the #1 problem behind your sales - Christine Kane

“Tell me how to write a sales page!” It’s a common question. And the answer begins with what I share in this episode.

My advice may be surprising at first. That’s because this isn’t about putting some words on a page that magically makes customers whip out their credit cards. (It’s better than that!)

First, we’ll take a few steps back to understand the importance of knowing the deeper value of your services and products, and gaining clarity on what you bring to the table. (HINT: Anyone who struggles with self-worth needs this part!)

Get a glimpse of lessons I learned in my early musical days that helped me Uplevel my prices. Get inspired by the story of a client who was under-selling herself for far too long, and the transformation she had.

Oh, and listen in for one of the biggest dangers in marketing, that every entrepreneur makes at some point. I’ll even give you a go-to question to ask yourself every time.

The key to selling isn’t about knowing sleazy words or NLP persuasion. It’s about tapping into the energy of your business, your offer, and your clients. So let’s get started.

Episode Transcript

This work is the deep work that pays off in the long run. It makes more cynical people go away, but it truly uplevels your business and is like a game changer when it comes to being a Soul-SourcedTM Entrepreneur.

Welcome to the Soul-Sourced™ Podcast, unconventional business advice for the highly creative, secretly sensitive and wildly ambitious entrepreneur. I’m your host. Christine Kane. Let’s do this.

Okay everyone, welcome. This is I believe, I believe it’s episode number 33 of the Soul-Sourced™ Business Podcast, and I’m doing something different. I am throwing on the record button and I’m kind of just doing a coaching moment. We’ve got Finnegan here. We’ve got Zoe here. I don’t know what noises are going to happen. And I don’t even know quite honestly, if I’m going to save this, but what I’m going to do is act as if I’m turning on Voxer, the app, and I’m recording a message to you. And the reason I’m doing this is because I have a program called CK On Call, and that is the only way people can work with me privately. I only open this up to former clients of mine and current clients of mine, and they go by the month and it’s kind of an all access all the time, sort of a coaching program, and we do it via Voxer, and sometimes we hop on the phone. Sometimes we share Google docs. It’s a lot of hand holding and support for business owners who need that level of leaning in.

So, the reason I mentioned that is because a theme has popped up in these clients in the last few weeks. And I, whenever I see a theme, it starts to become sort of fodder for a podcast or some kind of training because I see that it’s something that’s blocking several people or a few different people. And in this case, the theme is selling, and the theme is sales and offers, like what you offer. And typically when somebody comes to me, it’s that whole thing of you don’t know what you don’t know. And so what the entrepreneur or the coach or the healer will say to me is, can I just have you help me with my sales page? I just want you to help me with my sales page, or can you help me with the PDF I’m sending out to people for what I’m offering here?

And my response is often surprising to them and probably even a little bit disappointing to them because I think everyone wants somebody to just write their freaking copy for them or just to make it all magically be something that sells, and make it so that the person who reads the sales page will just whip out their credit card and buy. And here’s the thing why I call everything Soul-Sourced™ is because it has a lot to do with the energy connection that you have with your business, with your offer, with your clients. And that might sound really esoteric and intense, but it’s actually not, it’s pretty simple, but it really requires that you go a little deeper than just hoping somebody will write your copy for you.

And so in this particular instance, in the cases where people have brought me these challenges with their sales, the first thing I tell them to do is that I want them to go right out the part of what would become their sales page, where it talks about the features and the benefits of what they’re offering. And, um, before you get frustrated at that, because it sounds all, you know, that’s a lot of work and I don’t know how to write sales copy. I want you to think about this, what we’re doing and what I see people do is, they have an offer. They put something together and they have really no clarity on what it is or why it benefits people. And what they’ve done is they’ve gone out and they’ve looked at all kinds of sales copy, and they just think, well, I’ll just start to write it like that. And, and then their clarity gets even more unclear because now they’re trying to copy somebody and then they think they have to be marketers and they start to sound really weird and they stop sounding like themselves and they stop, even, their energy stops even being a part of the sales process.

And so I’m going to tell you a story about one of my first coaches. This was still when I was a musician. I didn’t understand anything about selling. I didn’t understand anything about marketing, because as a musician, you know, I didn’t sell my songs, you know? So I, you know, if you think of my song, Virginia, for instance, I didn’t have to write, copy saying, and the reason you want to listen to this song is because it, you know, it’s, it was when I wrote to my niece when she was seven, and, and then I rewrote it with Steve Seskin and, and it’s really a song about a girl on an adventure, and most likely she’s a seven on the Enneagram. And you’ve just got to hear, that’s just, obviously you’re getting the idea. You didn’t have to do that.

