Marketing & Sales

4 Reasons Your Leads Give You the Cold Shoulder (And How to Fix It)

Written by Lisa Newman-Morris

You work so hard in your business to get the most out of your marketing. You invest money, time and effort to attract leads into your business and you hope they eventually will buy from you.

That’s why it’s so frustrating when so many of them give you the cold shoulder.

Converting leads into paying customers is the backbone of any successful business. It doesn’t matter how many leads you get from your marketing, if you’re not converting them into revenue, you don’t have a business.

Here are 4 reasons your leads are giving you the cold shoulder and what you can do about it.

Reason 1 – You’re trying to cater to everyone

According to the Australian Bureau of Statistics, the population of Australia as at 30th June 2017 was 24.6 million people. Your business can’t help every one of these people, nor should it try. How about half of that number? One tenth?

One of the biggest mistakes you can make in your business is trying to cater to too wide of an audience. When you try and provide to everyone, you end up helping no-one because your solution is too broad and not targeted to the specific needs of the people you want to help.

Solution – Define your niche

One of the most important things your business can do is define its niche. A niche refers to a specialised but profitable corner of the market. When you specialise to a narrow audience with specific products and services, you can help your target customers much more effectively. By being able to provide a more effective solution to a specific problem, you’re more likely to appeal to the people who are the best fit for your business.

There are three aspects to defining your niche:

  1. Define the specific problem you want to solve
  2. Create the perfect solution to this specific problem
  3. Identify the characteristics of the people who need this particular problem solved

Completing an ideal client profile allows you to invest in a more targeted marketing approach to appeal to the right people.

Reason 2 – You’re selling with manipulation

No-one likes to be manipulated, but that’s how most sales are done every single day. Can you think of a buying experience you’ve had as a customer where you were manipulated? It felt yucky, didn’t it? I’m guessing you’re thinking of a stereotypical encounter with a used car salesman, or a telemarketer calling you in the middle of dinnertime, or a canvasser knocking on your front door uninvited, to sell you electricity or light globes.

These are some of the more cringe-worthy examples of manipulation, but there are many more subtle forms of manipulation used in sales.

Now you might be thinking you would never manipulate a customer, but here are some less obvious forms of manipulation used every day in many businesses:

  • Discounts
  • Buy one, get one free offers
  • Upsell offers
  • Free trials
  • Before and after photos
  • Competitions
  • Fear based messaging
  • Peer / social pressure messaging
  • Novelty offers

These are all such common sales tactics you’ve probably experienced thousands if not tens of thousands of times in your life; you take them for granted as a normal sales tactic. The difference is, none of these tactics aim to appeal to the customers need. Instead, the only goal is to move more product and increase the sales quota.

Solution – Inspire your customer

There are only two methods of selling; manipulation and inspiration. Most bad experiences customers have with sales are because of manipulation. The best businesses don’t need to manipulate. Instead, they inspire.

The easiest way to inspire your customer is to genuinely want to help them. Take a selfless interest in finding out what they need, ask them the right questions and then help them see the best solution.

Reason 3 – You tried to sell them the ‘thing’

Here’s a harsh reality everyone in sales needs to understand. No-one cares about what you have or what you do. It’s true. What you sell actually means nothing to your customer. It’s not the thing that they buy.

What they want from you is a solution. They want answers to their everyday challenges. They have a desire, a pain or a problem to solve and they are looking for help. It really is as simple as that.

Most salespeople are taught to sell the features of the product or service they’re selling. They try to dazzle the customer with fancy language, technical jargon and irrelevant facts. But the features aren’t the selling point. People don’t buy the thing; they buy what the thing can do for them. They buy the solution.

Solution – Find out what your customer needs

There’s only one thing you need to do when a customer comes into your business – find out what they need. When you’re clear on the need, then and only then can you determine if you have the right solution to be able to facilitate the sale. When you uncover the need and can offer the right solution, you stand a much greater chance of helping the customer to buy.

Reason 4 – You focused on what you do

Every business in the world knows what they do. Your business is either in real estate, or flowers, or plumbing, or consulting, or insurance, or any number of a thousand other industries. But the thing is, what you do, is the same as every other one of your competitors. So why should someone choose your business?

Sure you might have sold more houses than other agents in your area, or you might provide a cheaper plumbing service, or you may have been in the consulting game longer than most. But the truth is, most customers don’t really care about any of those facts. It’s not enough to focus on what you do.

Solution – Focus on why you do it

The way to stand out from your competition is to focus on why you do what you do. Your why is your purpose, your passion and the reason your business exists at all. If you can convey the passion for what you do, show your customers how much you care about helping them, and how much you believe in the solution you’re providing, your business will stand out head and shoulders over the rest.

Final thoughts

There is a better way to sell, and when you master the process and do it better than your competition, you’ll reap the rewards.

“The opinions expressed by BizWitty Contributors are their own, not those of BizCover and should not be relied upon in place of appropriate professional advice. Please read our full disclaimer."

About the author

Lisa Newman-Morris

With over 30 years of experience in coaching, training and mentoring clients to success in life, fitness, health, sport and business, Lisa's passion is working with aspiring small business owners and entrepreneurs to create, build and grow their business.

Lisa draws on her experience of being a serial entrepreneur, an award winning business owner and highly knowledgeable and experienced business coach and consultant. She also has the X-factor, utilising her personal experience of excellence as a World Champion trampolinist, an Olympic level coach, an Ironman triathlete, a world class personal trainer, an Amazon best-selling author, a self-published author, an app developer and a mother, to help show others how to master the process of achieving success.