So you’ve managed to finally build your startup from the mere dreams they had once been in your head.
You’ve managed to hire some quality employees, got a cool-looking website running, and everything seems like it’s off to a great start.
However, you’re looking to land your first big client, and you’re scrambling to do everything right. You’re making a great presentation, using a proposal template to sweep them off their feet at first glance—but how sure are you that you will get them hook, line, and sinker?
Here are some tips to remember to finally bag that big client:
1. Study Them
Do your research. Do some background reading. Look into the clients’ past, and beyond its flashy and alluring exterior.
Know everything that there is to know about that client, because everything ultimately boils down to one fact: It isn’t about you. It’s about the client.
Sure, you’re confident in your own company and what it sets out to do. But landing a big client isn’t about showing off what you’re capable off. You should show them what you can do—and only you can do spectacularly—for the client.
What can you offer that can vastly improve your client’s goals? What do you think they should improve upon? And more importantly, how can you help them get there?
With these in mind, you’re well on your way on convincing your client that there’s nobody out there but you who can do a great job for them.
It’s all about connections.
Once you present an amazing pitch, it’s going to fail if it falls on deaf ears, or if it does not connect to anyone.
One quick way to get around this is to identify which person makes the decision. It should be easy to tell, especially when you’re pitching to a group of people; the decision maker will stand out.
Talking to the wrong people will only be a waste of time. Partnering with the right people, with whom you can connect and communicate your shared goals and objectives with, will only take you to success.
And it doesn’t have to be the big boss! It could be someone else internally—like a creative director. Or a marketing director, who may seem to have small roles, but actually handle quite a large chunk of a company’s direction.
3. Think Big
As a small startup in the face of a big client, you may tend to shortchange yourself. Don’t do it!
This usually leads to bad client relations, as eventually you will be led to think you are being underpaid for the work that you do. Know your worth, and know that the work ahead of you will be so much more than you bargained for—so you might as well earn more for your efforts. Big companies will also be willing to shell out more for quality work. Underestimating yourself will only lead to them taking advantage of you, and bargaining for even cheaper pay for heavier workloads.
4. Build Your Portfolio
Sometimes the best way is smaller paths you’ve already paved to get there.
Before landing your biggest client, take on small clients that showcase what you can do best. You can start building a good reputation this way, even before you land a big client.
Boost your visibility by making your presence known through events, introducing yourself to people, and most importantly, doing spectacular work—even on a small scale. Your good reputation will eventually precede you, and any big company would be convinced that working with you will be the best decision they have ever made.