Do You Make a Good Second Impression?
We all know the importance of making a good first impression, but how good is your second impression?
I’m sure you’ve met people in the past who presented very well at the first meeting but then didn’t call you back or deliver what was promised and this probably changed your impression of them.
A consistent professional impression is all about your protecting personal brand and cementing your business relationships – and as you know it’s not all about how you dress!
So how do you deliver an ongoing good impression so that people spread the word about you and your business?
Like most things in business it is all about sticking to the basics:
- Deliver what you promise, when you promise it – even when it’s unlikely to turn into business. If you’ve promised to get back to someone with some further information then you must do it. In this age of social networking, bad press can spread fast. Be mindful of this, as it’s your personal brand you’re risking.
- Respect their time – send them a thank you after the meeting even if you don’t plan to see them again. It’s a good PR strategy in personal branding, it takes only minutes to do and you can also save time by setting up an email template. They’ll appreciate the effort and you never know who they might talk to.
- Treat everyone equally – by all means focus on your top clients but respond to everyone equally. Everyone deserves to be treated with respect in business, no matter what their value is to your business and remember that you never know where things might lead – don’t sabotage your potential future business.
- Be clear and honest – at the end of each meeting confirm what you will do in followup even if it’s only to stay in touch via a monthly newsletter. This ensures you can end the meeting by cementing a professional image of yourself and are clear about the followup. And if there’s no immediate business from the meeting, it still allows you to stay in touch for future opportunities and helps spread the word about your business.
Lastly, remember that a consistent professional image is key to protecting and promoting your business. In many ways it’s more important than any marketing activity you undertake and without it any marketing dollars you spend will be wasted.