When you finally get your very first client, what’s one thing you can do to ensure you impress them? Why does this work?
These answers are provided by Young Entrepreneur Council (YEC), an invite-only organization comprised of the world’s most successful young entrepreneurs. YEC members represent nearly every industry, generate billions of dollars in revenue each year, and have created tens of thousands of jobs. Learn more at yec.co.
1. Know Your Data
Be sure to know your data. If it’s your first client, you have to spend the time to fully understand them, their business, their needs, their shortcomings and more. Frankly, this advice goes for all clients, but especially your first client. When they bring something up, you will be able to respond intelligently, instead of with, “I’ll go look into that.” This makes them see you as a partner and expert.
2. Do What You Say When You Say You’ll Do It
Your first client understands you are figuring things out and that there may be bumps along the way. They want to be in the know for the good and the bad; more importantly, they want to hear the bad directly from you, and they want to feel that you are controlling the flow of information.
3. Go the Extra Mile
Go the extra mile — or more! Show your passion for the job and your compassion for the client. In this dog-eat-dog world, people tend to think, “What’s in it for me?” so kindness and proactivity are rare to find. If you’re genuine, you will shine. It is never about impressing a client; it is more about sincerely caring for the client and the project, which will then lead to productivity and engagement.
4. Follow Up With Them
After you get your first client, send a follow-up email. Sometimes just saying something like, “Thanks for taking time to speak with me,” can go a long way in solidifying a new client relationship. It’s also a great way to provide any necessary follow-up information or additional resources. It’s just a final little touch that shows the client that they are more than just a transaction.
5. Provide Clear, Comprehensive Documentation
Having clear and comprehensive documentation goes a long way toward impressing clients. Just create a document that includes a summary, your offer, terms and conditions and more. Such documentation can serve as a quick reference, making things easier for everyone. Meanwhile, it subtly highlights that you’re a professional and this isn’t your first rodeo.
6. Focus on Presentation
Presentation is everything. Whether it’s a service or product, be sure that it’s presented to the client in the best possible manner with good quality and courteous communication. Go the extra mile to make sure that the client’s needs are met and they are happy. Think of what you would want if you were the client and what would make you recommend this product or service to others. – Benjamin Rojas, All in One SEO
7. Pay Attention
Pay attention to them! Clients want to feel like they matter and that their time is well spent with you. Connect with them as a person. Take time to understand where they are coming from and what goals they have. When you have that understanding, it will be easier for you to meet their goals and expectations, which will create client loyalty.
8. Respond Quickly
Answer back quickly! Communication is the key to any good relationship. If your client feels that you get back to them with answers, next steps or deliverables quickly and efficiently (or clearly communicate any setbacks or expectations), they’re more likely to trust you and refer you out or hire you again.
9. Deliver a Quick Win
Deliver a quick and substantial win. Set the tone right away with consistent and meaningful deliverables. That way, you can show you’re more than just a good salesperson and that you are able to produce real value. This works because ultimately they want a partner who can help them find blind spots, act on opportunities and contribute to their bottom line.
10. Be Punctual
The first impression is the best impression, and you want to make sure that the first impression you give to your new client will be a positive one. Make sure that you are always on time for meetings and always answer emails in a timely manner. It’s also important to maintain a professional demeanor while working with your clients.
11. Implement Their Feedback
One way to build rapport with your very first client is to encourage them to send you feedback. We have a program where we encourage our customers to send us feedback on our software so we can make improvements. If your business is brand new, there are likely a few things that need to be fixed. Listening to your first customers and making fast changes based on their thoughts will impress them.
12. Be Honest
Deliver what you pitch and be clear and honest in your communications, from beginning to end. Clarity and honesty go an incredibly long way, regardless if it is your first or 40th client. So many entrepreneurs overpromise and then find themselves making excuses or delivering work that doesn’t hit the mark.
13. Immerse Yourself in the Project
They say overdelivering is what keeps clients happy, but, honestly, I feel that immersion is more important. Immersion into the project shows that you are wholeheartedly interested in seeing them succeed. If you’re immersed, they will feel like they’re getting A+ service, which will impress them. It works because it’s “showing” over “telling,” and that wins hearts.
14. Create a Plan to Address Their Needs
The one thing you can do to impress your first client is spend time with them, listen to all their needs and come up with a plan to address them. Some of their needs may not be available to work on yet, and you need to be honest with them about that. Even so, you can include them in a plan.