1. Take It Offline
The first step in building relationships and taking your game to the next level is to get personal. There is only so much you can do over the phone or email, at a certain point you need to meet face to face. When it comes time for that, pick up the phone or shoot them an email offering to treat them to coffee or a meal. Pick a place closer to them than to you. Begin developing the habit of putting their needs above you own, it will be invaluable.
2. Personally Connect
The very best meetings are those where you connect on a personal level. Make your time together about them. Spend over 95% of your time asking good questions about the them and their story. It communicates that you genuinely care about them, are looking for common ground and value relationships over business. Connections are built on common ground. You will find that the better you become at connecting with people, the richer your life will be and the faster your business will grow.
3. Explain Your Process & Set Expectations
When you do broach the topic of business, use it to as an opportunity to establish expectations. Frustrations are born from unmet expectations. Everyone carries certain expectations with them through life. Sadly, these aren't always communicated and it reaks all kinds of havoc both personally and professionally. Why not use your client meeting to establish expectations for your future clients? Use it as a chance to share your process, answer their questions and roll back the curtain on your operation.
4. Follow Up
As you may have heard, the money is in the follow up. The best habit you can develop is to follow through on the commitments you make durring the meeting. If you tell them you will send them an email containing certain information, send it to them. It does you no good to nail the meeting and then fail to follow through. One common way to follow up is to send a recap of your time together as well as any other information you discuss immediately following your meeting. This establishes trust and sets us up for a successful relationship.
Clients meetings are often some of your biggest opportunities. Respect their time by doing them well. You just might find that some of your best meetings yield not only some of your best clients but some of your best friends in the process.