But what I will say is that, that at that same time, when I was learning about marketing and learning about selling, what was really funny was that I did, I did shows all the time, obviously, I was on the road 200 dates a year, and one night I was singing my song Right Out of Nowhere, and I told this story that what had happened few weeks ago, somebody at a show had come up to me after the show, and she had her tax documents, and she was telling me that she had listened to right out of nowhere every single day, every morning, she would listen to that song. It had inspired her so much that she took more chances and she was showing me her tax documents because she made so much more money in her business that year. And she was blaming my song. And so she was saying that I should pay her taxes for her. And it was funny. I included that story in my book.

But what was really interesting to me was that at the end of the evening, when I was selling CDs, people kept coming up to the CD table and saying, I want the one with the song about the girl who made all the money. And the song is not about the girl who made all the money. The song was called Right Out of Nowhere, and it was about a young woman who leaves her old life behind and sets out on her own and try something different. And it’s about that whole philosophy of breaking away from, you know, what, what is the norm in your life?

But what was interesting to me was that what people wanted was the magic behind the song that that woman experienced that she is, she’s a coach. And the fact that I told that story, it was just one of those things that opened my eyes of, Oh, that’s what, that’s what marketing is. So when I started offering retreats for women and I wanted to raise my prices, I had started working with a business coach who went and looked at this pathetic little email that I had sent out to my list to talk about the retreats. And she, her assignment to me was exactly what I gave and give constantly to, uh, my clients when they’re stuck in terms of their sales and in terms of their marketing. And that was all my business coach told me to do was she said, go write a sales page. She didn’t give me a whole lot of context for it, but I took it deeper. And what I did was that I first started by writing out all about my retreats.

And I had been charging, I think $350. It was almost like it was a pittance and I wasn’t even making that much money. I love doing them, but I wasn’t making a lot. And this coach had wanted me to triple my prices, which I ultimately ended up doing. Like, I, I ultimately turned them into $1,500 retreats and I couldn’t have done that though, without getting my energy tuned into what I was offering. And this was where I really started understanding the shift that has to take place, not just because you become a great marketer or a great sales person, but because your energy becomes invested into what you’re offering. And most of us don’t want to do that because we’re avoiding, looking deeply at this thing that we do. And so we just throw shit out there like, Oh, I’m doing a retreat or, Oh, I’m doing a program. And, and you get a call with me and you, you get all these trainings and really explore what the value of any of it is.

And so when I sat down with my retreats, they were three days long, and what I would do would be, I would send out an email to my list and I would just say, Hey, I’m doing my Great Big Dreams retreat. And I wouldn’t tell them anything about it. I would just say, it’s this great little place in, in the mountains here in Western North Carolina, and we’ll have fun and we’ll, we’ll work on your intention. And I, I don’t know how to deeply I went into it because I don’t even remember what those emails were. I just know that I was, I just didn’t want to dive into it. It was good stuff. I knew it was good stuff. And I was hoping, and I was really just hoping that they would trust me enough to know that it was good, and if I made it cheap enough, they would come, which worked. And that was great.

But when I started to really break it down and I started listing what I offered in those retreats, it’s, it began to awaken me to how much value was there. And this is a key piece, because a lot of times when people sit down to sell something, what they come face to face with is their own self-worth issues. And they start to say, Oh, well, I have all the shame and I’m not really worth much, and who would pay me this much? And so the assignment to sit and write it down was the very thing that woke me up to this is not just about your self-worth. This is about the value you’re delivering in this offer. You’re creating.

So when I broke down my retreats, I had, and I’m not going to go into exactly how they were laid out, but there was a meditation sessions. There was a coaching circle that happened. There was an Enneagram training that I did. There was an entire thing that ultimately became a program called Uplevel Your Energy, where we went through and looked at everything in our lives that drained us. And it was a whole exercise in elimination. Those of you who have done Uplevel Your Life know that that’s an entire section of Upleveling Your Life is eliminating everything that drains you, that is not aligned with your intention. There was also a vision board workshop as part of this, like on day two, the entire afternoon was spent creating vision boards. And then in the evening I did a concert cause I, like I said, I was still a musician. And then the next day we created a game plan. On the third day, before everyone went home, we created a game plan.

In addition to that, I also, I had hand selected the chef. She was a woman who had her own farm. The food was all locally sourced, which at that time wasn’t as big a deal as it is now. But I, I named, I called it Mindful Meals because I realized everything I had done, I had put my care and attention into. And that included the fact that there were these things I called, I named the Mindful Meals. I had, uh, my, my favorite local massage therapist, who is still a favorite local massage therapist here in Asheville. They could get massages if they got the VIP package that came with a massage. Like there was all these extras that I put in there cause I so, so carefully put together these retreats. And when I mapped it all out, I realized, Oh my God, there’s so much here.

