A GOOD FIRST IMPRESSION
You only get one chance to make a good first impression. That statement may be cliché, but it is true. In sales terms another maxim is almost more important; first impression last. However you look at it, selling is easier if first impression lead people to positive conclusions, and prompt thoughts like: that’s a good start – so far so good- I like that, now what comes next?
Sometimes this can be achieved simply and it is specific to the individual; it is something they do. Sometimes, more rarely perhaps, the impression stems from the whole company, and more rarely still, it is something that achieves a real wow factor.
At international construction machinery company JCB….
Here is a company that certainly wows first-time visitors to its factory in the English Midlands, especially those who come from overseas. Its product needs demonstrating so it no doubt has visitors aplenty. Imagine: you fly from where – Peru or Paris – and even if you are not familiar with the country, you know that the place you will visit is a significant journey from London. (You imagine the usual hazards of any journey – traffic, holds –ups and so on). But your hosts say they will meet you at Heathrow Airport, London, so that sounds a little easier.
Then the meeting turns out to be brief connection to the company helicopter and a very straightforward direct flight, of only an hour or so, which lands you in the landscaped grounds around the factory.
Not everyone can run to company helicopter, but attention to any detail at first contact that will give the right impression is worthwhile and helps set the scene for the subsequent meeting. The helicopter may be a dramatic way of doing things, but it is really only one way of providing extra service and convenience to customers. This is true of the individual, several individual, several individuals, or the organization itself.
- Seek to make genuine service, rather than gimmicks enhance customer acceptance
- Ensure that there are management processes to consider/ approve expenditure on such things (though not necessarily of this magnitude!).