The difference between a profitable service provider and ………………………………..getting by

The difference between a profitable service provider and ……………………getting


I recognize every single construction service industry company shares the same goal as we do. The goal is to make sure the customer is taken care of in the best possible way leading to higher profits. The disparity between the companies is the exceedingly subjective term of best. Some companies will howl at the moon and others bark at the moon and still others are left on the dark side of the moon when it concerns doing what is best for the customer.

Some fail to recall how business was run in the 50s and earlier. Typically business was conducted with the neighborhood in mind and helping the community. It was growing your neighborhood. It was about enhancing the neighborhood. Back in those days neighbors helped their neighbor and took care of all of their issues.

Over the year’s transportation, advertising, and reaching more people became possible. The only advertising available was through local print and some radio. TV was for giant corporations. Magazines may have been printed every 3 months and newspapers ruled the local community. Whoever advertised in the paper was considered giants of the community. The only information available was by word of mouth via the local businesses.

As the 60’s approached radio became even more powerful and now you could reach communities that were over 30 miles from you. With a larger area to work customer service became less important to businesses to receive this information. Access to Information became easier to gain however the home owner still trusted the local community company for their information. The problem that came from this situation was less information was given to the home owner. Fewer questions that could possibly lead to a different perspective led to quick fixes and the inclination that home owners only wanted you to address the initial problem that the home owner diagnosed.

Years past the service provider would come in and complete the job and have a cup of coffee or even eat a meal and discuss business with the home owner along with current events occurring in the neighborhood. This conversation developed a relationship built on trust and respect that built loyalty to the customer and the customer to the company. It is a 2 way street and a lot of companies forget that loyalty starts with them first

Then the information age hit. It hit hard and fast. You could find Dot com’ers all over the place selling multi-million dollar companies. The computer became smaller and more affordable. The information gained from the computer was amazing and fast to receive. Back then within 10 minutes the information was there. Today that same 10 minutes has become seconds. Frequently this information gained and given does not necessarily mean the home owner has the right information.

What do you have to do today in order to make a difference? Keep in mind the home owner who is a customer wants a different experience than they have ever had in the past. The internet and the” I have to have it now economy” has provided you with home centers that can give the home owner multiple choices to make repairs or replace what they have in their home. Too many service providers are stuck in the 70’s and 80’s thinking all they must do is, give the customer a quick fix repair choice.

Remember during the days of neighborhood business it was very rare that a home owner told the service provider they would not be doing business today. However today it is much different where 30-50% of the consumers may decide to use or receive multiple bids. During the neighborhood business days consumers were loyal to companies. Today some are loyal most are not loyal.

So what can you do to make it a different experience? Why do you need to make it a different experience? When I visit home owners I am amazed at how many of them have had other service providers before choosing me to help them today. Ever wonder why the consumer was not happy with previous service providers? I have never met any construction service provider ask their customer these type questions: have you ever had a plumber in your home? When the answer is yes, what would you like to happen that did not happen then? What was missing from that visit? There is a reason they did not call that service provider back and that has led to your company being invited into their home.

I would suggest that the service provider did not give the consumer what he or she wanted or liked. Now you must discover what it is they may like. You do that by asking the customer questions that elicit an answer that you understand and can acknowledge.

A fantastic way to give a different experience is to give an inspection to every customer. I am a plumber and that is the example I will use. This should increase the customer’s awareness of their perceived value. The perceived value will be influenced by your ability to communicate and then listen to the customers answers. The inspection will guide your questions to the home owner.

Your communication will control whether or not you do an inspection. The old saying it is not what you say but how you say it that will determine your ability to gain the inspection. The majority of plumbers will inform the customer that they must do the inspection to make sure all of the plumbing products and system is working properly. Each customer will respond similarly to that statement; it has been working fine. Another way to ask improperly is to say I am checking for leaks or finding something that is not working right.

Helen I give/we give/I do /we do a home plumbing inspection. What I do is check for loose toilet seats, loose faucet handles and tighten them up, slow lavatory drains where I can adjust the level or height of the plunger and remove debris from that item. Possibly do an adjustment to the toilets that I can perform for free. Sound good to you/ is this of interest to you?

Let us pretend the customer stops you and makes a statement that no other plumbing companies have done this. Helen this is why we are different this inspection allows me to get to know your home and understand the plumbing system. In turn this will allow me to help you understand your plumbing system.

Helen how do you feel about preventive measures that in all likelihood will help prevent premature failure and in all likelihood extend the life of your plumbing products? Would this be of value to you? Our experience has told us that the majority of plumbing problems happen at the most inopportune time and by doing this inspection I can inform you of most of the issues you may have to deal with in the next 12 months. You can choose to take care of them now or budget for them in the future. Would it be good to know of any upcoming issues that you may face in the next 12 months? Customer states yes, GREAT should I start here?


About practicebetterbusiness

Author of Outside the Business Box: All about Sales Build a better you and increase your earning potential

Posted on February 24, 2014, in electrical sales, How to sell HVAC, How to sell plumbing, plumbing sales,, sales tips, Selling HVAC, Selling Plumbing, Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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