Tips for Making the Most of In-person Homeowner Consultations

SellingTipsWhile new technologies and online selling tools continue to garner attention in the building industry, it’s important that we do not lose sight of the importance of in-person meetings with potential customers. Sure, a great website or Facebook page might raise awareness for your remodeling or contracting business, however a polished in-home selling approach truly is the key ingredient in sealing the deal.

Through my work at CertainTeed, I have the opportunity to connect with hundreds of remodelers and contractors on an on-going basis and have witnessed some stellar selling techniques. As peak construction season approaches, here are some useful tips and reminders.

Never underestimate first impressions. From the moment you enter the driveway, your appearance and actions are being judged. Arriving in a clean truck and wearing company-branded clothing will help set the stage for a successful meeting.

Make a proper introduction. Begin the discussion by providing background on your company’s history, including your location and years in business. This is also an ideal time to share information on relevant licenses, credentials and insurance documentation.

Let your presentation do the talking. Most manufacturers, including CertainTeed, will equip you with the necessary tools to create an easy-to-understand presentation. A good product sales presentation will speak for itself, eliminating the need for over-the-top sales talk that might turn off a potential customer.

Keep it simple. Too many options might confuse or overwhelm a homeowner. Consider organizing their options in good, better, best categories to simply the decision-making process.

Leverage resources from manufacturers. If you are looking for ways to spruce up your selling technique, get in touch with manufacturer representatives. These product experts can help ensure that you are up to speed on the latest product information, messaging and marketing tools.

Include a step-by-step description of the project. Paint a picture that describes the process from start to finish, and when possible, bring product samples that homeowners can see and touch. Also, by explaining the process from start to finish, you’ll provide homeowners with the added assurance to move forward, while also reinforcing your credibility and expertise.

Keep an eye on the clock. While arriving to an appointment on time is a given, it’s also important to refrain from overstaying your welcome. If possible, confirm the length of the meeting upfront and keep an eye out for restless activity.

Offer references up front. Streamline the selling process and save homeowner time by providing a list of references at your initial meeting. Doing so eliminates extra legwork for the homeowner, while also instilling confidence in your work.

Don’t leave in limbo. Before leaving the appointment, make sure you and the homeowner are in agreement on next steps. Whether you’ll be providing an estimate the next day, placing a follow up phone call next week or beginning the project immediately, establishing a clear set of actions will keep the project running smoothly.

Is there a tried and true selling technique that has worked well for you? If so, we encourage you to share your success stories.

Tips to Boost Contractor Leads Using Twitter

Monica Brogan is Manager, Sales Support for CertainTeed Corporation

If you don’t have a Twitter account, stop what you’re doing, go to www.twitter.com, and create one.  Why?

According to the State of the Twittersphere report, each day five to 10 thousand new people join Twitter. Millions of users tweet daily. That’s a lot of opportunity!

For building professionals, this is another way to find customers, share information and best practices with other professionals, and expand your circle of influence.  It is just as important today to engage is social media as it is to a have website.  It is a part of doing business in the 21st century. I have included some examples of how Twitter can help you.  You can:

  • Create a “following” of people who are interested in what you are saying
  • Search for people who are searching for you.
    • Use the Twitter Search and enter phrases and keywords people would use to find you and your business.
    • Then, comment on their Tweets or send them an email when available. This will help you build a following quickly
  • Boost contractor leads and customers by staying in constant contact with your target audience.

Tips on the effective use of Tweets:

  • Post real-time updates so you can keep your followers informed.
  • Write strong Headlines – Short and Sweet – “What’s in this for me?”
  • Tweets with a link are more likely to be re-tweeted. 
  • Share how-to information, newsworthy events and tips, promotions.
  • Use the 90/10 rule.  90 percent of the time tweet useful information and resources, the remaining 10% tweet surveys and questions.
  • Day of the week and time of day matter – Monday to Wednesday were the days with the most re-tweets and tweets posted between 9:00 am and 6:00 pm had a higher volume of re-tweets.
  • Comment on blogs of your followers. They will likely follow you back and leave a comment for you.
  • Comment back as much as possible. This establishes a relationship and will lead to repeat visits.

In today’s world of social media marketing, Twitter should be one of the tools every contractor is using to build their business.  

If you are using Twitter as part of your sales strategy, I would love to hear how it is going.