I love this piece about the danger of inappropriate footwear and potential client meetings. I’ve said for years that wearing great shoes to meet with clients/targets is a good idea, but that post deals with an oddly connected issue: don’t wear the wrong brand to your meeting.
Overall, the important underlying point of the post is that if you don’t do your research, you can blow a great opportunity. You’ll look lazy and unprofessional if you wear Adidas to W+K (btw, I discourage wearing sneaks of any kind to meetings–wear grown-up shoes, please–you’ll look more upscale, too). You need to know what brands an agency represents, at a minimum! Or if the corporate target you are meeting with is part of a larger multi-national.
The other side of that, of course, is that if you do do your research, you can add to your perceived value to a target. Imagine going into a meeting with a potential corporate client and telling them that, for example, you love how they added solar panels to their parking structures. You don’t need to know that info to work for them, it has nothing to do with what you would do for them, but the fact that you do means you care enough to do more than the minimum for that client. You invested time and effort–this client means something to you. It is not just another name on your list.
Remember that when you are making your target lists, you want to work with companies you admire and with whom you share something–an aesthetic, at least, but maybe more, like a commitment to the environment. Those companies want the same–to work with people they admire and with whom they share something. By doing your research, you can find the best matches for your business.
And when you get a meeting, don’t forget to wear (the right) great shoes.