Starting a business is daunting, but don’t fear. I have a few tips to make landing that first client a cinch. Starting a business is about mastering the details and minutia of registering as a business, licensing, financing, etc. But if you can’t attract clients, none of that matters. Below, I am going to share the 4 techniques I used to book my first clients.
Whomp! That’s not something you want to hear out of the gate. Stay strong, it gets better. Your product or service is amazing and you want to get paid. I get it! But until the rest of the world realizes you are amazing you have use the tried and true method of under cutting the market. Your mantra is “A High Quality Product and Experience at the Lowest Price”. You need to be very competitive with your pricing in the beginning. I stormed into the marketplace offering the best boutique wedding invitation experience for the most competitive pricing for a solid 6 months. No one could match the quality of design, execution, and customer experience. No one!
I made no profit for the first 6 months, but I built a foundation for the future. I was working to build my business, my creditability in the marketplace, and POSITIVE REVIEWS. Everyone loves a deal coupled with great quality which leads me to my next technique.
You want to be taken seriously in the marketplace. The quality of your product has to be GREAT. Notice, I did not say good. I said GREAT. The art of the deal is providing a fairly priced product that exceeds the quality of your competitors. Know and learn your craft. Know you are the best and learn all the tricks to execute like the best, but don’t wait to become a virtuoso, get into the game. The pressure to deliver will give you the push to achieve your best work. Your clients expect the best so give it to them.
Think about your best customer service experience, ever. You remember that clutch waiter or waitress that recommended the best dish, paired a great wine, seamlessly transitioned courses, poured and topped off drinks, performed a silent dance around your table, always helpful yet never intrusive. Yeah, THAT customer service experience. A rare combination of skill, knowledge, intuition, and care acting in synchrony; a desire to deliver the exceptional customer experience for every client. OK. That was a little deep, led me paddle back into the shallow end.
You understand, it needs to be exceptional. Chances are a competitor offers a fairly similar product, but you’re not selling a product. You are creating a customer service experience. You and your product share the spotlight, but you are the star. People will appreciate your product but they will rave about you, after you deliver an exceptional customer experience. About that restaurant experience at the beginning, I have no idea what I ate that night. That’s my point, it about the customer experience.
I sell and promote my products online. Social Media platforms are inexpensive tools you need to use to target potential clients. The only limit to Social media is your willingness and tenacity to harness its reach. You need to be smart, and determined to reach your potential clients. As a wedding stationer, I spent HOURS every day in Facebook buy/resell wedding groups across the country. I would post in every single one until Facebook blocked me for 24 hours. The next day, I would do it all again. I still have my team performing this exercise every single day. This is a FREE
platform to reach my exact clients. Just rinse and repeat, insert Instagram and Twitter or any other platform that can reach you target audience. Following different #hashtags is another strategy to land a client. I comment on these future- bride’s photos; tell them to check us out. A little nudge to encourage a look-see. Sure, it takes time and effort, but these social media platforms have already performed the heavy lifting by aggregating your audience.
Remember to cast a wide net; don’t silo all your effort into a single platform. Internet platforms and apps have been notorious for altering algorithms that decimate revenue and customer streams. If a change happens, be quick to react. Don’t dwell on the good-ole- days, they’re never coming back. A new paradigm demands new ideas.
I hope these techniques help you get your dream off the ground. I want to provide as many answers and solutions to help you navigate your entrepreneurial journey. To be successful you are going to be required to wear many hats and live far outside your comfort zone. You can do this, I know, because I am living it right now. With a few tips and your talent, we got this.