Anyone looking for investors for their business knows the importance of a great first impression. Research tells us that people can form powerful ideas about others in as little as seven seconds. The look, smell, and body language of an individual give clues about the way they behave, think, and carry themselves throughout life. Whether we develop insightful feelings about others or not based upon these first seconds of a new interaction with strangers is irrelevant when seeking startup or continuing business funding. What matters is using this to your advantage in order to always leave a great impression on those you hope to receive money from. Here’s how to make an impression your investors won’t forget.
Know your stats like the back of your hand.
A surefire way to make an impact when you meet a lender for the first time is to know your business inside and out. You know he or she will ask about sales figures, production costs, rent, and other overheads. You need to know these without hesitation, but also take the time to go over other expenses and minute aspects of the business model that the lender might not ask about in the first meeting. This is like a job interview for your whole small business. It’s your chance to impress, and nothing impresses like a mind like a steel trap. If you can talk about projections, potential hurdles going into the next phase of business development, or the way a proposed law will impact your ability to sell you will create the air of incredible knowledge for lenders considering your company. Knowing everything about the business you are in should be a priority anyway, but being able to discuss with confidence the minutia that affects entities in the space will work powerfully in your favor while hunting for capital to continue growing your market presence.
This is also true for Franchise Lenders. Knowing the business you want to get into is a great way to impress venture capitalists. When considering starting a franchise you should familiarize yourself with the business, but going above and beyond here shows that you are willing to put in the work required to be successful in a business that you haven’t yet entered. This kind of knowledge really impresses prospective investors.
Dress to impress.
The other half of the coin is in your appearance. While far less important long term, a first impression relies primarily on visual and other sensory cues that are more readily apparent than intellect. Your knowledge base will become evident as you speak more on the subjects surrounding the business, but before you open your mouth, lenders are already sizing you up, from your business dress to your haircut and gait. Looking at the part is crucial.
The first part of this necessity is, of course, your business attire. Wearing a dress or smart skirt with a blazer in a neutral color to the meeting is a great way to make a lasting impression. Applicants for funding of all sorts should always dress up for the occasion since business casual or other casual attire simply won’t do, so leave the sneakers and sandals home. Making sure you look your best is a great way to feel your best too, helping you to impart your personality and knowledge effortlessly, sealing the deal with investors.
Another component is in personal hygiene. Manicured nails, a fresh haircut, and a mint right before the meeting are all great ways to show off your own efforts in maintaining yourself and speak volumes about the way you handle smaller details in daily life and in the workplace. These little things are big indicators for lenders, so don’t let them fall by the wayside just because you are preparing the big-ticket items for the meeting.
Go in with confidence and look your best in order to secure the investments you are looking for to advance your career.