Is the headline of this article hyperbolic?
Potentially – especially if not implemented properly.
However, it’s by far one of the most impactful strategies you can use in your business – especially because of how simple it is.
It’s also the exact same strategy that launched companies like Domino’s Pizza, FedEx and countless others into globally dominant businesses.
The two most common things that business owners ask me for help with are, scaling their business and increasing sales.
These days, most markets are more crowded than ever, making it harder even for well established brands and companies to compete.
Luckily, there is an easy and vastly under utilised strategy that will differentiate your business in a meaningful way, as well as add a ton of value to potential customers – making it much more likely they will buy from you.
The method revolves around the two most critical aspects of a sales process:
- The more perceived risk there is in a transaction, the more resistance there will be to purchase from you
- The more you can build trust during your sales process, the more you can reduce the level of resistance to buy from you
Now it’s not a revolutionary insight, yet the vast majority of businesses get this concept completely wrong.
Think about it for a second, most marketing efforts revolve around making big promises about the features, benefits, results and outcomes a prospect will achieve if they buy your product or service.
The problem , is that your prospects don’t know for certain whether these are true, false, exaggerated or applicable in their specific situation.
This inherently builds perceived risk.
You can of course mitigate this with case studies, trials, etc. but if your product or service ultimately doesn’t deliver on what was promised, who takes all the risk?
Most businesses aren’t getting the sales they expect because they are making the buyer take all the risk in a transaction.
If you want to vastly increase your sales then you need to eliminate any perceived risk of buying from you.
Make it Easy to Say Yes and Difficult to Say No
To build customer trust, you need four things:
- A great product/service that’s priced right for your market
- An authentic and engaging story (your “Why”)
- Testimonials or case studies from happy customers
- Zero risk for giving you money
The first three are easy but the biggest block to your customer saying yes to you is FEAR. We are all hardwired to fear loss, so you have to get prospects past the primal fear of losing their money.
Enter the “Risk Reversal Guarantee.”
This is a strategy where YOU assume all the risk, NOT your customer.
Now, business owners often say to me, “why should I assume all the risk, I’ll just get ripped off.”
Firstly, that’s exactly what your potential customers are currently thinking about you and secondly, you don’t have to leave yourself completely exposed…
Here’s why you should absolutely have a risk reversal guarantee
- You’re the one making the promises
- You control the inputs and deliverables
- You can define the terms and conditions, as well as what’s acceptable from the customer
- A customer should never be in a losing position if your products or services don’t deliver
- You probably already “make good” if something goes wrong
To completely eliminate risk, put your customer in a position where they will “win” no matter what.
Here’s an example from a past client.
They turned into a very large plumbing company on the back of this risk reversal guarantee:
- To be on time
- Your problem will be fixed quickly
- Our pricing will be fair, upfront and won’t change
- The work area will be spotless after we complete your job
If we let you down in any of these areas, not only will we complete the job for free, but we will also give you $200 for wasting your time.”
This was placed smack bang in the middle of their ad… Would you call them?
Now while this is an example from a plumbing company, I’ve used similar in over 34 industries and have yet to find where this won’t work.
It’s also the same strategy that launched companies like Domino’s Pizza, FedEx and countless others into globally dominant businesses.
Did the company need to make good on this guarantee a bunch of times?
Where they annoyed by that?
No. We budgeted them having to “make good” on 4% of their jobs.
This became part of the marketing budget.
The increase in sales more than made up for it and the payouts were significantly cheaper than running their previous ads that weren’t working.
Remove the risk and make it very easy to say yes, and almost impossible to say no.
Why It Works
Why does Risk Reversal work so well? If you actually look at your competitor’s websites, you’ll see that many don’t have a strong risk reversal guarantee. They go on and on about how great they are, but they don’t ease your fear.
Lead With a Risk Reversal
Contrary to popular marketing strategies, you don’t have to spend endless time and money establishing a great relationship with your prospects before asking them to buy.
Start with a risk reversal! Mention specific outcomes your product/service will deliver and take away the risk, making it easy for them to say yes immediately. Once you follow through with value, they’ll like you even more!
A Word of Caution
To prevent too many customers taking advantage of your guarantee, pre-qualify them! If you’re a financial planner, only offer your $500 one-on-one consultation guarantee to specific clients who are most likely to get the results you promise.
Is that cheating?
No! You are pre-qualifying your customers.
You said so upfront that this service or approach isn’t for everyone.
If someone doesn’t meet your criteria, turn them toward a different product or service. This will still get them results, and they will likely refer or engage with you when they are ready.
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