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Digital Agencies & Sales The Art & Science of Closing Deals [Webinar Recap]

21 April 2020

A digital agency is like any other business it doesn’t come without the challenges of bringing in new business.

Carol Martindale, Global Partnerships & Operations at Leadfeeder, is joined by Clodagh Higgins, digital agency Director, Consultant, and Coach with Growit Group. Clodagh has worked with HubSpot and hundreds of digital agencies to increase revenue, results, and retention. 

During this webinar, Clodagh will discuss the tried and true methods of streamlining sales from interest to close.

What is this webinar about?

  • Evaluate if a prospect is actually interested and how to move a project forward,

  • How to position yourself in your proposals and contracts.

  • What the right questions are, for you to recommend the services and tools that you offer. 

Note: Even with the best sales closing techniques, you still need a sales tool to win the sale. Try Leadfeeder free for 14 days to see which companies visit your website, the pages they visit, and more to help identify, qualify, and connect your sales prospects.

closing sales deals

Watch The Webinar

See The Transcript

Carol Martindale: (00:05)

And we're live. Hi, everyone. Sorry for the short delay, we were having some audio issues, but I think we're ready to go. I do still wanna give everyone about 30 more seconds to join, but in the meantime, feel free to say hi in the chatbox and let us know where you're logging in from today. Last I checked, we should have over ten countries represented today. So really, really exciting stuff. We'll give everyone maybe another 20 seconds. I still see people are still rolling in. Alright, but. Excellent. Whoa, Tel Aviv, really cool. Okay, and while we're still waiting, just some housekeeping rules. We do have the questions tab that you can feel free to use throughout the session and add your questions there, and we'll make sure that we'll get to it at the end of the call, and we may address some of them along the way as well. Excellent. Spain, Denmark, Germany, Kyiv. Really cool. Anyone from the US here yet? I'm here from New York. Canada. California, Chicago, there you are. Fun stuff.

Carol: (01:32)

Alright, so we wanna be respectful of everyone's time. It's two past now, but thank you, everyone, for attending today's webinar. But hey, let's face it, you're all fantastic at doing what you do with helping your clients grow their business. But sales are probably not your forte, which is why you're here today but. Well, you're all going to leave this session with actual insights on how to improve your sales. So without further ado, let me briefly introduce myself, and then I'll pass it on to the star, Clodagh Higgins. But I myself, my name is Carol Martindale, and I've been with Leadfeeder for over three years now, and I oversee global partnerships. And in my previous life, I had over 12 years of B2B sales and marketing experience, I started my own company, a non-profit tech start-up, I've worked with over 100 agencies such as yourselves, and I'm really excited to be here. And like I said, I'm dialing in from the Lake George region of New York, and I'll pass it on to Clodagh now.

Clodagh: (02:41) 

Hi, everyone. Absolutely thrilled to be here. And we'll add another country onto the list. I'm dialing in from the west of Ireland, a place called Sligo, and I was really pleased to meet with Carol a few weeks ago at the Digital Agency Expo by Digital Marketer, and I was on stage speaking, and Carol reached out to say, "Let's do a webinar together," and I thought... I'm just really pleased to be here because I just love helping agency owners have the business of their dreams. And that came from the fact that I actually ran my own business, I had my own agency for over ten years, and I also worked with HubSpot and worked with hundreds of agencies. So I know what it's like to run this business, and I love helping agency owners just to get over these hurdles and make you feel like you're not alone. There's plenty of us out there, and we're all here to help each other. So what I'll do is I'll get right into what we're gonna cover today. We are going to look at how to identify what makes a prospect good or bad. We're going to focus on reducing your sales cycle time.

Clodagh: (03:55) 

I think that's something that agencies can experience that you get all this excitement from a prospect and they're interested in a meeting, and then all of a sudden, it's like tumbleweeds, they're gone. And part of solving this agency sales challenge is to become a trusted advisor because if you can be seen to be an expert and there's. I'm gonna share ways to do that. You will attract more good-fit clients and people that you wanna work with. And then we've got time for questions and answers. Very happy to do that. And if you stay till the end, we're going to randomly pick three people who will get a free consultation with me, and that will involve an agency health check, and I'll go through and give a diagnosis of how I can help you in your business and give you some recommendations that you can take action with. So, lots of reasons to stay on, questions, and a free consultation with me at the end. So let's get stuck in here.

