You may have made the contact, and have the lead, but what good is it if you don’t visibly show your potential client that you’re interested in working with them?
For most of us, we don’t give things like body language and how we communicate a second thought. But it’s important to take these things into consideration, especially when approaching a new client or presenting an up-sell.
Start Your Day Off Right, and Be Ready
Before you even drive to your meeting, it’s important to take a few notes. Try to find out as much about the person as you can, and if you’re a corporate photographer like me, find out as much about the company as you can. Visit the company’s website, know the basics of what they do and what their products do.
Don’t rush the day you have the meeting. I’m not a morning person, and because of this, I rarely will schedule a meeting before 10 a.m. I do this because having a little time in the morning to wake up will avoid “Zombie Bryan” from appearing at the meeting. Take your morning slowly, have a drink of coffee and don’t rush through getting ready in the morning. Chase Jarvis has a great workflow he follows every morning, and it’s probably one of the best I’ve seen:
Optimize Your Body Language
Your body language can say a lot about you. It can show confidence, tiredness, laziness or a lack of being interested.
First and foremost, show up to your client meeting on time, or even a few minutes early. Being prompt can go a long way and can avoid any awkwardness with the client having to wait for you.
Once the client arrives, give them a firm handshake. This helps to instill confidence and will ultimately give a positive first impression of you to them.
After you sit down, it’s important to be light-hearted with your client. Don’t just jump into details about what they’re looking for — ask about who they are, what they do, etc. Get to know your client. And while doing this, smile and be responsive to show that you really care and are trying to get to know them.
When you do finally get down to the details of the photoshoot, retain that interestedness that you’ve shown.
After you leave the meeting, do a follow-up the next day. This again helps to tell the client that you care about working with them, keeping you top-of-mind when they do make a decision.
Even if you don’t get the job, it’s important to thank them for the opportunity, and tell them you’d love the opportunity to work with them if the opportunity were to present itself in the future. You’d be surprised how much a potential client can come back to you by doing this one simple act. I’ve been passed over for some shoots, but then hear a few months later that they need photos of something I’m definitely suited for. Because I’ve made the effort to stay in touch, I get those jobs.
We can often overlook how we come off to potential clients, thinking that we’re always smiling, happy-go-lucky and showing interest. But the next time you have a meeting, think it through. Are you consistently showing interest and confidence?
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