Ever been ghosted by a prospective client? If it hasn’t happened yet, it will.
You had a great sales consultation with a prospective coaching client. They seemed like a great fit and sounded excited to get started … only to never hear from them again.
Suddenly you realize, you’ve been ghosted.
Just like in dating, ghosting also (unfortunately) happens in business.
Being ghosted can be a frustrating and disheartening experience, but you don’t have to let it affect you.
In this article, you’ll learn some ways you can mitigate prospective client ghosting from happening in the first place, and what you can do if it does.
Ghosted by a potential client after a consultation
Here’s how it usually plays out:
Someone signs up for a free coaching consultation. You have a wonderful conversation with this person for 30 minutes, maybe even longer.
She seems like an ideal client. You have a great rapport. You know you can help her. She was engaged and responsive during your conversation.
She seems excited to get started working together. She might even say the words, “I’m excited to get started!”
You get off the phone and send her an email with next steps. You’re so excited to celebrate your new client!
Fast forward to a week later. You haven’t heard a peep from her. Did she get your email? Did it go to spam? She’s not ignoring you, right?! She seemed so ready to get started!
You send one more final email, “Just checking in!” and reiterating that you’d love to work with her. And still… crickets. What went wrong?!
You’ve been ghosted by a prospective client
It’s frustrating to feel like you had such a great connection with a potential client and you’re on the same page moving forward, only to be let down when she disappears into the ether.
(After all, just like dating — It would be better to hear, something, anything, even a rejection, rather than nothing.)
Plus, you want to know the reason WHY she’s ghosting you so you can do something to fix it in the future… and prevent this from happening ever again!
So what gives? Did you do something wrong?
What to keep in mind when you get ghosted by a potential client
The most important thing to remember is, most of the time when a potential client ghosts you, it’s not really about you.
This is true with anything in life and in business. Another person’s actions say more about them than you.
The thing is: You, I don’t know why it happened. And you may never know!
Here are a few possible scenarios:
- She said “yes” because she was excited or wanted to appease you, and then realized she wasn’t that into it when she got off the call.
- She was totally in, but her partner didn’t agree to it for financial reasons and she is too embarrassed to say.
- She found another coach and she doesn’t have the heart to tell you.
- She is still “kicking the can,” as in, not making a decision. Unfortunately, some people will stay in this place for a long time.
Whether her grandmother died or she filed bankruptcy or “something suddenly came up,” you may never know the truth.
So it’s safer not to assume anything. And not to take it personally.
Ghosting happens when people are uncomfortable saying no
In general, many people are uncomfortable with saying no or “rejecting” someone. It makes them feel bad. So instead, they avoid that feeling altogether by simply not responding at all.
(And if you’re the ghoster, you might check out this article on why ghosting is bad for you.)
While we always want potential clients to be honest and forthcoming (as honesty is at the forefront of the coaching relationship), the truth is, not everyone is comfortable with that.
When a potential client ghosts you, they are not your ideal client, nor are they ready to experience coaching with you.
A prospective client ghosting you can be a blessing in disguise, because the absence of the wrong client creates the space for the right client to find you.
How not to take a client ghosting you personally
The best thing you can do for yourself is to let go of the ghosting client, wish them well energetically, and move forward.
Remember, your ideal clients are those who want to work with you. Those who see the value in what you’re providing. Those who are YES and ready to get started, even if they are a little bit nervous.
Your right-fit clients are out there and you can find them. But you won’t find them chasing all the wrong clients.
Remind yourself that you are worthy of being paid for coaching. You deserve to find clients you enjoy working with. And the easiest way to do that is to focus on attracting the ones who are the right fit.
The other thing to remember, is that every consultation that doesn’t result in a new client is still practice. Just like a job interview, you’re getting better each time you go through the process. So whatever the result, chalk it up to practice and let it go.
How to avoid potential clients ghosting you
Although you can’t totally avoid a potential client ghosting you, you can reduce the chances of it happening by taking these steps.
#1. Focus on attracting the right clients in the first place.
- Use your website copy and messaging to attract your ideal client and repel your non-ideal clients. Your words should speak directly to those you want to attract, so they know they’re in the right place.
- Be clear about what you offer and to whom. I firmly believe in sharing your prices up front (on your website) to eliminate the clients who can’t or won’t pay for your services.
- Don’t take clients for the sake of taking clients. It can be alluring to take any and all clients who come your way, especially when you’re new in business. This is a scarcity mindset. You attract what you focus on, so focus on attracting the best fit clients.
#2. Ensure you’re effectively managing your consultation calls.
- Pre-qualify prospective clients before they get on a consultation with you. Ask questions to assess fit before you get on the call.
- Ask how they’re feeling about the package or offerings you shared on the call. Give them space to communicate any concerns they have in a safe, non-judgmental space.
- Don’t use pressure-filled manipulative sales techniques. This can pressure someone to say “yes” when they really mean no. The goal should be for your prospective client to make an empowered, conscious decision to move forward.
#3. Accept that not everyone we will become a client — or become a client right away.
Not every prospective client becomes a paying client. Some people even need weeks or months to consider it. And some may never be a fit. The sooner you accept that, the more easily you can avoid getting attached to any outcome.
Being ghosted by a potential client is part of running a business
Just like anything in your business, being ghosted is a learning experience.
People will ghost you and it won’t be the last time. But it can be the last time you take it personally.
The more you focus on your worthiness, the value you provide, and attracting the right fit clients, the more easily you can move forward.
Want to attract more right-fit clients?
If you’d like guidance and support communicating your value, creating compelling offerings, and creating a powerful, effective sales process that brings you more of the right clients, I can help.
You can sign up for a free consultation here.