Clodagh: (05:00) 

The first part we need. How many times have you been on a call with a client or been in a meeting, and you just know that they're kicking the tire like they're just not really engaged with you? And it's so frustrating. I used to have this feeling when I ran my own agency, where an employee in a company would ask me to come and have a meeting with them, and I'm working for myself. And I think employees in companies, marketing managers in companies, they sometimes don't appreciate that when they ask you for a meeting, or a sales meeting or a pitch, you are investing time and money and energy and petrol and there's so many things that you cannot do when you're in your business that you have to do for this meeting. So, how important they are for you, and what that can lead to is a lot of energy as you, as the agency owner, the business owner, the person and the agency, when you're going into these calls. Where the employee might have had three or four of those meetings during the day, they might have met lots of different types of agencies.

Clodagh: (06:00) 

So what we wanna do is actually get into a situation where you're meeting a good fit. If you are gonna take the time out, let's make sure they're the right people.

Clodagh: (06:18) 

So how we're going to do this is, this is a group exercise, so if you are in an agency of around 10-12 people, I really recommend booking a morning where you can actually sit down and review, as a team, your last five clients, the ones that you liked working with. Now, if you have the time, you can also look at the last five that didn't go so well, or you didn't enjoy working. But let's focus on the positive for the moment. That's if you're a small agency, book the time off, do a 90-minute workshop, and get the whole team together.

Clodagh: (06:52) 

If you're a larger agency, just perhaps book the management team and make sure at least somebody from services and somebody from sales is in the meeting as well. And what you're going to do here is you're going to analyze who did you have a really good result with? Like, they hired you, it went really well, you executed some strategies, you did perhaps SEO, you did some new web pages, you did a campaign, and you got these great results. And with this, it's a good opportunity to do some forensics. Like, why did you get those results? What were the elements? Are they repeatable? 

Clodagh: (07:33) 

Could you do that for lots of clients? Also, you want to look at who did you enjoy working with? A lot of software companies recommend you go and find your niche, or pick a niche industry like hospitality or pharma or B2B or technical companies. But if you can look at the actual personality of the people that you'd like to work with, were they open? Were they flexible? Were they coachable, were they responsive, do they pay on time? You know, these aspects can be replicated with other clients as well. So, this is an exercise that you would do, is to actually delve into who you got good results for, what was the work, how you can actually diagnose the personalities of the people that you worked with.

Clodagh: (08:27) 

Who you enjoyed working with, was it because you had something in common, like a sporting interest or something like that? So not just the niche or specialization, but actually the personalities. And the next question that not a lot of agencies ask, or dig into is, "Was the work profitable?" Sometimes, with great clients that you're working with, if things are going smoothly, you're putting in all the hours, but what's happening is you're spending a lot of time to get that result, and at the end of the month you might have worked more hours than they paid for. And this is something that, over time, is not sustainable.

Clodagh: (09:12) 

So, you have to look at the work that you did, that you liked doing, that you had got good results for with the people that you liked, and it was profitable. If they paid for X amount of hours and X result, did you deliver that in a profitable way? So that's the first thing that you're going to do is to review the last five clients. The next thing you're going to do is actually go deeper than just the buyer persona, but actually build out a customer avatar. I recently came across the Digital Marketer community, and they have incredible templates and checklists and all sorts of online marketing information that I'd never seen before, and I've been working in the online space for over 12 years.

Clodagh: (10:00) 

So once you've decided the good work that you like doing, and you've answered the questions before, now dig in and create customer avatars. You can see where they're a lot deeper than just a buyer persona. Their goals and their values, what's gonna make them look good in their job, where do they get their sources of information, what objections do they actually have in their sales process? This is why you need someone from sales to sitting in on this workshop with you because they'll be able to name those off straight away for you.

Clodagh: (10:33) 

And what are the challenges and pain points that you solved for those good fit clients in the past? You might create two or three of these, but never more than four because it does get a bit complicated and a bit messy. Now that you actually have identified the good fits, the work that you did, and the fact that it was profitable, it's time to create packages around it. Now, this has been a bone of contention with agencies over the years that I've been working with them. Some of them go, "Oh, but every client is different. Oh, we like to do customized work." This can be really challenging for you to try and scale your business if you cannot create a menu, at least small packages that can be built on, but you have to create a menu of services, a product catalog, a packages catalog, a page on your website, whatever you want to call it, but it has to be identified very clearly for the client.

