“Don’t be afraid to reach out to friends and family and ask for support.” With Mitch Russo & Kendra Perry

For those who are feeling lonely, don’t be afraid to reach out to friends and family and ask for support. Talking about your feelings and emotions with those who understand you can really make a big difference in how you feel. If you don’t have friends or family, there are many great support groups online […]

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For those who are feeling lonely, don’t be afraid to reach out to friends and family and ask for support. Talking about your feelings and emotions with those who understand you can really make a big difference in how you feel. If you don’t have friends or family, there are many great support groups online where you can find people who will help you through these very uncertain times.

As a part of my series about how to be great at closing sales without seeming pushy, obnoxious, or salesy, I had the pleasure of interviewing Kendra Perry.

Kendra Perry is a former Functional Health Coach turned Online Business Strategist for Health & Wellness Coaches. She is on a mission to end health coach poverty by helping 100,000 health coaches build thriving 6-figure businesses in the next decade. She has currently helped 200+ health coaches grow their practices, attract consistent clients and blow up their bank accounts through her online courses and programs.

She is the creator of the ground-breaking Health Coach Accelerator Method which turns scared, scattered and self-conscious coaches into confident, focused and high-performing health entrepreneurs. She is also the founder of the Profitable Groups System which teaches coaches to scale their income and impact with group coaching programs. Learn more about Kendra at

Thank you for doing this with us! Before we dig in, our readers would like to learn a bit more about you. Can you tell us the “backstory” about what brought you to this career path?

Itall started when I was lying on a hospital gurney with my knee wide open in the operating room. I had jumped off a cliff skiing and blew out my knee in my pursuit to be a professional skier. My surgeon believed it was a quick fix and scheduled me to get a quick scope to clean up some light meniscal damage. Once he looked inside, he informed me that my meniscus was fine but my ACL was in shreds and I was going to need reconstructive surgery. Any skier who has torn their ACL knows this surgery is no joke and comes with a long recovery time. I was absolutely devastated as I realized my ski dreams were over. At the time, I was working as a forestry technician, so I was also faced with the loss of my career.

Soon after, I had reconstructive surgery and was forced to go on medical unemployment insurance. I knew it was time to forge a new career path. I had a large interest in alternative health so I decided to do a certification program in Functional Diagnostic Nutrition. After graduating and becoming a health coach, I started my online health coaching business. I grew it to 6-figures in just 3 years. Along the way I noticed a HUGE elephant in the room; the majority of my colleagues were broke and struggling to pay their bills. Some were giving up on their business altogether. I felt a deep calling to help, plus, I noticed that I was significantly more passionate about business and marketing than I was about health coaching. I decided to pivot my business shortly after and I have been helping health & wellness coaches ever since.

Can you share with our readers the most interesting or amusing story that occured to you in your career so far? Can you share the lesson or take away you took out of that story?

The first time I decided to create a group program, I tried launching it four different times and lost money every single attempt. It was very frustrating at the time because I had spent over 6-months creating the course and spent several thousand dollars on advertising. After four failed launches, I was ready to give up and I did for a while. As hard as it was to fail, I learned some invaluable lessons. I learned there was a huge difference between what I knew my audience needed and what they actually wanted. When I was able to make this distinction, I was finally able to succeed at launching a group program. 6-months after my four failed launches, I had my first successful launch. I generated 8K which at the time was the most money I had ever made at one time. This success led to many future 5-figure launches and my first 6-figure launch. I learned that a failure is never truly a failure unless you don’t learn. Without that failure, I would have never been able to succeed.

Are you working on any exciting new projects now? How do you think that will help people?

Yes! Soon, I will be launching my new online course, Profitable Groups, that teaches health & wellness coaches to launch an online group coaching program. My audience has told me that they have noticed a steep decline in interest and sign ups for their 1:1 coaching programs. Due to the current global situation, many people have less money to spend or are being cautious about their spending. The great thing about a group program is it can offer people the same results as high-ticket private clients but at a more affordable price point. In my opinion, group programs are the perfect way to scale a business, especially in a time of global economic crisis. My 5-step system teaches coaches how to create and launch their program in 30-days or less (even if they haven’t started) and then shows them how to re-launch at a higher price point in just 90-days. My goal with this course is to help health coaches reach more people. When healthy coaches are successful in business, they are able to help hundreds or even thousands of people reverse their chronic health conditions.

