Joe scrolled through their tortured email chain. They had been going back and forth for nearly two weeks trying to find a time that would work for both of them. They had set one time, cancelled it, rescheduled, and now, apparently, they were back to playing scheduling ping pong.Joe glanced at his calendar. There was no way he could meet on Monday at 1:30, and his Tuesday was booked solid until 3pm.He clicked reply to the message, and typed:
There must be a better way to schedule life coaching sessions than using email, Joe thought, as he clicked send and shut down his laptop.
Joe grinned. “It wouldn’t be date night if I was on time, would it now?” he kidded her, sliding his phone into his back pocket.Date night had been a monthly tradition since Adam, their six-year-old, was a baby. Karen picked the restaurant, Joe ordered them food. They had only two rules. No talking about the kids and no phones at the table.They chatted easily about their day. Karen had a new client who wanted her to design her new baby’s room in a citrus theme and old clients who wanted to redo their dining room. “The crazy thing is, I don’t think they ever sat in the dining room I designed for them three years ago,” she said.The waiter told them about the specials, and Joe ordered a tapas starter for them to share. He wanted the steak, but money was tight, so he ordered two hot dogs for himself, and the antipasti for his vegetarian wife.While they waited for the tapas to arrive, Karen excused herself to go the ladies room. Alone, Joe pulled his phone out of his pocket, and started scanning his email. “Finally,” Joe said to the empty table, when he read that Mike had confirmed availability for Tuesday at 4.He was sending the meeting confirmation to Mike when Karen returned.“Is that a phone at the table?” she asked, as she sat back down.“Yeah, but it’s OK. I’ve been going back and forth for like two weeks with this guy to set a coaching session, and we finally agreed on a time.” Mike clicked send, before putting the phone back in his pocket.“It’s crazy,” Joe began. “We want to set a session, but it just takes so much time emailing back and forth to find a time that works for both of us.” Joe looked up at Karen. “How do you set meetings with your clients and not go crazy from the back and forth?”“I email back and forth, same as you do,” she told him, “but I did have a meeting last week with Juan, my wallpaper supplier and he sent me a link with a calendar on it. All I had to do was click on the time I wanted, and our meeting was set.”“What do you mean?” Joe asked.“I could see the times Juan was available. I clicked on the time that worked for me, and the meeting was set. I even got a confirmation email, and the meeting went into my calendar.” Karen bit into one of the tapas that had just arrived at the table. “You should try these,” she said, her mouth half full of food. “They’re delicious.”“Wait, can you show me the email with the calendar,” Joe pleaded.“Of course, but not now, silly. No phones at the table during date night.”
This was exactly what he needed to schedule coaching sessions without endless emails. Two hours later, after sending his calendar link to three prospects, he had scheduled and confirmed three coaching sessions in everyone’s calendar. According to the updates Joe got, one had even scheduled an appointment and then changed the date and time all without taking a moment of his time.The day passed quickly. Joe helped one client make a big career decision, and another one get closer to picking a school for his daughter. After each session, he shared his new calendar with them, and they easily scheduled their next appointment.It seemed to Joe that if he didn’t spend all his time coordinating schedules with clients, he might have time for even more clients. More clients meant more money in his pocket and more steak in his belly.He spent the next few days talking to prospective clients, trying to get someone to commit to a 4-week, $500 executive package, but it wasn’t happening. He needed help closing the deal.
So far, things were going well for David. He had clients and believed that within six months he would be making the same income he earned as an accountant.Joe tried to temper his enthusiasm and offered some more realistic financial goals, but David would not be deterred. “I’m going to make it,” David said fiercely, “and I owe a lot of it to that calendar program you like to use. Ever since I started using it, I’ve been closing all kinds of deals without even talking to the clients. They even share it with their own friends!”Now that got Joe’s attention. “How does a calendar program help you close deals?” Joe asked.David laughed. “Have you ever really looked inside Book Like A Boss’ website? It’s a lot bigger than just a scheduler.”Joe admitted he hadn’t, and David started to chuckle. “Looks like I’m the coach today. What’s your billing address?”Now it was Joe’s turn to laugh. “In that case, I’m cutting this call short. I need to do see what Book Like A Boss can really do for me. Have a great day.”Joe waited for David to hang up the phone before putting the receiver down on the cradle. He was very curious to find out what David was talking about.