Clodagh: (11:41) 

The market is very well-educated now, so they have obviously had experience before with other agencies. So a great thing to do is, now that you know the work that you're good at, plus the work that you enjoy, don't go off creating loads of SEO packages if you actually don't enjoy doing it. And make sure the packages are created around the results that you get. And how you would frame those packages is you would actually say, "Pick this package if you want to get a result in a quick time, if you want to get these results."

Clodagh: (12:17) 

So, I've actually got an example here, this is an agency that I've been working with for a very long time, Perry. I believe that some of them are from Tel Aviv there. So, Perry runs Penguin Strategies, and I've got some screenshots here of his packaging and pricing page that has been extremely successful for him, very transparent. He shows people what is available to them if they spend X amount of money, he has a credit system working in his business as well, but you can see here if you want quick results in a quicker amount of time it is going to be more expensive because they're going to be more work involved.

Clodagh: (13:00) 

And what he's done is created like a monthly services package, so you can see here the core elements of digital marketing are there. It's all very clear, and how this page is presented on his website is the prospect can literally tick through these boxes and almost create a customized experience for them. So it gives the element of, "Yes, you're customizing something, but you're not really because you've actually created packages and processes in the back end." This is how you're going to scale your business.

Clodagh: (13:35) 

And here he's got add-on services, so you could have an add-on, going, "Okay, you've got the core elements in X amount of package, X of time. Now, do you want additional work?" So the prospect feels like they're getting this customized experience, but you are not reinventing the wheel all the time. And Carol, you put this example in here because you've been coming across lots of different examples of packages. Talk us through this particular one that you've identified here.

Carol: (14:10)

Yes, so like I said, I've worked with hundreds of agencies through Leadfeeder, and I've come across this similar package I've seen set with a lot of agencies. A lot of times, agencies will offer to build out landing pages or build out websites and also offer paid ads to their clients, but the kicker is adding Leadfeeder to the package because Leadfeeder's able to tie all the efforts together and identify. And show the ROI of how their efforts are working. So yeah, it's just. I'm sure this is a similar package that most of you are offering. I'm curious to hear that in the chatbox, if you offer anything different, but usually it's digital services, and then you wanna make sure that you're showing your ROI, which we're gonna dive into deeper later. Yeah.

Clodagh: (15:10) 

And while I have you there, we'll just do a little time check, and soundcheck and everyone can understand my Irish accents. There's no feedback there in the chat.

Carol: (15:22)

It sounds good to me, sounds good to me.

Clodagh: (15:24) 

Thank you.

Carol: (15:25)

But yeah, basically the flow is, "Create the website, push traffic to the website for them," right? Usually, get paid ads. That's like the short-term gains. The longer-term gain, the longer-term project, is creating blogs and videos for your clients. But of course, the returns on that is a little longer. And like I said, adding Leadfeeder there allows us to show ROI more immediately, whether you're doing paid ads or creating vlogs or videos for them.

Clodagh: (15:54) 

Yeah. And this is exactly. You need these up on your website. I mean, so many people, agencies, talk about, "Oh, I don't want my competitors to see my pricing." And it's just not on today. If you ever think of an experience as a consumer, if you have to ask yourself. If you ever go to a website and you cannot find the core elements that you need, like a phone number, like their opening hours, like the price of something. I mean, what do you do as a consumer? You don't spend hours searching and ringing and doing all the things. You just go move on to the next person. And it's no different for your prospects. Today they want to see all this information online. Now, if you're still uncomfortable about putting exact pricing in there because you need to talk them put in a ballpark and say, "Package A can cost between X... 5000 and seven and a half thousand." So, at least have some indication, because you can waste a lot of time making customized proposals, which we're gonna talk about in a second, over and over again, answering questions on email, answering the phone, for things that should be upon your website.

Clodagh: (17:03) 

We're all about saving time here and being transparent. Another element of this as well as if you're getting on a call with a prospect and they are interested, you have the decision-maker, they have a budget, they have a timeframe, and they are looking. You've identified that they have a need, but you want to get more information from them. You're going to book a deeper call like a connect call is, I guess, what most agencies call it, where you're going to qualify them deeper. In between that first initial contact and the longer qualification call, give them some homework to do, give them a case study to read, give them something to do so that you can see, and if you can see it on your CRM, that they've actually clicked on it or they've completed some questionnaires, maybe it's an audit or a health check or a questionnaire that you've asked them to do. Because once they do that, they've really committed to, actually, the conversation. And if they haven't done the work, check the day before and just make sure and go, "Hey, I can see you didn't get round to the work. Is there something up? Do we need to move the meeting?" Because a lot of people will just presume that it's okay to turn up for a call without doing any work. And you've given them some homework to do because you want to see if they're engaged and if they're serious.

