You're nervous, I'm nervous.
Welcome to our First Consultation.
All first meetings are like first dates. You try not to judge on appearances. You try to be open minded. You try to impress. You try to hide the things you're insecure about. Sometime during the date you have a mental checklist or you come to a certain conclusion. Sometimes it takes a bit of mental digestion after the meeting to come to the conclusion but usually not long. You know whether or not you like this person, trust this person and whether you expect they can follow-through.
What does a first date with us look like?
First, we send you a brief questionnaire - it helps us to be prepared. Everyone likes a prepared date. Like others, we do a bit of homework but not too intensely because we don't want to have preconceived notions.
Second, we do not charge for the first meeting. Why? Because we will work so closely together, we need to be sure there is a mutual ability to communicate, to agree on certain expectations and to determine if our personal and professional styles mesh. We don't want an expense being the first thing you think of when it comes to our first meeting. We go through a mental checklist just like you do. We have certain expectations just like you do. We want to be sure that you're open minded, listening and trust worthy also.
Third, we listen first and ask questions along the way. Business owners often have a lot on their mind - concerns and hopes. We understand that just getting that off of your brain will help you listen and be engaged more when it's our turn.
Fourth, we ask a lot of questions. Specifically we ask about your goals, the direction of your business, the past history and more.
Lastly, we will conclude the meeting with a very real, direct assessment. Either we can help you or we can't. We are not the best fit for everyone. We work with a few clients at a time so we have to be careful about the kind of work we take on. Neither of us wants to waste time. Your project and your business is a lot like choosing a home builder. If you're building a simple two bedroom home, the resources and types of professionals you will need are very different than the kind you will need to build a 12 bedroom mansion with a pool, tennis court and luxury car garage. Finding a professional to help you build your business is a lot like choosing the right home builder for the size and scope of your project and business.
During our meeting we will also go over what kind of company we are and how we differ from other marketing companies. Here are a couple of key points to know:
We are a hands-on marketing business. We do not hand you off to an associate. If you work with us, you will get a lot of communication, random check-ins, visits and... a bit of pushing and prodding. Our clients love that about us. They are busy with their passion and growing their business or spreading the word. We keep them accountable to the marketing dollars they've dedicated to us by ensuring we stay on goal, on task and on time.
We work with clients who are similar to us - their business is personal. Often the owners are very involved with daily operations as well as overall management and strategic direction. They care deeply about their employees and the long term viability of their business. We don't work with businesses whose business isn't personal. Owners instead of "corporate" can make decisions faster and often are the driving force to implementing change throughout their organization. This is key to successful marketing and growth of your business.
Lastly, we work on results, not products. We do not earn commissions on products like digital pay-per-click campaigns, advertising or referral fees from vendors we partner with. We earn our dollars by producing results. If your goal is to grow your business by increasing revenue, we agree on those numbers and work together to get there. If your goal is the successful launch of a new product, service or entry into a new market then we set those benchmarks as well. At the conclusion (and along the way), we want to always reflect and measure our results. If you achieve those kinds of results than our fees are more than paid for and our marketing becomes a growth driver rather than an expense.
Now that you know what to expect, are you ready?