There’s something I bet you’ve got on your website…
… and if I can see it, then it’ll give me a cold chill down my spine.
Know what it is?
Your phone number, and the almost ubiquitous invitation to call you for a “chat” about what you can do for me.
Fuck me, but that’s dumb.
I mean, what message does it give out if you're just available on a whim to call up and talk about nothing specific?
In fact, my brain runneth over with reasons this is so bad.
And what exactly are those reasons?
I'll give you just a few.
Well, six, actually. And there are loads more.
It marks you out as not in demand. Put it this way: if you've got time to be sitting there by your dog 'n' bone waiting for it to ring and then spend your precious unpaid time just "chatting" to someone, then you ain't busy. And even if you are busy, you ain't busy on anything important if you can be interrupted just for a chat
It marks you out as an amateur. Because even if you are busy on something important, the fact you're willing to be interrupted to inhale a random brainfart means you're lacking in judgement and not well focused. Like, an amateur.
It puts your prospect in control of the dialogue. When I was working one-on-one with clients and didn't know any better, I'd let them come to me and tell me what they wanted. And then I'd do it.
Danger, Will Robinson! That's one of the most stupid things you can ever do. Why? Because, in the main, they're not qualified to be doing this shit themselves.
If they were they'd not be asking me about their problems. So… if you, say, have an overweight client then, with vanishingly rare exception, they are not qualified to have an opinion about how to go about losing their excess flab.
If they were, they’d be out there doing it and not talking about it to you. No matter what your “thing”, the same principle applies.
It pigeonholes you as "hired help" and not "trusted advisor". Although people will happily "chat" with you about their problems, this isn't actually what they want or need (with some exceptions, like when a woman tells a friend or confidant about a problem — then she usually just wants them to listen).
What they need is someone to take them by the hand and gently lead them down the right path. And that's extraordinarily difficult to do when you're giving them free advice in the form of a "chat".
You'll be far better off if you charge them for a proper consultation or assessment.
It hammers down your prices. As a consequence of being the hired help, your prices must needs drop. Why? Because you've been commoditised. Think about it.
It attracts scrote customers and clients. If you start by working for free, I guarantee that's how you'll stay — if you’re on the phone giving away free advice for the sake of it, and without a strategy to make it work, then working for free is exactly what you’re doing. Sure, give away a freebie of some kind, but even then there's quid pro quo — you get their contact details so you can market the fuck out of them.
But to sit there and start interactively solving someone's problems without being paid for it? What? Are you fucking nuts, or something? Do that and you'll get the worst possible kind of customers and clients. Scrotes, to a man. And woman.
I hope that's sent a cold chill up and down your spine, too, as you think now about all the other shit you're getting wrong (and, sorry to say this, an' all, but you don't know what you don't know, and that's as dangerous as it gets).
Thing is though it's one thing to know about all this stuff, it's another to go and implement it in your own business.
As Jason Statham once said, "you got the minerals for that"?