First day of school, first day of a new job, first date, first day of boot camp…remember those feelings? Sometimes your customers are experiencing just those emotions when dealing with you for the first time. You’re in luck, though. I’m old and have been down that street from both sides. Plus I read a lot. Plus my sister was literally a master at confidence building. Of course this is not a self-help article; This is a helping other article.
Building confidence in others is quite difference from building confidence in yourself. Also there are multiple personality types to deal with – certain actions cause specific responses in others. There is no way in this short blog post to cover all of that psychology so we’re going to look at just a few things that can be found in the Venn intersect of all things. In other words these should fit the bill across the board.
This sounds like a no-brainer but it goes beyond the 8A to 9P retail hours you keep. This includes your website, your email, your social media, and other ways of connecting with you. Everyone already knows the first thing we all do with a new business or new business person is? Google them. You do it, I do it, your prospects do it. So be open. This does not (necessarily) mean having someone monitor Twitter 7/365 but it does mean having all major channels open.
Confession time for me would be that I can do so many different things for small business people that I have a difficult time focusing. Hopefully you will be much better than I am at focusing on your business and your interaction with future clients. If you click the “What I Do” link in the menu above you’ll see I have really tried to narrow it down and be deliberate in my choice of words and communication. Real Estate Agents, at least during the down times, were among the worst. And, I still see real estate agents who’s profiles say, “Social Media Guru, wedding planner, Network Marketer, and Diet Planner”. I think I’ve said enough. Be deliberate.
More confession time for me would include the thousands of times I blew this when I was younger. Have you ever been in a conversation with someone and it was very obvious the other person was thinking about what they were going to say the next time it was their turn instead of listening to you? Yes, we can all pretty much tell. Sometimes people just aren’t the right client for you. If you’re so desperate you have to bend your offerings to appease this client (guilty) then you really have some issues that need to be dealt with away from your clients. Listen to what they want even if you don’t have it. The best thing you can do is recommend someone who does.
Help Them Decide
Some people refer to this as “pressure” and it can feel that way. But when it gets down to it and you know your prospect is very interested in what you are offering then it is your responsibility to make sure they get it. This could be offering financing, throwing in some bonus, extending a stronger guarantee – whatever it takes within reason. If they weren’t interested in the first place they wouldn’t be there. Many years ago a partner told me, “If they weren’t interested in doing business with us they wouldn’t have dug out the yellow pages and called us.” Times have changed but he’s still right.
Get A Consultant
Do you have any idea how many ideas have exploded into life just during phone conversations with a trusted listener? Nor do I, but I know some that have happened with me. A super efficient grill was invented, a new type of radio telemetry device was created, a promising re-design of traffic signals is in the works and literally hundreds of others have been pulled screaming out of the incubator of some brilliant minds.
Be consistent. Be consistent in your message. Be consistent in your offerings. Be consistent in your service. Be consistent in your support. Be consistent in your availability. Jimmy is a great plumber…when you can find him. Dinesh is an amazing web coder….when he returns messages. David is a brilliant young developer….when he doesn’t tell the client his boss is an idiot. See where we’re going? If corrections are needed, make minor changes.
Seriously. I spend a lot of time speaking with people who never do business with me but many of them have become regular conversations. Of course I want to do something for you that helps you succeed and helps my mortgage company stay off my back. But the reality of it is I have been there, done that and got the tattoo.