Selling contracting is different from selling nearly anything else. You’re not necessarily selling a thing, a widget that you can show someone the bells, whistles, and features. Instead, you are selling yourself, and a service. This means that your strategy must be different than when you are selling other things.
So how do you get your next client’s attention and turn them from a looker into a buyer? Here are five sales tips for contractors.
1. Talk Value not Price
If you are doing a great job as a contractor, you probably won’t always be the lowest bid on any given job. The difference may be in the materials that you use, or the labor that you use which will cost more than that of a less expensive contractor but will provide a better quality outcome for the client.
How do you explain this to a potential client? By talking about the value of what you offer rather than the price. If your work will last longer, has a better guarantee, and will increase the worth or even just how livable a customer’s home or business may be, emphasize those benefits in your sales pitch. Don’t try to win every job with the lowest bid, but instead win with the highest quality.
2. Be a Good Presenter
Want to make a good impression and help the customer trust your value proposition you offered above? Learn to be a good presenter. The way you present something and communicate it is just as important as the information itself. Use modern tools like digital presentations, tablets, and even augmented reality and virtual reality when possible.
Be a polished speaker or hire a salesperson who is. Part of marketing is the customer’s trust in you, your company, and your ability. The way you present a bid to them is the first impression they will have of your commitment to quality. A lot of stammering, ums, and lack of confidence on your part will deter them from hiring you. A big part of being a contractor is learning to talk to people. If you don’t know how, learn.
3. Make Your Credentials Clear
What makes you qualified to do the job? In addition to your general contractor’s license or your license in your field, you probably have other qualifications and certifications that matter to your clients. At this point, it is not bragging to show those things off, but instead is a service to your customers.
Invite them to check you out online. Show them your licenses, any additional schooling you may have had, and show them the requirements you have, and the qualifications needed by those who work for you.
Remember, the client is trusting you with their home and things that are very important to them. Build trust early by showing that you are more than qualified to care for their home and complete the job you have been hired to do.
4. Have References
In addition to your credentials, offer your clients references. Offer them the number of recent customers or show them reviews and testimonials. Of course, be sure that you have permission before you share customer’s information. Encourage customers to leave reviews online, and even hire a reputation management firm or use reputation management software to handle complaints effectively and populate the most important review sites with good feedback on your service.
Remember, still the most effective marketing is word of mouth, and reviews are the modern word of mouth means on the internet. A person who has a bad experience will now tell 1,000 of their friends on Facebook rather than 10 friends they know. A good review will also reach far more customers, so be sure to solicit those as well.
5. Give Them Options
Want to endear your customers to you? Give them options. Figure out how to offer financing to customers, and give them as many options as possible. Include budget conscious quotes in your bid to help them understand value and the worth of your work, but also that materials can be substituted to save money in the short term.
Also, be as flexible as possible with your schedule. People are busy and have vacations. Contract work will be disruptive to their home lives. Offer to work around other things the client has planned, and work with your other jobs accordingly.
Of course, to complete the work in a timely manner will require compromise on their part and perhaps on yours. Still, the more flexible you are, the more likely they are to choose your service and refer their friends and family to you as well.
Selling contracting is different than selling virtually anything else. You are selling yourself and your service, so you are the product. Be sure you know how to sell yourself well and show the kind of confidence in yourself you want the customer to have in you. Your conversion rates will skyrocket, and your business will prosper.