I used to be that freelancer who would reach out to potential clients via email, state my services and offer a “free” consultation to see if there was a good fit.
Nine times out of 10, it didn’t work — and I had no idea why. In fact, I almost never received an email reply. I’m sure you can relate.
After reading The Go-Giver by Bob Burg and John D. Mann, I started to take a different approach to attract new clients. Instead of stating what I could do for potential clients if they hire me, I send potential clients an email with exactly what I would do for them if we worked together, unconditionally spelling out the “why,” “what” and “how” in great detail. And I don’t withhold any information, or attach any strings. I put all my cards on the table and present them with the opportunity to take it or leave it.
This way, I’m able to demonstrate (show instead of tell) my expertise and knowledge, which immediately builds my reputation as a trusted source. At the end of the day, trust is the most important intangible in sales, because clients hire (and are willing to pay more for) people they trust.
As a result, I’ve been able to more than triple my hourly rate and win big-time clients through “cold emails.” Attracting more prospects with the “go-giver” approach put me in a position to pick and choose the clients I want to work with, since the scale of supply (my available time) and demand for my services now tips in my favor. Here’s how I do it.
My Trusty Email Template
To take a page out of The Go-Giver, I typically work from a template when I first reach out to potential clients that’ll show my expertise and knowledge right up front. The template looks something like this:
I’ve been looking through your [medium, platform, website, etc.] and have noticed some opportunities for improvement that’ll help you [the “why”].
I’m not sure if I told you, or if you already know, but I’m a [your title here]. I work with brands and organizations like [your client’s company], so I’m confident that we’d make a great team.
Several opportunities immediately come to mind, including:
- Opportunity 1
- Opportunity 2
- Opportunity 3
If you’d like to discuss further, please let me know.
Scale Your “Go-Giving”
You can also take this approach at scale so you don’t have to rely on one-to-one marketing all the time. This will entail less personalized messaging, of course, but the ultimate effect essentially remains the same.
List all of the main services you provide, and break them up into mini tasks. Then, create step-by-step video tutorials where you show people exactly what you can do for them. Here are a few examples:
- A graphic designer creates video tutorials about designing a logo, business card and email newsletter (three different videos) using Canva.
- A digital marketer creates video tutorials about setting up a Google AdWords campaign, creating a landing page and using email automation.
- A blogger creates video tutorials about setting up a new blog, creating and managing a content calendar and writing different types of blog posts.
You can also include add-ons such as templates, printable worksheets and software recommendations to tie up all the loose ends. In other words: The more, the merrier.
Give to Get
At this point, you might be asking yourself: “Why would I give away my expertise for free? Isn’t that why clients hire me, so I can make money to provide these services for them?”
Absolutely, but you have to give in order to get. Once you give, two scenarios will likely take place:
- People will try to complete the tasks themselves, but will realize their lack of experience, knowledge and expertise produces a less-than-stellar product.
- People will appreciate your expertise and transparency, but they can’t or don’t want to dedicate the time to do it themselves.
In both cases, who do you think they will hire to get the job done?
You guessed it.