Are you making a strong enough impression when you meet with potential clients?
If you’re not seeing the results you’d like, it might be time to revisit your strategy.
When preparing for a meeting, think in 3 stages: before, during, and after.
Stage 1: Before
- Once you’ve scheduled the meeting, send something in advance. Email a link to your website or send a digital brochure! This gives the client a chance to familiarize themselves with you and your business – you’ll make a strong first impression without even being in the room!
Stage 2: During
- While meeting, be sure you’re giving clear, concise information and address all the client’s questions/concerns. Take your marketing kit: well-designed information you can leave behind. This should be a brochure, flyer, or folder that outlines what your company offers, has a price list, and includes positive testimonials. Also be sure to leave a business card (ideally, this would match whatever you leave with them, creating a strong brand identity). This way, they have materials that sum up your sales message and provide comprehensive information if they have questions after your meeting.
Stage 3: After
- Follow-up builds consistent relationships. Always send a thank-you note (preferably on your company’s official stationary, again keeping with your brand identity). In your “thank-you” be sure to highlight a few points that were discussed in the meeting. State how enthusiastic you are about helping that particular client with their particular problem. This says to them that you are a good listener, and that you’re considerate enough to thank them for their time.
Stage 3, continued…
- Sometimes you have to be a little more persistent with your follow-up in order to get a response. If your thank-you note doesn’t elicit a reply, send another quick note and include additional informational materials (like a postcard or flyer) to jog their memory.
- Occasionally, a small thank-you note isn’t enough. After meeting with a sales rep who bring you business, a peer in your industry, or a loyal customer who is continuing to do business with you, sending a small token of appreciation often makes a huge impact. Promotional items are great for this: a nice pen, coffee mug, frisbee, etc. – something fun or useful that comes in your company’s colors and has your logo printed on it.
Sticking to a 3-part strategy ensures that your company becomes a recognizable source for solutions to your clients’ problems. Of course, having some slick-looking marketing materials doesn’t hurt! It’s all about consistency: consistent contact, consistent branding, consistent exposure.
Now get out there and maximize your impact!