If you’re like most remodelers, you built your business up from referrals. You got plenty of work, maybe even more than you can handle. At some point, however, you realized that being spread too thin in the variety of services you offer is hurting your bottom line. Or that you weren’t getting the types of customers and projects you wanted. And so you turned to advertising.
When most remodeling companies begin to advertise, they get discouraged. The leads seem like they’re tire kickers or that they don’t have money. And while it is true that some lead sources don’t provide quality remodeling leads, most of the time the issue actually lies in the sales process.
In this article, I’ll outline how to build an effective sales machine in your remodeling company to turn marketed leads into paying customers.
1. Earning Their Business
The reason most contractors get frustrated when venturing into marketed leads is because they expect these leads to behave the same as a referred customer. However, it’s vital to understand how things look from any potential customer’s perspective.
If a customer was referred to you by a trusted friend who sung your company’s praises, and they SAW the proof of your skill in a beautiful kitchen design, they are going to be a lot more patient and forgiving if they have to play phone tag.
Now, if that same customer found your company from Facebook Ads, for instance, and doesn’t have any frame of reference for your abilities, and hasn’t seen your company’s reviews, they aren’t going to be as forgiving if there is ANY breakdown in communication. And they simply aren’t going to try as hard to be available for you. Referrals might freely give you their business, but for marketed leads, you need to earn their business.
To successfully turn marketed leads into paying customers and raving fans of your business, a strong follow-up process is key. This process should include several phone calls, a few text messages, and should be consistent for all your new leads.
2. Turning Your Leads into Referrals
Referred leads already have some social proof (and probably physical proof, from seeing a friend’s newly remodeled bathroom) that your company can bring their vision to life. Marketed leads, on the other hand, don’t. They may have glanced at an ad for a few seconds, but that doesn’t compare to being referred by a friend.
So how do you turn your marketed leads into referrals? Give examples of people referring you, via reviews. Your marketed material, and sales material, should have your reviews worked into the process so that customers become more and more convinced that your company is trustworthy.
3. Leave No Doubt
Don’t assume that the customer did their homework on you - do the homework for them! Even if they did glance at your site and Google reviews, your sales presentation should include your best reviews, as well as photos of a variety of different projects you’ve done. There’s no guarantee they will see what you want them to see online. So if you want to guarantee that they’ll see what you want them to see, show them in person.
One way I’ve seen companies accomplish this is with a slide presentation they show potential customers during consultation visits. This slide presentation can be physical, or can be a digital slide presentation that you use a tablet or laptop to show them. It should include reviews, photos of work, guarantees, warranties, expectations of how the project will go, and anything else the customer might want to know.
Going about it this way, you will answer a lot of questions for the customer they didn’t even know they had, and you’ll make people a lot more comfortable in choosing to do business with you.
4. Always Plan the Next Step
A common practice for most remodelers is to send the estimate via email and let customers respond at their convenience. There isn’t any real planned step - the email is sent, and sometimes it feels like the email is going out into the ether and you never hear back from the customer.
A good way to solve this is to plan the next step with the customer, and agree on a date and time to review the estimate together. If you provide 3D designs, a great way to handle this is to set up a zoom meeting (or Google Meet) and go through a presentation and show the customer their 3D design along with a quote.
If on that call, they haven’t made a decision yet, set up a Decision Meeting, or at least plan a follow-up date. If the customer agrees to move forward, send them an agreement to sign and set up a start date. You always want to plan the next step to minimize friction and help the customer along the process.
5. Pre-Selling & Communication
Marketed leads, who have only briefly seen one of your ads and your business logo, won’t hold you in as high of a priority in their mind as a referred lead would. Sometimes, they can even forget that you have a consultation appointment set up.
To prime customers for your consultation visit, you can make use of automated text, to send reminders as the appointment gets closer. You can also have a sales video, and pictures, that demonstrate what’s unique about your company and the quality of work that you do.
This will help customers not only be ready for you, but even be excited as your appointment gets closer.
The best thing you can do for your sales process is to put yourself in potential customers’ shoes. When you go to work with a business you haven’t heard of before, how do you feel? What would put you at ease?
Improving your sales process will help you turn marketed leads into paying customers.
This doesn’t mean that all lead sources are good. There is often a big difference in lead quality depending on where you buy leads from. That being said, having a good sales process will help ensure that your marketing is as profitable as possible. It also opens up your options, because some lead sources that weren't viable before will become viable, and the good ones will become great.
At Service Allies, we provide lead generation services and can help you set up parts of your sales process. We offer:
Give Service Allies a call at (717) 636-2751.