Clodagh: (18:23) 

So this is another way that you can make sure that you don't waste time on bad prospects. The next one we look at is reducing the sales cycle time. I just love the Office. What, it's Office Space, isn't it, was one of my best movies. Thanks, Carol, for these great images. So the next thing you're going to have to do here is have answers to frequently asked questions upon your website. How many times have you got an email or a phone call or a message on your chatbot that's asked a question, and you've said to yourself, "Oh, I wish I had a dollar for every time I answered that question." Well, get it up on your website. It is vital that you answer basic questions and give people the information. Like, "Who do you work with? What times are you open until? Do you take holidays? Where are you located? Who do you work with around the world?" All of the questions that you have to answer and make videos for, which is great because it can show personality, you can divvy out the videos, among your team and get everyone involved, or you can write. Simply start with writing down the text and put in frequently asked questions.

Clodagh: (19:42) 

A really, really simple way to get this is going into your Sent Items. Get the whole team to do it, and I guarantee you will have at least 50 frequently asked questions within a couple of hours up on your website, ready to go. And then you can make a plan to record four or five of those per week so that you would actually get them all recorded within a five-week period. So it's really about videos, making sure they're written as well about your secret sauce. How do you work with people? What results have you got? Ideally, you'd love to interview some of your best clients that you've loved working with and get them to talk about what was the problem and challenge that they had before they hired you, what was it like working with you, what. Talk to them in an interview. It doesn't even have to be super corporate-looking, it can just be a casual chat, you can get them on a Zoom call. And also timelines on what to expect. Detail your sales process, that there is a pricing page, there is a qualification, there is a call that identifies your needs, there is some reading material, and then there's a qualifying call, like tell them what the sales process is. Outline how your services work. Have lots of visuals, have lots of videos, and have lots of text.

Carol: (21:10)

I wanted to actually add to that. I know at Leadfeeder our teams, our sales teams, support teams, customer assessing, work really, really closely with the marketing team. But basically, we are always collecting customer feedback. And it's something as simple as having a slack channel. We dump all the frequently asked questions and feedback we get from our customers, and then from there the marketing team uses that and creates blogs and video content, and that has helped to really drive our inbound marketing machine, as well as cutting down the sales cycle time, because now when our sales team gets on a call, they don't have to spend. Waste time answering all these questions. We've already educated our prospects and our leads based off what's on our website. So yeah, it takes a bit of a coordination between all the teams who are client-facing, but something as simple a slack channel that's what we do.

Clodagh: (22:01) 

Excellent yeah, that's great, thanks for sharing that. Very simple to do, and everyone's got those questions ready to go. So the next thing to do is, to reduce your sales cycle time, is making sure you have sales templates ready to go. And what I mean by that is all of the collateral, from start to finish, from the template in an email sequence that says, "Thank you for contacting us, we will book a connect call with you, and in this call is going to be these questions." From pitch decks, from templated proposals. Every single thing you do, you should have a template and a process around it, because if you have a sales deck all ready to go and the only thing you have to do is put the client's name in, the challenges that the clients have, and I do. If you ever work with me, I sound like a broken record sometimes because I repeat myself, but packages and pricing. Because if you had those all on a templated proposal and a pitch, all you're doing is customizing the client, the client challenges, their logo.

Clodagh: (23:11) 

Now, if you are not turning around proposals within 10 to 15 minutes, you must be re-writing the wheel every time, and you're doing that because you don't have packages and you're customizing the work over again, which is incredibly hard to scale the agency. And just making sure that if you've one or two people on your sales team, if you give them the sales collateral guaranteed over time, they'll be altering it so reign them back in once a month and asked them to do some hygiene and clean up the sales and what's working, what didn't work.

