Whether we like it or not, people do judge by appearances. In fact, research indicates that people judge others in 10 to 15 seconds of meeting. Not much time to make a fair assessment, yet that is simply the way it works. And the same principle applies when someone views your e-mail, looks at your website or hears your telephone communication. Just 15 seconds is all you get to make your first impression.
Based on that statistic, doesn’t it make sense that you should start the New Year off with a new resolution, one that suggests you pay more attention to how you communicate? Given that many of your clients will never visibly see you, the way you present yourself through e-mail, website or telephone communication speaks volumes.
In the past, we worried a great deal about how we were dressed for professional presentations and were bombarded with opinions and articles related to dressing for success. Yet in today’s technological age, many of our clients never see us. Therefore we are judged strictly on our written or telephone presentation. Unfortunately, we don’t necessarily have control over how people perceive us, but we do have control in the way we send messages. The key to building a successful client base starts with how you convey your communication.
Stop for a moment right now and consider what your communications are saying about you. Is your tone friendly and supportive? Are you easily accessible? Do you respond quickly to inquiries? Are your e-mail messages gracious or curt? Do you convey sincerity, interest and professionalism when speaking on the phone.
The next time you have the opportunity to communicate with someone via e-mail or phone consider carefully how you respond. Bear in mind that a bit of personal rapport combined with excellent customer service goes a long way.
Key Points to Consider:
1. Make sure your messages are not curt or aloof but are always friendly and approachable. If a person has provided a name, use it. Don’t respond by saying hello, hi or good day. People enjoy hearing their names used.
2. Be receptive to inquiries and respond quickly. Don’t think that waiting will indicate you’re very busy. If you don’t respond quickly, someone else will get your business.
3. Carefully review any of your written material making sure there are no spelling errors. I’m not suggesting that you have to write a masterpiece, but if your message is important enough to attract a new client, it might be worth your while to be sure it’s well written.
4. Communicate a level of honesty and trust. Sincerity takes people very far and when your message is communicated with authenticity and appreciation for the potential client, you have a much better chance of gaining a new client.
Pleasant and professional attitudes go a long way in reaching your goals. So the next time you have an opportunity to make a presentation, whether through e-mail or telephone, stop for a moment and think about your New Year resolution. With so much competition out there, you want to stand above the crowd, so make every effort to rate high when communicating. Remember, every word you utter, whether through an important proposal or through a simple telephone conversation, represents your image and your business. Give careful attention to your level of integrity through the words you speak or write.
About the Author
Charlene Rashkow brings 15 years of experience as a Writing Stylist/Consultant to her creative efforts as a freelance writer. She has successfully helped companies and individuals reach their objectives by writing exceptional web site content, press releases, bios, and articles of interest, business plans, proposals and all other forms of professional or personal material. You may visit Charlene Rashkow at http://www.allyourwritingneeds.com .