Whether you’re courting a new client or cultivating a long-standing business relationship, everyone wants to be impressive. Unfortunately, working at home can present a challenge when you need to meet in person to close a deal.
On the one hand, you might not have the money to be wining and dining your clients. On the other, your desk beside a nursery and screaming child isn’t going to be encouraging any signatures either.
It’s a situation that’s more common than you think. For start-ups, most capital is placed into the business. Buying expensive lunches to try and secure a deal simply isn’t possible, unless you put it on credit.
Fortunately, some credit cards offer enticing awards when taking prospective clients out. The Capital One Savor is a particular popular card for this, in which you can get 4% back when spending on dining and entertainment, meaning you won’t just secure a deal for the long term, but earn a little back in the short term too.
You can check it out here, where there’s a full review, but once you’ve got the money to begin to take clients out, what sort of places will impress them?
Dinner is a first choice for many and one you really can’t go wrong with. It’s the perfect place to discuss work, whether it be a lunch meeting or evening meal and allows you not only to discuss business but also get to know your clients on a more personal level.
You can tailor dinner to the type of client they are quite easily. A high-paying, or soon to be high-paying, client would likely require a more fine-dining experience, while someone in the arts or a younger client may be more suited to a nice casual spot. You can usually get a good idea of your client’s tastes as you get to know them further.
Naturally, it’s probably a good idea to find out any particular allergies or dietary requirements before choosing a location.
If you’re feeling particularly extravagant and want to treat your potential clients, a trip for a drink on a rooftop bar with fizz never ceases to impress.
Taking a client to a place with a spectacular view, with nice drinks and a private spot to discuss business can be the perfect spot, particularly if you can go following a productive meeting.
A drink and a place to unwind alongside your client can often be a signal that you feel relaxed in their company, breaking down the barrier between client and business and ensuring the relationship is maintained as a happy one.
Of course, champagne isn’t a necessity. A pint of beer in a craft beer bar or even a coffee shop can do exactly the same job. It’s about reading the situation and your clients’ interests.
Add Some Excitement
Again, you can really get an idea what a client might like through the conversations you have, and if they seem like they might enjoy some added excitement, this could be a great move to seal the deal.
Activities such as bowling can be a fun evening out and bring everyone together, while you could even go the whole hog and take them on an experience such as to the racetrack or a football game.
In these instances it’s unlikely you’ll get much business talk done as there will be too much going on, so these are ideal for post-meeting and having a little fun.
It’s important to get to know your clients, so you can show a real understanding on your own part.
You could be up against a competitor who offers the same sort of qualities, pricing structure, and work completion time as yourself, but because you’ve gone that extra mile to find out your client loves the Cowboys and then taken them to a Cowboys game, it’ll give you the edge.
It also shows that you listen to the details in a conversation, which of course goes a long way when being briefed on the work that needs to be done.
Just paying that little extra to impress your clients and seal the deal can make all the difference and begin a lucrative and productive relationship. It really is a case of spend a penny now, earn a pound later.