When prospects meet you for the first time, they likely already have a positive, negative or neutral impression of you. The mindset they come to you with can help determine whether they eventually decide to do business with you.

Our preconceptions about others often play out in the way we think they will. It’s really no mystery, just human nature and psychology. If people come to the table wanting to work with you, they will search for evidence to support their initial inclinations—even if you don’t deliver the perfect presentation.

At the same time, if they come to the table not really wanting to work with you, they will be looking for reasons to be right and choose not to work with you. It’s true in politics, in business, in dating and in life. We want to be “right,” and often that need works against our own best interest.

Have you given prospects a reason to be positive about you before they get to the table? What if, instead of putting on the hard sell at the end of your seminar, your ideal client came to his own conclusion that he wanted to work with you? What if your website made people feel they had found the right firm to serve them? What if your clients were powerful advocates, promoting your positives and generating referrals?

The best way to create a positive aura around your and your business is through proper marketing. Strive to share yourself and your firm in an authentic way and avoid overly stiff, professional marketing speak. The more you can foster positive feelings through your marketing, the more likely your prospect will later say “I knew this was the right advisor for me!”

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Maribeth Kuzmeski is the founder of Red Zone Marketing, LLC, which consults to Fortune 500 firms on strategic marketing planning and business growth. For more information, go to www.redzonemarketing.com.