How you get paying clients, especially when starting out, can feel like a big deal. Not to mention hard and awkward at times.
You have to start where you are. Marketing yourself in alignment is part of this process.
Being visible in your craft is another part. Do people even know what you are doing? Or have you kept it a secret from friends and family? Are you posting stuff appropriately on social media?
What do I mean by appropriate? Well… don’t let desperation and doubt seep into your connections. A few things to NOT do:
- Create a Facebook group and add people in it
- Post a video and tag everyone you know it, unless you have their permission of course.
- Friend people, then try to sell them in the next conversation.
You aren’t going to start out with thousands of people on your email list. You aren’t going to start with being invited to speak everywhere. It’s not likely that your post on Facebook will go viral and The Today Show will call you next week.
It could happen, but what if it doesn’t? How do you REALLY build your business?
Pause. Breathe. We live in an abundant universe and building your business is about building relationships.
Before you let your friends and family know what your big vision is, use wisdom. I’m not an advocate for sharing your heart and vision with the naysayers in your life.
You know the type… the well-meaning people who complain about their job every day, and fearfully pay their dues at a company for 20+ years so they can enjoy their life after they retire. There is absolutely NOTHING wrong with that choice, BUT they are likely NOT people who will encourage you to live your big dream. It’s safer for them to advise you to be “responsible” because that’s the world they know. When you take risks by not having a j-o-b is scary for people!
And let’s face it, if you attempted to put yourself into that formula for the “good and responsible” life, you would die of boredom.
One thing you can do to share with your friends and family, is to send them a friends and family letter.
Two tips so you don’t spam people:
- DO NOT send a mass email with everyone in the “To” or “Cc” field of your email. If you are going to send a mass email, use the BCC field and after this Friends and Family letter, DO NOT send more emails to people on your personal list.
- Please don’t add friends and family to your email system that sends newsletters out to people. It’s technically spam and no one likes to get spammed. 🙂
Another option for this letter is print it out and mail to people the old fashioned way (like in an envelope with a stamp.) It’s really cool to receive something other than junk mail – it’s likely to get noticed more that way. Make sure you personally sign each letter too.
If you send a letter the old fashioned way, a great strategy is to follow up individually with each person you sent the letter to with a phone call, text OR email (not all three) to see if they received it and if there was anyone they know who you can serve.
Before I give you a template for a friends and family letter, put your hand over your heart and say this out-loud:
I (state your name), solemnly swear that I will use this is a TEMPLATE and not copy this verbatim. I also promise to take action outside of this one strategy because I know that I am ultimately responsible for my business.
Okay, now we’re good to go. 😉
First, follow these DON’Ts: (I know there a lot of don’ts in this post, but it’s because I’ve seen so many people miss the mark on this strategy and I want to make sure you are setting yourself up for success.)
- Don’t down-play your passion and vision. And definitely don’t apologize for it. For example: “I’m sorry to take time out of your busy schedule, but I wanted to let you know some exciting news.” No apologies!
- Don’t share all of the features. No one cares that you have a 3-month package that has two 60-minute sessions per month. What is possible when people work with you? What are the benefits? Focus on the benefits.
- Don’t prove your value or hide behind certifications. If you have the energy of trying to convince or prove your value, then pause and get that writing out of your system. That’s not the letter you will send. Embodying your value comes without you saying a word. You have to believe yourself first.
Friends and Family Letter Template:
Dear [Name Here],
I’m excited to share some big news. I’m opening the doors/launching/now offering __________________________________(your service or product) in my business.
[Adjust this first paragraph accordingly to match if you are launching your business, changing your business, or adding a service or product.]
[What you do and who you do it for – be brief and focus on the benefits:]
As you may or may not know, I’ve done ___________(service) for the past ___________ years. What I love most about this work is ______________ (results that people experience.)
[If you have holistic or healing services you provide, be specific and grounded in describing the benefits. If it’s too airy-fairy then people won’t get the VALUE of why they should work with you. Again, follow your marketing archetype here.
If your benefits are that you are the cheapest massage therapist in your area, but you are the best, then find something else that helps you stand out. Avoid focusing on price as your differentiator.]
[Why are you sending them the note:]
You may be asking why I’m sending you this note and here is why – referrals are a great way to grow my business and I would love to support you or someone you know who would like to __________ (restate the benefit).
[Get them to think of someone:]
Think for a moment of someone who fits this description:
[Describe your ideal client]
The type of people that I work with are _______________ who would like _______________ (their desires) instead of ______________ (pain points, what they struggle with.)
[Don’t be overly focused on the typical marketing language of people who are tired of ….blah, blah, get specific.]
Example: My clients are brilliant at what they do, but they are really frustrated with the time and money they have invested in building their business. They don’t know what they are doing wrong, and what I teach them is how to leverage what they are naturally good at in their marketing because they aren’t doing anything wrong, they just don’t have the right tools and strategies in place to effectively share their services with their market. )
[Short testimonial -2-3 sentences- if you have one.]
[Your free gift of value:]
Example: What I’m offering to people is a free consultation so people can get to know me and if I can help them, then I’ll share with them the various programs I have.
Example: I am hosting a free online training on ________ about ______(topic and benefit) and this is an easy way for you and your trusted referrals to get to know me.
[Let them know you will be taking good care of their referrals and if you have a referral commission or gift, mention that as well:]
There are two important things to note:
- Any referral you send my way will be well taken care of. My passion is to ________.
- I would love to send you a thank-you gift for anyone you refer to me. I so appreciate your trust in me and believe reciprocity is a key to creating value for everyone.
[Tell them how you want to receive the referral:]
Thank you for taking the time to think about someone who could benefit from working with me, perhaps that person is even you. The best way to connect me with someone you know is to send them my information or send an email to both me and your contact introducing us.
[Link to your site, booking, or free gift:]
Here is the link to use, if you would like to talk with me about this, or to pass along so people can book their session/register for free for my upcoming training/etc.
Thank You for Your Support / All the Best, / Sincerely,