You are the biggest part of making any sale. So, this week (aside from answering a few of your questions from last week) I’d like to make five suggestions on how to handle yourself at that first meeting to have the client fall in love with you (first step in getting a job).
- Be yourself. Your clients are just people and most folks respond very well when someone is just real. If you are nervous, it’s okay to show it. It makes you look vulnerable. (I happen to like vulnerability, and so do most clients)
- Always be truthful. I used to find myself exaggerating my accomplishments to make a sale, but it always backfired later. As long as you show your clients that you are willing and open to try anything they need, you might just gain their trust and their job.
- Let them feel heard. Practice being a good listener. When I am being interviewed for a job, I get so nervous that at times I want to start rambling about myself or my accomplishments. However, it’s best just to sit back and listen as if you were a therapist. (For those of you like me who have been to therapy.)
- If totally possible, do not make this first meeting about discussing money. This meeting should be mostly about showing your client three things: 1) That you are the right person for the job. 2) You can be trusted to do your best. 3) Your main goal is to give them what they want and make them happy. If they insist on talking about money, please tell them you’ll have someone get back to them ASAP.
- If you’re an artist, do not discuss money with your clients. If you are like me, you might also fall in love with the clients and want to give almost everything away. Have your associate or designated “business person” discuss money and budgets with your clients on your behalf. This leaves you in a place of always being the artist you are in your client’s eyes.
An example of one of my inspiration/mood boards. To download this mood board, click here.
Some answers from last week’s questions:
Question: Is it okay to use a computer or iPad to show images of our work?
Answer: Of course this is perfectly fine. However, I am a bit “old school” and like to show them large prints of my images. The work feels like it almost jumps off of the print and I’ve found it to be very effective.
Question: What is a good marketing tool for someone who is just starting and may not have a portfolio?
Answer: Create a storyboard of images you like and find inspiring (as long as you give proper credit to each artist). Your main goal is to show your clients you are an artist with a good eye.
Question: Am I in danger of giving away too much by using inspiration boards, especially if the client has not signed on?
Answer: You’re no more in danger than we all are in actually showing them pictures of our work in person or online. We should remember that most clients are looking for ideas for their event. The bummer comes when they take your idea and have someone else do it. So, I suggest taking the five points I just stated above to heart, and have this new client fall in love with you enough to use your services.
Question: Could you please tell me where to find the table in last week’s picture?
Answer: Thanks for asking. This is my own one of a kind design that I am considering marketing in a future date.
Tell me, what is your biggest concern about getting a new client to sign on with you? If you have 10 interviews with clients, what percentage do you actually get?