Marketing Monday: Sales pointers gleaned from author Michael Port

Entrepreneur magazine hosted a half-day workshop on selling professional services last week, anchored by Michael Port, author of “Book Yourself Solid.”

I took away several helpful ideas and pointers so today’s Marketing Monday is some highlights:

Author Michael Port

Author Michael Port

1. There are certain people you are meant to serve. Your job is to find them and push away the people you are not meant to serve. Doing business with people you aren’t meant to serve is likely to end in conflict and frustration, while working with your ideal clients will inspire you to do your best work — which is most likely to lead to referrals.

2. Awareness is not the same as booking business. Yes, you need to do self promotion through such things as networking, referrals, writing and public speaking, but ultimately, you need to move beyond awareness to trust. A client will book you based on trust, and the pitch you make needs to be proportionate with the level of trust you have earned.

3. Clearly define your target market. You need to know where to do your marketing, and your target audience needs to know you’re speaking to them. They have established networks to talk to their peers and if they think you’re good, they’ll share the word with others in their space.

4. Focus on the benefits of your services, not the deliverables. What will a client get from you financially, emotionally, spiritually, personally? That is what will resonate most.

5. How people react to your pricing depends on the amount they had in mind (whether or not that was a legitimate anchor amount) and how you frame your pricing. For example, Port described offering three levels of access to a webinar:

Basic $99 — Gold $199 — Platinum $299

The majority of customers bought the middle tier for $199.

Then he switched the pricing, without changing anything about the features of each.

Basic $179 — Gold $279 — Platinum $299

And the majority went for the highest tier, because you’d be a fool not to pay the extra 20 bucks to get the additional offerings.

Would you rather have most of your customers spend $199 or $299? Think about how you talk about your prices and what your customers might compare them to.

Want to get more? Here’s an hour and a half of Port speaking about Book Yourself Solid:

Colleen Newvine Tebeau is a reporter and editor who then earned her MBA at University of Michigan with emphases in marketing and corporate strategy.  She is a marketing consultant who helps small and midsized organizations with strategy and tactics, including social media and communications.



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1 reply


  1. Marketing Monday: Do you have an elevator pitch? Or are you more conversational? « Newvine Growing

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