None of us are able to achieve success without some help along the way. Is there a particular person who you are grateful towards who helped get you to where you are? Can you share a story about that?

My partner, Ryan, and the support he has offered me has been a huge part of my success. Five years ago, when we had first started dating, I was struggling in my health coaching business. I was having a hard time generating income and finding consistent clients. I remember breaking down in the garden one day and crying big ugly tears. I thought I was failing at my business and that I wasn’t going to make it. I was embarrassed because I had just met him. But he was incredibly supportive, he hugged me and told me that I was already successful. He told me that I knew more about online business than anyone he knew and that I would make it. Ryan is also an entrepreneur so having him as my number 1 support and as someone who truly understands the rollercoaster that is entrepreneurship is incredibly valuable. I couldn’t have done it without his love, support and understanding.

For the benefit of our readers, can you tell us a bit why you are an authority on the topic of sales?

Sales is one of my super powers. Early on in my business, I knew that if I was going to be successful in my business, I had to master sales. I read as many books as possible on the topic and did my best to schedule as many sales calls as humanly possible. I combined those teachings plus my experience to come up with a sales process that grew my business to multiple 6-figures. In my 6 year business career, I have completed over 1000 sales calls. My authentic and honest sales call process has given me an 80% close rate. In 2019, I used this process to close 100K worth of sales in under 2-weeks and a total of 150K in less than a month for my high-ticket business mastermind program. I teach my process to all my clients who have also generated hundreds of clients using my sales call script.

Let’s shift a bit to what is happening today in the broader world. Many people have become anxious from the dramatic jolts of the news cycle. The fears related to the COVID-19 pandemic have understandably heightened a sense of uncertainty and loneliness. From your experience, what are a few ideas that we can use to effectively offer support to our families and loved ones who are feeling anxious? Can you explain?

I think the best way to support family and loved ones is to make an honest effort to listen and be supportive. Everyone is entitled to their own feelings and emotions at this time. Making space and helping our loved ones feel heard is really the most important action we can all take right now.

For those who are feeling lonely, don’t be afraid to reach out to friends and family and ask for support. Talking about your feelings and emotions with those who understand you can really make a big difference in how you feel. If you don’t have friends or family, there are many great support groups online where you can find people who will help you through these very uncertain times.

Ok. Thanks for all that. Let’s now jump to the main core of our interview. As you know, nearly any business a person will enter, will involve some form of sales. At the same time, most people have never received any formal education about how to be effective at selling. Why do you think our education system teaches nearly every other arcane subject, but sales, one of the most useful and versalite topics, is totally ignored?

There are a lot of negative perceptions around sales. Many people believe it to be manipulative and shady. What often comes to mind is the sketchy door-to-door salesman who wants to sell you a broken vacuum. I think, in general, people are just uncomfortable with the thought of sales, even though they are selling in daily life without even realizing it.

We are always selling ourselves. Consider dating apps. People make profiles that try to sell them to the person swiping right or left. They then go on a date and try to sell their personalities to the other person in hopes for a second date. That is essentially sales!

Experts are not just naturally good at sales. They didn’t inherit these skills or just wake up one morning as sales experts. Like any skill, sales need to be fine-tuned and practiced. These skills are necessary for many areas of life such as landing a job or getting accepted into college. I wish sales were taught in school! Unfortunately, the education system fails to teach many useful, practical skills in general. Sales is one of these very useful and practical skills that gets ignored.

This discussion, entitled, “How To Be Great At Sales Without Seeming Salesey”, is making an assumption that seeming salesy or pushy is something to be avoided. Do you agree with this assumption? Whether yes, or no, can you articulate why you feel the way you do?

