Wk19 (26.7k subs): How I Closed $2,000,000 in 24 months (Part 1)

The 3-step sales process that turns strangers into long-term clients

Wk19 (26.7k subs): How I Closed $2,000,000 in 24 months (Part 1)

The Comeback - Week 19 (26,700 Subs):

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I joined my last agency in 2020 and they were doing about $5,000 a month in revenue at the time.

We were a performance marketing agency helping Ecommerce brands find more customers with social media advertising.

But we had no reputation and in 2020 the market had become extremely competitive.

How on earth was I meant to win business from these huge agencies that had all the case studies?

I needed a sales process that turned strangers (from cold outbound) into high-paying clients like clockwork.

Over the next two years, I spent hours and hours relentlessly testing different things over hundreds of calls to figure this out.

This three step sales process was responsible for closing all leads at 50% that entered our pipeline and bringing $2,000,000 of revenue for my last agency from 2020-2022.

The 3 steps consist of:

  • Step One: The Discovery Call

  • Step Two: The Due Diligence

  • Step Three: The Sales call

This three-step process works best for service-based businesses but the principles are all rooted in human psychology so you should be able to get value - even if it’s just one golden nugget!

My hope is that you can learn from my mistakes, start making more sales and turn more strangers into long-term clients.

Today I’m going to focus on the first step of that process.

The discovery call.

Road to 100,000: Behind the Scenes

Challenges - Monetization for Q3

After moving forward with the agency mentoring (helping 15 agencies 1-1 and in a group setting scale their agency) I’ve learned a lot.

Whilst the revenue has been good the time I have to spend to help them solve their problems is becoming a bottleneck - because unfortunately there is only one of me and 24 hours in the day!

So looking to Q3 there are a few options: Sponsorships, mastermind retreats or digital products the main 3.

I need to figure out a way to get more leverage from my time but still get the revenue to invest back to grow David to Goliath so we hit this 100k subscriber goal.

Breakthroughs - In-Person Interviews:

For the longest time, I’ve wanted to integrate the Thursday Newsletters, where we break down people’s backstories, with in-person interviews on our podcast.

But obviously booking out studios, and travelling all comes at an extra cost - so the guest has to be worth it.

One person I’ve been trying to interview for the longest time is Timothy Armoo - A Nigerian-born entrepreneur who against all odds built a huge marketing agency and sold it for multi 8 figures by the time he was 25 years old.

Honestly this guys story is amazing and finally we agreed on a date! On Friday the 24th of May I’ll be interviewing him on the David to Goliath podcast and we’ll do a Newsletter about his backstory - so stay tuned!

Since I’m already in London I also reached out to Lara Acosta, who has her own incredible backstory and has built a huge personal brand of over 140,000 followers on LinkedIn. So I’ll be interviewing her on the same day - I’m genuinely so excited!

To cap it all off my brother has given me his spare ticket to watch my boyhood team Man City beat (I’m staying positive) our arch-rivals Man United in the FA Cup Final at Wembley on Saturday 25th May.

It’s gonna be one hell of a weekend and I look forward to sharing the journey with you all soon!

Main Topic: The 3-step sales process that turns strangers into long-term clients

The difference between marketing and sales is marketing is everything before the call. Sales is everything on the call until the deal is over the line.

Today we’re focusing on sales.

Contrary to popular belief great sales isn’t about shouting the loudest and beating your chest. it’s determined by the quality of your questions and your ability to listen.

Have you ever seen that scene at the end of Wolf of Wall Street?

Leonardo Dicaprio proceeds to give the pen to the on-looking audience members.

Each one of them attempts to tell him why it’s the best thing since sliced bread.

But that’s where they and so many people go wrong in sales.

First, you must ask: “Do you even use a pen?”

Because even if you somehow manage to manipulate someone into buying something they don’t need you can bet your bottom dollar that they won’t have a positive experience.

And when it comes to big business-to-business contracts this is your reputation which is going down the drain.

So we must have a qualification framework to ensure that we’re selling to people who can be high quality long-term clients.

The game isn’t won by how many deals you close. It’s won by how long your clients stay with you.

However, before we get into the qualification framework you must first stamp your authority and give the prospect a reason to listen to you.

It’s like throwing the prospect a rope and pulling them through the process.

If they throw you the rope, you’ll never get control to ask the questions you need answers to. Therefore the chances of making the sale massively diminish.

1: Get Attention and Take Control

First impressions last the longest.

Experiments by Princeton researchers even suggest that people can make accurate judgments of others within 1/10 of a second

And a Harvard study revealed that it typically takes eight subsequent positive encounters to change another person's negative opinion of you.

So the first few minutes of the call are vital.

Show up with a smile and ideally try to make the other person laugh. This is the best way to someone's heart.

After maximum 30 seconds take control by saying: “I appreciate you’re busy (firstName) so let’s get straight down to business. Sound good?”

Ensure you wait for their response - you’re now taking the Alpha position and setting the expectation they’re going to follow you.

2: Set Agenda for The Entire Sales Process:

This is where you the prospect you’re organized, you’re prepared and you have a process you’re leading them through.

“So our discovery process here at (yourCompanyName) is 3 simple steps. Step 1 a quick call today so I can understand your company, what challenges you’re facing right now and your goals for this year. 

If it makes sense step 2 my team will do a deep dive analysis of your company and send over a video breakdown showing exactly what needs to be fixed in order of impact.

