I’m about to drop a bomb, so hold on tight! Sweaty hands, forgetting what you want to say or jumping from one thing to another while talking. Does that sound familiar to you? Having your first discovery call can be stressful and nerve-wracking, no matter how much you prepare for it. You really want to become a part of the ‘First Client Club’ and to kickstart your VA career with the first few official clients. You are active in Facebook groups, finding the job opportunities, and sending out your pitches. However, before you can do that, you have to go through the discovery call and be most likely one of the few people that your potential client decided to chat with about the position, so keep in mind that the first impression is important and you should be ready for the call.
Now, the good news is that you as a VA have the privilege to work with whoever you want to and charge the amount you believe is reasonable. There are things that you need to consider, but once you talk about prices, you are the one who is telling the client how much money you charge for the services they require. Be confident in your offers and the price you charge because it shows that you know what you’re doing, you have an experience, and that the client will get what they pay for. That being said, let’s talk about a few key points to keep in mind when preparing for the discovery call questions!
Do Your Homework
Before you get on the call with your potential client, prepare for it. I don’t mean putting the make-up on or nice clothes, even though you might not want to show up in your PJs. What I mean is do a bit of stalking beforehand and research their website and social media, so you can get a better idea of who you will talk to and what’s their business about. Especially if you were the one applying for the job, you need to be able to answer why you want to work with them or what you like about their brand. So, if you haven’t done it yet, make sure you do your homework.
Discuss Your Client Goals
One of the main things that you should go through during the call is what the specifics about the job role are and what’s expected from you. Before the call, you will already have some details about the position, just make sure to prepare some additional questions to ask, to have a better understanding of what you are getting yourself into, how the workflow would look like, or what’s the long-term vision. Having all the details about the job tasks will help you decide whether you can see yourself working with them and helping them achieve their goals. Although, if you are not sure about something, make sure you discuss it on the call to clarify it for both sides.
Be Confident But Truthful
Know what you can offer but don’t be too pushy. Know why your package is something that this client needs. Give them good points on how you can help them and what you bring to the table. You don’t need to talk about the full strategy on how you will achieve it, but give them a rough idea of how you usually work. People love to see some initiative, and when you care about the mission behind their brand, that’s adding you some extra points. Bringing someone on their team who is passionate about their expertise and the industry is a win for both sides.
Know Your Next Steps/Processes
You need to know what’s happening next if the potential client decides to go ahead. Explain a step by step process in case they hire you to know what to expect – first, sending a contract and invoice, second sharing an onboarding questionnaire that can help you understand their brand better, and anything else that is relevant.
Talk about the practicalities, like how you usually get paid, what channels you and them usually use for the client communication, or what other tools you use for storing documents or assigning tasks/to-do lists.
Lead the Conversation
This is something that many VA’s don’t think about. Having a discovery call is not just about you being interviewed but also about you leading the conversation that should help you see whether the potential client is a good fit for you, not just the other way around. As much as you will tell them about your VA career and yourself, they should be talking about their business and how they see this collaboration working.
Be the equal partner during the call, not just someone who is answering tons of questions but doesn’t get any information out of it. Also, don’t let the client to force answer any of their questions. Many times people keep asking about pricing during the call and you can give them the price if it’s a specific set package that you’ve talked about. However, if you are clarifying what would work best for them, you are not obligated to give them the price right away, since you need some time to think it through and set up a personalized package for them. Ask your potential client for a budget and give them a rough idea of your hourly rate, but don’t feel pressured to say it straight away. At the end of the call, sum up some key points and send them a proposal with all the details, including the price.
Discovery calls at the beginning of your VA career can be stressful, but if you are well prepared and you know what you can bring to the table, you are on the right track! Do some research before the call, to know more about your potential client, show up confidently, and lead the conversation to make it valuable for both sides. Think about the questions they might ask you about your business, processes, or the questions you want to ask. This will help you prepare for the call. And it gives you time to discuss all the other details about the client on the call! You got this, it’s a conversation for both of you to see whether you could work together, so you both are in charge!