Clodagh: (23:46) 

Maybe one salesperson had a better result with a particular piece of collateral. So review them regularly don't leave them sitting out there for a long time. I'm laughing because I used to be a salesperson, and I know exactly what I was like, making things and altering them and running with them. So that's another thing to be mindful of. The next thing to do here is proposals. I will stress this over and over again. Never, ever, ever, ever email a proposal. State clearly to the prospect what your sales process is, that there is a connect call, there's a qualifying call, there's some work to be done in between, that you will prepare a detailed proposal, and then you book a call to talk through it. You will say things like, "In your experience, a call is the best way to explain the proposal because there is always questions, and you'd like to answer those questions directly." Just don't send an email. We all know that feeling, you send it and then tumbleweeds. It just goes into this darkness. So make sure you book a meeting, try and get all the decision-makers on the call, if not. Or even if they are on it, record the meeting.

Clodagh: (25:03) 

Sometimes people don't like to look bad by asking questions that they think are silly so they'll gloss over it, but if they can listen to the recording again or you can tell them, "Hey email me if any questions come up." So I have a huge success rate with the agencies that I encourage strongly to stop emailing proposals and start to talk through them. You can handle objection straight away, you can answer any questions that come up, you can build a rapport, and you can start to help the closing process by going, "What happens next on their side? How long is that going to take? Who else needs to talk? What is stopping them from moving forward? Who else is in the consideration phase?" So never email the proposal. If that's one thing you can take away from this, it's definitely that. And the last part about making sure you can actually help your agency increase your sales is to become a trusted advisor. Good old cat meme, there. Gotta love that. Thanks, Carol, I love your sense of humor. So the important part here is to listen to learn. You must really deeply qualify exactly the impact that this person who's calling you.

Clodagh: (26:21) 

This marketing manager could be a sales manager, could be the marketing director... They need something done. You have to listen and listen deeply to learning how their business works. So they could come on and say, "Yeah, we need a new website, we need a new campaign." You have to understand why. What is the revenue they wish to generate as a result of that? Now, they might not know that straight away but, again, with the homework part of it, ask them to go off and find out. If you're doing anything in that business, eventually it's revenue that you need to tie your self to. They have to hit a certain goal. Now, you can't guarantee the revenue, but you are going to guarantee the activity. The work to be done to the activity that's generated so that they can close the revenue goals, and this is a very important one. Just having visitors and leads as metrics, they're great but if you can say, "If we do increase your visitors from 1000 to 5000 over a six-month period", and those leads from 100 to 500 over a six-month period, what is the expected revenue that those 500 leads could generate based on a certain conversion to and start to play some numbers around.

Clodagh: (27:39) 

Get a nice big juicy number in front of them that you are all working towards as a partnership with them. And from there, you can show them that you are a business person, you're committed to their business, and you're commissioned to the growth of their revenue and their profitability. And that's where you need to get to so that you can become a long-term partner for them. Talk to us about this, Carol.

Carol: (28:05)

Thanks, thanks. So, as Clodagh mentioned, you always wanna tie yourself to revenue goals as much, right, and showcase our ROI. That's a no-brainer, right? Because you spend all your time helping your clients build these websites, landing page, blogs, paid ads, but let's face it, most of the traffic you have to attract to your client websites are not raising their hands, right? They might browse your clients' websites, but they won't fill out a form or call or reach out, so that can make it extremely difficult to tie yourselves to their revenue or showcase your ROI. But with Leadfeeder... Leadfeeder's one of the ways you can accomplish this really easily.

Clodagh: (28:46) 


Carol: (28:47)

Oh, sorry, go... So, basically with Leadfeeder, we can show you what companies are visiting, even if they're anonymous. So we seamlessly connect with your Google Analytics data, and we leverage our partnership with Google Analytics to tap into their API, and basically, it's all IP-based, right? So aside from the company name, we show you what location the visitor's from, what campaigns or sources they come through, what pages they're viewing, how often they're on your website for your clients. So that then you can provide your clients with a daily, weekly, or monthly recap of the types of relevant traffic you're drawing to their website based off of our direct efforts, right? And then to tie it into their revenues, you can automatically push the Leadfeeder data into the CRMs and connect it to their deals that their sales teams are working on. So now you'll know, and they'll know that a lead was first identified through your efforts, or AKA Through Leadfeeder, and then you can also see that the intel that Leadfeeder provides them has helped them close an existing deal or a new deal. And of course, Leadfeeder can also be used to up-sell their current customers as well.

Carol: (30:00)

So it's a lot of upsell opportunities. It's good for new prospects. And, the end of the day, like I said, you wanna tie yourself as much to their revenue as possible.

Clodagh: (30:07) 

Yeah. Brilliant.

