How to Get Your First Client
- December 3, 2018
- Posted by: Quarles Business and Financial Strategists
- Category: Business Advice
How to Get Your First Client
A big first step in starting a new business is getting your first client.
You’ve had a great idea, found the right business location and are ready to start offering your great service to the world.
Now you need to find someone who is interested in your business and willing to hire you.
Check out our 10 Tips on How to Get Your First Client.
Start with Enough Resources
Even if you have a great service to offer, it is hard to know exactly how long it will take to get your first client.
It is important that you have enough money to get by, while also investing in the necessary processes to find potential clients.
It will take some time to be profitable, so make sure you have enough money saved up or have gone through a plan with a financial advisor.
Do your market research
Having a good idea of your target audience and your competitors will be critical to finding your first client.
Firstly, it will give you a better idea of who you should be approaching and where to look for clients.
You will also know what else is on the market, and how to tailor your pitch so you can stand out and offer something different to your prospects.
Use Your Existing Connections
People are more inclined to work with people they know. While meeting new people is also an important step in this process, you should first take advantage of your current network.
You may find someone who already needs the service you are offering, or someone who will be willing to help you out.
Finding a client in the people you already know will be a great way to gain experience and generate positive word of mouth, which is one of the best ways to find more clients.
Get involved in your community
Similarly to how people work with those that they know, they also favour people who live nearby.
Clients can be found at kid’s sports games, religious gatherings or through relationships formed in volunteer organisations.
Pro-bono work can help you gain more experience as well as meeting new people and putting yourself out there. Don’t underestimate the power of community in meeting prospects.
Connect with Local Business Partners
For a new startup, connecting with new businesses through things like networking events is one of the best ways to find clients.
Joining a networking group and attending events will allow you to meet lots of prospective clients who are more likely to trust you. You may also form new business relationships that will help you in other ways even if they don’t become a client of yours.
The key to finding your first client is building trust, and networking events are the perfect place to do that.
Use cold calls and cold emails
This may go against what we said earlier, but cold calls and cold emails can still work.
These are an effective way to reach a large number of people, and if you’ve done your research and you have a great sales pitch ready they can still be quite effective.
Create a list of businesses or prospects who might need your service, and then try contacting them. If you contact enough people, there is a good chance that you’ll find a prospect.
Offer a trial period or incentives for new clients
Even if you don’t profit off new clients, they will still bring you value in other ways.
Doing work and gaining experience will help you generate a portfolio, and will make other prospects have more faith in your ability.
You can also generate positive word of mouth if you do a good job for your new clients.
People who become a client due to a discount will probably stick around if you do a good job, so don’t be afraid to offer a hesitant prospect an incentive.
Get Your Business Online
It’s impossible to ignore the huge potential of the internet in finding new clients. By establishing yourself on social media, you can deliver your message to a range of potential prospects.
Depending on your industry, channels such as LinkedIn, Facebook & Twitter could be a valuable source of new prospects. Creating your own website or blog could help attract prospects to your business, although you might be better of investing in these further down the line.
When you are trying to get your first client, make sure you take advantage of the huge wealth of potential prospects online.
Find Jobs Wherever You Can
There may be people already asking for the service that you offer, on things like job noticeboards and freelance websites.
You shouldn’t undervalue having experience and previous projects to show your future prospects.
If you find a good job out there, it will help give you some cash to get by and build your portfolio even if they aren’t your ideal client.
Don’t Give Up
Starting a business is hard, and many startups fail. However, by working hard and persevering, you can give yourself the best chance of success.
Even if things start to feel hopeless, a chance encounter could be your ticket to a long-term client and much-needed revenue for your business. The more work you put into the business, the more likely you are to start your business off on the right foot.
Keep sending out those emails and attending those networking events! Your first client could be right around the corner.
These have been our 10 tips on getting your first client.
Successfully finding a client is a great start, but there is a lot that goes into building a successful business.
Luckily, there’s something easy and free you can do to increase your chances of succeeding.
Book a free consultation with our business experts, and we will help you get the best start possible for your new startup.