Many new roofing contractors feel they need storms to have a solid business or steady cash flow. But is that really true? What if you delayed immediate profits and invested in your business for the long haul? What would happen if you channel your efforts to a few different services, push your money into them, and get profit to reinvest?
Ethan Andes of Andes Roofing shared a few pointers that can help you to keep your business booming while not being too reliant on storms.
Nothing compares to doubling down and focusing on just one or a few services (maybe shingle roofing, gutters, etc.) and creating maximum exposure for them in your market.
Your community will start to recognize you easily if you simplify your service offerings and start to focus more on long-term branding— truck wraps, signage, t-shirts, all those good things. Focus on branding and avoid the temptation to try a little bit of everything; your efforts will naturally start to snowball!
First Impression Still Matters
Your job site should speak excellence about your company — your workers, vans, yard signs, etc. Many contractors don’t have a big office or warehouse, so their only public presence is visiting the home in person. Branding and appearance become essential as the homeowner gets their first impression of you from that. 👨🚒
Bag Those Reviews!
On starting, many contractors want to look bigger than they are; but have you noticed that people tend to prefer the underdogs?
Let’s consider these two intros from two beginning roofing contractors:
- “Hi, I’m an awesome roofing contractor with five certifications (he probably doesn’t have any because he just started). My business has won three awards, and I can help attend to your roofing needs.”
- “Hey, I just started my business, and I’m just out here trying to make it! I do excellent work, and I have previous work experience in the roofing industry. I wanted to see if there’s anything I can do to help you?”
Because the second one shows some enthusiasm and vulnerability, people can relate to it better. Even if helping out a homeowner means just cleaning some gutters, a serious contractor will do whatever it takes to make things work out. However, it’s also essential to have the end goal in mind when starting from scratch.
Ask for a Google review alongside the chump change you’re paid for cleaning gutters. 😂 Imagine the credibility you get on amassing up to 50 reviews in three months! You get people that don’t know you from Adam to trust you, even as a newbie.
Key Leverage Points to Push Into When Starting
Put Yourself Out There
How will people like you or trust you with their money if people don’t know you? Let your work speak for itself. Get tons of exposure and impressions. Homeowners don’t care about your gallery of certifications and awards; they need social proof. Your certification only means that you’ll do a quality project for them, but other than that, without social proof, they have no reason to trust you over the next 50 contractors that have the same certification.
Your work will only speak if you sell yourself on every job. You must play the humble card as a starter without many reviews, awards, or recognition. Build those impressions, gain trust with every homeowner, get on those neighborhood Facebook pages, and humbly ask for referrals.
Let’s take referrals, for example. You don’t have a choice but to ask for them. Ask for referrals and send a thank you note to your referrers afterward. As much as you want to avoid looking desperate, you shouldn’t look indifferent. A homeowner can only help you out with referrals if you go out of your way to ask for them.
And always, let your homeowners be sure that you’re going to work harder than anyone else and that they’re going to get 110% customer service from you. 👌
Turning Into a Leader 🦸♂️
After putting consistent hard work into your company’s growth, you’ll find that you shift from selling to people-building as the leader. Your role now involves motivating, cultivating, and mentoring your team to be everything they can — not just in work, but in life (which allows them to perform better in their work).
The team rises and falls on leadership. 🦸♂️ How well you take care of your people is how well they take care of their customers. Your team can only follow your example as the leader. For example, if you don’t show up at work earlier than everyone else, you can’t teach punctuality to them. It’s unrealistic and unfair to expect people to rise past the bar you haven’t pushed.
Humility in the Hiring Process
Making an expert want to work for you can take time and effort. What can you include in your hiring process to get those people? Is humility required when hiring?
Yes! Authenticity is key! You have to be honest with people and be patient. Go out for lunch with them or bring them into your office. As you scale, your people need to be energized by the fact they’re also growing alongside the company. So let them know this at the outset.
Branding and Online Reviews
An undeniable online presence is one of the best ways to sell your services without having to use your insurance proceeds. Show yourself to the public. Did you know that people make 80% of their buying decision before they ever call you? It usually goes something like this:
- Someone referred them.
- They google you up
- Then they read some of your reviews.
People online are becoming more educated. People don’t buy things on Amazon without FIRST looking at the reviews. The more expensive the item, the more research they do!
And just like buying products from Amazon, People now do serious research on companies before working with them. So as a new company, you must understand that your online presence can be one of your biggest sources of leads or one of the main things holding you back.
If you find that your online presence is lacking, reach out to us ASAP, and we can help you gain more traffic and leads from your website.
Does Financing Affect Close Rate?
With the current economy, financing will be the single biggest way residential, retail, and home improvement contractors will progress in the next couple of years. Now more than ever, people will start to hold on to their cash as the economy continues to dip and think twice before making payments.
You make things easier for your homeowner by slashing the giant wall of payment to small road bumps of monthly payments. They appreciate you more and want to work with you. Easing things up for them financially makes a homeowner feel like you’re offering better customer service.
Other Tips to Help You Feel Less Reliant on Storms.
Brand Awareness 🔆
As a retail contractor, branding is just as important as getting leads that you’ve paid for from Angi Leads or other lead-buying services. When there’s no storm, your brand sustains you. In a storm, it only gets better because you’re on top of the community’s mind. Get your shirts, business cards, and other things that make you look more professional and better as a contractor.
New contractor? Throw yourself out there and let everyone in the neighborhood know who you are.
Show the Hustle Spirit
A dynamic approach to work pulls the heartstrings of your clients. Focus on being a new contractor that has a hustle. The guy that shows zeal for work gets to the emotions faster than the plain, settled professional.
There’s no harm in sounding like, “Hey, look man, I’ve just started and I’ve got a lot of hustle. I noticed you had a missing shingle. Can I get up on your roof and check it out?” No question, that passion hits!
Spell Out Your Sales Process
Because you’re just starting, you need a defined sales process to give your clients a good reason to trust you. The branding/marketing, who picks up calls, schedules appointments, and every other step to production.
As a new contractor, if you’re any good at marketing or generating leads, eventually, your phone will ring many times while you’re talking to a homeowner. And because those callers don’t know you enough to call you again, they’ll call someone else. You just lost leads while you were out there hustling. 😑So it’s vital to start hiring admin that can cover you while you’re out in the field.
The sales process starts as soon as that person picks up the phone to call you; hence, you need to have a competent person to answer your calls. Your first hire should be a CSR (Customer Service Rep)/ office administrator; they can take up that role.
They also serve as your executive assistant for everything office — answering phone calls, scheduling google calendar, and every other similar function.
Your first set of experiences as a contractor might be rough; nonetheless, you’ll succeed and fly if you’re willing to work harder than everyone else you know. Your friends might not understand you now, but that’s okay. Hopefully, when your sacrifices start paying off, they’ll see where you’ve been headed the whole time.
Amongst other things, specialize, get reviews, develop your leadership skills, and don’t hesitate to go all out! You’ll be shocked at your growth in time.