Now, at first glance, you might be completely confused as to why I’m writing an article comparing suits with branding. These are two entirely different things, right?
Not at all! They have much more in common than you would think at first. Most business activities that you will be involved in as a business owner or entrepreneur will rely on one thing – the first impression. The impression you make when you’re at a networking event, speaking with potential investors. The impression you make in an interview with your hopefully future employer. Heck, the impression you make on a first date with that girl or guy you matched with on Tinder!
We’re going to stay away from the dating realm in this article, but you’re soon going to learn how that first impression you make heavily relies on the suit you’re wearing and the logo you’re showing off.
Presenting your First Pitch to a Potential Client
The first scenario of the article is a situation that many of you have probably found yourselves in before. You have found this incredible potential client for your business and have managed to set up your first meeting with him or her. Now, every entrepreneur should know that first impressions are absolutely everything when it comes to pitches. In fact, it’s been shown that within the first seven seconds of an interaction, your first impression has been made and that’s what’s going to stick.
That gives you only seven seconds to show this potential client what you’ve got with a combination of hundreds of verbal & non-verbal cues. No pressure!
Now, given the fact that non-verbal cues are 12 to 13 times more influential than the words that you say, that’s where most of your focus should be. Imagine if you walked into this important meeting wearing the suit that looks out of shape and not fit for your frame.
The suit’s pretty baggy and doesn’t fit well, but you just didn’t feel like spending tons of money on a bespoke suit. That’s where your big mistake comes in! What do you think this poorly-fitted suit says about you?
It says that you didn’t want to make enough of an effort to give an above-and-beyond first impression to this client.
Do you think that impression is going to lead you to secure a deal with this client? Of course not! When you put on a custom suit that actually fits your body, rather than getting one off of the racks at your local department store, that first impression is going to be much better and will last longer.
The exact same thing happens when you show up to your first pitch meeting and show your client a one-pager with your brand’s logo that you generated off of some random site on the Internet. This logo just isn’t going to show off your best side to this client. However, when you invest in a custom logo that has been developed with care and attention to the details you provide, that’s going to make a much better and longer lasting impression. And give you more of a chance when closing that deal!
Manning a Booth at an Important Networking Event
Next up, we’ve got to talk about networking events. These events are definitely some of the most dreaded in the business world. You’re speaking to hundreds of people for a whole evening or sometimes an entire day at trade events, presenting your business in a good light, and giving it your all to weed out the best contacts.
Let’s imagine if you attend this networking event, put on that suit & tie that you bought off the rack yesterday, and set up your booth in the convention center. You’re looking around and notice that the suits the other guys and gals are wearing appear a bit different. They seem to be much more fitted and the people wearing the suits are smiling, laughing, and appear confident as hell. You look down at your baggy suit and any ounce of confidence you might have had is gone in a flash. Who’s going to take you seriously if you didn’t take your outfit seriously?
The same goes if you set up your booth at that networking event with a logo that was drawn up overnight on a free or low-cost branding site. Any potential client, investor, or customer who walks by is definitely not going to leave with a great first impression of your business. On the other hand, if you walk into that networking event with branding materials that have a custom logo that is high-quality, shares what your brand’s all about, and is designed for maximum impact, you’re going to find quite a bit more success.
Handing out Business Cards at a Networking Event
First impressions aren’t just important when you’re showing off your business at a networking event booth. If you’re on the other side, sharing your personal or business brand as you walk around, that impression is even more crucial. Imagine if you walk up to other businesses, wearing the suit on the left:
The difference a custom suit makes is quite incredible, right? If you were to wear the suit on the right-hand side, everyone will automatically take you more seriously. And if you’re handing out business cards to potential clients, investors, or partners, you’re going to want your brand’s logo to stand out.
Just like your bespoke suit, this logo should be memorable, custom-made for your brand, and unique. Your brand will appear more credible and trustworthy with a custom logo!
What kind of impression are you going to make?
Now that we’ve come to the end of this article, you should be well-aware that both custom suits and custom logos are so much better for first impressions than those off-the-rack or off-the-web. Those people you interact with on a daily basis while doing business notice a whole lot more than you might think.