Selling the Invisible: 5 Reasons Why You’re Struggling To Sell Your Service | Melotti Media

Selling the Invisible: 5 Reasons Why You’re Struggling To Sell Your Service

Written by the The Melotti Media Team, checked by Christopher Melotti

Prefer to listen, rather than read? Here's the Podcast summary!

Selling services is very different from selling products.

As a business owner, you probably understand the challenges of getting prospects to see the value in the services that you offer. After all, it’s not always easy to explain the features and benefits of something that the prospect can’t see.

This means that your sales, marketing and business strategies, as a service-based business, are going to be different from that of a product-based business.

For instance, if you’re shopping for a new vacuum, it’s easy to compare features to find one that meets your needs. But what if you want a cleaning service to come to your house and do the job for you? You reach out to six providers, and they all tell you they can do it.

But how do you know which one will provide the best service?

This question gets to the heart of how anyone selling services has to compete to win business. Whether you sell to other companies or to consumers, selling services means:

  • selling yourself
  • your team’s expertise
  • and the value your company brings to the client or customer.

This can be a tricky prospect, but there are ways to make it work.

So, to help you sell your service, our Melotti Media team has prepared a list of the 5 most common mistakes brands make when selling their services.

Why selling a service is difficult

If your business provides a service, you are probably familiar with how tough it can be to get potential customers to see the value of what you provide.

At the heart of it, the main difference is that a product business sells physical, tangible objects, whereas a service business provides value through intangible skills, expertise and time.

Typically, selling your service requires building trusting relationships with customers and customising them as necessary. The challenge of selling a service is knowing how to communicate the value of what you are offering in a way that resonates with your target audience.

5 reasons why you are struggling to sell a service to your customers

The business landscape nowadays is saturated and overly competitive.

There are a lot of brands that offer the same service as you and because of that, selling your services might get more difficult than ever.

Here are 5 common mistakes business owners make when selling their services:

1. You’re selling the wrong service

One of the biggest challenges when selling is accurately understanding customer needs.

It’s all too easy to define your goods and services and try and flog these to your customers without doing any research and understanding whether they actually need them.

The easiest way to upsell to your customers is to help them buy something they need. If you don’t understand their challenges and their pain points, putting together a solution in a form of a service that your customers want to buy can be difficult.

Here’s a tip: Do your research and really listen to your customers to understand what their problem is. Sometimes they think they know what they already want, but there could be something better for them that they don’t know about.

2. Not defining the value for your customer

Customers will opt for your services over others based on how much value they perceive from them. It is not enough to simply offer the lowest price or the most features.

Instead, you need to think beyond the service itself and ask what advantages it provides to your customers.

To establish your value, consider answering these questions:

  • Are your services more valuable in terms of pricing?
  • Does your brand provide better service than your competitors?
  • Does your service help your customers save time?
  • Or does your service offer a deeper significance?

Once you understand the customer’s needs, you can craft a pitch that demonstrates the value you offer to meet that need.

3. You’re selling your service to the wrong client

Not everyone is going to be interested in the services you provide. That’s why it’s important to research and determine who is most likely to need them.

For instance, it wouldn’t make sense to try and market gardening and landscaping services to those who are renting a home in an area where the population is mostly young.

In order to make successful service sales, you need to make sure you’re offering services that your customers actually want to buy. Additionally, it’s important to take the time to listen to customers and ask questions to gain a deeper understanding of their needs. The more you let your customers talk, the more insight you’ll be able to gain and the better you’ll be able to provide solutions to their problems.

4. You’re looking for immediate buyers instead of building a relevant audience

Every business NEEDS clients.

Which means things can get noisy. You and your competitors, all selling the same services are trying to get through the noise and clutter just to get more clients.

However, you don’t want to have to spend your days shouting. It’s hard work, it’s tiring, and it’s rarely as fruitful as one would hope. Your business is for the long-term, so you need to plan for the long-term.

Here’s a tip: Build an audience. Take the time to create a following by sharing your thoughts, insights and knowledge. Let people get to know you as a Key Opinion Leader in your industry. This way, people will get to know how you can help them.

5. You lack good service positioning

Positioning is what makes your brand different. It’s what has people turning up with confidence, ready to buy from you.

Most businesses do a dreadful job of this – communicating to prospects how experienced they are, how great their service is or what value they can give to them.

Choosing to compete on price instead of striving for excellence will only make the game harder for you. If there’s not much to differentiate you from your competition, then price is the only factor that can be used to make decisions.

To stand out, use your marketing to position yourself as THE expert. You can offer valuable guidance through:

How to effectively sell your service in 4 easy ways

Without a tangible product, you’ll need to sell prospective customers on the vision that your service will improve their life or business.

Here are 4 tips to effectively sell your service:

1. Be the product

If you’re running a service-based business, YOU are the product. That means you need to sell yourself just as much as you’re selling your service.

If you want prospects to become clients, you have to get them to view you as someone who is reliable and trustworthy. People buy from those they know, like and trust.

Before trying to sell, you should develop a relationship first. The better you are at building rapport, the more you will increase your chances of closing more deals.

2. Stop charging per hour and start charging per project

Charging an hourly rate isn’t sustainable in the long run, since you can only work so many hours.

It can be hard to get out of this rut, as you may have to increase rates and risk losing clients, or switch to a different pricing structure and struggle to communicate the changes to your customers.

Instead, focus on the value you bring to your client, and charge for THAT.

3. Use social proof

Since you’re selling something intangible, you need to find other ways to get your prospect to see the value in your offering – like social proof.

People love to hear stories and having a case study will show your brand’s success story with a client.

Good case studies can help you promote your services. They’re also a valuable way to earn trust and demonstrate social proof during the sales process. Additionally, client testimonials are also a great way to show prospective clients that you can deliver on your promises.

Here at Melotti Media, we LOVE getting real testimonials from our satisfied clients and we’re proud to see how our services provide value that helped them achieve greater results.

Have a look at some of our case studies and client testimonials here.

4. Lastly, build a brand that differentiates your business.

Building a strong brand is crucial to the success of any company, but it’s especially important to service-based companies. Again, since your prospect can’t actually see your offering, they need something to connect to on a deeper level.

That’s what a strong brand can do for your business.

Your brand is what will distinguish you from your competition. It gives your prospects a reason to choose you over the other companies that offer the same service as you do.

Successful branding is about perspective. Find out what your unique brand perspective is, and work hard to communicate it to your audience.

Having a full-service copywriting agency partner can help you achieve all of the above!

A team of quality marketing copywriters take your thoughts, ideas and expertise, and can articulate them in a customer-friendly way that earns sales results.

To learn more, see: how does a copywriter help you build a sales pipeline?

How can Melotti Media help you achieve service sales fast?

At Melotti Media, we understand that you want to get cut through in a competitive market and achieve business success – and a powerful way to do this is by implementing content marketing and brand messaging that will drive results.

However,  you may find that you’re time-poor and spread thin or you still have a lot of unanswered questions.   

You don’t need to worry!    

At Melotti Media, we can assist with all your content marketing and copywriting needs while you focus on what matters most to you – growing your business.

Let’s start earning the results your business deserves!   

To speak to your trusted message marketers and copywriters, email us at   
We can sharpen your words to achieve your goals today!   

The Melotti Media Team 
Melotti Media | Copywriting & Message Marketing Bureau 

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