As the saying goes – “There are no second chances to making that first impression.”
We all know that first impressions matter and they happen very fast – 7 seconds actually.
For your first-time customers coming into your health and wellness business, it’s very important to make them feel comfortable, welcomed and invited from the moment they set foot through the door or if your a business that goes to people.
To make this happen, a first impression comes from not just from what you say but how you say it. It also comes from your general demeanour, sight, smell and which can come from multiple different they will already feel whether they like you or not—your character, your style, your traits will be indelibly etched, all within the first 30 seconds.
That fast? Actually, forget about 30 seconds, 10 or 5. Research now says you only have 3 seconds or a blink of an eye to make an impression that will last. Their opinions after that won’t change their mind.
The research titled “First Impression” was published in the July issue of Psychological Science.
Which makes starting off on the right foot quite a challenge.
Lucky for you, we’ve round up the best ways for you to make a first brilliant impression in a flash!
If you want your clients to keep coming back, you can take your time reading these ones.
TIP 1 – Set your Intentions Right
If you want to make a good first impression with anyone, start by setting your good intentions. Good intentions equal good impressions. Simple right?
The same holds true when meeting a first–time client. Whether you want to get to know them better, help them heal or build a long–lasting relationship together, they will feel it.
Harvard Business School social psychologist, Amy Cuddy, has studied how to make a first impression last and revealed two traits we always look for in a first impression: trust and confidence. These two traits account for 90% of first impressions.
“We’re judging how warm and trustworthy the person is, and that’s trying to answer the question, ‘What are this person’s intentions toward me?’ And we’re also asking ourselves, “How strong and competent is this person?’” states Cuddy.
So set your intentions right. Because you convey what you really feel inside. This will set the groundwork for all your interactions and will make a good foundation for trust and confidence.
TIP 2 – Set a Welcoming Ambience
The ambience of your health and wellness space speaks about you. Even without being visible, you’re already revealing a part of yourself in the way you market your business.
Your interior design, your waiting room, restroom, equipment, your choice of music and furniture—everything affects the client’s first impression of you.
So make a welcoming first impression in everything you do. If you are in the client’s shoe and you want to break–free from stress, what do you want to see?
Start with the entrance and the reception that should be kept clean, organized and friendly.
What are your ways to keep the clients relaxed? Do you offer free drinks or a comfy chair to sit in? Whatever ornaments you display (flowers, magazines) just keep it clutter–free.
As an added tip, extend the ambience and warmth of your facilities to your marketing materials such as your website and social media pages. Remember, everything about you should be consistent: organized, confident and trustworthy.
TIP 3 – Look your Best
You know we’re in the wellness era right? How do you expect to help others feel good when you look like you could use some help yourself.
Pay attention to your personal grooming every day. Your fingernails, your feet, your hair, your scent.
Keep it always clean, well–kept and simple, so it doesn’t draw any attention. When you look good, you feel good, which helps in nailing that first impression.
TIP 4 – Dress Professional
What look do you want to convey? Anything that says “professional and therapeutic” all over. Trisha Brown Leweke, a self–care consultant offers some good advice to dress up and here are some of the following:
- Wear shirts that are soft and flexible and no more than 2 inches below your collarbone
- Although T–shirts are acceptable in the industry, they should not be overly form–fitting. Make sure to always look appropriate.
- For females, be aware if you’re showing cleavage. You don’t want to give the wrong impression.
- Consider wearing scrubs. They have come along way in the development of style, comfort, modesty, and professionalism.
- Do not wear shirts that are short or tight, and do not wear tight pants or pants that hang low.
- Wear a belt when needed. If you have to pull up your pants during the day, you probably need a belt or a seamstress.
- Don’t be ashamed of elastic waists. They are comfortable and flexible and stay up high when you are bending low.
- Make sure to wear the right sized pants.
- Don’t over accessorize but choose accessories that complement your style
- Eliminate any perfume to avoid triggering client’s allergies (if any)
- Men should be clean shaven and women are preferred to wear just light barely their makeup
TIP 5 – Smile Genuinely
First, smile. This would be the best facial expression to make when you first see someone.
It doesn’t matter how odd you look when you smile, just as long as it is a genuine one.
Remember, they feel your intentions. They can sense whether you’re making a grimace or faking a smile. One smile is all it takes to warm someone up.
TIP 6 – Express Confident Body Language
What can you do to make a great first impression in 3 seconds right? Smile then shake their hand.
Place your hands in a position where they can be seen. Keep the handshake simple, grasp the other person’s hand firmly yet warmly, then look at them directly with a smile and say something nice or welcoming like “How are you?” or “It’s very nice to meet you”.
Other follow-up question can include open-ended questions like
“Have you ever had a massage/ PT session/ spa treatment before?”
“How often do you get massage/ PT session/ spa treatment?”
“What made you want/need a massage/ PT session/ spa treatment today?”
“What is your goal for this session?”
Whatever questions you ask, just be sure to be focused on the client’s response like you are really interested in their answer because you want to connect and help.
Again, you want to build that trust and confidence the clients are looking for in a first good impression so a firm handshake and casual conversations convey your desire to connect and your confidence to help.
TIP 7 – Mind your Posture And Stand up Tall
Some of your clients will come to you for pain associated with their spine or muscles. You want to look like someone who can really help correct a problem.
Keep your chest up, shoulders and head relaxed and stand or sit up straight! Your posture alone can spark confidence that can be felt wherever you are.
Bonus Tip: Make a Great First Impression online
Wow, your clients even before they decide they want your services. You have both your website and social media profile pages to convert onlookers.
When it comes to your website, don’t forget the 5 second rule to convert. Make your website is clean and functional with the booking buttons always visible! Make your offers stand out. Use creative and attractive images to keep them hooked.
Don’t forget to offer an incentive too!
When it comes to increasing your social media bookings, engagement is key. Posts interesting visual and ideas. Host online events. Share other’s posts and engage your audience. The keyword here is to be social.
Respond to posts and reviews about you and your service. Don’t forget to share them too! Remember that your online presence matters, so plan ahead and make it count.
Conclusion: Trust Begets Trust
A first impression leads to many big impressions—your reputation, your skills, your value as a person. The impressions you make will dictate the number of loyal clients you’ll have, ergo, your success in the health and wellness business.
All kinds of people, client or not, are always looking for a memorable experience. Be that truly unforgettable person, from the very first moment.
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