How Do You Pre-Qualify Your Leads

22 replies
Hi Guys,

I am in the online marketing/web design niche. Getting a fair few inquiries for both services. Our typical web design packages start from $3k and online marketing start from $750 per month.

Now i don't want to keep the trying to sell to the people who don't see the value in how we go about our work or just don't have the budget.

What kind of questions/script do some of you warriors use to help weed out people that aren't the ideal fit for your services?

Thanks heaps guys this will help my business a great deal.
#leads #prequalify
  • Profile picture of the author ewenmack
    There can be a number of ways to do it...

    If direct mail is used, have the list with a revenue over a certain amount.

    In the ad, sales letter, qualify them with language like you only work with business owners with revenue over X dollars.

    You can have a application form where revenue multiple choices are given.

    All done before you talk with a prospect.

    Best,
    Ewen
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  • Profile picture of the author ATAC
    For those prices you better have lots of proof in terms of sites ranking 1 in Google and that you did the work !
    Otherwise you will be out of business very fast !

    Best of luck
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    • Profile picture of the author Jason Kanigan
      Originally Posted by ATAC View Post

      For those prices you better have lots of proof in terms of sites ranking 1 in Google and that you did the work !
      Otherwise you will be out of business very fast !

      Best of luck
      I couldn't disagree more.

      This guy has to sell just one site to make up for SIX $500 websites you're selling. Or THREE $250/mo SEO clients.

      I'll be surprised if he sells two sites a month, or gets six to eight ongoing SEO clients, he doesn't cover all of his costs and then some. And he has all that time to find them, whereas the low-budget peeps are scrounging around all the time hunting for clients.

      Tell me about your customers and I'll tell you why you have that viewpoint.

      @the OP: use the pricing as a qualifying tool. Immediately tell the prospect the minimum investment to work with you is $3,000 or $750/mo and if they don't have that in mind it's just not a fit. Have an OK but inferior designer & SEO guy you can refer low-end business to and perhaps take a commission from.

      This is how you lead them to seeing the value (and qualify them further: if they have a $60,000+ problem, it's easy to invest $3K, isn't it?):

      http://www.warriorforum.com/offline-...uch-again.html

      That is one of the most valuable tools I have ever shared on this forum.
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      • Profile picture of the author maverick8
        Originally Posted by ATAC View Post

        For those prices you better have lots of proof in terms of sites ranking 1 in Google and that you did the work !
        Otherwise you will be out of business very fast !

        Best of luck
        The proof is the easy part for us. We have great web design case studies where our design have improved the conversion of the site considerably. Hence paying for our investment cost through our service very easily. Similar with the online marketing our service have helped businesses gain a medium where the cost per acquisition is very profitable or reduced the CPA of their current online marketing etc.

        Originally Posted by Jason Kanigan View Post

        I couldn't disagree more.

        This guy has to sell just one site to make up for SIX $500 websites you're selling. Or THREE $250/mo SEO clients.

        I'll be surprised if he sells two sites a month, or gets six to eight ongoing SEO clients, he doesn't cover all of his costs and then some. And he has all that time to find them, whereas the low-budget peeps are scrounging around all the time hunting for clients.

        Tell me about your customers and I'll tell you why you have that viewpoint.

        @the OP: use the pricing as a qualifying tool. Immediately tell the prospect the minimum investment to work with you is $3,000 or $750/mo and if they don't have that in mind it's just not a fit. Have an OK but inferior designer & SEO guy you can refer low-end business to and perhaps take a commission from.

        This is how you lead them to seeing the value (and qualify them further: if they have a $60,000+ problem, it's easy to invest $3K, isn't it?):

        http://www.warriorforum.com/offline-...uch-again.html

        That is one of the most valuable tools I have ever shared on this forum.
        Thanks Jason,

        when you say immediately say the starting investment cost is $XXXX how do you position that? Just jump out with it? Or frame it so the prospect can actually see the value of the service first?

        Some people more than have the budget they just don't see the value and the work that goes into the project.

        P.S I dont know how people are selling sites for $500. But i am sure happy they are. Because when they dont produce results businesses come to us to get something that really produces results.
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        • Profile picture of the author Arzak
          Originally Posted by maverick8 View Post

          The proof is the easy part for us. We have great web design case studies where our design have improved the conversion of the site considerably. Hence paying for our investment cost through our service very easily. Similar with the online marketing our service have helped businesses gain a medium where the cost per acquisition is very profitable or reduced the CPA of their current online marketing etc.

          when you say immediately say the starting investment cost is how do you position that? Just jump out with it? Or frame it so the prospect can actually see the value of the service first?

          Some people more than have the budget they just don't see the value and the work that goes into the project.
          Right, so since you have prices starting at $X, you want to communicate that. There's no point of making people go through hoops only to end up wasting both of your time. I would show the value of your services first - what increasing the conversion rate of your previous clients brought. I go on to show quite a bit of math because profits (% wise) typically increase much more than the revenue from increased conversion rate. So that kinda intensifies the value.
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        • Profile picture of the author Johnny Mathis
          Originally Posted by maverick8 View Post

          P.S I dont know how people are selling sites for $500. But i am sure happy they are. Because when they dont produce results businesses come to us to get something that really produces results.

