Lindsay McMahon
"The English Adventurer"

In sales, sometimes you have to ask uncomfortable questions to get more customers. 

We have a listener question about this today.

Don’t be nervous in these situations!

Getting more customers is vital.

You have to be brave and try to be a people person.

Today we provide phrases that will help.

You can get more business advice in our business course!

Reserve your spot now for our first Business English webclass!

Today’s question

Hello AEE-team, thank you for your inspiring podcasts with a great variety of topics and interesting questions. You really keep me to going on with english learning.

I would appreciate if you give me suggestions on how to ask customers for recommendations.

I work for a German insurance company and sometimes we have clients who only speak english. In German conversations we normally ask if they know somebody for example friends, relatives, per group who could be interested in our services and special benefits.

How can I say this in a natural way? How would a native speaker express it?

Thank you very much. See you soon.

Great question!

If you are selling something or looking for customers, you may have to ask multiple people and existing clients!

This is such an important skill. 

Why can sales be uncomfortable?

Many people are uncomfortable selling.

For most people, it’s not a natural skill.

You face the possibility of being rejected, which is difficult for everyone!

So what can people say in this situation?

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Option #1: Focus on how you can help

I’d love to help more people with X.

  • Insurance
  • Finding a car
  • Finding a house,

Do you know anyone who could benefit from Y?

  • Our services
  • An expert in the field

Option #2: Be honest and direct

We are looking to expand our client base. Can you point us in the direction of anyone who may be interested in our services?

Is there anyone you know who we could reach out to to inform them of our X?

  • Special benefit
  • Services
  • Company

How to respond if they say yes

  • Great! Here’s my card.
  • Great! If you don’t mind, I’d love to get their information and I can reach out to them.
  • Excellent. Would you mind giving them my information?

This will depend on whether you want to reach out to them, or you want them to contact you.

Usually you would reach out to the potential customer.

  • Perfect. We have a new customer get-to-know-you event coming up. It would be great if they could attend.

How to respond if they say no

  • Ok, thank you. If you think of anyone, you know where to find me!
  • I understand. We have some really great promotions coming up, so think about it and please let me know if you think of anyone! 

Why is this skill so important?

In business, it’s extremely important to expand your network.

You want to do it in a way that doesn’t seem too pushy, but that doesn’t allow them to say no too easily.

The language is extremely important.

If this is a formal relationship, you need to use a formal, professional tone.

If you know them well, you can joke around more and use a more informal tone.

We will be sharing tips on switching between formal and informal tones in our first Business English webclass

Space is limited, so reserve your spot today at


I sell audio equipment and am hoping Lindsay will send me to other podcast hosts.

Michelle: It’s been so great working with you.

Lindsay: Definitely. I really appreciate your help.

Michelle: Happy to help. So Lindsay, we are looking to expand our client base. Can you point us in the direction of anyone who may be interested in our services?

Lindsay: Ohhh . I have to think on that. Yeah, actually. My friend Tammy just started a podcast and definitely could use your help. 

Michelle: Great! If you don’t mind, I’d love to get Tamm’s information and I can reach out to her.

Lindsay: Sure. I’ll connect y ou both by email. 

Michelle: Ok perfect. Thanks Lindsay!

Lindsay: No problem.


Don’t be scared in these situations!

Getting more customers is key for business success.

You have to be brave!

Even if it’s not in your nature, be a people person.

Use these phrases today and get more business advice in our business course!

If you have any questions, please leave them below in the comments section.

We’ll get back to you as soon as we can.

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