First impressions are extremely important, but how you build upon that first impression is of equal significance. After you’ve shown your prospective buyer or investor what you have to offer, it’s time to show them what you’re really made of.
The key: thoughtful, elegant persistence. Be thoughtful about how you approach your interactions. Be personal and personable in order to make him/her/them feel like in that moment, they’ve got your full attention. Instead of sending a general follow-up e-mail with a lot of fluff, be concise and economical with your words. Get straight to the point: you value their time and would like to make it worth their while by establishing a mutually beneficial relationship. Consistently remind them why they should choose YOU over your competitors, not by manipulation or nagging, but by being articulate, honest and direct.
Anyone can rehearse their you-know-whats off and give a buyer or target audience the old razzle dazzle during a pitch. But not everyone has the patience, thoughtfulness and tact to truly pursue a long-lasting business partnership. It’s a give and take. While your competitors may bring a similar product or idea to the table, you can offer a more valuable experience through your interactions. Understand their interests, wants and needs and bring a fresh perspective that may help him/her/them on their own entrepreneurial or business journey.
In your follow-up call or e-mail, mention something you discussed during the pitch that isn’t related to your specific product. Prove to them that you are a good listener with the intentions of helping them become more successful, while you promote your own success as well. Instead of approaching it from an “I need you” standpoint, take the “we need one another because…” stance. If you are confident in yourself and your product or idea, they will be as well in the long run.
Don't make an excellent pitch and then drop the ball during the next play. Keep your momentum going and build, build, build until you have established a long-lasting partnership.