People don’t know what they don’t know.

This is one of my favorite business sayings (my team can vouch for that!) While there is so much truth to this, so many leaders forget. The power of suggestion is critical to your web-based business success.

People are not going to reach for a product or service that can help them if they don’t know it can help them.

This is where the power of suggestion comes into play – it needs to be woven into your communications strategy, online and offline.

Here is an offline example: my colleague was dealing with small pesky bumps on her face -they looked like pimples (but with no white head). No fun, right?! She tried many products and had many facial services but they never disappeared. She went to a medical spa to get a consultation for something unrelated to the bumps (anti-aging options) and the cosmetic surgeon noticed them (called milia). He suggested to her that he could get rid of then with a machine that zaps them off. She didn’t know what she didn’t know! Had the surgeon ONLY addressed her anti-aging concerns and kept his mouth shut, she would still be struggling with these annoying bumps. Not only was she pleased to finally be rid of them, she sees this business leader in such a helpful/expert light. Had the doctor not given her this unsolicited suggestion, she would still be searching for a solution because the treatment is not widely known to people outside of the aesthetic medical community. This business leader can also turn his suggestion to my friend into website content – this would be a great blog post!

When you suggest something, it’s educational. It’s a very different communication vs. an old-school sales pitch AND IT WORKS.

Here is an online example: one of the women in the WWW Leadership Circle was doing a series of social media posts. The content was excellent (I learned a lot reading them) but the images she was using were not on-brand and looked very amateur. I sent her a personal email and told her how much I loved learning from her posts and loved seeing the consistency of posts and asked her if she had ever tried to make images. She said she was using PowerPoint to make her images then copying them to social media (eek!) and had never heard of Canva! We told her to get the service and let her know we could do a few samples images to help her get started including uploading her logos and giving her font and design directions. Social media graphics crash course was complete! A simple suggestion stepped up this amazing web woman’s social media marketing efforts!

Would you like us to make it better?

We are big believers in practicing the power of suggestion with our clients and community members. I know what it’s like to be a busy entrepreneur, so instead of telling a client what they can do, I also offer a solution. Never, ever wait for a client to ask for help because they may not know they need it or that there is help available.  If I spot an area that could be improved, we ask them if they would like us to help make it better, or if they would like me to help get something done and often I get a “Wow, I did not know I needed that / or that could be done / or I am so slammed this week, I could sure use the help …”

Offering help to a client – that they may not even know they need – is less about making a sale and more about building trust.

Serve and support…that is the way to sell.

If you are constantly on the lookout for your client, for both the bigger picture and the smaller things, and are offering helpful solutions to make their overall business run and look better, than you are also making yourself worthwhile to keep around.

Being a successful business person is not just reflected in how many new clients you can pick up. It’s more about how many clients stick around after the honeymoon phase is over.

Using the power of helpful suggestions to improve their business is also one way to improve your own.

You are paid equally to how much you are able to think.
Focus on how you can help others with your products and services then start suggesting!


Lorrie Thomas Ross, MA

The Marketing Therapist® and Wild Web Women® Founder
Of all the things Lorrie imagined she would be someday, Wild Web Woman® was never on the list. But thanks to the wild, wacky and wonderful web, she is living a happy, healthy life and enjoying a lucrative career she loves helping women brand, build and boost their web-based businesses! Read More

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