In today’s world, people are very used to being sold to and they don’t always like it. For this reason, they can sniff out a pitch from a hundred miles away. No one wants to feel like they are being pushed to purchase something they don’t actually want. Unfortunately, there are many marketers who have given sales a bad name by being pushy and even manipulative. So if we truly want to sell in a way that doesn’t turn people off, we need to do so in a way that is opposite to that. When you sell from a place of authenticity and honesty, you will reach people who actually want what you are offering and who can truly transform and change their lives from your product.

The seven stages of a sales cycle are usually broken down to versions of Prospecting, Preparation, Approach, Presentation, Handling objections, Closing, and Follow-up. Which stage do you feel that you are best at? What is your unique approach, your “secret sauce”, to that particular skill? Can you explain or give a story?

My secret sauce is prospecting and objections. I believe that in order to execute a successful sales call, you need to attract the right type of person to the call. There is no point in scheduling a bunch of sales calls if they aren’t with the type of person who actually wants what you are offering. When you attract the right people, these calls are minimal effort.

My approach is to be incredibly clear with my content marketing. I know exactly who my ideal client is, their struggles and their desires. Based on this knowledge, I customize high-value content that is exactly for them. The other secret sauce to my approach is addressing objections in advance by creating content around the most common objections. When you address objections before the actual call, your prospects will have fewer objections.

A few years ago, when I was still health coaching, I noticed that a common objection was, “I need to ask my husband.” Many of my audience were women whose husbands were the primary breadwinner of the household. The problem was that my prospective clients were not salespeople like me. They would never do as good of a job as selling my program to their husband as I was at selling my program to them.

I began to create what I called, “spouse videos.” These were videos that I created for my audience that addressed the “I have to ask my husband” objection. The videos taught them how to speak to their husbands about the value of investing in their health and how it could help save them time and money in the long run. I also created informational videos specifically for their husbands, which they could pass along after the call. This content strategy greatly reduced the “I have to ask my husband” objection.

If you notice a common objection that keeps coming up over and over then my advice is to produce regular content around that objection.

Lead generation, or prospecting, is one of the basic steps of the sales cycle. Obviously every industry will be different, but can you share some of the fundamental strategies you use to generate good, qualified leads?

The most important part is knowing your audience and knowing who you want to attract in the first place. If you don’t know who you want to bring into your world then they won’t be qualified. Once you understand who you want to work with then you can craft a content strategy that provides value to your ideal client.

For me, an important strategy is market research. I complete market research on my audience every 6–12 months by sending out a survey to my email list and social media following. Through the survey results, I can understand who they are and what they desire. Once I understand this, I can create my content strategy, my free offer and my paid program to accommodate their desires.

For example, my upcoming course, Profitable Groups, was inspired by my audience. In my last survey, they overwhelmingly told me that they were feeling burnt out working with 1:1 clients and that they wanted to launch a group program but they were terrified to try. Based on their responses, I birthed the Profitable Groups course that I know my audience is ready and excited to purchase.

In my experience, I think the final stages of Handling Objections, Closing, and Follow-up, are the most difficult parts for many people. Why do you think ‘Handling Objections’ is so hard for people? What would you recommend for one to do, to be better at ‘Handling Objections’?

Handling objections is difficult for many people because they take it personally. No one likes getting rejected so often people will give up as soon as an objection is stated. But objections aren’t a reflection on you or the quality of your program or product. Objections are not a “no.” Objections come from fear.

Your prospects have likely already spent money trying to fix their problem before and failed. That means that many prospective clients are skeptical, scared and uncertain.

Your job is to be understanding, empathetic and compassionate when these objections come up.

Every objection is an opportunity to serve and further communicate the value of what you are offering. It’s also important to gauge when people clearly aren’t interested and when it’s time to end the conversation.

To improve at handling objections, it’s first important to understand the common objections that your audience has. Once you have a handle on what those are, you can create solutions to those most common objections. This will allow you to not only feel prepared but to anticipate what might come up at the end of a sales call.

‘Closing’ is of course the proverbial Holy Grail. Can you suggest 5 things one can do to successfully close a sale without being perceived as pushy? If you can, please share a story or example, ideally from your experience, for each.

