Bringing Value/ROI to a "struggling" contractor

by schazz
6 replies
Hey guys,

So I'm talking to a contractor who has lost a lot of his business in the last 5-6 years, downsized and is now losing out on jobs he used to get because he gets undercut by uninsured contractors, landscapers who do other work, or contractors that just do crappier jobs. At this point he is basically resigned to just doing a crappier job himself so he can lower his prices and compete.

He does amazing stonework, driveways, stairways, can do home construction/additions/renovations, etc. His clientele is wealthy and he has gotten jobs basically passively through word of mouth from customers, architects, some builders, etc.

I told him that another option other than lowering his prices is to educate his ideal potential customers about why it's worth it to them to pay more for a job done the right way, thereby changing the perception of these potential customers.

In terms of putting this into practice, he wants to go straight to the consumer rather than through JVs with builders or anyone else. He told me he does have a past customer list, which has never been marketed to or stayed in touch with in any way. I think that's the clear starting point. We can use a "reactivation" campaign to get him back on the minds of past customers that fit his "ideal customer" profile, and either get jobs or referrals from them.

Another possibility is getting a targeted list that fits his ideal customer profile and market to that list. In both cases, I'm thinking that direct mail will be the best course. Of course it will need a great offer and get opened (will do some sort of lumpy mail).

He also doesnt have a website, which I think is necessary to have before sending out any mailing, just because a certain % of people will want to be able to see more about his company before taking any further steps.

I'm wondering if anyone has any thoughts on this scenario, what I've said and what you would do to get this guy some business!

#bringing #contractor #direct mail #leads #offline #struggling #value or roi #website
  • Profile picture of the author Jason Kanigan
    Any, all, and more.

    I might qualify this guy out for a bad attitude and no budget, but...

    "What can I give this person right now that will give them the biggest boost?"

    Would implementing one of these options on NO budget be possible? I'm not saying you should work for free. I am saying that if you do one thing that's dead easy for you but next to impossible for him, and it generates revenue, he will have confidence and be able to fund the work. Maybe take a % of revenue from whatever you do first. After that it's pay for project. Just a thought.
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    • Profile picture of the author shockwave
      I agree with Jason on this.

      The only real "solution" I see (assuming you still want to help this guy) with no budget, is to build him a lead-gen site and bust out some videos.

      Go grab a local phone number (through CallFire) and put it on the website and in the videos.

      You put in the work FREE upfront and take a percentage of his first sale (whatever it would be to cover your minimal up-front costs of setting this thing up to begin with).

      From there on out, you charge him per lead.
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  • Profile picture of the author HostWind
    Whatever it may be, he NEEDS a website and it needs to look professional. If he does quality work, then everything about him and his business should reflect as such.
    Market him as a premium worker who does a to-quality job. Heck, you could even put some comparison images up if you really wanted to - anything to display to the user that he is their only choice.
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  • Profile picture of the author rob19028
    I am thinking a couple page website and a groupon offereing for something cheap he can do....This generates revenue before he does the work so he can pay you...and gives him the opportunity to upsale these customers to make real money.

    If you are friends...sounds like he needs to improve his sales process while he is in the home...there is always an uninsured guy that can beat your prices....he has to sell around that...
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  • Profile picture of the author schazz
    Thanks a lot for the responses guys. I should have mentioned that I don't know his budget, but he does have money. He has a $2 million-or-so house, although that was built when things were great and I know cashflow is tight and he likely won't want to put out a ton of money upfront without knowing that he'll get a return.

    Rob, I agree that the sales process needs work , I think that he just gives an estimate without any additional materials to showcase the value of what he can do (will confirm this). Without that, the prospects are going to be much more likely to decide based largely on price.

    HostWind, i agree that the website is a must and probably a first (or close to first) step.

    Assuming he's willing to pay for a website, I'll probably start there. If not, I can do what shockwave is talking about and set up some low-cost lead-gen avenues like video/lead gen sites.

    To Jason's point, if I look at what I can do to give an immediate boost:
    -Improving the sales process would help him increase his % (low cost to implement, but not bringing additional customers, just helping close more).
    -Great website itself won't necessarily bring more customers but magnifies any and everything else we do.
    -Marketing to past customers could bring some immediate and future business, but will be somewhat expensive to do (direct mail).
    -Lead gen properties are pretty cheap to setup and could bring immediate results.

    Of course there are other options, but looking at it from that perspective, implementing some lead gen properties might be a nice place to start, hopefully concurrently with a website if he's willing to do it....

    Thanks for the suggestions, I appreciate anyone chiming in!
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  • Profile picture of the author schazz
    PS just got off the phone w/them and set up a meeting for next week. Found out that they had been wanting a website but had been quoted $5,000. And when I say website I mean simply a polished, professional site showcasing their work, selling their services and offering contact info.

    I went over most of what was discussed in this thread and they are open to doing some/much of it...
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