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Man presenting to a client

Your First Client Meeting: Impressing Your New Client

Meeting clients for the first time can be stressful no matter how many times you have been doing it. There will be times when you feel that you are not going to nail it. You may be even second-guessing yourself even though you have won many accounts and successfully built relationships with them. However, it is just normal. Sometimes, accounts and sales people feel stressed about it because they know that they have not made enough preparations for the meeting. You need to prepare properly for the first meeting to secure their desire to work with you. Some professionals often forego this part, thinking that they can nail it since they have been doing it many times. This is often a misguided concept, as clients have different personalities, and you should be able to respond to them in a personalized manner. Treating it with a cookie-cutter approach may result in awkward conversations. Here are some pointers to keep in mind:

Dress up nicely

First impressions always count, and you can make a good one when you dress smart and nice. You should look professional. This will help you feel confident and as they say, you will feel good if you look good. For women, it will be a good way to present yourself by wearing a little black dress topped with silhouetted blazers. If you want to create a statement, a pantsuit will be nice. Men should wear their blazers — navy blue is always a safe choice for casual meetings. Wear brogues to finish your look.

Be good at small talk

You are sent to talk to clients, and one good way to start the ball rolling is through a small talk. It is a skill that you can develop over time, but if you want to play it safe, you should ask questions about the business and a bit of their personal life (but do not go too personal, though). When they start to talk, be intent when listening. Show that you are interested. Also, avoid sensitive topics that may cause some arguments.

Listen to their concerns

When you have directed the small talk to the real purpose of the meeting, you will learn that your client will speak many things about their problems and concerns. This is where you should listen carefully. You can respond beautifully if you know what they are talking about. Take down notes or if it is possible, you can use a voice recorder.

Leave a mark

businessman and businesswoman are shaking hands and exchanging folder after agreement was reached

As the meeting ends, you may want to leave a mark by cracking a joke or two. That way, they will be able to remember you. Before you part ways, it will always be a nice gesture to hand out your fold-out business card so that they can contact you in case they need to know something.

Talking to a new client for the first time can be easy if you have prepared for it. You should know that clients could sense if you are anxious and stress. Some of them may use that to their advantage to bully you. Be confident and run the show nicely.

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