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If you’re heading out for a meeting with a potential new client, the one and only question that you’re probably asking right now is: ‘how do I impress them?’ Making a great impression is absolutely essential in business, especially when you’re trying to impress a new client. But not everybody is good at it – and some clients are going to be hard to impress, no matter how hard you try.
Use these strategies to stand a better chance of having a positive impression on even the pickiest of clients.
Do Some Research on the Client
There’s no better way to impress your potential client than to turn up at the meeting having thoroughly done your research on them. Do your homework on their background and their company before you turn up; it sends a clear message that you are serious about doing business with them and are interested in what they do.
Find Personal Connections
Finding personal connections with clients can be just as useful as finding professional ones; it gives you something to talk about that isn’t all about work, and it can help you develop a friendship with them through something that you both have in common. Find out about your client’s hobbies, if you can, and study them. Even if their interests are vastly different from yours, doing some research means that if the topic comes up, you’ll be able to contribute to the conversation without looking completely clueless.
A Professional Appearance
Re-evaluate your appearance before you head to the meeting; a professional, polished appearance will go miles towards showing that you are an expert who takes what you do seriously. This can be anything from how you dress to the car you arrive in; booking a business taxi service instead of turning up in your old car can make a massive difference.
And even if you work from home or tend to dress casually in the office, it’s worth making a bigger effort when meeting a new client. Just make sure that you’re comfortable in whatever you wear and that it’s suitable for the business that your client does – don’t turn up to a relaxed, techy office where everyone wears t-shirts and jeans in a stiff suit!
Remove Unnecessary Electronics
During the meeting, switching off your phone and putting it completely away will show your client that they are the most important thing right now. Having your phone or a tablet on the table might be necessary for productivity in some meetings; if this is the case, then make sure that you’re only using it for what’s necessary during the meeting. If it’s not needed, it’s just going to be a distraction for others in the room; if you’re fairly certain you don’t require gadgets, they’re best turned off and put away.
Finally, giving your full attention is the best way to keep the client’s attention during your meeting. Be present and practice active listening techniques. Ask questions and make comments to show that you’re completely invested in the conversation.