As a reputable dog trainer, you know how much your services are worth—but that doesn’t make the cost conversation any easier. In this post, we’ll share a few tips that can help you approach this topic with confidence and grace.
It’s a discussion, not a sales pitch.
It can be tempting to play up your credentials and services with the objective of rationalizing your fees. However, consumers mostly care about their own priorities, and your credentials are usually not as important to them as they are to you. Instead, they care about the results that you’ll be able to deliver. Most of us lose interest when someone aggressively tries to sell us something, even if it’s a product or service we need.
A better strategy for cost conversations is to treat the process as a dialogue or a genuine discussion. Ensure that you actively listen during conversations with potential clients. Most people simply wait for their turn to speak, but don’t really hear what the other person is saying. If you start actively listening to your customers, they’ll feel it. It can help establish their trust in you as a person and as a service provider. Ensure that your cost conversations are a two-way street by asking about their pet, their goals, and their concerns. These initial discussions can help you screen your potential clients to determine whether your services match their needs. Even if they aren’t a good fit for you right now, a good first impression can pay dividends in the long run.
Never underestimate the power of word-of-mouth marketing. Every conversation you have with a prospective client can help you win or lose more customers in the future. Don’t just look at your customer as a potential source of income; look through that and connect by showing genuine interest in what they have to say.
In order to target your niche clientele and connect to them directly, you first need to define who they are. Think about your ideal clients. Are they everyday families interested in simple obedience school? Organizations who place service dogs with people with disabilities? Once you have a detailed idea of who you customer is, you can “speak” directly to them.
Share client success stories on your website and social media. Make sure you are telling customer stories that match your ideal demographic. Are you targeting families with new, hyperactive puppies? Share a story of a recent client whose family dog was transformed by your obedience services. Show pictures, before-and-after videos, and plenty of family-oriented puppy content.
Finally, remember to interact with other people within your industry on social media and network with your niche customers and even your competitors to stay on top of what’s going on in your market. It’s also a great strategy to regularly post blog articles on your website because it helps keep your site at the top of search engine results—allowing potential customers to easily find you. Keep your business information up to date by creating a business account on Google. Add pictures, ask clients to share reviews, respond to negative reviews, and manage your reputation online.
Offer payment options.
Even when you market your business well, some prospective clients may still have trouble affording your services. With high-quality dog training services costing hundreds or even thousands of dollars, many families are unable to pay for training in full and up front. But it doesn’t mean that you need to lose the opportunity and wait for them to save up. In fact, most customers appreciate having different options when it comes to payment. When you offer payment plans or a third-party dog training financing option through LendingUSA, your flexibility shows your clients that you understand their needs. It also helps you retain clients who might choose to stop using your dog training services in times of financial hardship.
In any scenario, offering a simple point-of-sale dog training financing solution can signify to your customers that you really care about them, a great way to set you apart from your competition.