#032: RC Peck on How to Have a Stress-Free Conversation with Your Prospects

Summary: In this episode, you'll hear from RC Peck, a seasoned pro at having productive and highly effective prospect conversations.

For many of us, the initial conversation with a prospect can be stressful.

Maybe you need the work. Or you really want to land this client. And you don't want to screw up the opportunity by saying the wrong thing.

RC is not a freelancer. But I've brought him into the show because we can all learn from the mindset and techniques he's developed about these initial prospect conversations.

You'll discover how to better manage these conversations. How to ask for (and get) quality referrals. How to frame your pricing so that you land the client at higher fee levels. And how to vet prospects faster so you waste little time with poor-fit prospects and set yourself up for success with high-quality opportunities.

The notes that follow are a very basic, unedited summary of the show. There’s a lot more detail in the audio version. You can listen to the show using the audio player below. Or you can subscribe in iTunes or Stitcher to get this show delivered straight to the Podcasts app on your smart phone, tablet or iPod.

Tell us about yourself 

RC Peck worked for many years as a financial advisor and money manager. When he started his own business, he had to figure out how to charge the full value of his work while competing against big box advisors that provided similar services for free.

Normal sales approaches weren’t working, and he struggled to attract clients.

When did that change?

One of his clients helped him with his sales. He took that knowledge, combined it with his understanding of brain functionality and developed a template for cold calling. He used this template to do two things when talking to existing clients:

  1. Load the experience. “You know what I’ve done for you.”
  1. Ask who else would want this experience. “Whom do you know who needs to know about the experience you’ve had with me?”

This approach loads the client’s brain with “life is great” then moves to “who else would want this experience?”

RC would then ask for an email introduction.

Six months after applying this method, RC was able to quit his day job.

RC also started calling people he knew. He would describe the experience of his clients and then ask, “Whom do you know who would also like this experience?”

RC structures the conversation as “life before RC” and “life after RC.” He doesn’t get into what he does. He focuses on the experience.

Walk us through at a phone conversation after you’ve gotten a referral

RC uses a 15-minute conversation to gauge prospects’ interest.

clicktotweetAs a business owner, you have to filter out 'time vampires' and those who aren’t a good fit.

RC’s clients have at least one of three issues:

1. How to make more money per client.

2. How to get clients to say “yes” sooner.

3. How to get clients to stay longer.

RC goes through all three issues. He then asks, “Of those three, which has the most tension for you?” “Which do you most want to solve?”

If they say, “Well, we actually want to address this other thing…” then it’s not a good fit.

RC then uses the conversation to talk about price in an indirect way. He frames the price for the buyer. For example, as a financial advisor, RC could say, “Typically, my clients know that for every $10,000 check they write, they’ll get $50,000 back in three or four months.” He knows he can deliver this.

Make the “frame price” higher than your actual price. If prospects freak out at the number, it’s not a good fit.

Another example: As a financial advisor, you frame it as the client pays $6,000 and gets $30,000 in return.

One of three things will happen:

1. If they don’t have $6,000, they’ll tell you.

2. They’ll start to reconsider/increase how much they’re willing to pay. “I can’t afford $6,000; maybe I could do $3,000?”

3. They’ll say, “I don’t have $6,000. What do you get for $6,000?”

When you quote your actual price, they’ll remember the higher price you mentioned and feel relieved.

With this process, you control how the number hits the prospect’s brain. You can increase your pricing simply by changing the conversations you have about it early in the process.

clicktotweetFraming the price is the biggest point of leverage you have, to charge full value for your work.

Most experts just drop the price without framing it: “I’m going to do this and this for you, and it will cost $7,500.” You’ll never grow your business this way. The prospect will make arbitrary price comparisons. “I could use $7,500 to go to Hawaii or buy a used car.”

When you talk price, load the prospect’s brain with two things:

1. What he or she will experience. “I’ll keep my job.” “I’ll get a raise.” “I’ll retire earlier.”

2. A larger number. “One of my clients increased sales by $36,000 in the first three months.” The prospect will compare $7,500 to $36,000.

Where can listeners learn more about you?

RC Peck’s website: The Easy Conversation.

  • I'm playing catch-up but, this technology is definitely cutting edge!

  • I've listened to this one twice now, Ed (and RC!) And I took notes the second time. Really liked the idea of not bothering to mention what you do, but focusing on the solutions you provide for your clients and how they help. And loved the "price framing" info. Great stuff!

    • edgandia

      Cool! Thanks for listening, Holly. 🙂

  • Michael F. Tevlin

    I agree with Mike. As I was listening to RC, I found myself wishing I could frame the price by quantifying the benefits. Ed, you should do a podcast on this topic: How freelancers can talk about the quantitative and qualitative benefits of their work.

    • edgandia

      It's a great question! Will definitely do a show on this.

      Hint: it's all about positioning the value differently. 🙂

  • M!ke

    Another bullseye, Ed. Bravo!

    I would love to be able to tell my prospects that "my clients know that for every $X check they write, they’ll get $5X back," but, outside of direct response, I can't. It's the classic challenge of marketing. We can't know the impact one of our pieces of writing has on the bottom line.

    Since quantity results are off the table (please correct me if I'm wrong), that leaves quality results: the sense of relief of working with a professional, the assurance that the writing is on par with the design (not just an afterthought), etc. Elsewhere, Ed, you've suggested we use intangibles: clients in the same industry, years of experience, awards, etc. That doesn't feel as firm a platform upon which to stand. What then?

    PS - RC has a good complementary video on his website with a few more nuggets on the Easy Conversation.

    • edgandia

      Thanks, Mike! It's an excellent question. Will address it in an upcoming show.

      The short answer is that you need to frame it differently by painting a picture in the prospect's mind of what that value really is (since you don't have an actual number).

      One example: continuing ed. programs for execs and other workers. They can't really say "for every $10k you give us, you'll get $30k back..."

      Yet students know they're getting an ROI, don't they? So how do they do it? Look carefully at how the good ones are framing this question... 😉

  • Mia Sherwood Landau

    This is terrific, guys. I took notes and will definitely try out RC's suggestions!

    • edgandia

      Awesome! I really appreciate your continued support, Mia. So happy to hear that my shows are helpful.

  • I'm intrigued by how RC made six figures working two days a week. How do I get that gig? Seriously though. The podcast was helpful. I especially liked the tip about asking your client "Who do you know in your world that needs to know about this?" Too bad I didn't have it yesterday when I spoke with someone about content writing. Perhaps I may have received a referral or two. I also liked, "Life before RC, life after RC." Good stuff!

    • edgandia

      I want that gig, too, Amandah! Lol! 🙂

      I appreciate your continued support. I'm honored to have you as a regular listener. You rock!