Adam Gellert, Linkus Group, Toronto, ON, CYBF Young Entrepreneur

Developing a client base can be challenging, especially with all the resources available today. Do you try new things and see what works? Have you tried cold-calling? Did it take too long and return few results? If you’re in the beginning stages and don’t have customers, how do you even get started and move forward?

Before jumping in, develop strategies that increase your client base exponentially. An obvious place to start is contacting friends and family in your personal network. Be sure to call on staff, clients (both former and current) to advocate for your business; it’s the best way to grow.

Make sure to ask yourself these questions:

1. Who will need what you’re selling?

2. Why will they need it and buy it?

3. Once they’ve bought, will they provide referrals?

Now work from point 3 backwards, because it’s the most important step for exponential growth.

Be sure to reward your advocates as a thank you for referring your business; do it often, be personal, and thoughtful. I like to donate to a charity of their choice. The most effective referrals come from those who are most passionate about you and your business. It’s passion that drives the sale.

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