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The Art of Upselling

Lesson 20 from: The Entrepreneur's Guide to Pitching Clients and Getting Sales

Peter Corbett

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Lesson Info

20. The Art of Upselling

Lesson Info

The Art of Upselling

We're gonna go on to upselling and referrals, we're closing it out here, folks. Almost, almost done, how sad. It's been such a wonderful day. So, talk about upselling. So there are a lot of, there are a lot of ways to do this. The first way, let's imagine you have, you have a big client, or, I'm sorry, you have a client, you might have a small project, but they're in a big organization. The first thing that I would ask, especially if it's going well with that client, is, can I set an internal lunch and learn so I can just educate people about the work that we do and maybe the work that we're doing for you? And if they like you, they will do that. It may not be culturally relevant for them to do this. Some organizations would find that strange for some reason like they wouldn't let vendors do education sessions, but that's, I don't know which company that would be. So ask your clients, can you educate the rest of their colleagues about the stuff that you do? You should ask that of every...

client. The next thing that's the most relevant is just really, literally, the person that you're working with, this is the most obvious one, is there anything else we can help you with? Or... You can say something like, most of our clients are planning for the rest of the year. You can say, oh, it's May, most of our clients are planning their content creation efforts or their web projects for the rest of the year and we're allocating our staff against projects for the rest of the year. Is there anything that we should be on the lookout for so we can ensure that we can work together? Because we wouldn't want to not work together, right? And they'll say, oh, yeah, no, I know that there's gonna be this, maybe this new product launch in October, so yeah, we should start talking about that now. And great, they didn't wait til the last minute and ask you to jam something out in two weeks, right? So that's another way to do it. I think those are the two most relevant ways. I would wonder, if there's anyone online or anyone in the room that has other upselling challenges that you're facing or, tools and tactics and tricks, we can talk about those. What do you see, Chris? Yeah, I'm kind of thinking tying this back to what we talked about earlier, having your services that you offer, do you naturally look to connect them to another service that maybe you offered earlier? Yeah, so in an earlier session, when we were looking at service mix, I mentioned that sometimes someone will hire us to do web design and development, and, to this day, I'm amazed that, I shouldn't be amazed. I'm amazed that our clients don't know everything that we do. It's not their job. They are focused on what they do, and so, I have to remind myself not to assume that they know all of the things that we do, so when I do make that ask of, like, hey, is there anything else we can help with, and by the way, this is all of the things that we do, just reminding them of the full service mix, especially the things that are very closely related, so a web project, I almost always include an optional add on for content creation. So they may have never said the word content. It may have always been design and development for a web project, and then, in the proposal, I'll put a note and say, if content creation is required for this project, anything from photography to videography to writing, we'll scope that as a separate budget. Here are some links to some of our work. And the client again will go, oh yeah, we need that, huh. So you just start to, and I'll tell you, sometimes that adds, like, 20 or 30 percent to the deal size, which is, can be very significant, right? So you were doing a 50 K project and now it's 65. Super happy about it, let's do it. So thank you for that prompt. It's very useful. Let's talk some more about the lunch and learns. Is that something that they are paying you for? Is it so you're talking to other department heads? Okay, a lunch and learn is a it's sort of endemic to, I think specifically the agency world. Agencies, first and foremost, are very accustomed to having people come to them to do lunch and learns so everyone who's trying to sell me stuff, say, Peter, can I bring in, can I bring in cookies and show your strategy team the latest and greatest social media monitoring tools? And I'll say, all right, come on in, educate the team and, if they find a use for it in a client project, then we'll license the software. So, in your context, or anyone's context who's doing content development, I'd say, yeah, I know that content marketing is becoming really important for everybody. We've developed a really interesting presentation all around the analytics of the top content people are seeing in your industry. If you're interested, we'll come and we'll just sit down for a half hour, an hour, and take people through it so they can learn what it's all about. So when you go in there, you're selling, but you're not, you're trying not, you're just educating. You're trying not to appear like you're selling, and the reason why, it's not because you want to trick people, it's, nobody wants to be sold something. Everybody wants to buy something. So, you just have to put people in the position to buy your services, and stay out of the position of having to sell somebody something. So I'd go in and I'd do that session and if people were interested in hiring you, leave your card, they'll email. You do that, cut a lunch and learn thing with a dozen digital agencies across the mid-Atlantic, for example, for your business. I'm sure you'll close a bunch of business. Yeah, so what else? I want to clarify something on the timing of the upsell. Is this something that you start thinking about right off the bat with the first project? Do you wait for the project to conclude before you start throwing around upsell ideas? Is this something... It depends. It really, really depends. If the project is really big, I want my team fully focused on delivering that really big project. If the project isn't that big, I want them to try to uncover a bigger project. So it really depends. It also depends on how long have you worked with that client. If you've worked with them for a very long time, you'll get to understand their cadence, so, they may always be reaching out to you with new work, or they would never do that, because, I don't know why. I just, maybe they just don't do that, and so every time you say, hey, Bob, do you have a need for anything that we do? And he's like, oh, yeah, actually, yeah, I do. He would never, ever think to ever call you and give you money, right? So, you just have to start to get that feel for the cadence of upselling on a client, I think, client-by-client basis.

Class Materials

Bonus Materials

Concepting Proposal Template
Independent Contractor Services Agreement Template
Mutual NDA Template
Sample Prospect-Deal Tracker.xlsx

Ratings and Reviews

Bonnie Aunchman

Peter & Creativelive - I loved, loved this class! I would HIGHLY recommend. The class is extremely informative in content and has great document samples you can use. I will implement Peter's advice and practices immediately! (Loved Peter's teaching style!) Thank you! :)

a Creativelive Student

I had the great privilege of being in the studio audience for this class and had a phenomenal experience. Peter shared not only great insights and experience but templates that I've already started implementing in my own business. His experience and approach towards working with clients really resonated with me and my business partners. I specifically encourage you to find the section and write down word for word what he says when a client says "well, I don't know what our budget is, we want you to tell us". I've already used his approach of responding with "oh, it's a million dollars :-)!" and using that to open the conversation. It get's results and the answers you need to put together an aligned proposal. On being an audience member the staff at CreativeLive was kind, clear with instructions and made sure we always knew what was expected of us. I encourage you to apply for a class and experience it first hand. As a bonus, their office and catering was phenomenal.

Che Pilling

Peter Corbett is a very clever man, I appreciate his honesty and creative thinking. This course is amazing for people who are in a process of setting up different areas of their business. I can also see how it would benefit business owners/managers who want to review their processes. Corbett is a very engaging speaker and his communication is excellent. Fabulous course, A+.

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