It’s absolutely true that you have to give to get. Often, the more you give, the more you get.

But giving to get is not a magical system by which you can circumvent the sales process. The reason “giving to get” is so often bandied about in value(s)-driven business is that it makes business owners feel secure, like they’re doing what they need to do to move their businesses forward, without having to actually make an effort to change potential customers into paying customers.

“Giving to get” does not excuse you from the sales process. – @taragentile
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Too often, I see eager, but insecure, entrepreneurs put all their time into producing free content, doing free consultations, and offering free gifts then wonder about how to find the time to do work that pays. Or they spend too much time answering queries about their services or products but rarely close the sale. Or they simply see customers that they’ve nurtured buy from other providers or makers.

This isn’t about what you give away for free or even how much you give away but rather ensuring that you have a system in place to accept payment – or other compensation – when potential customers want to go further with you.

There are many ways to receive
: email addresses, personal information, experiential information from ideal clients, and, of course, money.

  • If you’re giving away virtually free content, do you have a good system in place to collecting email addresses or leads?
  • If you’re creating remarkable blog content, do you regularly invite readers to purchase more in depth writing on the same subject?
  • If you’re answering questions about what you do, do you have a services sales page to send prospects to?
  • If your client nurturing is actually creating buyers for other business owners, do you have a way to get the feedback you need to create compelling offers of your own?

If the answer to these questions is no, ask yourself why you’ve been “giving” in the first place. And why you feel insecure about receiving.

Giving and serving outside the payment system is incredibly important. But if you don’t build in a system for receiving, it’s difficult for your customers to give back and go deeper – allowing you to serve them further.