Thursday, September 13, 2012

Making a Good First Impression in Business

When we meet someone, the first five minutes usually establishes the "first impression trajectory." First impressions are decisive of whether a relationship will be short-lived or flourish. The same holds true in business. An owner should always lead with the best features of the business. The window for convincing a consumer that a product or service can meet their needs is relatively small. The conveyed information should do a few things: (1) hold the consumers' attention, (2) inform, (3) and convince them of the value.
We live in a world overflowing with consumerism where people have many options of where to take their business. Consumers are faced with a barrage of products and services. You have to make the best first impression. The initial opportunity to garner an audience can be through advertising or sampling of products. However you orchestrate that first introduction, it needs to happen. It is the precursor to generating and maintaining the interest of the consumer. You can grab a consumer's complete attention when what you are offering is relevant to their needs. Take the time to create an effective marketing blurb. The blurb should not be a sales pitch, but a recurring theme that keeps the consumer interested.
Next, you must educate the consumer. This will include relevant information on use of products, benefits, and how to get the product or service. It is often said that you may describe something by describing what it's not. However, that is not the best impression. Never define something negatively. Suppose you meet someone for the first time and they begin the conversation by saying: "I am not a liar, I am not thief." That would be really awkward. The same is true for promoting your business that way. Start with the good news! What is this product or service? Why is it special or different? This can help you get your foot in the (consumer's) door. Don't be repetitive. People only need to hear information once, or else you might alienate them.
Finally, you must convince consumers why what you have is better than your competitors. Generally consumers will do their own comparisons. If you can create a platform for that comparison, you should. This includes answering the ultimate question of why a consumer should buy your product instead of another. Don't spend much time on the competitor, but showcase what is great about your product or service. Uniqueness is a key selling factor because it is the main differentiator. Highlight the value to ensure a lasting impression on the consumer and manage their expectations.

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