How often do we focus exclusively on our client in business and forget to talk a bit about ourselves? Don’t underestimate the power of finding those points of connection that will set you apart from your competitors. It can be as simple as gathering any of the following information:
- Where are they from?
- Where did they grow up?
- Who is their favorite sports team?
- Do they have a favorite restaurant or food type (Italian, Mexican, and Chinese)?
- Where is their favorite vacation spot?
- Do they have a fantasy destination?
- What school are their kids in?
- What college did they graduate from, or are the kids headed to college?
Yes, you can include politics and religion though I don’t generally recommend it unless you met at church! Interestingly I have found that most of my clients share my same political views, like attracts like.
By finding out some of these critical factors you will learn how you can connect to your client. I have had clients hire me not only for my portfolio but also because:
- We have the same university as our alma mater, though different majors and years apart.
- We are both from the West Coast, though I was Southern California and she was Northern.
- She attended the same boarding school as my younger sister, years apart.
- I’ve been to Africa on Safari and it was on their list of fantasy adventures.
- We both love Hawaii and can share places to go.
- We share a love of art and museum trips, having met on a bus trip sponsored by a museum.
Personal points of connection set you apart and allow your clients to connect with you beyond business. In this age of hi-tech and low touch, business is all about reaching out and touching in real time, not just cyberspace. It is the same reason everyone watches reality TV shows, they want an inside peek at someone else’s life. Remember women bond over boutiques, so if you can compliment her on something she is wearing, and be genuine in that, you’ll gain a new resource and get that much closer to a new client. Men bond over sports, so if you share a love of the same teams go for it. If, on the other hand you are a rival, be diplomatic and keep your sense of humor. Allow your clients a glimpse of your life beyond business; it will make you much more real and possibly irreplaceable!
– – – – –
Want to Use This Article in Your E-zine or Website? You can, as long as you include this complete blurb with it: Interior design entrepreneur, speaker, and coach Melissa Galt publishes the award-winning “Interior Destinations” bi-weekly ezine with 3,500+ subscribers. If you’re ready to jump-start your marketing, make more money, and have more fun in your small business, sign up now for your FREE tips and your personal subscription at www.melissagalt.com.