How Does Your Garden Grow?

Cultivate new business by tending to your customers.
Magazine Contributor
1 min read

This story appears in the May 2005 issue of Entrepreneur. Subscribe »

In the South, the month of May means serious gardening. Sergio Zyman, former Coca-Cola chief marketing officer and co-author of Renovate Before You Innovate, believes companies must cultivate better relationships and renovate the roles they play in their customers' growth. In gardening terms: Grow your customer's business, and your own garden will grow.

To help your customers grow, become a catalyzing agent. Share leads, forge profitable partnerships among them, and actively demonstrate concern for their interests. Here are three tips for aspiring customer-horticulturists:

1. Read Selling Is Dead, a manifesto for reinventing sales by Marc Miller and Jason Sinkovitz, set to be published this month. Growth-motivated companies must change to remain competitive.

2. Aerate your sales-lead generation and remove weeds. Sell, tell and qualify less--and customize your interactions and dialogue.'s prospect lists help you focus on the types of businesses that buy your products and services and cater your approach to their needs.

3. Try out LexisNexis AlaCarte, a new service expressly for small-business owners that offers business insight and industry analysis.

Kirsten Osolind is CEO and founder of re:invention inc., a Chicago-based marketing consulting company.

More from Entrepreneur

Get heaping discounts to books you love delivered straight to your inbox. We’ll feature a different book each week and share exclusive deals you won’t find anywhere else.
Jumpstart Your Business. Entrepreneur Insider is your all-access pass to the skills, experts, and network you need to get your business off the ground—or take it to the next level.
Are you paying too much for business insurance? Do you have critical gaps in your coverage? Trust Entrepreneur to help you find out.

Latest on Entrepreneur

Entrepreneur Media, Inc. values your privacy. In order to understand how people use our site generally, and to create more valuable experiences for you, we may collect data about your use of this site (both directly and through our partners). By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to the use of that data. For more information on our data policies, please visit our Privacy Policy.