality possible. They don’t realize your worth – and unless you know your worth, you’ll never be able to ask for the payment you deserve. A salesman closes the sale by asking for the money, but preps the customer before by reassuring him that he’s getting the best return on his investment. If he’s a new customer, offering a sample (or freebie) may push him over the edge of closing the sale. Another way is to offer even more than what you advertise. Special bonuses or reports add value to your product and give the customer an incentive to purchase the entire package. If you were going to ask a boss for a raise, you might submit an extra report outlining how the company could save money or time. You may need to work on it during your time off, but a fat raise is worth the effort. Providing your customer with something extra may well be worth your effort in converting the freebie seeker to a loyal, paying customer. Some tire kickers just want to be convinced that spending their hard-earned money is a good idea. Your business should be a reflection of what you think of yourself. If you don’t think you’re worthy of someone purchasing your product, that mindset will show in everything you do for your business. Even though asking for money can be intimidating and sometimes terrifying, you can’t be a victim of your fears if you want to be a successful entrepreneur. Fear of rejection and failure can cause you to lose sales and give away what you should be making money on. These are real fears that should be addressed, but knowledge and experience will eventually lead you to the conclusion that you do offer a worthwhile product or service and that it’s well worth the price you’re asking. Start Out Small and Level Up One of the best sales strategies for online entrepreneurs is to begin your marketing strategy small and gradually level up to a larger package of information. For example, a $7 product will bring in people who want to see what quality you’re offering. After they know your worth, it’s time to move up – offer an even larger and more informative package for $17, then $27 and perhaps throw in a recurring membership option as you raise your price to $47, $67, $97 or more. Never skimp on the lower-priced package. This is where you’ll nurture your repeat customers and get them onboard for other promotions, so do your very best on every product you offer. It’s also easier to ask for a small payment than a larger one when it comes to a nervous mindset. As you get familiar with strategies to use to secure payment, you’ll build your confidence asking for larger amounts. Never think that asking for payment is pushy. It’s only pushy if you’re full of hype and don’t deliver what you promised. When you research the strategies of other marketers, you’ll find that many are somewhat shady in their dealings, while some are completely upfront and don’t promise you the elusive moon. Learning how to sell – especially the best strategies to use online - will help increase your sales and let your customers (including the freebie seekers) know that you’re up front and honest. Businesses are jumping on the bandwagon of using the level up technique. Offering a great product for an inexpensive price to bring in customers or get them to experience the quality you offer is a technique that most people will go for. The fear of asking someone for payment is a problem with most beginning entrepreneurs – especially freelancers who hear “I could do it myself” from prospective clients. But after you’ve gained experience and found the strategies that work best for you, you’ll move away from that fear and may begin to enjoy the selling process. As you move away from the fear of asking for payment, your business will begin to grow substantially and you’ll learn how to weed out the dreaded freebie seekers who aren’t about to spend a dime, but want everything for free. Research and learn all you can about how other marketing entrepreneurs ask for money in their online strategies. Some of these entrepreneurs started out the same as you and have now overcome their fears and gone on to business success. Build confidence in yourself and your product by making sure you have a quality product – even though you may be selling it for a small cost. That will ensure repeat customers and a great business future. Feeling overwhelmed? Click here to visit our homepage where you can sign up for our Step By Step Guide: Grow Your Business by Hiring Your Dream Team.