          I work for a company that has over 1k reps across the US going door 2 door selling websites for $139 a month. The sad part is that there is 3 other large companies doing the same yp.com , web.com, hibu, reach local .

          The trick is that they have the billing to support clients paying a monthly instead of large lump sum . Heck just imagine someone paying 139 for 36 months for a crappy 10 page site with no updates since the 1st year.

          If you have the patience and billing power break it down to monthly payments and throw some value in it and you will have people lining up.

          I sold 2 websites last week and I still can't believe I convinced these people to spend $139 a month for a 10 page site. As long as you do right they will make that monthly payment or that sites getting shut down.
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  • Profile picture of the author misterme
    "Now i don't want to keep the trying to sell to the people who...

    don't see the value in how we go about our work...

    just don't have the budget."


    Those can be two different groups of people and are pre-qualified accordingly. The latter group by screening, the former group by educating.
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  • Obviously you are not going after hair dressers, so do a little research on the industry and determine what a completed "deal" could profit them. Let them know that your services could bring in "x" additional deals, which would result in "$x" additional revenues after your service costs of "$x" amount. This way it is spun as a profit potential, and not a pure expense potential.
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    • Profile picture of the author maverick8
      Originally Posted by randomsoftwaregroup View Post

      Obviously you are not going after hair dressers, so do a little research on the industry and determine what a completed "deal" could profit them. Let them know that your services could bring in "x" additional deals, which would result in "" additional revenues after your service costs of "" amount. This way it is spun as a profit potential, and not a pure expense potential.
      Yes i have tried to do this at times. But finding reliable info is hard. To put in perspective. recently went to talk to a new prospective client. My thoughts on their client life time value was about $1000-$1500. I was way off. It was $5500. Now thats better for me. But finding information about this type of stuff is hard.

      Do you have any tips?
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  • Profile picture of the author Jonwebb
    the easiest way I've found is to have them call YOU first
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    • Profile picture of the author Jason Kanigan
      Originally Posted by Jonwebb View Post

      the easiest way I've found is to have them call YOU first
      That's called Marketing.

      But then what do you do?

      They're still not qualified...maybe they have Want/Need, but that's only one factor.
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      • Profile picture of the author Jonwebb
        Originally Posted by Jason Kanigan View Post

        That's called Marketing.

        But then what do you do?

        They're still not qualified...maybe they have Want/Need, but that's only one factor.
        funny guy,

        a qualified client is someone who fits your bare minimum requirements to work with you correct?

        if for example you where to send a letter/s or ppc ad that does does the qualifying for you. When they do call, they will be more receptive to be sold. Because they reached out to you.
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        • Profile picture of the author Jason Kanigan
          Originally Posted by Jonwebb View Post

          funny guy,

          a qualified client is someone who fits your bare minimum requirements to work with you correct?

          if for example you where to send a letter/s or ppc ad that does does the qualifying for you. When they do call, they will be more receptive to be sold. Because they reached out to you.
          No.

          A qualified prospect is someone who has the Need/Want, Budget and Personality fit to become a client if you choose to let them.

          Just because they called doesn't mean anything other than they have some interest. Meaning they may be looking for you to give them a free education.

          You don't get paid for giving away your knowledge, do you.

          An inbound call is just an inbound call. Nothing more. You still have to filter/qualify it.
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          • Profile picture of the author Jonwebb
            Originally Posted by Jason Kanigan View Post

            No.

            A qualified prospect is someone who has the Need/Want, Budget and Personality fit to become a client if you choose to let them.

            Just because they called doesn't mean anything other than they have some interest. Meaning they may be looking for you to give them a free education.

            You don't get paid for giving away your knowledge, do you.

            An inbound call is just an inbound call. Nothing more. You still have to filter/qualify it.
            so, if your letter or squeeze page says " dont call unless xyz"

            that seems like a solid qualifier to me. Granted it may not hit every qualifier you need, but its a start.
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            • Profile picture of the author Jason Kanigan
              Originally Posted by Jonwebb View Post

              so, if your letter or squeeze page says " dont call unless xyz"

              that seems like a solid qualifier to me. Granted it may not hit every qualifier you need, but its a start.
              You can use your copy to screen a bit, but it's not at all foolproof. People will still call who are not truly qualified to work with you.

              Yes, marketing is valuable. People may even buy because of it. But there are refunds...because the marketing isn't the only thing you need for qualifying prospects.
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              • Profile picture of the author Jonwebb
                Originally Posted by Jason Kanigan View Post

                You can use your copy to screen a bit, but it's not at all foolproof. People will still call who are not truly qualified to work with you.

