How to approach a business client    

BOQ Head of Third Party, Karen Carter, shares her tips for brokers looking to build their client portfolio and partner with the right financiers.

In the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic many Australian businesses have had to diversify to survive. The same applies to brokers who are now looking to provide business lending solutions to their residential clients. Brokering a loan for a small business is different to helping a customer secure a residential loan, so here are some tips for recommending the right bank and product to your clients.

1. Carve out your niche

Before you go out to find clients, it’s important that you know what kind of broker you want to be. Do you want to be a generalist or a specialist in a particular sector? BOQ works with numerous specialist brokers who have carved out a niche for their business by positioning themselves within a particular industry. They’ve been successful through aligning with industry bodies, associations and suppliers; and even geographically placing themselves within the vicinity of their target market. For example, a health-focussed broker located close to a hospital or medical precinct. 

2. Brush up on your skills and knowledge

Once you have decided on the industries you want to focus on, it’s worth taking a financial course, (such as Accendo Financial or FINSIA), to understand how to complete servicing exercises. It’s also worth working with Business Development Managers and Relationship Managers from your preferred lenders and asking them to show you how to complete commercial lending applications.

3. Do your research

It’s important that you take the time to understand your client, their business, industry trends and the market they operate in. LinkedIn, Google, IBISWorld and the business’ own website are great sources of information for learning about the business before you meet with them. 

4. Get ‘under the bonnet’

Never assume that you have a solution before you really understand the mechanics of your client’s business. Every business is different, so take the time to know what questions to ask for specific industries, what is important to the business’ owners and directors, what their goals are and how they intend to fund their growth. It’s important that you understand the ‘why’ behind your client’s requirements because the bank or lender will ask! If you don’t understand something or think there are more facts to uncover, keep asking questions.

5. Get expert help

Assisting SMEs through the process of raising capital can be a complex process so it’s important to know where your expertise starts and ends. Work with your own financial advisor, accountant and/ or aggregator for advice on what options there are in the market for who you can work with.  

6. Build confidence with the right support

Partnering with a financer that can support you is key to delivering a successful outcome for your clients. At BOQ we focus on building genuine long-term relationships with brokers. Our Commercial Broker portal provides a self-service platform for our accredited brokers with access to niche business lending guidelines, application forms, servicing calculators as well as checklists to help frame your interview with the client, so you can recommend the best bank and product to suit their needs.


Visit the Commercial Broker web page to find out more about how Karen and her team can support your broker business.


  • BOQ Commercial Broker Portal. 
  • IBISWorld provides industry market research, reports and statistics by country and sector.
  • Accendo Financial offers workshops, short courses and mentoring programs for brokers servicing SME clients.
  • The Financial Services Institute of Australasia (FINSIA) offers a range of professional qualifications, short courses and workshops for financial services professionals.

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