The art of getting new business is no mystery. The trouble is, we get busy in the daily Doing that we can often overlook some simple ways to seek new business. Here are 9 tips to help you get started on growing your client base.

  1. Get New Business From Old. Ask existing clients for more business before you try warming up a stone cold lead. Ask the happy clients for referrals to people they know that you don't - and be sure to keep track of who referred whom. Your client's needs change, so stay up to date with how you can best serve them.
  2. Pitch a Stranger. It's like bad advertising when you blow hot air when pitching to a new prospect. In face-to-face mediating you've got to know what to say, and say it with conviction. Start with friends and work from there. See next point too!
  3. Give It To Me Straight. No one has time for the "warm-up". Prepare well-honed phrases and practice them in front of a mirror. People like it when you can get to the point rapidly and intelligently. If it's by email, make sure they don't have to scroll down to read it all. Answer the ever-present question that your prospect has in their minds - What's In It For Me?
  4. Talk About Your Failures. Sounds crazy, but it builds credibility. Everyone can't be perfect all the time, and when you can tell a prospect why you lost a client and what you've learned it's a welcome change.
  5. Offer a "Loss-Leader". People are less and less apt to buy impulsively from a person if they don't have a good feeling about them. Offering a loss-leader allows the relationship to mature over time. This is very important in B2B clients. (Loss-leader is the practice of offering a product or service at a considerable discount and loss of profit to attract future business.). Look at your product or service offering and see if there is something you can provide that is of low cost to you but high value to your customer.
  6. Get Sold Yourself. Pick the most successful competitors in your area and let them sell you. Play customer and be aware of how you feel during each step, and see why their approach works so well.
  7. Start an E-mail Newsletter. This is much like #5. Give your clients and prospects useful information on a periodic basis. Make them happy to see your name in the "from" field. If they only hear from you when you want something, they'll turn you off when they hear from you.
  8. Offer Testimonials. Satisfied clients or customers can say things about you that you can never believably say about yourself. Use the person's full name if possible when doing this.
  9. Ask Questions. This cannot be over-emphasised about how important this is in business. Simply allowing people to verbalise their needs makes them happy and tells them you listen. It also allows you to hone in on the points to make when it's your turn to talk.

Do you have any tips you can add to this list?