The secret of my most successful prospecting idea

When looking for new clients, don’t forget the ones who may be right in front of you the next time you’re standing in a car dealership or other business. All you need for this to work is the kindness of sincere compliments.

This approach has opened more doors than any other prospecting tool that I have used. It works in a variety of businesses — including small retail businesses, large employee-owned businesses, public companies, auto dealerships, defense contractors, manufacturers and many others.

Here’s what I say when I’m using this prospecting technique based on compliments:

“Thank you for taking a few minutes to speak with me. My name is Walton Rogers, and I’m a customer of yours. The fellow told me that this is your company.

“I want to compliment you on running a company that treats the customer as a special person. Your employee, Fred Smith, listened to me carefully, suggested ways to resolve my problem and then followed up with me after the fact. I do not get that kind of care very often. So, thank you, and thanks for training your people so well. Do you do most of the training? Is this company your idea?

“Your company has been so helpful to me; I would like to return the favor.

“The jobs that I enjoy most are helping families build wealth, protecting the growth of that wealth and then helping them enjoy the fruits of their hard work, making retirement a victory.

“Could we meet in a few weeks so we could talk about your long-term dreams and goals for this business, especially as it relates to your personal financial growth?

“Perhaps, after learning more about your business, I will be able to suggest some tools that have helped other businesses similar to yours advance their financial goals. May I return the favor by meeting with you in about 10 days?”

The theme here is “a favor for a favor” or “a gift for a gift.” When we do something nice for people, they naturally feel some obligation to return that same attitude that we used in our approach. Give them something of value, and they will want to add value to building the relationship.

You can find out more about this in my MDRT Annual Meeting presentation “A gift for a gift: Referrals.” (MDRT member exclusive)

Walton W. Rogers, CLU, ChFC, of Amelia Island, Florida, USA, served as MDRT President in 2009 and is a Court of the Table qualifier and an MDRT member since 1975.

For more ideas for finding clients (MDRT member exclusives)

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