Author Marty Grunder, consultant, speaker, and owner of Grunder Landscaping, one of the largest firms in the Midwest, gives his advice on making the sale when you aren’t the lowest bid. Catch Marty at his NALP Sales Boot Camps in Baltimore and Charlotte the week of March 27, 2017.
My experience, and the success of my clients I coach, points to the fact that if you watch your expenses and control your debt, do good work and take care of your team and your clients, you have a very good chance of being successful. Oh sure, there’s a lot more to a successful business, than just that; however, the aforementioned works well. My clients also know their costs; they know their numbers and they are empowered to make great decisions as a result. Since they know their numbers, they know what clients are good and which ones are not. And that leads me to the marketing tips I want to share with you in this issue. Here are my top five:
1.KNOW WHO YOUR IDEAL CLIENT IS
Your ideal client is the one you make money off of, the one you enjoy working with, and the one that sends you more business. Too many landscape industry professionals never identify their ideal client and end up targeting all sorts of people who aren’t going to be long-term clients. Take the time to define your ideal client. For more help, visit my website and download my client experience funnel and the instructions associated with it.
2. PRACTICE RELATIONSHIP MARKETING IN A 2-1 RATIO TO LEAD GENERATION MARKETING
Relationship Marketing is the things you do to keep in touch with a client. It’s calling a client to see if they need anything. It’s visiting a client’s property to walk around. It’s sending them a birthday card. It’s inviting them to a show at the performing arts center. It’s simply just keeping in touch with them, like you would a friend. Get out and keep in touch with your clients. This is NOT easy and it takes time. Understand this, people do business with people they know, like, and trust. To achieve that, you have to spend time with your clients. So, spend twice as much time on that as you on Lead Generation. Lead Generation is the marketing you do to make the phone ring. My last three tips are all Lead Generation Marketing functions.
3. MAKE SURE YOUR WEBSITE’S SEO IS FULLY MAXIMIZED
If I do an Internet search with the words “landscaping, and the ‘name’ of the town you service” and your company’s name is not one of the top-three that comes up on the search, you have work to do. Hire an expert to achieve that. Consumers don’t use phone books anymore; they go on the Internet to find a contractor and if they can’t find your company and be impressed by your website, your phone will not ring. Actually, if you have your web page set up right, it allows for your clients and prospects to inquire about your services, 24/7 by submitting an email from your webpage.
4. MAIL POSTCARDS
Yep, those simple cards that have been around for years. They still work. However, here’s the key: mail them to homes and businesses where you already have a presence. Blanket mailing to neighborhoods where no one knows who you are normally does not work well. If you have trucks in a particular neighborhood or office park, your postcards will create more awareness and will help you get more leads. Before you try to branch out, get density in areas. This has worked for my own company and for the countless ones I have implemented this idea for as well.
5. COMPANY INTRODUCTIONS
At Grunder Landscaping Co., we call our networking “Company Introductions.” We don’t call it cold calling or warm calling. I used to call it that and my team and my coach pointed out (yes, even Marty has a coach) that’s not really what we do nor is it what we want to do. Our selling process involves selling to people the way they want to buy. No one wants to be accosted by someone with commission breath telling them to do business with them. What people appreciate is a soft, polite introduction that is quick and to the point. I have four sales professionals, although everyone at Grunder Landscaping is a salesperson, and each of us is required to make 100 of these, or about two a week. So, we’re mailing notes, knocking on doors of neighbors of current clients, sending e-mails, and even making phone calls. Our message is simple, and it is the same whether we are writing, calling, or e-mailing.
Focus on what you can control, know who your ideal client is, develop relationships, make sure your website is maximized for SEO, mail postcards, and work on introducing your company to as many people as you can and I know you will make more sales.