How to entertain (and win) new clients with your business credit card

How to entertain (and win) new clients with your business credit card

  • A cashback card could earn you real money when making purchases for potential clients.
  • Need to lock in entertainment options for a client but don’t have any time? Use your credit card’s concierge service.
  • Frequent flyer programs aren’t the only rewards option for business credit cards. You can earn rewards when buying Christmas gifts for clients – or even paying their Uber bill.

Despite the introduction of alternative payment methods like Afterpay and PayPal, one thing has remained constant throughout the decades: our love affair with credit cards. Simply put, they are just so easy to use. So it’s no wonder there is almost one credit card for every Australian – and a collective total balance exceeding $45.5 billion.

But credit cards are useful for much more than just the everyday standard purchases like groceries, utility bills and filling up the petrol tank. Businesspeople have long recognised the benefits of having a credit card handy. Whether it’s buying up new stock, paying suppliers or simply steadying cash flow during a quiet period, business credit cards can be really useful.

Reasons to get a business credit card are made even more compelling when you consider just how many rewards you can take advantage of – from frequent flyer points on business trips to superior concierge services and even special business-exclusive deals depending on your credit card provider.

Want to take your business credit card spending to the next level? Why not combine its purchasing power with winning over new clients? There are lots of unique ways to turn a potential client into a regular, but you could also get something extra out of the deal by using a business credit card to impress them. Here’s how…

A business taking out an important client team for lunch aerial image of table with plates

Choose the right rewards program for your business spending

Every rewards program is created with a particular user in mind. That means what works for one business person won’t necessarily translate well for another. So do your research and compare different credit cards online first so you know exactly what you’re after.

Are you constantly meeting clients around the country or taking international flights to global conferences? If that’s the case, a business credit card that rewards you for frequent flying – like the American Express Qantas Business Rewards Card – would be ideal. You can rack up the points and then use them to woo a potential new customer.

Alternatively, maybe you’re a big fan of American Express but would prefer to collect lots of Membership Rewards points. With something like the American Express Platinum Business Card, you can get invitations to exclusive events and experiences that aren’t available to the general public, and even use the Fine Dining privileges to reserve a table at world-class restaurants. Client meeting over dinner, anyone?

Could a cashback card offer more?

You don’t necessarily need a business-specific credit card to put its rewards to good use. If you’re a small business owner who doesn’t really travel much for work and you don’t need a card that rewards you for flying, a cashback card could be a great alternative.

With a cashback card, you can get rewarded with money back in your account from specific purchases. So if you’re meeting with a potential client for lunch, you can do the noble thing and pay for their meal while also getting rewarded with your cashback card.

The Virgin Money Low Rate Credit Card, for example, offers 10% cashback on spending in the first three months after your card is approved. Add the minor $49 annual fee and a low ongoing interest rate, and you have a potentially rewarding credit card for the savvy small business owner.

Combine using a cashback credit card with cashback websites when purchasing gifts for clients to save even more money. 

Office colleagues celebrating in a bar with red wine

Be cash-conscious when showing potential clients a good time

One thing to remember when showing clients a good time is that you are always on the clock. That means your guests will be watching your every move and making a judgement based on how you act in certain situations. It’s all well and good to idolise the Wolf of Wall Street-esque business moguls of yesteryear, but for many clients, that type of cavalier attitude to money isn’t a good look.

Treat entertaining clients as a ‘dry run’ for your future business partnership. That means deploying the same business practices you use in your everyday dealings. Often the smartest thing you can do is demonstrate that you’re careful with your money, so picking a cool but inexpensive place for a lunch meeting could win over the local business owner better than forking out thousands of dollars on an overpriced degustation.

It all depends on what type of business persona you want to exude, and the type of people you want to turn into clients.

Receive 120,000 Bonus Membership Rewards Points

Spend conditions apply.
American Express Platinum Business Card
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Receive 120,000 bonus Membership Rewards points when you apply before 6th November 2019, are approved and spend $5,000 within your first 3 months of Card Membership. (Conditions Apply)

Complimentary access for you and a guest to over 1,200 lounges across 130 countries. (Conditions Apply)

Platinum benefits including a metal card right out of the envelope.

Higher earn rate of up to 2.25 pts per $1 spent on everyday purchases except ATO where you earn 1 pt per $1 spent.

This credit card offer is subject to change and may not be directly related to the content of this article.

Put the concierge service to good use

As an entrepreneur or business leader, your time is already at a premium. That’s why it’s so important to delegate any time-consuming or complex tasks elsewhere so you can focus on what’s most important: winning new clients.

The good news is that many business credit cards come with concierge services. That means you can use your concierge to get seats to a major event, book tables at restaurants that are notoriously booked out, and even get local recommendations depending on where you are – great for the travelling businessperson.

The concierge service with the NAB Qantas Business Signature Card, for example, is available 24/7 and can arrange travel and food experiences, provide tips on where to meet for your upcoming client meeting, and just generally make your work life easier!

Spend where your card will provide the most bang for your buck

Winning new business isn’t always about entertaining. Sometimes even a small gift as a follow-up will be enough to get that client over the line. In some cases, the mere act of paying for their Uber fare will get you their business – who’s to say what a small act of kindness can do for your bottom line!

If the idea of earning rewards with incidental business purchases sounds good, consider a card like the Westpac Altitude Black Credit Card. In addition to 100,000 bonus points on sign-up, you’ll earn additional Altitude reward points on purchases through David Jones, Uber, Myer, THE ICONIC and more.

Could a thoughtful Christmas gift for a former client help you earn their portfolio back – while also earning you rewards points?

Melbourne Cricket Ground MCG Corporate box

Wine and dine like a big business

So you want to take things to the next level and forgo the traditional lunchtime meetings with clients – how big should you really go? Well, it depends on your budget, your business type and your accessibility around Australia, but if you really want to serve up a treat to a potential client (especially if the win will pay for itself), then consider:

  • Yachting trips: They don’t come cheap but nothing screams high-class and exclusive like an adventure on the high seas – especially when the vessel is as stylish as a chartered yacht.

  • World-class restaurants: Sure, the average person might be tempted to do business with you if you simply cover their meal at the local pub, but what about the high-net-worth individual who has other companies begging for their business? If you had the potential to book a dinner meeting at a Michelin-quality restaurant, that could be your ticket in.

  • Box seats: It’s an oldie but a goodie, and while it might put a dent in your cash flow there’s nothing like entertaining in the comfort – and privacy – of a corporate box at a sporting event.