The first time I heard about using free strategy sessions to sell my coaching services, I felt I had been handed the keys to the Kingdom.
I was ecstatic.
And truth be told, offering free strategy sessions gave my business a much-needed boost.
But offering free sessions had one major drawback that gave me concern:
If by the end of the session, the prospect didn’t buy my coaching package or whatever I was selling through the sessions, then I didn’t make any money.
A while ago I stumbled on a concept that, when applied to my free coaching sessions offer, totally changed the way I now sell my coaching services.
The concept I’m talking about is the Pay What You Want (PWYW) Pricing Model.
The idea behind PWYW is to simply let the buyer determine what to pay for whatever it is that you’re selling.
I experimented with the concept for a little while and enjoyed some success with it.
But it wasn’t until I applied it to my free strategy sessions that things really took off for me.
Here’s what I did:
At my next presentation, I still offered my free strategy session valued at the time at $125.
I made it available––as usual, to just 10 audience members. This time it wasn’t for free but on a pay what you want basis.
Here’s the pitch I made:
“To help with implementing the strategies that I’ve shared so far, I’d like to offer 10 audience members an actionPLAN consultation during which I’ll help you develop a plan for:
The consultation is a 45 minute session valued at $125 but for today I’m making it available for just 10 people on a pay what you want basis.
That means rather paying the full price of $125, you can pay whatever you want for it.
But it’s only available on that basis for just the first 10 to request it”
That evening I generated just shy of a $1400 from that offer.
The amount came from the people who made it into the first 10. But here’s the really interesting part: 5 people didn’t make it into the first 10 but were willing to pay what they want in advance and wait for openings the following month.
But that wasn’t all. I also had a higher conversion rate for people who bought my coaching package as a result of being on the actionPLAN consultation with me.
About 70% of the people bought the coaching package from me, which was much higher than my regular 25-30% conversion rate.
So basically, by repackaging my free actionPLAN consultation into a PWYW actionPLAN consultation:
So…the big question is:
Assuming you decide to try this…how do you make it work for you?
Here are a few suggestions for doing just that:
Just like you would a properly packaged free session…give your PWYW session a good result oriented name.
Understand that your free strategy session isn’t designed to solve all your prospects problems but to help them realize what the problem is and position your offer as a solution. Your PWYW session should be designed with the same goal in mind.
I suggest the following format for conducting a PWYW strategy session.
Now I understand that that might sound weird given that it’s a PWYW offer, but I have noticed that most people struggle with offering a fair value for their time. However, putting a price on your offer actually helps people take advantage of it.
When people don’t know what to pay, they don’t take you up on your offer because they don’t want to offend you.
But when you let them know what the value of your offer is, two things happen:
I have had situations where people actually paid me more than the value I attached to the session, and at other times, the exact value that I attached to the offer.
Now, most people would offer less. But considering that this is the same session that you offered for free, any amount is basically a profit.
Proactively offer your PWYW session to people on a consistent basis.
Offer it at the end of a talk.
Offer it at the end of a conversation with someone who “just needs a minute of your time to discuss some really important matter”.
The more PWYW sessions you book, the more prospects you’ll have enrolling in your higher priced programs.
That’s basically it.
It’s been interesting to see how much revenue I left on the table by not applying this in the past.
I hope this serves you.
Victor Ekpo Bassey is the founder of Expert Business School a total support program from entrepreneurs who want to multiply their capacity to create, leverage and monetize influence in life and at the market place. When he’s not busy serving as the Chief Tribemaster at the internationally acclaimed Highly Paid Experts Network, He’s busy fooling around with his amazing wife and hanging out with his three super smart daughters.
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