What difference would it make in your business if even 5 percent of your customers ordered another service from you? What about 10 percent of your customers? What about 25 percent or even 50 percent of your customers hired you again?
Repeat business is the golden ticket in contracting businesses — it’s more profitable and takes far less effort than selling to new prospects. With new prospects, you spend (possibly) hundreds of dollars to market to them, just for the privilege of standing in front of them to sell them on your service. So, you spend money and valuable time just trying to get them to buy from you the first time. And when a customer buys from you again, you didn’t spend that money or time to get them to buy from you, which increases the profitability of the sale.
Every time a customer buys from you, your projects become more profitable.
Unfortunately, most contractors miss this because they’re so focused on getting new customers in the door that they ignore their existing customers and the massive, profitable opportunity of their existing customer base.
You can start making your projects almost instantly more profitable — even as quickly as the next 30 minutes — by simply implementing this “mind control” strategy in your business:
Step 1: Build a product chain
List out all of your products and services and packages in a column down the left side of a piece of paper. Then, beside each product or service or package you offer, write down one to two of your products or services that customers who bought the left-column product might also buy.
For example, first, you might list the following products, services and packages:
- Backyard deck
- Bathroom renovation
- Garage renovation
- New roof
Second, you’d then list a couple of related services beside each one. For example, on the first two, you might write:
- Kitchen renovation – bathroom renovation, backyard deck
- Backyard deck – kitchen renovation, garage renovation
And so on. Your objective here is to create a product chain, so that you’ll always have another product, service or package to offer customers.
Step 2: Call your customers
Now it’s time to use that product chain! Pick up the phone and call your previous customers. Look at their file and see what service they bought from you, then offer them one of the others in the product chain.
Say something like, “Hello Mr. Customer. Last month you had your kitchen renovated. Well, we know that people with beautiful kitchens often want to entertain in the backyard when it’s really nice outside, which is why many of our customers who hire us to renovate their kitchens also hire us to build a deck in their backyard for entertaining. Have you thought about entertaining your guests on a beautiful backyard deck?”
Now, if the customer doesn’t need a backyard deck, or if it’s winter and no one’s hiring to have decks installed, then offer the other product, service or package. Listing two beside each of your products or services gives you some flexibility.
But let’s say the customer does hire you for their deck. Great! Build their deck, serve them at the highest level, then call them back later and refer to your deck service in the left column and offer them another service in the chain, such as a garage renovation. And when you’ve done the garage renovation, call them back and offer them the service you listed beside garage renovation.
Power of this strategy
This is such a powerful strategy because it uses “mind control” on your customers, in a good way.
Here’s how it applies the power of mind control:
- By being proactive, you show the customer that you have their best interests in mind, which positions you as a trusted expert in the field, and therefore someone they should listen to.
- By emphasizing the benefits, like in the example about entertaining on a deck, you highlight the real value of your service, and not just the nice look of a deck.
- By creating the offer, you plant a seed in the customer’s mind about having that service. Even if they don’t hire you right away for it, you’ve planted the seed and you may be able to repeat the offer later.
- By saying, “…many of our customers who hire us to renovate their kitchens also hire us to build a deck in their backyard for entertaining…” puts your customer in an imaginary competition against other people, and they’ll want to keep up with the Joneses, which compel them to hire you.
- By repeating these offers every time you perform another service, you establish yourself in your customer’s mind as an important part of improving their life.
This is such a simple strategy and it’s one you can take action on immediately. Within the next 30 minutes, you could potentially have your product chain and you can start calling your past customers to recommend a product or service!
Mike Agugliaro is the “Business Warrior” and founder of CEO Warrior, a business consulting and mentoring firm, providing tested and proven methods to defeat the roadblocks that prevent small to mid-sized businesses from achieving their ultimate success. He has played a key role in building Gold Medal Services’ success, as co-owner of the company. For more information about CEO Warrior, visit www.CEOWARRIOR.com.