I've been really busy lately and haven't been on the board as much as I'd like but I wanted to share a quick and simple tip that should help beginners make their vision more of a reality. It's so simple, in fact, that you can do it by the end of the day. Here it is:
Get yourself some business cards
Now, I know this might sound a little obvious but let me explain. When I first started out I found that one of the hardest problems I faced was convincing other people that what I was doing was real and that I was serious about it.
This is why business cards are so great. I had been doing a lot of work but when I first got my cards my business somehow felt more real. When someone asked me what it is that I do I could hand them my card. I realized that I no longer had to convince them of anything.
Business cards will add legitimacy to what you're doing. When you hand someone your card you will feel more confident about what you do and that will show through when you speak to potential clients or customers. They will be more willing to listen because you seem more confident and legitimate.
Business cards are also cheap, you can get them printed up for $20 or even less if you look around. They can represent some of the best money you've invested in yourself and your future.
I want to throw in a few extra tips that coincide with the cards. These are:
Always have some with you
Know what to say when you hand one out
Always keeping them with you is obvious. There were plenty of times when I really wish I had my cards. One day I was floating around in a pool at a friend's BBQ when I got into a discussion of business with another guest. They needed the service I provide but I didn't have my cards!
Knowing what to say when you hand one out is slightly less obvious. There are many times when I hand out a card and the other person will ask me what it is that I do. This is the time when you need a concise, one sentence explanation of what it is your business does. Try to make it roll off the tongue. Here is an example:
Don't say: "It's an SEO marketing company."
Do say: "My/Our company helps businesses of all sizes achieve a more effective and profitable web presence through strategic search engine optimization."
Notice how the first statement leaves too much room for questions like "What is that?" while the second clearly defines what you do and opens the discussion to what you can do for this potential client.
Remember, it's all about confidence. Handing someone your card is even more important than the way you shake their hand.
So I hope this has helped a few beginners who need a simple trick to make their business more real, instill confidence in what they do and get more clients!
If you have any questions, please feel free to ask.