How to Find the “Perfect” Sales Offer

cartoon of entrepreneurs putting ideas into a sales offer machine and making money
Ever wonder how some businesses create sales offers that seemingly sell themselves? It’s not magical power they possess, but a system for continually improving.

In my early twenties, I went through a year-long health crisis. At first, the doctors didn’t know what was causing all of the strange symptoms I was experiencing, so they ran tests. And more tests. And still more tests.

With each set of tests, they discovered new clues about the cause of my poor health. And, as time went on, eventually they found the answer—the root cause. Yet, enduring the process of testing again and again, without the answers quickly revealing themselves was frustrating (to say the least).

If you’ve ever observed with envy a business that has an offer that “sells itself”, frustrated that your business lacks that kind of magical power, the answer isn’t some divine inspiratio n or dumb luck. No, it’s the same answer my doctors used—testing, learning, and more testing. Until, soon, finding the answer becomes inevitable.

And, that’s our subject for today. We’ll cover this idea of finding your best offer in three parts:

Part 1. The truth about your perfect offer.

Part 2. The necessity of feedback loops.

Part 3. Breaking your offer into components.

Let’s get to it.

Part 1. The truth about your “perfect” offer.

In marketing, we love to throw around words like “perfect.” They sound so much more definitive and exciting, don’t they. The truth is that you have two “perfect offers” right now.

Your first perfect is better described as today’s best offer. Whatever it is. It’s your current perfect offer—the best thing you’ve got.

And now for the magic…

Your other perfect offer is…tomorrow’s better offer.

That’s all you’ll ever need. Just those two. Work them, and you’ll get ever close to an offer that sells itself.

The only way to find your perfect offer is to take “today’s best offer” and turn it into “tomorrow’s better offer.” Then, repeat.

Part 2. The necessity of feedback loops.

Here’s the catch with this very simple idea. Most entrepreneurs get stuck because their version of tomorrow’s better offer is lives only in their head. They believe that with more thinking and analysis they’ll improve it. Yet, you can’t improve it. Yes, you can create the offer and flesh it out to a point, but that point is not far into the offer’s conception.

Once the offer is conceived, improving it further is beyond your capacity. It’s not that you’re not intelligent, it’s just that you don’t get a vote on the worth of your offer. Your clients hold all the ballots.

I’ve (sadly) witnessed entrepreneurs sink months, and large piles of cash, countless irreplaceable hours, and valuable energy into designing an elaborate offer that they just knew would sell. Only to launch to…

Crickets.

In everything you do, keep in front of you the reality that the market is the only true judge of your offer, of the way you present it, of how it’s priced and packaged, of how it’s marketed and sold.

The sooner you put it in front of the judge and jury, the sooner you’ll find out what will sell, and what should be scrapped.

Marketing is the magic feedback loop for testing.

One of the reasons I write these articles (other than the strange fact that I find it fun) is that it’s a fantastic early testing ground.

Here, I’m selling ideas, and getting feedback on them from you. I’m testing offers and gauging interest as early as I possibly can.

The feedback then goes into our sales message in our webinars, promotions, and in the 1-on-1 sales conversations we have.

But marketing isn’t the only feedback loop you should use.

Sales conversation secrets.

Every sales conversation is a test of today’s best offer. Each conversation will reveal the parts of the offer that work, and the ones that act like a brick wall between you and a closed deal.

If you’re observant, you’ll quickly learn what people want. Give them more of that.

Like my diagnosis in college, it won’t happen overnight, but by consciously using simple feedback loops, you’ll dramatically improve your offer every quarter and every year. The progress compounds.

Once you have this feedback coming in, you need a way to systematically examine your offer. Here’s how…

Part 3. Breaking your offer into components.

When you look at an offer as a whole, it’s difficult to see which areas are working and which are holding you back. The solution is to break up the offer into its five component parts.

Pains and Problems

As you’re listening for feedback you want to identify the biggest pains and problems your future clients face. This isn’t some new revelation, you know it, but are you systematically applying it?

The pains and problems are the gateway to constructing your offer. At the end of the day you’re selling confidence to the prospect—the confidence that you understand them, the problem they face, and can solve the problem.

Yet, most offers are 100% focused on you, and the deliverables you provide. The deliverables aren’t that important. The relief of pain is important.

(What if you sell something aspirational? There’s still a pain of not achieving the aspiration.)

Consequences

Pains are great, but we all have pains and problems we’re not willing to pay a penny to solve. You need to understand the deeper implications that your prospect fears, related to each pain. And, you need to know the deeper implications that the prospect isn’t even aware of.

These are most often revealed in sales conversations, when they are structured the right way.

Objections

As you catalog the objections and questions your prospects raise when presented with your offer, they will give you the roadmap for making sales.

And, you won’t need some fancy objection flipping technique to do it. No, you’ll build them into your pre-sell process, so they’re neutralized before you’re ever meeting with a prospect.

Future Vision

Your offer is promising a better future for your clients, but is that vision aligned with the clients’ vision? Do they accept your vision? Are you taking them where they want to go?

I learned this the hard way a few years ago as we were working hard to turn our Ideal Clients into master marketers, teaching them all we knew about effective marketing. Turns out they didn’t envision themselves becoming master marketers. They just wanted to have great marketing. Our offer changed from “We’ll teach you how to do all this stuff,” to “What if we did all this stuff for you, would you want that?”

Things changed overnight. But getting to that offer took time and lots of iterations.

Proof

The final part of the offer is proof. Case-studies and testimonials are essential elements of your offer. Our long-time client Roxanne Emmerich, who serves the banking industry, ran into a major roadblock when it came to proof.

When I first started working with her years ago, I quickly realized that the short but profound testimonials she had from her clients were actually hurting her message. The results she gets for her clients are so off-the-charts amazing, compared to the rest of the industry, that already skeptical bankers didn’t believe the testimonials.

The solution was to move from short testimonial blurbs (as good as they were) to long-form case studies, told by the clients themselves.

We recorded the case studies interview-style in video. Prospects saw real bank CEOs telling their story of transformation. We then turned those interviews into a series of case study books, further lending credibility to them.

Within two short years, she began attracting larger clients and found that selling essentially the same offering was easier than before.

Proof is an essential part of your offer. Don’t just throw some random testimonials at your prospects. Create them strategically. Listen to understand which ones resonate, and get more like those.

A final point on confidence.

The factor of confidence is what often holds entrepreneurs back when it comes to experimenting and testing offers. You know testing is the way forward, yet you don’t want to look foolish.

I understand. At some point you have to have the courage to roll out an offer, then to change it, and change it again. So here’s a thought that may help.

The doubt you feel today will be there tomorrow whether you ship your new offer today or not.

Happy testing & stay unstoppable!

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