Breaking the Ice and Winning Over the Client

Wherever you turn these days you'll find articles covering every business strategy and tactic available to man from how to make a great presentation to strategies for success all the way to negotiations and prospecting and getting a client to commit. But hardly anyone touches on the subject of breaking the ice with a new client and winning them over.

Experts say it takes only three seconds to make a first impression. That doesn't give you much time to dazzle someone with your professionalism and polish, especially since it's so difficult to change a first impression. Naturally that leaves most of us a bit concerned when meeting someone for the very first time, especially if a lot is riding on your presentation.

Since your success is based heavily on your approach along with your understanding of the potential client's goals and purpose, it is up to you to plan for that first moment of breaking the ice. If you investigate the approach and attitude of top producers you'll discover that they all use some similar strategies for meeting and greeting a new client. Because they know just how important it is to prepare for the first meeting and how crucial it is to break the ice correctly, they come well prepared.

Consequently, whether your communication begins with a simple e- mail message, telephone call or person to person visit, the first contact is the most important. How you present yourself along with the questions you ask determines your success. And while there are no guarantees that any one strategy will work every time, applying the following few techniques will help make an impression that will certainly impact your very next presentation.

Make Your First Meeting Count !

  • The first and most important strategy for breaking ice is being fully prepared. And the best way to prepare is by knowing all you can about the company or individual you are planning to address. Prior to making an appointment, conduct some preliminary research about the company and individual so that you feel confident when making the first contact. Bios or articles about the person are often posted on the Internet so it's usually easy to find information. By knowing the company's history or something about the individual, you'll be in a better position to know what the prospect needs. Familiarizing yourself with the prospect opens the way to conversation.

  • To gain the respect of a potential client, there's a lot more to communicating than just words. Your body language and your tone speak as loudly as the words you say, therefore each presentation must be offered with cheerfulness and confidence. Needless to say, your overall appearance is critically important to the way you present yourself. Feeling good about your appearance is critically important to the way you present yourself. In fact the confidence you feel both about yourself and your product might well be the primary ingredient for winning over a prospective client. When it comes to speaking about your product and your service, it is your confidence and belief in your product that does most of the selling. So during the first moment of meeting, greet the person with a firm handshake along with good eye contact. Stand and walk tall, keeping your shoulders back and your head erect. And don't forget to smile.

  • We hear a lot today about the value of connecting with a person, yet what does That really mean? A connection comes when two people meet on common ground. One way you can connect with a potential prospect is by being your authentic self. Allow your personality, integrity and sense of humor to shine through. If the person you're meeting is aloof or hard to connect with, they might just need a bit more convincing. So rather than leaping right into the sales presentation the minute you start talking, speak first about some mutually interesting topics of conversation. If you did your homework you already know something about the company or the person, therefore you might try opening on a light note. After a few minutes, when you've had some time to relax and establish rapport, you can launch into your presentation.

  • There may be times when you meet with a client and you don't feel an immediate connection. Although your first instinct is to run and find someone who's a bit more compatible, perhaps you might consider viewing the situation from a new perspective. Consider it a challenge. Trying to find ways to connect with the person and then achieving it can be very rewarding. After all, your mission is to be the most important resource to your client therefore your goal is to impress the potential client with your ability to solve their problems. Pay careful attention to what the client really needs by actively listening. Don't oversell or try to convince the client that what you have is absolutely perfect for them. State clearly and plainly how you'll be able to help the client. Basically, before quitting on a potential client do your best to gain insight into the client's needs. If it doesn't work, you'll know you gave it your best shot.

  • Listening to what your client has to say is extremely important. It may be basic Knowledge that one should listen and not talk too much, but in our exuberance to sell we often forget to listen. When paying attention to conversation, you learn a lot about the potential client. Therefore, a good rule of thumb is to listen more, talk less and glean the knowledge that will help you understand the prospect's goals, concerns and overall needs. Ask questions, but be sure to pay attention to the answers. Additionally, use common courtesy by letting the prospect know that you understand how precious time is to him. If you requested 30 minutes and the potential client agreed, respect that time frame.

    Breaking the ice can at times seems like a difficult task, but if you're genuinely committed to helping your potential client, it won't be difficult. Be sincere, respectful and open-minded. Take the time to understand the client's needs and they'll take the time to understand yours. If you plan, prepare and manage the initial breaking of the ice effectively, the potential prospect will soon be considered a well-established business associate.

    About The Author

    Robert Moment -- Author, Business Coach and Strategist, is the Author of best-selling book, 'It Only Takes a Moment to Score'. Founder of The Moment Group, a Small Business Coaching & Consulting Firm, Robert helps entrepreneurs harness their potential and soar to new heights. Contact: mailto:[email protected] or visit his web site at: http://www.sellintegrity.com.

    In The News:

    This RSS feed URL is deprecated, please update. New URLs can be found in the footers at https://news.google.com/news

    Forbes

    Bookstore Sales Are Up Again
    Forbes
    Bookstore sales increased in March of 2018 over March of 2017 according to the US Census Bureau. The increase--which follows February's 2.3% increase in sales--came at 3.75%. January of 2018 saw a decrease over 2017, with the industry ailing from a ...


