When a Prospect Gets Cold Feet, Here’s What to Do
You’re almost there.
You’ve marketed your services, products or programs, set up an enrollment call, and spoke to an interested, qualified prospect.
You’re certain you can help this person and they say they’re ready to invest with you.
…they get cold feet and tell you they’re not sure they want to move forward.
When this happens, you need to know how to pick up the pieces!
Save Your Sale From Slipping Away
For seven steps to save a sale that might be going sideways, and most importantly, how to prevent cold-feet cancellations in the first place, keep reading.
Step 1. Schedule a “TLC” call.
The very first step to prevent prospects from getting cold feet begins with the enrollment process.
Whether you typically enroll clients in a one-on-one conversation over the phone, at events or at your place of business, it’s important to schedule a next-day, button-up call. I like to call next-day, button up calls “next day TLC (Tender Loving Care) calls.”
The purpose of these calls is to touch base with your prospective client the next day. TLC calls don’t have to take a lot of time – they can be scheduled for 5-10 minutes.
As a business owner, you can either take the calls yourself or you can train someone who naturally has a warm personality.
Ideally, your client will call you, but if they don’t, I definitely recommend you call them.
So when you schedule the call, make sure to communicate that you would like them to call you.
In addition, I highly suggest that you save their contact information in your phone so that when they call, you know it’s them and you can call them by their name when you pick up.
Calling your clients by name will make them feel supported.
Step 2. Speak with enthusiasm.
When your client calls, make a point of greeting them as if you’re thrilled to receive their call.
Showing enthusiasm sets the tone for the call, especially if they’re starting to get cold feet.
Showing enthusiasm towards someone who’s at risk of getting cold feet is known as a pattern interrupt in behavioral psychology.
A pattern interrupt is a technique used to change a particular thought, behavior or situation.
You see, if a person is starting to get cold feet, they will usually feel fear, doubt or worry. They may start to ask themselves questions such as:
- “Do I really have the time for this?”
- “Is this really going to work?”
By showing enthusiasm, you have the power to interrupt these unconscious thoughts and feelings and shift them immediately to more positive, encouraged ones.
Step 3. Ask him/her to tell you more.
Whenever a prospect presents a limiting belief, it may be tempting to start coaching them immediately.
Instead, first acknowledge what your client has just told you. Say something like,
“I hear you saying that you’re afraid you don’t have the time.”
The key here is to stay calm and to not become defensive.
Then say, “Tell me more.”
This will give your client the opportunity to list every limiting belief they have. As long as they continue to talk, simply keep asking for them to tell you more.
Allow them to continue talking until you sense that they’ve laid it all out on the table.
By giving your prospects the space to speak truthfully, they will feel safe, supported and cared about.
Step 4. Acknowledge the facts.
The fourth step is to repeat everything you’ve just heard the client say, and then ask,
“So, have I heard you? Do you feel acknowledged for what you’re really thinking and feeling in this moment?”
Pay close attention to what they say and then repeat back what you hear, word for word.
The truth is that most people want to feel heard and acknowledged.
Whether you save the sale or not, one of the greatest gifts you can give someone is to see, hear, acknowledge and support them right where they are.
Step 5. Ask if they’re open to receiving feedback.
The next step in this process is to ask your prospect if they would be interested in receiving a different perspective, advice or (if you’re a coach) some coaching.
The point is that before you give advice, ask permission. By asking for permission, your prospect will be more open to receive.
Step 6. Acknowledge the truth.
When you have completed steps 1-5, encourage your prospect to pause for a moment to reset.
Ask them to take a deep breath and then remind them of the truth.
The truth is that there is a big part of them that feels deeply concerned, and yet there’s probably another part of them that feels completely grounded and ready to take the next step.
Let them know that you believe that they are way more powerful than either of these feelings.
They have an opportunity at this moment to allow the part of themselves that’s really stuck in those feelings of fear, doubt and worry or allow the part of themselves that said yes in the first place to win.
Remind them that there’s a power breathing them that has the ability to expand and guide them if only they will allow it to.
If feelings of fear come up when they start taking steps in the direction of their dreams, that’s actually a great thing because it means they are growing.
Step 7. Remind them of their vision.
Part of the enrollment process that we teach here at Brave Thinking Institute is to create a really clear picture of what the client’s ideal outcome is by means of the coach’s product or service.
As a coach, it’s important to know what it is that the client would love a year from now or three years from now.
What are the tangible results that have occurred by means of them saying yes to this product or service?
Only by having a clear picture of what the prospect wants can you help him or her reconnect to that vision.
At this point in the process, if you haven’t yet had that conversation with your prospect, it’s not too late.
You can say, “Let’s imagine it’s one year from now. This product or service worked for you. What results would you love to have?”
When you invite people to focus on the results they’d love, you shift them into thinking about possibilities, which will lead them to feel emotions such as faith, courage and confidence.
When your prospect is tapped into that higher vibrational frequency, they will begin to think about the steps that they might take to make those results happen.
Invite them to tell you one empowered step they can take in that moment toward their goal. Ask them,
- If you’re in that place where it’s all worked out, what does that part of you do in this moment?
- Does that part of you shrink back, say ‘no’ and cancel?
- Or does that part of you step forward and take a bold, confident action step in the direction of the result you would love?
Most likely, your prospect will say something like, “You’re right. I got caught up in the fear, worry or doubt.
What I really want to do is to stay the course. Thank you so much for supporting me.
Thank you so much for being in my corner.” At this point, feel free to celebrate your client for saying YES, for stepping forward and for doing the thing that they really want to do!
Let’s recap the 7 bulletproof steps to save your sale…
Saving the sale begins during the initial enrollment conversation with your prospect.
The first step is to schedule a TLC call. Simply having that call on your prospect’s calendar makes them feel loved and supported, and actually greatly reduces the chances that they will cancel. And remember, instruct your prospect to call YOU. Be ready for the call by saving their contact information in your phone.
When they call, remember to put yourself in a high energy, enthusiastic state. Enthusiasm can serve as a pattern interrupt and starts to work before you even begin the conversation.
Step three is to acknowledge what the prospect has to say. If they’re doing great, then celebrate them and wrap up any final details that might be needed. If your prospect is second-guessing their decision, simply ask them to tell you more and encourage them to lay it all out on the table. When you ask them to tell you more, you diffuse any contractive energy.
Step four is to simply acknowledge the facts. Your goal is to make the prospect feel heard, seen, acknowledged and loved. Repeat their specific words and phrases back to them.
Step five is to pause, reset the energy and ask them if they’re open to receiving feedback. Remember to ask for permission to give them guidance, coaching or support. During this time, you also want to let them know that if they’re feeling any fear, doubt or worry, it means that they’re stepping beyond their comfort zone, which means they’re growing.
The next step is to acknowledge the truth. The truth is that they are a spiritual being having a human experience. There is a power breathing them that’s far more powerful and greater than any circumstance, situation or condition.
If they’re willing to allow that power to work through them, they will have all the resources they need. They simply need to trust and have faith. Lastly, remind your prospect of their vision.
Ask them if it all worked out, what would they do in that moment?
Typically, the prospect will stay the course. Then you can ask them to think about one powerful, confident, bold action step that they can take that moment that will move them in the direction of their vision.
Although there may not be a way to avoid canceled sales altogether, there are definitely ways you can prepare for these situations when they do arise.
Now that you’re equipped with this powerful formula, you can take steps towards saving your next sale and upping your impact in the world. Happy selling!
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