Carol: (30:08)

And... Great.

Clodagh: (30:11) 

And this is really... All that activity there, I highly recommend that if you're the agency owner if you're the business owner and you're doing a lot of sales, as soon as you possibly can hire a business development person to go and do all this prospecting, connecting on LinkedIn, like if you can just see there, you can do account-based selling, account-based marketing. There is so much activities that can be done by a business development rep in your business, a junior role, skill them up and so that you as the owner can go out and close the sale and actually work on the meetings. So I think that's a really important part, and it's the first role that if you can get yourself out of that role in the future, then you can work on other parts of the business. And other parts of the business are speaking at events, and if you can get invited to speak at conferences, businesses of the chamber for commerce, anything at all in your local area or in your niche. If you're of identified pharma companies, that's who you wanna be in front of, you've got to go to the conferences that they're at, and if possible, get on stage.

Clodagh: (31:14) 

But at the very least, go to these events, meet people, talk to them, eyeball them, or even better get up on stage. And then host your own events, one of the most successful agency activities. Regarding sales that I've worked with over the. With partners that I work with over the last few years, has been getting them to host their own breakfast seminars. So sometimes these events in the evenings, I think there was a phase where we were all doing evening events, but let's face it, people are a little bit more family-centered or health-centered, and they don't wanna go to things in the evening if they don't have to. So morning activities, 7 o'clock, get coffee, get some Danish, and talk about basic topics that are educational for your audience. Don't have to do anything too future, but talk about what are the challenges they have, and how you solve them, and that's how you become a trusted advisor in your space.

Clodagh: (32:13) 

Again, back to creating content when it comes to the work that you're doing, you don't want to be doing basic work for the rest of your life, right? You, in the beginning, you will have done the basic campaigns, the basic keyword research, but as you evolve in your agency, you want to educate people on how to do it. Because how good would it be if you actually had a prospect come to you and say, "I've watched your how-to videos, I have implemented a campaign, but I need some help on it." At least you've got a starting point there. So by creating content, people can see that you are a trusted advisor. Again, back to the case study interviews, what was the problem that they had? Why did they choose you? Where did they meet you? And then share that online, ideally in a video format, if possible. And, again, the frequently asked content. So if you're getting questions on how-to, not just the questions about your business and how you work, but what is the impact of the new Google algorithm BERT on pharma business. So you have to start creating this expertise content as a trusted advisor in the future.

Clodagh: (33:30) 

So that is the summary of everything that we've gone through so far on their digital sales, digital agency sales. And really I would encourage you if you could take one day out of your business to work on your sales process as a team and get it done now, you're going to make a really, really good start to your business in 2020 and these are some of the techniques that I wanted to share with you here. These are all proven, they have worked with many agencies that I've been working with over the years, and I'm very happy now to open the floor for some questions.

Carol: (34:08)

Yeah, really excellent takeaway, by the way, Clodagh. I'm guilty of being sucked into the daily grind that I sometimes forget to just stand back and take that time to work on process and strategy and, in this case, work on your sales process. I don't see any questions yet, but I have a question.

Clodagh: (34:27)

Sure, yeah.

Carol: (34:27)

Yeah, and hopefully, this applies to everyone who's still on the call. So a lot of times clients think they know what they need or they. But they don't actually know what they should be asking for when it comes to your services, so how do you go about recommending things to clients? And if they push back, but you know that you know better, you know what's best for them, how do you sell in that scenario? 

Clodagh: (34:52) 

Yeah, I think if you... Again it comes back to sometimes you might not be speaking to the decision-maker, and I see this happen over and over again with agencies. So if you actually are talking to somebody who's asking for a particular product or service and then you're digging into their business and going, "What would be the impact of you not doing that work? What would be the impact of a successful implementation of that campaign? What results are you looking for?" If they don't have the figures, it's very likely you're not speaking to a decision-maker. And if they don't have the figures, why do they not know the figures? Who knows the figures? Where do they have to get the numbers? Because every single person in a business, whether they are directly related to the sales, the revenue, they're impacting the sales and the revenue, if that makes sense. They have to have... Fundamentally, everyone in the business has to be delivering some revenue value to the clients so that they keep buying. Whatever it is, there is revenue that's attached to it.

