I’ve talked to a lot of contractors lately who’ve indicated a decrease in lead flow after an embarrassment of riches the past couple of years. Here are five tips to consider anytime demand is down for your products.
1. Don’t Panic.
Too often home improvement companies get nervous and start cutting prices, which means cutting margins and profit. The customer wins because they get a great product or service at a discount, but your company loses the valuable dollars necessary to run a successful business.
2. Do Not Cut Your Marketing Budget.
When leads are lean, large companies will gain an even bigger market share if small to medium-sized contractors cut back. The rich will get richer and you’ll be left scratching your head wondering how another one of your competitors got acquired by a private equity firm.
3. Create a Robust Referral Program.
Reward your customers with checks for referrals. Or deliver bottles of wine to their doorsteps like Chicago-based contractor Opal Enterprises. Stay top of mind with monthly or quarterly reminders by mail or email as offered by companies like gFour Marketing.
4. Follow Best Practices for Direct Response Marketing.
Emphasize your offers and calls to action, and always include an expiration date to create urgency. The grandma with the Gucci bag whipping out coupons to save 13 cents on banana bread at the grocery store also wants to feel like she’s getting a great deal on a new door.
5. Promote Your Financing Program.
Customers who might not think they can afford a home improvement project at the moment may change their tune if you show them you offer same-as-cash or low monthly payment plans like the guys at Outback Deck who shared their finance-first approach with me on my Rock Stars of Remodeling podcast.
Whatever you do, don’t take your foot off the gas when times get tight.
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