Making your business seem like it is bigger than it actually is can go a long way in helping you to secure larger clients. It will also make customers feel more secure when dealing with you, and can give your voice more authority. Punching above your weight when it comes to making first impressions is easier than you might think, and many of the available strategies are very cost effective.
Put some extra effort into your website
Your website is almost always going to be potential customers’ first point of call. The impression that your website makes on them can seriously influence their perception of your company. A website that has a dated design, difficult navigation or poorly written copy will instantly give them the impression that you’re a small or amateur company. It is also recommendable to invest in some SEO assistance. SEO stands for search engine optimisation, and will help you appear near the top of search engine results.
Work on your social media presence
Developing an active and current social media presence can help a business connect with their customers and will assist in making the company appear more prominent and experienced than it may actually be. Social media sites increase the amount of information that can be found on a business, and are usually far more engaging (and cheaper!) than traditional forms of advertising. People assume that businesses with a lot of online material have been there for a long time. If a company has a lot of ‘followers’, it creates a sense of age and goes a long way in enhancing the image of the brand.
Invest in your promotional materials
Professionally designed business cards with consistent stationery and letterheads will give a business credibility. Printing the details on cheques and envelopes, rather than posting them hand-written, are small and cost-effective options that will also assist in this area.
Get a virtual office
If your business cannot afford a full time receptionist, setting up a virtual office can have the same effect at a much cheaper cost. Having a virtual employee answer phone calls and manage customer service from an outside location means eliminating the costs of actual employment while giving the impression that the business is much bigger than it is.
Turning a vehicle into a company car
To visit clients is often essential for small businesses and pulling up in a company branded car can give a business respectability and show professionalism. This will also give you the added benefit of getting your brand noticed on the street.
Spreading the word
To get the attention of bigger potential clients, it may be necessary to spread the word on some of the other big-name clients the business has had. Once a business has obtained a few large contracts, using this as leverage to secure other clients will be easy. Business owners should mention these previous jobs in meetings and show the work on their websites.