Wikipedia has quite a write up on the aphorism fake it til you make it. In the business world, perception is everything. If potential clients think your business is too small and unimportant, they will take their custom to competitors. To be taken more seriously, you might have to look bigger than you really are just to be a part of the conversation that can turn into sales and repeat business.
Here are some tips on how to do just that:
Make your events look big
Anytime you put on a conference, you get to dictate everything about your image. You don’t have to rent a large hall that you can’t fill or afford. Even a smaller space can look important if it is decked out in just the right way.
Event spaces must be clean, uncluttered, well-organized, and well-located. Microsoft, one of the biggest tech companies in the world, just recently put on a conference that was none of that. And they suffered the ire of the reporters they invited.
Rather than keeping participants in the dark about what to expect, provide them with an app for whatever platform they prefer to use. Make sure it is customized to your specifications, allows you to update schedules on the fly, and allow participants to have a safe environment for communication, thus guaranteeing high engagement among participants.
If your IT people can’t produce such an app, you will need to look for professionals. Whomever you choose, make sure they have the flexibility to handle apps for internal and external corporate events, as well as global and regional associations. You will want to maintain continuity of quality across all your events. For information on creating a branded, up-to-date mobile guide for attendees, read about the new DoubleDutch data driven event app.
If your wine comes in a bag, you’re a wino. If it comes in an artistically crafted bottle, you’re a connoisseur. Put your products in artistically crafted shipping boxes with your style, colors, and logo, and make your customers connoisseurs of fine products.
A plain, brown box is not the best way to make an impression. It looks like something that belongs out next to the dumpster. The colorful printed boxes look like something you would be proud to have on the receptionist’s desk in the waiting room. That is the packaging that is going to make your potential clients feel like they are working with a big company that has its act together.
A professional website
There was a time when a business card conveyed your name, phone number, fax number, address, and logo. Today, it is not uncommon to receive a business card with nothing more printed on it than a URL.
Even if you choose to festoon your business card with all manner of unnecessary information and decorative flourishes, the most important piece of information will still be the URL. You absolutely need a website of some kind to be taken seriously. Imagine how much business you would have received if the answer to the question, ‘What’s your phone number’ was, ‘Sorry. I Don’t have one.’ You would have either been mocked or pitied, but never taken seriously.
Your website may only be an informational blog that you only update a couple of times a week. However, it is worth having as it is expected by your customers. Also, a professional website masks the size of your business. No one can tell you are a one-person shop if your site is a professional as the big players. Make sure your website has a well presented About Us page – it is one of the most frequented pages on a website.
Just a quick word of warning: Don’t overdo it. If you make yourself look too big, you might just catch a bigger fish than you can handle. GT Advance was a smallish company with some big ideas. They caught Apple’s attention, and couldn’t handle the demands. Now, they’re bankrupt. It is easy to make yourself look big. Just don’t bite off more than you can chew.