Be transparent. In your marketing of the sales call, it’s important to be 100% transparent about what the call is for. It is not a free consult or a free coaching call, it’s a conversation to determine if the prospect is a good fit for the work that you do. This will prevent you from attracting individuals who are looking for free information and have no intention of buying. If you can get the right people on the call, you will have a better opportunity to close the sale.

Listen and learn. The call is not just an opportunity for you to talk about yourself and your product, it’s an opportunity to build a relationship with the person on the other end. Let them do the talking and take note of the words that they use and the way they describe their problem. Actively listening will help you uncover if the prospect is truly a fit for the work you do and if they are ready to do the work required to get results.

Serve first, sell second. When you approach your call from a serve first, sell second mentality, it’s impossible to be salesy, obnoxious or pushy. Serve first, sell second means that your number one priority is to find the best outcome for the prospect, even if it’s not working with you. Not everyone is going to be the right fit. If you come from a place of servitude, your prospect will feel safe to make the decision that is right for them.

Add urgency. Most people need a little pressure to buy. In my experience, those who are the most committed and take action fast, usually get the best results. I like to reward that. You can offer a fast-acting discount for those who take action on the call or within a certain time frame after the call. This adds a bit of urgency while still respecting they may need a little bit of time to think about their decision.

Ask for the sale. You can’t expect to get the sale if you don’t ask for it. Tell your prospect that what you offer is a good fit for them, can get them a result of X, Y, Z and ask if they are ready to take action.

Finally, what are your thoughts about ‘Follow up’? Many businesses get leads who might be interested but things never seem to close. What are some good tips for a business leader to successfully follow up and bring things to a conclusion, without appearing overly pushy or overeager?

If you are unable to close the prospect on the call but they seem interested in what you are offering, it’s important to set expectations of follow-up before you get off the call. How you follow-up with the prospect will be different for each person. It’s important to ask the client how they would like to be followed up with.

Once you have this information, be clear about when and how you will be following up with them and set the expectation for responsiveness. Ask them exactly when you can expect to hear from them and let them know that you will mark it on your calendar. If you establish a communication framework in advance, you are more likely to get a response from your follow-up efforts without being annoying or pushy.

I have found it’s best if you follow-up within 24-hours of the call. In the follow-up email, you should summarize what was discussed and the key next steps for the prospect. Don’t add too many steps. There should be a single call-to-action at the end of the email. It’s also important to personalize this email and foster the connection that was built on the call.

Any future follow-up you pursue thereafter should have a specific reason and intention. Never contact your prospect just to “follow-up” or “check-in.”

As you know there are so many modes of communication today. For example, In-person, phone calls, video calls, emails, and text messages. In your opinion, which of these communication methods should be avoided when attempting to close a sale or follow up? Which are the best ones? Can you explain or give a story?

I don’t think there is any right or wrong method of communication for follow-up. The best method is the one that works best for your business. Generally, I recommend following up using the method of communication you have already been using with that client. If prior to the sales call, you were communicating via email, I probably wouldn’t call them out of the blue and surprise them. In the end, I would recommend testing several methods to determine which is the most valuable for your business.

Ok, we are nearly done. Here is our final “meaty” question. You are a person of enormous influence. If you could inspire a movement that would bring the most amount of good to the greatest amount of people, what would that be? You never know what your idea can trigger. 🙂

Great question! My mission is to end health coach poverty. Because many health coaches have their own story of struggling with their health, they often feel icky around taking money from people to help them. The result is that they underprice their services and struggle financially. I believe that health coaches can be financially successful in a way that feels authentic and aligned with their core values. I believe that by empowering health coaches, they can get their very important message about the importance of health out to the world. When coaches help more people, we not only shift global health but we also shift global consciousness. It’s time for health coaches to step up and become agents of change in the world. This is my passion and I will do whatever it takes to help health and wellness coaches achieve their dreams.

How can our readers follow you online?

My favorite platforms are Instagram and YouTube. I show up regularly on both platforms and share as much value as I can provide.

You can follow me on Instagram here:

You can subscribe to my YouTube channel here:

Thank you for the interview. We wish you only continued success!

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