    Fortune

    Google Home Sales Outpace Amazon's Echo for the First Time
    Fortune
    In the first quarter of 2018, Amazon Echo sales of 2.5 million fell short of Google Home's 3.1 million, according to estimates from analyst company Canalys. Amazon and Google haven't released official sales numbers for either device. It's the first ...
    Massive Reversal: Google Home Sales Explode 483% To Beat Amazon Echo For Smart Speaker CrownForbes
    Woman says her Amazon device recorded private conversation, sent it out to random contactKIRO Seattle

    all 682 news articles »

    Forbes

    Memorial Day Sales For Your Home: Steep Discounts To Upgrade ...
    Forbes
    Memorial Day Weekend sales are a great excuse to upgrade your home. Whether you're looking for a new smart mattress (yes, those exist!) that will provide you ...

    and more »

    NPR Illinois | 91.9 UIS

    Bill Would Ban Tobacco Sales To Youth Under 21
    NPR Illinois | 91.9 UIS
    A measure in play at the Statehouse would make it a crime to sell tobacco products, including cigarettes and vaping devices, to those under age 21. Laura Sido of East Alton worked in bars and restaurants all of her adult life. She smoked on and off ...

    and more »

    Bloomberg

    Sales of Headset Maker Turtle Beach Surge Thanks To Fortnite
    Bloomberg
    Sales for headset maker Turtle Beach are surging on the popularity of Fortnite and other battle royal video games #tictocnews (Source: Bloomberg). Terms of Service · Trademarks Privacy Policy ©2018 Bloomberg L.P. All Rights Reserved. Careers Made in ...


    Alabama NewsCenter

    Wiregrass April home sales up 25 percent from a year ago
    Alabama NewsCenter
    Sales: According to the Wiregrass Multiple Listing Service, there were 105 residential sales in the Wiregrass region during April, a 25 percent increase from one year ago. Existing single-family homes accounted for 92 percent of residential sales ...


    New York Times

    Banks Tried to Curb Gun Sales. Now Republicans Are Trying to Stop ...
    New York Times
    Since a few big banks restricted financing for the gun industry, some lawmakers — many of them Wall Street allies — are looking for ways to squelch what they ...

    and more »

    Dallas News

    Dallas safety exchange zone for online sales is a good idea that needs to be expanded
    Dallas News
    Chances are good that you've bought or sold something using an online marketplace site. And you've probably had that queasy feeling in your gut prior to the meet-up, wondering whether the exchange with a random stranger will be safe and problem-free.


    Los Angeles Times

    The trend of bare-bones ticket sales is spreading to transatlantic flights
    Los Angeles Times
    Lufthansa said its "Economy Light" fares for flights to and from North America will go on sale this summer. The Light fares are also available from other subsidiaries of the Lufthansa Group, including Swiss International, Brussels and Austrian airlines ...

    and more »

    NewBeauty Magazine (blog)

    The 11 Best Beauty Sales This Memorial Day Weekend
    NewBeauty Magazine (blog)
    Us? Well, we might be at the beach but you can bet we're scrolling through the sales under our umbrellas. To get the most bang for your buck, we found the top beauty sales you can shop online right now. From makeup to haircare to skin, see the best ...

    and more »
    Google News

  • The Art Of Cold Calling

    I know, don't groan. You have to do them if... Read More

    The Importance of Good Sales Leads

    An important part of your business plan should be to... Read More

    Letting Them Use Plastic

    Obtaining merchant status will help to increase your sales. Consumers... Read More

    Cold Calling Pressure Reduction

    Who likes cold calling? Most salespeople don't like cold calling,... Read More

    How to Generate Leads on the Internet

    In the last decade, the Internet has become a major... Read More

    Lock, Stock, and Barrel!

    The other night I was watching a classic western from... Read More

    The Most Important Word in a Business Letter

    What do you think it is? Many experts insist it's... Read More

    Instead of Discounting, Back Some Value Out of Your Proposal

    Last minute discounting has become so prevalent that many companies... Read More

    Want More Sales? Write A Barry Bonds Sales Letter

    I'm not a baseball fan. Never have been. In fact,... Read More

    Telephone Techniques

    TELEPHONE TECHNIQUESSelling face to face is different from selling on... Read More

    Focus on a Trade - Not a Discount

    Smart buyers will always ask for a better price. Unfortunately,... Read More

    The Benefits of Metal Store Fixtures

    Your choice of materials for store fixtures includes wood, metal,... Read More

    Restaurant Pressure Washing

    Many pressure washing companies try to stay away from the... Read More

    7 Ways to Stop Selling & Start Building Relationships

    Sometimes we can all use a friendly reminder to keep... Read More

    3 Ways To Sell and Have Fun Doing It

    There are many ways to sell and have fun doing... Read More

    Overcoming the Fear of Selling

    For many of you the Fear of Selling is a... Read More

    Are You a Cultivator or a Harvester?

    As a result of providing marketing consulting, training and coaching... Read More

    What is a Pitch?

    I've been training in countries outside the U.S. recently, and... Read More

    Grow Your Business By Increasing the Value of Each Sale - 29 Ideas to Spur Your Brain

    There are 3 ways to grow any business:- Get more... Read More

    Write On The Money: The Ten Commandments (Plus Five) Of Profitable Sales Letter Writing

    According to the Direct Marketing Association, in 2003 U.S. direct... Read More

    Nine Keys to Make your Sales Copy Convincing

    Would you pay $12,500 to discover the keys to great... Read More

    More Cleaning and Janitorial Customers Using Yahoo

    We use this method to find new cleaningcustomers, and it... Read More

    Are You REALLY Listening?

    Being a good listener requires more than just keeping quiet... Read More

    Creating More Effective Proposals

    The need for good proposals - the business kind, not... Read More

    60 Ways to Increase Your Mail Order Catalog Sales

    This article is meant to inform. Please don't construe this... Read More