When is a space more than just a space?
A prospective client comes to your office. He walks through the lobby, glances at the water cooler and stack of old magazines on the side table, sits down in the conference room and barely notices the motivational poster on the wall behind you as you begin your pitch. When he leaves, you think, “Did I give the impression of our company that I wanted to? Did he understand how hip/innovative/professional/charitable we are?” The answer is: probably not.
When you rely solely on traditional presentation-style exchanges to convey information about your business, even a short overview of company history can feel like a lecture or a sales pitch. It’s more effective -and easier- to let your work environment tell a big part of your story for you.
It doesn’t hurt that physical activity (a simple tour) enhances the neural connections in the brain responsible for learning and concentration. Just the act of walking through your office can be the most inspiring activity of all, provided you know how to take advantage of it. (For more information on activity and learning, check out the Brain Gym website.)
Letting your space speak is about being intentional and letting the brand become part of the environment. At Torque, we both welcome and inform visitors with our space. On one wall hangs a series of photos of our staff, suggesting the intimacy of our team and the personal connection people can expect from us. Along another wall is an array of awards that we’ve won for client work – we’re damn proud of the work we’ve done and the fact that the rest of the world acknowledges it. We are also adamant about displaying samples of several current and exemplary projects; after all, we are a visual culture, and branding is all about story-telling. New visitors to our office often linger in the front of our studio for several minutes, asking questions or commenting on what they see. After 10 minutes of natural conversation, they already have a strong sense of who we are, what we’re about, and the quality of our work. By the time we get to the conference room, there is little need for the Dog and Pony.
We apply this thinking with our clients as well. La Petite Academy, a provider of childcare and early childhood education services, noticed a significantly higher closing ratio when parents visited their facility and looked around. To enhance this effect, Torque helped conceptualize a space that would help to tell their story through a series of stations- similar to a collection of trade show booths- each spotlighting one aspect of La Petite Academy.
In summary, when it comes to client interactions, selling and conveying a brand experience, it’s time to break away from the pack. Rather than delivering the same old pitch with projectors and conference tables, consider creating a unique, fun space that will spark interest and create a lasting impression. Get your clients out of their chairs and let them see for themselves who you are and what you have to offer.