Now to that end, what I will say, just as a side note. I do remember as I was sitting here talking about the Mindful Meals, I remember when I actually put this all onto a sales page or a sales letter as it’s called, somebody who had come to three or four of the retreats in the past, wrote me a very bitchy email about the fact that I had called the dinners and breakfast and everything Mindful Meals, and she was pissed off at me and just said, it’s vegetable. She pulled them out of the ground. Who cares? And one of the things that we have to realize that comes with the act of selling in this way, where we really get clear on who we are and what our value is, is that we’re going to probably, um, make the people who were in our lives because we were cheap or who are a little bit more cynical because we hadn’t fully invested in, so we attract other people who don’t fully invest in their own lives, they’ll get cynical and they will make remarks. And that did happen.

And so to that end, I want you to just know that as you’re writing some of this stuff, you may come up against your own cynicism and your own snarky voices that say, Oh, who cares? It’s just someone who has a farm and makes meals, who cares? But for me at that time, it started to make me understand the value of what I offered and how much care I put into it. And so what I did was I wrote down each and every item, like I just bullet pointed. And that was the fast part. Like the fast part was just let me break down these re these three days and what’s in them. And so I would you know, I wrote down the first day is all about intention. The second day is all about elimination and getting really tuned into your intention. And what’s not aligned with it in your life right now. And then the third day was about creating a game plan to go out into the world.

Oh, and I also, there was another whole thing about attention and knowing who you are and where your attention goes. And then I bullet pointed all of these features, these things that happened over these three days. And I, the, the hard part, and this is the assignment that I give to my clients who get stuck in sales and stuck in their own pricing and are scared of their own value is to really start to tune your energy into what is happening with each item on your list. Meaning, you kind of want to put the item down, and then you want to say, and this is so great because, and write everything and don’t try to write it like a marketer, please, God, please do not try to write like a marketer. When you’re first getting this down onto paper in your computer, whatever it is, you are writing from your heart and your soul, and you’re just getting it out.

So even if you were to hire a copywriter, this is the part that a great copywriter would try to pull out of you because, and if you don’t hire a great copywriter, you’re probably going to get somebody who just writes copy, and then it’s not going to feel like you, and it’s not going to really feel like there’s value to it. And this is what I mean about the energy behind your selling, the energy behind your offer, because I’m, I’ll give you an example of somebody who I coached on stage. It was a while ago. This was back when we were doing Uplevel Your Purpose and, uh, Uplevel your business events in Atlanta. And there is, and she is still a beautiful woman out there doing the same service, but her name’s Devin. And she had a business at the time. I don’t think it’s still called this, but it was called Mama’s Little Helper.

And she was helping new moms kind of, you know, navigating the terrain of being new moms. And when we did this same activity on stage with her, she didn’t even, she just had this offer she gave them, it was way too cheap when we broke it down, she was making about $7 an hour for each package. And when we really started looking at everything that she brought to the table, including these big packets of resources and being able to access her on her cell phone 24 seven, and having her run little errands and having her teach them about meals and all of these things that she did, suddenly she started to, you could see her energy change on stage. She started to realize the value of this thing she offered. It wasn’t about, Oh, here’s my self worth. But the way she described it, when she walked away from that event and she, she became a client, but when she described it, she said, I feel like I came in here on a rickety old bicycle. And I feel like I left here on a, on a rocket ship, because she started to see the value of what she did and how she had been de-valuing it by bringing her own self-worth issues to the table.

So all of this is about how the energy and the focus that you give to this thing that you offer is so important. And so this is your assignment for, for you out there who sell anything. And that includes, by the way, people who say, well, I don’t do packages cause I’m a realtor and I can’t set a price. My clients who were realtors did this as well, And they started realizing, this is why they were such great realtors and why they should get more referrals. And once they started doing this again, it has to speak to that kind of strange idea of your own energy and your own spirit being truly infused with this thing that you do, as opposed to segmenting your business over here and your spirit over here. Your Soul-Sourced™ business means that all of you goes into this thing you offer.