Joe visited his website and was surprised to see that the now familiar booking calendar was embedded on his existing website as well, giving David two places to take bookings.On his booking page, David included a 30-second video clip, showing him pruning a tree. He talked about the different gardening services he offered and threw in a great call to action at the end, where he reminded people to click on the calendar option below to schedule their free consultation.Joe grabbed a pen and paper and started jotting down some notes. He was glad he did because as he scrolled down, he continued to be amazed by what the system could do for him.Above the calendar, David added options for different types of appointments of varying lengths. When Joe clicked on Free Consultation (30 Minutes), the available times adjusted. He noticed that David was only offering his free consultation between 12pm and 2pm. It made sense. That way David could work mornings and evenings when it was cooler outside and have less intensive consultations during the hottest part of the day.Joe continued scrolling down the page and came to Services. David had his full menu of Services listed on the page, with pricing and time estimates for everything.End of winter clean-up - 3 hrs, $150Weekly lawn mowing - 45 mins, $90One-time lawn mowing - 45 mins $110Garden planting - 2 hrs, $100The list was exhaustive, and when Joe clicked on weeding, a pop-up window asked for additional details as well as credit card payment information. Joe shook his head in disbelief.David was not only scheduling his gardening clients through the calendar, but the system was actually closing sales for him. Joe had to laugh. Maybe he really should start paying David for coaching classes.Joe had written a full page of notes on the pad of paper in front of him, but he wasn’t done yet. He scrolled down the page and came across a handful of Testimonials from satisfied customers, as well as an FAQ section. There was even a Facebook comments plugin.Joe clicked over to his own page, bookme.name/coachjoe. Compared to David’s page, his page looked like it was from the 1800s. He definitely was not getting everything he could out of his site.
He added a few services and pricing, synced his Book Like A Boss calendar with his Gmail calendar and connected his account to Zoom conferencing services and MailChimp.Joe even found that he could use a custom domain name to take his bookings. Instead of bookme.name/coachjoe, he could create book.coachjoe.com, giving him a more professional look. He added content to the sidebar of his page including his office hours and Skype ID and was intrigued by the coupon creation feature.For some reason, Wednesday mornings at 11 was never booked. Joe created a coupon code valid on Wednesday morning only and sent it to a handful of clients that he hadn’t seen in over a month. He wondered, as he clicked “send,” if coupons could be the answer to filling open slots in his schedule.It was late in the day when Joe was finally satisfied with his page. He posted his booking page on Facebook and LinkedIn, sent out a few tweets, and shut down his computer. It was date night, and Joe was not going to be on time.
As he sat down, Karen started to tell him about her day, but Joe interrupted. “Do you remember the last time we had date night, and you told me about that calendar program you got from your client?”“Of course, I do. And then you wanted to look at it at date night and I said no phones at the table. What about it?”“Well,” Joe began, “it turns out that it is so much more than just a calendar app. It can help me with my schedule, but it also closes deals and accepts payments by credit card and PayPal. How cool is that?”Karen nodded, as Joe continued.“I spent the last few weeks just using it as a calendar app, but then earlier today I was talking to a client, and he told me how he was using the system. Turns out, the calendar is just the tip of the iceberg. It is so much better than I thought.”Joe felt his pocket buzz. Karen was looking around, trying to get a waiter’s attention, so he pulled out the phone ever so slightly, and saw a notification that he had a new client beginning the following Sunday.“Yes,” he said out loud, drawing Karen’s attention back to the table. “I just got a new client,” he said, while we were sitting here.“Really,” she asked. “Can I see?”“It’s date night,” he told her, “but tonight I’m going to make an exception.”He turned the phone toward her, but she grabbed it out of his hand. “This looks really good on mobile,” she commented as she scrolled down, taking in all the detail on the site. “Maybe I should start using this. How much does it cost?”“Less than dinner,” Joe told her proudly, “and I signed up for the full package.”Karen continued to comment on the different features, when the phone buzzed, and a notification appeared on the screen. “It says here you just received a $500 deposit in your business account. What’s that all about?” she asked.
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