And finally step 3 we’ll jump on one more quick call with you and your team to show you the 6 month road map we’ve put together and answer any questions from the video analysis and if everything looks good talk about how we would build a long-term partnership.”

“Does that all make sense your side?”

It’s critical you wait for them to verbally confirm this.


Because then they’ve just subconsciously said yes to your entire sales process.

Meaning they’re more likely to answer questions, watch the video you’ll be sending and show up to the second call.

Busy business owners love talking to someone who has complete direction and is extremely organized. Always remember that.

Before we get into the questions the last step is tackling their biggest objection head on.

3: Tackle The Main Objection and Establish Your Authority

Chances are this person doesn’t know who you are.

So their biggest objection is “Why should I trust this person?”

Well, give them a reason to trust you.

After you’ve got the verbal confirmation for the discovery process now proceed to the elevator pitch for your company.

For example: “Here at XYZ agency we help supplement brands scale faster and more profitably by using social media advertising and highly optimized content. In the past 2 years we’ve spent over $100M on advertising and tested over 10,000 creatives - working with brands such as XYZ.”

Robert Cialdini in his book ‘Influence’ talks about the power of social proof and authority. Noone wants to be the guinea pig and if you back up your company with big impressive numbers and names of household clients it builds trust fast with the prospect. 

Everything you say following this they will see and hear through a different lens because you’re now in a position of authority.

But that’s enough of the humble brags!

Now it’s time to turn the tables and LISTEN to your prospect.

4: BANT Qualification Framework:

Personally, I don’t believe in scripts. The last thing your prospect wants to hear is a robotic sales pitch. Everyone is different so I prefer to let people’s unique personality shine through but guide them with a framework so you always get to the end goal.

That goal being qualifying is if this person/business is the right fit for your company - before you spend your company time doing due diligence in step two and three of this sales process.

There are only 4 main things we need to figure out to make any sale:

Here’s an example of questions you might ask to figure out these answers:

  • Budget - “How much do you spend on ads?”

  • Authority - “Are you the sole decision maker at your company?”

  • Need - “What would happen if you didn’t fix this?”

  • Timing - “When exactly are you looking to get a solution in place?”

As you move the call mentally tick off these 4 boxes before you qualify for them for the next step (the due diligence).

But this alone isn’t enough. And this next part makes all the difference.

5- Digging For Gold

Someone once told me: “The only stupid question is the one you don’t ask”.

It stuck with me ever since. On discovery calls the likelihood you will close this prospect is judged by the quality of questions you ask. Often this isn’t the first question - it’s all in the follow-ups.

Your prospect won’t reveal their true struggles straight away - that’s on you to dig in and find the gold.

Let me give you an example of a dialogue I might have on a discovery call:

What started off as asking the prospect who runs their current marketing agency ended with a key takeaway that if we deliver with stand you head and shoulders above your competitors.

Take note of that because I’ll bring it up on step 3 next week when I break down the sales call.

6- Getting The Numbers:

One way to dramatically stand out to your prospects is understanding their financials, no matter what business they’re running.

If you get access to their accounts you’ll be able to analyze certain things but there is always more than meets the eye.

So at this point you need to ask a few more questions so when you present your 6 month road map on the sales call (step three) you can piece together the jigsaw.

Here is a list of further questions I tend to ask so I understand their financial projections and what they consider as a successful year for their business.

  • What is your revenue target by end of 2024?

  • How much profit margin do you make on average?

  • What is your lifetime value? (potentially per product)

  • What are the top 3 things you’re focusing on this year for it to be a success?

  • What is your conversion rate last 90 days? (or closing rate)

  • What is your marketing budget for this year?

  • Do you have outside investment?

Just like a doctor, now we have the information we can either prescribe a solution or tell them we can’t help them.

7: Book The Sales Call

Did they pass BANT? No - qualify out. Yes, next step…

Circle back to your agenda and tell them “great so the next step at this stage is getting access to your account for a deep dive analysis”

Either get access on call OR tell them you’ll send an email (including a Loom explaining how they can give access) and get them to commit to exactly when they’ll turn this around by

Plant the seed about why they should watch the video prior to the next call.

Then MAKE SURE you BOOK the next call!

Inside Tip: Ask them to open their calendar - and confirm it in front of you - this MASSIVELY increases show-up rates.

Also, book the sales call within 1 week. Remember in sales: time kills deals so strike when the iron is hot.

So that’s the first step of this three step process complete.

At this point you should have qualified the prospect in/out with the BANT framework, got the answers to the deep questions (the gold), set the expectation for getting access for due diligence and booked the sales call.

Next week I’ll be covering steps two and three of this three-step sales process so you can execute like clockwork and turn strangers into long-term clients that pay more!

Resource Rec: Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion

I’ve referenced this book before in the David to Goliath Newsletter but it’s honestly so good I have to recommend it again.

For sales, it’s the GOAT.

If you want to dig deeper into how I used human psychology to build this 3 step sales process that generated over $2M in revenue study Influence by Robert Cialdini.

The key to all sales is understanding how people work and this book will give you the Fastrack insight into what motivates people and most importantly how to persuade them to work with you.

You can grab a copy here. Thank me later.

Watch out for next Tuesdays Newsletter where I’ll uncover step two and three of the sales process!

Until next time - keep dreaming like a Giant.

But believe, fight and act on your dreams like an Underdog.

Yours truly,

-Nigel Thomas

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