Clodagh: (35:57) 

And just by asking those questions and go, "In order for me to give a good quote, please tell me how many clients you want next year, what is the average spend of those clients with you? How long do those clients stay with you?" Find the lifetime value of that client because in a very simple example, if you are working with an accountancy firm and they like working with a small business, that small business spends ten grand a year with the accountant, and they stay with them for an average of five years. A new client for an accountant is now worth 50 grand. So if you are going to bring them a new client, will they spend 10% of that lifetime value of a spend on their marketing to get one client? That's five grand. If you commit to getting 12 new clients for them, that's five grand a month for a year, that's where you've gotta work into, these numbers have to be dug into, and you have to speak to decision-makers because they know them.

Carol: (37:05)

Great points, great points. Well, I have one more question, and then we're gonna announce the winners, the three winners. But if you have questions in the meantime, please feel free to ask them now. My other question is that you had mentioned that never ever send a proposal through email. Get them on a call, walk them through it. I just think of myself. I'm one of those like, "I want it in an email, I wanna read it myself in advance." So how do you navigate difficult people and clients like myself? 

Clodagh: (37:34) 

Yeah, I think if you're... This is the point of the two calls beforehand. You've done a connect call with them, and you've identified what they are looking for are, and then you'll give them some homework, and then you'll actually say you're going to qualify more and you're going to get deeper into them. With those two calls, and with the to and fro of emails, over and back, it's about building rapport, about becoming the trusted advisor. And you say things like, "In our experience, it is better for us to walk through this together because so many questions come up," and you state it as a fact. If I tell you that this is how things are going to run, you're saying it with an element of confidence, you're not giving them an option, you're going, "I can only talk through it on the phone, it's not gonna take that long, but I have to talk it through on the phone because that's what works best." You just got to state it as a fact and be strong in it, and it will work out much better in the end. It's for their own benefit.

Clodagh: (38:12) 

If you pitch it like that going, "I appreciate time is of... very scarce for everyone around the world. However, it's going to save us time in the long run if we book this call for 15 minutes to go through the proposals together, I will record it, and then you can share it with other people as well. But it would be great if all the decision-makers were on there, like the CEO, like the finance guy, get them all on."

Carol: (38:12)

Fair enough, fair enough. I guess that would work on me.

Clodagh: (38:12) 

I just gave you time in here.

Carol: (38:12)

Yes, of course. I love it. Alright, so without further ado, drum roll, please. As I was gonna announce them, I will also put them in the chat. Okay, the first winner is Bart W. From Belgium.

Clodagh: (39:20) 


Carol: (39:21)

We'll also email you afterward, too. So, you'll know, I'll connect you with Clodagh. Great, second one is Mina K. From Finland.

Clodagh: (39:33) 

Oh yay, love Finland. I've been there many, many times.

Carol: (39:37)

I have too. I've been there four times now.

Clodagh: (39:39) 

And you have too, that's right.

Carol: (39:40)


Clodagh: (39:41) 


Carol: (39:41)

And Belgium, I love Belgium. I love the beer and the food. Everything's beautiful there. Go Finland. And lastly... Yes, Belgium beer. Lastly, Nicolas R. From Canada.

Clodagh: (39:56) 

Oh yay, go Canada.

Carol: (39:58)

Also been there many times. I live a couple of hours from Montreal, so.

Clodagh: (40:03) 

Oh. Super.

Carol: (40:04)

Alright, so thank you, everyone, and the recording will be sent after this call. And like I said, we'll connect the winners with Clodagh directly.

Clodagh: (40:12) 

Excellent, thank you so much, and if anyone has any questions or feedback or they like anything, don't hesitate again in touch with us, either at the GROW IT group, you can see us all on the social media or my email, it's just clodagh@growitgroup.com. Thank you so much for being on this, and thank you, Carol, for making this happen and your fabulous team, really appreciate it.

Carol: (40:31)

Thank you, Clodagh, it was a pleasure. Alright, have a good day everyone, take care, bye.

Clodagh: (40:36) 


Note: Even with the best sales closing techniques, you still need a sales tool to win the sale. Try Leadfeeder free for 14 days to see which companies visit your website, the pages they visit, and more to help identify, qualify, and connect your sales prospects.

Anna Crowe
By Anna Crowe

Anna works as a SEO Consultant and writer for Search Engine Land. Over the last decade, Anna has successfully developed and implemented online marketing strategies, SEO, and conversion campaigns for 100+ businesses of all sizes; from the Fortune 500, to startups, and nonprofits. She enjoys burritos and puppies (in that order).

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