To turn your first encounter with potential clients into an effective account-based marketing (ABM) relationship, you must engage your audience, establish credibility, and ask them for an easy "yes."

Unless you are quoting Dwight Schrute from The Office, introducing yourself as "assistant (to the) regional manager" is not a conversation starter. That information won't mean much to those you're speaking with.

You need to have a conversation, not a monologue.

Ask your new contacts questions about themselves along the way so you can learn what drives them. Doing that will contribute to building a relationship and help you determine how your product or service could be best positioned to win their business.

Structure the first touch so it can lead to another.

Yes, the entire conversation can feel awkward. Everyone—except the most experienced—needs to practice. Stand up and say it out loud. Practice with a friend or colleague until the conversation feels natural. Ask your friend to make a video of you on your phone. It doesn't get much more awkward than being on video, but seeing yourself in action is priceless.

In B2B marketing, the client is in large part buying the personal relationship. So here are three tips to help business development and sales reps earn and begin to build that relationship in the first conversation.

1. Engage the audience

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
image of Eileen Smith

Eileen Smith is a public speaking coach and former diplomat. She helps business executives deliver their message through public speaking, executive presence, and body language.

Linked In: Eileen Smith