Your best new prospects are your present customers.

Your best new prospects are your present customers.

Written By Jeffrey Gitomer

KING OF SALES, The author of seventeen best-selling books including The Sales Bible, The Little Red Book of Selling, and The Little Gold Book of Yes! Attitude. His live coaching program, Sales Mastery, is available at



Your best new prospects are your present customers.

Looking for new prospects? Who isn’t! It may interest you to know that you have hundreds of HOT prospects you’re not paying attention to… your present customers.

Consider these 10.5 assets already in your favor:

1. They know you.

2. They like you.

3. You have established rapport.

4. Confidence and trust have been built.

5. You have a history of delivery and satisfaction.

6. They respect you.

7. They use (and like) your product or service.

8. They will return your call.

9. They will be more receptive to your presentation and product offering.

10. They have credit and have paid you in the past.

10.5 They don’t have to be sold they will buy.

Think about this for a second. You’re a farmer, and you need milk. You wake up and decide to go milk your neighbors cows. You walk by your barn where the cows are full of milk udders so full that they’re begging even for a set of cold hands but you just pass them by and head for some unknown neighbor in search of milk. Sales is the same.

Why go out and cold call or prospect when your present customer base is ready to milk? They’re waiting for you, dripping with business. I don’t think you could ask for much more than that. It beats a cold call by 1,000 to 1.

Here are some ideas to get your present customers to buy more now:

Sell them something new People love to buy new things. Your enthusiasm will set the tone. Create excitement about how your new (better) product will be exactly what will serve better or produce more. Sell sizzle, sell appointment then let them buy.

Sell them an upgrade or an enhancement Bigger, better, faster. Enhancements and upgrades have kept the computer software industry profitable since it’s inception. Up selling has built fortunes just ask any fast food business. (The question, “Do you want cheese on that?” sells more than one billion pieces of cheese annually.)

Sell them more of the same in a different place Look for other uses, other departments, growth or expansion of the customer’s company, or replacement due to wear and tear. You may have to dig a little, but the soil is softer at a present customers place of business than the pile of rocks you usually face at a new prospects company.

Sell them additional products and services Your may company sell multiple products or offer varied services, and very few of your customers carry your full line. Sometimes a customer will say, “Oh, I didn’t know you sold that.” When you hear a customer say that DON’T BLAME THE SALESPERSON blame the salesperson’s trainer.

Get your customer to meet you for lunch If you can get the customer out of the office environment, you can often uncover more opportunities to sell (ask them to bring a referral along). Build the relationship, and you build sales.

Get them to give you one referral a month This is the true report card on the job your product or service has done in performing for your customer, as well as a report card on your ability to gain enough buyer confidence that they will refer you to a friend or business associate.

Give them one referral a month Getting your customer business will create new thought patterns in the way the customer perceives you. If you get them business, they will find new ways and new people to do the same for you.

NOTE: No matter whether you make a sale or not, continuing to be in front of your customer builds relationship and goodwill.

If you can’t call on your present customer, or if you come up with some lame excuse like, “I’ve sold them everything I can sell them.” What this really means is:

You have failed to establish enough rapport with the customer.

You have probably not followed up well (or at all) after the sale.

Your customer had some problem and you’re reluctant to call and open a can of worms.

You’re in need of more sales and creativity training.

and the big one…

You have not developed a proper relationship with the customer.

Most sales people think that unless they are calling a customer to sell something that it’s a wasted call. Nothing could be further from the truth.

I’m amazed at the salespeople who make a sale, and move on to the next prospect. I challenge you to carefully (and honestly) look at your customer list. I’ll bet there are hundreds of opportunities to sell something.

Personally, I would rather have 100 existing customers to do business with than a thousand prospects.

FREE GitBit … Looking for a bit more inspiration? I’ve got just the thing. Power proverbs from “The Sales Bible.” 15.5 thoughts to get you thinking and selling. Just go to click FREE STUFF then GitBit register and enter the secret words, “PROVERBS”.

Jeffrey Gitomer is the author of The Sales Bible, and Customer Satisfaction is Worthless, Customer Loyalty is Priceless. President of Charlottebased Buy Gitomer, he gives seminars, runs annual sales meetings, and conducts training programs on selling and customer service. He can be reached at 704/3331112 or email to

1999 All rights reserved Don’t even think about reproducing this document or it’s contents without

the written approval of Jeffrey Gitomer or Buy Gitomer 704/3331112