And so your first assignment is to list every single value added item that comes when someone works with you. You’re just making a bullet pointed list. You don’t have to give it a name like Mindful Meals or anything like that, but you want to just list each thing out. And what I always tell my clients is that the enemy of marketing is assumptions. So making the assumption that, Oh, they’ll get that, Oh, they’ll get that the, I have a really great local chef who has her own farm and is locally sourcing stuff. They’ll get that. No, they won’t. You have to add on every single bullet point. And this is so great because, and then in total free form, I want you to just write down why it’s so great for them, why it’s so great for the good, the results, all of the, the experience, like in the case of their retreats, it was that I set up a sacred environment for people to do very deep work.

And what I can tell you is that if you’ve never really owned that, or if you’ve set aside that you do anything sacred or that you even associate anything with spirit, like my realtor clients often do, they get real embarrassed to say that this matters so deeply to them, but when you start to infuse your soul and your spirit and your energy into this thing, you realize you’ve put this package together, you’ve put this offer together in a way that is meant to really serve and bring out the results for your clients, and this is so great because, is that doorway to finding the energy behind the pricing you put on something.

And what I can tell you from when I did this for my retreats, and this was way back, I mean, this was when I, like I said, I was still a musician. I was doing these retreats. And then I, I built a sales page and I wrote all my own copy and it was hard. And it wasn’t great. I will tell you, I wasn’t a copywriter and, but I did love writing. And so I just wrote it from my heart. And then my, my coach sort of helped me edit and do that kind of stuff. And then I had to deal with the snarky people saying, you know, things like Mindful Meals, what’s that? But I did, In fact, I tripled my prices the first time around. So I had gone, I went from $350 for a retreat ticket to 900, or it was 950 I think was that. And then I had a VIP package that was 1500. And what I can tell you is that I had four slots of that or three or four, and that’s sold out first.

And all of those, the terror I used to have around selling things, and I was so scared that everyone was going to just not come to a retreat where I’d raised my prices so significantly, but, and yes, some people did just go away and not come to them anymore because I had regulars who would come because they were cheap and that’s fine, but that was the big shift. And the other thing that shifted in me was that once I listed all of this stuff out, I was a different retreat host. I was a, a radically different coach because what I had done was I had brought my, my own gravity to it, my own seriousness to it. I was always very scared of being like an intensity junkie. And I was always very, um, scared at how much life transformation meant to me as an artist. I, I thought you were just supposed to sort of be an artist and write things and let it go at that.

But once I really put it out there, I met, I was met by people who also wanted that. And I can honestly say that the reason I think that happened was the first step I took to shifting how I marketed and how I sold was to stand behind my offer, to evaluate each and every piece and part of it from the features standpoint, and then most importantly, to stand in the benefits standpoint of it, and then write a sales page, a sales letter, very earnestly, and truthfully, as much as I could to map it all out for someone so that they could see what’s in it for them. And that’s the key piece.

And what I can tell you is that even if you do have the money to hire an amazing sales copywriter, marketing copywriter, you cannot turn your back on the energy you bring to the offers that you make. And this work is the deep work that pays off in the long run. It makes more cynical people go away, but it truly uplevels your business and is like a game-changer when it comes to being a Soul-Sourced™ Entrepreneur.

So that was my Voxerish rant, just turning on record and not having any notes, and that is what I’m going to leave you with today is this big, huge lesson that I got from this, and I just want to close by saying, you guys have been writing me some very beautiful messages on LinkedIn and on Instagram and on Facebook, and I really appreciate it. I love hearing how the book has impacted you, and I love hearing how the podcast has impacted you.

Um, I just got a really beautiful letter from a client of mine who had been with me for seven years, and she, she said exactly what, what I love the most. And, um, she told me why she had gotten into Uplevel, why she had become a client, was to save this business that wasn’t working. And then she said, little did I know that the real adventure had just begun? And it had nothing to do with that former business. It was the life-changing soul-filling whole body transformation that seven years in Uplevel would bring from my first days at our retreats, I felt like I had come home to a place I didn’t even know I was looking for, and today everything has changed. And she had written that her kids were really, um, just kind of a mess, but now they’re happily married. They’re stable, doing well with children of their own. I have a six-figure business that still changes lives and fills my heart, but no longer exhausts me.

And that’s what starts to happen. But most people don’t realize, like she said, little did I know. The work I’m describing here is that little did I know part of it, is that thing that most marketers aren’t going to speak about, which is the energy behind what you bring to the table and knowing what you offer so much more deeply than you may be willing to know it now. Stop making assumptions and start going deeper and doing that work of writing out everything that you deliver and why it’s so great. And I will leave you with that and say until the next episode, thank you very much. And if you want to go grab my book, it’s called the Soul-Sourced™ Entrepreneur. And if you haven’t left a comment on it or a review, I would really deeply appreciate that as well. I’ll see you next time. Thanks for listening.