                Yes, marketing is valuable. People may even buy because of it. But there are refunds...because the marketing isn't the only thing you need for qualifying prospects.
                well of course but its a start.
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  • Profile picture of the author zer0Edge
    Maybe I've been lucky but I haven't had any trouble finding serious clients. Usually my pricing alone is enough to scare away tire kickers. I don't charge much over a grand on average so at three grand I'd think they wouldn't bother. Other than asking for a deposite before starting any work, I ask them a ton of questions about there expectations, business, where they see themselves, why they what a website or online marketing, and any past designers they might have worked with. Educating the client about your process and the work involved helps too.
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  • Profile picture of the author Peter Lessard
    How much we pre-qualify is generally directly related to our confidence and how much we need the business.

    I don't take on many clients so I just plainly state how much I will cost as close to the beginning of the funnel as possible. I won't meet/skype with someone for example if I have not told them the minimum budget they would need for us to work together. If I needed many more clients I would obviously be more gentle about it and try not to scare them off but at this point I would rather they run for the hills if we are not a good fit.

    What I have found interesting over the years is HOW people answer what they cost. I have worked in many corporations and been in on meetings that involved sales of just about every type of product or service. Some people when asked how much answer almost apologetically with fear in their eyes lol. I have even watched decision makers choose the more expensive guy based on how easily he answered how much. He conveyed confidence and that closed the deal.
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  • Profile picture of the author Matt Lee
    For web design, I have a private rates url that I can send them upon request. But I won't send an invoice or run a card until we've agreed on the terms, and they've selected a package that suits their needs.

    For SEO/Social Media/PPC/Leads packages I require prospects to fill out my questionnaire before meeting/talking in depth with them. Otherwise I wast too much time.

    I will pick up the phone when it rings, and listen to their needs but until I get that questionnaire back and know what i need to QUALIFY THEM I won't give out specific quotes.
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    • Profile picture of the author 9999
      The first question is usually price but there are ways around that!
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    • Profile picture of the author maverick8
      Originally Posted by Matt Lee View Post

      For web design, I have a private rates url that I can send them upon request. But I won't send an invoice or run a card until we've agreed on the terms, and they've selected a package that suits their needs.

      For SEO/Social Media/PPC/Leads packages I require prospects to fill out my questionnaire before meeting/talking in depth with them. Otherwise I wast too much time.

      I will pick up the phone when it rings, and listen to their needs but until I get that questionnaire back and know what i need to QUALIFY THEM I won't give out specific quotes.
      We do a very similar thing with out online marketing services. Which works well.

      The problem with web design is that the client thinks they know what they want. But is essence a good chunk of the time the brief is more complex than first thought by the client. And they want a website that actually has a conversion rate that supports PPC/SEO as a fantastic medium to drive new business.
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  • Profile picture of the author Rearden
    I sell life insurance, which is sold less effectively by Type A personalities, as in life insurance, it is not what you sell that counts; it is what you keep, since clients can cancel policies anytime, which puts your commission in jeopardy.

    With that said, life insurance is complex, and really needs a face-to-face appointment to sell effectively, as you could adding to or replacing existing coverage, which could be a myriad of programs. Additionally, there is a the factor of health problems, as well.

    Due to the complexity of the deal, we utilize one simple step to qualify a lead:

    1) Will he agree to a 15 minute appointment to deliver the information he requested?

    That's it -- if a prospect simply agrees to have me visit, with him understanding the purpose of my visit is to deliver the information he requested about life insurance, I have pretty good odds I'm dealing with someone who is actually INTERESTED in life insurance, enough to buy some from me.

    When we are in the home, I train my agents to do the following the pre-qualify a lead, after sufficient trust and rapport has been built.

    1) Pre-qualify health (health must qualify for an agent to sell them)
    2) Pre-qualify bank (prospect must have a bank account to set up EFT payments, otherwise, odds of sale is minimal).
    3) Pre-qualify budget (this is like a trial close -- we need to know HOW much they can comfortably afford if we can qualify them for a program today).

    If the prospect does not meet any of the criteria above, the presentation (which really hasn't begun), is over. On to the next one.

    If they pass my criteria, I've got 3/4 chance I'll sell them. ONLY THEN I begin to educate/sell them on my product, by comparing it to the competition. Luckily, my competition sucks so bad that all I need to do is show them what they send out, and 99% of the time the voluntarily agrees my product is the most desirable.

    Then I present the company, the product, and 3 choices within the budget range they provided earlier, then make my recommendation, and simply ask which one works best?

    Usually they buy.

    Originally Posted by maverick8 View Post

    Hi Guys,

    I am in the online marketing/web design niche. Getting a fair few inquiries for both services. Our typical web design packages start from $3k and online marketing start from $750 per month.

    Now i don't want to keep the trying to sell to the people who don't see the value in how we go about our work or just don't have the budget.

    What kind of questions/script do some of you warriors use to help weed out people that aren't the ideal fit for your services?

    Thanks heaps guys this will help my business a great deal.
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    David Duford -- Providing On-Going, Personalized Mentorship And Training From A Real Final Expense Producer To Agents New To The Final Expense Life Insurance Business.
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