5 Ways To Engage With Prospects To Make A Good First Impression

It takes less than one minute to make a first impression. People you meet, whether in person, online or over the phone, will use everything from your body language to your tone of voice to assess you and attempt to work out what makes you tick.
Whether we like it or not, the impression we make on someone in those crucial first few seconds is enduring, so it’s important to get it right. In business, making a good first impression can help you secure a new job, seal a lucrative deal or make valuable connections at an important networking event, giving you a leg up on the career ladder. 
While most of us associate first impressions with in-person meetings, the theory applies to all situations. So whether you’re calling a new client, sending a website link to a potential prospect or posting on social media, you need to get your message, and your image, spot on. What follows are 5 ways you can give yourself the advantage by improving your first impressions.


1. Give Your Website The Attention It Deserves 

Your website is your shop front. Often, it’s the first place that people encounter your company so has a significant impact on how new customers will view your business.
Firstly, it’s essential to make sure your website is up to date. If customers see Christmas offers at Easter time, or information on summer sales in the dead of winter, it can make your business look sloppy and uncared for. Updates should be done on a regular basis to keep your website current and on message.
Ensure that your website is clear, engaging and to the point. People don’t want to (and won’t) read thousands of words about your brand’s origin or philosophy, they just want to know what you can offer and why you’re the best choice for them.
Try to find a balance between providing information and provoking interest. Ideally, you want to answer a visitor’s initial questions and encourage them to get in touch to find out more. Initiating communication will allow you to begin building rapport with your new lead, increasing the chances of a conversion.
Make sure you provide visitors with a clear point of contact. People don’t want to hunt for a phone number or email address, so check that this information is obvious and easily accessible.

2. Use Your Social Media Wisely 

If your website is your business’s shop front, your social media is its soft underbelly. Your posts and profiles are your chance to show a more personal side and give your company an approachable face. The best way to connect with potential customers is to be human. If your posts can make your customers smile, laugh or think, you’ll find you’re able to relate better with followers and boost customer engagement.
When interacting with people or businesses on your social media profiles, do so in a purposeful manner. Consider the tone in which you write. Ideally, you should avoid using language that’s overly formal or corporate and try to show some humour and personality. Social media can be a fantastic way to build rapport with companies and clients, so make sure you use it wisely.

3. Be Someone People Want To Talk To 

Often, at a conference or networking event, you’ll notice that there are some people that others naturally gravitate towards. Learning how to become one of these people could help you make an even better first impression.
The easiest way to make yourself stand out in these situations is to do a little preparation. Before you go to a networking event, think about how you’re going to answer common questions in a memorable and interesting way. You’ll almost certainly be asked ‘so, what do you do?’, so make sure you’re ready with a good answer.
When talking to potential clients or contacts, be flexible in your approach. Think about how the person you’re talking to is responding. Are they matching your body language? Are they more or less animated than you? Adjusting your behaviour to reflect theirs could help you to make a connection.
Be curious in your conversations. Use open questions to encourage others to talk and make sure you listen to the answers they give. Pay attention when the other person is speaking. Don’t use the time to think of your next question or run through your ‘to do’ list, instead focus on what they’re saying and try to understand exactly what it is they’re talking about. The more genuine interest you show in others, the more they’re likely to show in you.

4. Be Prepared

Sometimes, the first interaction that you’ll have with a new contact will be in a meeting. This means that you’ll need to make a good first impression both on a personal and professional level.  
Before the meeting, think about how strong your setup is. It’s also important to be clear about the purpose of the meeting and what you want to achieve from the occasion. During the meeting, you’ll need to demonstrate to other participants that you’re worth listening to, so make sure you put the preparation work in before you walk into the room.

5. Be Real 

One of the most important things to remember when meeting people for the first time is to be yourself – just a slightly more prepared version. For years, we were told to ‘fake it till you make it’. However, in reality, this simply doesn’t work, and the days of pretending to be something you’re not are long gone. In most cases, putting on an act will only lead to imposter syndrome, causing you to feel less confident further down the line.
Being prepared before a first meeting will help you to come across as confident, assured and capable. Remember to trust in your abilities and to remind yourself that you’re there because you deserve to be.

Contact Us 

To learn more about making a good first impression and building your influence, or to find out how we can help you hone your professional skills, get in touch with an expert member of our team today.


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