I hope that you had a wonderful Thanksgiving with family and friends. Now that the holiday season is officially upon us, this also marks the time of planning for 2019. That time when you start to think about new initiatives for your company, and how you will best face the new challenges of the new year so that your business can continue to thrive and flourish.
At the Residential Metal Roofing Executive Report, we work hard to bring you proven ideas that you can implement in your business. Part of how we do that is through conference calls that we usually hold twice a month, typically on Thursdays at 11 am Eastern. Our next call will be held this Thursday, November 29, and will be another “Let’s Be Frank” call in which we talk with and interview industry leader and legend, Frank Farmer of American Metal Roofs.
This Thursday, joining us with Frank will be his business partner Dan Lane, Vice President at American Metal Roofs. Dan focuses heavily on the Operations side of the business. So, each day, he faces things that your company faces. How do you keep job sites efficient, productive, and profitable, and how do you attract new team members to the installation side of your business?
In this call, Dan will focus on the Speed Trims they have developed to increase metal roof installation speed, and also on how to build a company culture and environment that attracts today’s younger millennial work force to skilled labor jobs. Much of American Metal Roofs’ success is due to these two areas so you do not want to miss this call.
To attend the conference call, dial in to 857-232-0476 at 11 am Eastern on Thursday, November 29, and enter the pass code 332616. We hope you can join us!
Now, as part of the Executive Report in 2018, we have looked at several “best practices” that hallmark leading home improvement and specialty metal roofing contractors. In previous issues, we have looked at Business Systemization, Professionalism, Commitment, Knowing Your Numbers, Marketing and Lead Generation, Referral Maximization, Gaining Local Expert Status, Total Industry Knowledge, Lead Qualification, and Leadership. In this issue, we’re going to talk about Value-Added Selling.
“Just give me the price.” How many times have you heard that from a prospective customer? Hundreds? Thousands? Even more? And, if you’re like the rest of us, there have been times when, even against your best judgment, you fell for it. You short-circuited your sales process and gave them a price. And, if you’re like most of us, that didn’t end well. One of two things happened – you either didn’t get the deal or you did get the deal and later found out that your profitability was not what it should have been.
Is the prospect’s push for a price really a tactic on their end to buy at the lowest possible price? I think we sometimes assume that is their motive. But, in reality, they are just pushing for the only bit of information that they feel like they do not know – the price. But it all goes back to this – they do not know what they do not know. So, when they push for price, you have three choices:
- You can cave in to their price request, something which you know won’t end well.
- You can swoop in and try to be their hero, saving them from a poor decision and instead telling them why you’re so much better than everyone else.
- You can help them discover that there really are many pieces of information they are missing in order to make a wise decision – that price is not the only piece they’re missing. This scenario makes you their “guide” but allows them to be the hero in their own story by discovering information that leads them to the right decision.
The third option above is the option that sets you up for a Value-Added Sale. This is a sales experience where the consumer discovers the true value of what you have to offer and begins to understand why pursuing that value will allow them to achieve their end goals.
In our November 1, 2018 “Let’s Be Frank” call, Frank explained the great way in which his company converts the “Just give me the price” prospect into someone who realizes they have much missing information that must be answered before they make a decision. I encourage you to listen to that call as it is a critical part of setting the stage for a Value-Added Sale – a situation in which the prospect understands that your company and your product have more to offer than the low price bidder ever has to offer, and why they don’t dare ignore the things that you have to offer.
Successful home improvement and specialty metal roofing contractors know that, while aesthetics and long life go a long way, most homeowners must still understand the economic value of a metal roof or other home improvement project. Think about buying a new vehicle. Yes, sometimes we will pay extra for that new vehicle just because of how it looks or how it drives or the features it has. And those are all important things with quality metal roofs. But imagine if, with that car, those things also brought financial payback to you – imagine how much more powerful the sales presentation on the car would be then. That’s what you can do with a metal roof – bring the logical benefits in alongside the emotional things.
Value-Added Selling is a process that starts from your first interaction with a prospect. If that first interaction inadvertently affirms in the prospect’s mind that the only missing piece of the puzzle for them is price, then you will have a tough time ever presenting the true value of your offer. You will simply never get them to that point of discovery. However, if, from the very beginning of their experience with your company, the prospect sees that you have something different and something more to offer, then you can start to help them understand what they will be missing if they do not allow you to guide their investigative process.
When the consumer starts their shopping, they have two thoughts – “I need a new roof” and “What’s it going to cost me?” They want to be the hero of their own story by getting that new roof, getting it at the lowest price possible, and having it perform wonderfully. You, of course, know that the lowest priced roof will not perform wonderfully. Life simply doesn’t work that way. And you need to help your future customer see that while continuing to be the hero of their own story and discovering the missing pieces of the puzzle – the things that add value to what you’re offering them.
This is done by “guiding” the prospect along a pathway that allows them to discover the information they need and then come to the conclusion that you offer them the best value and performance for their roofing decision.
As always, let me know if you’d like to discuss this in further detail. I’d love to hop on the phone with you some day and discuss the challenges currently being faced by your company … and perhaps we can help you discover some great answers to implement in 2019! I can be reached at 1-800-543-8938 ext 201
Todd Miller has spent his entire career in the metal building products manufacturing industry. He is president of Isaiah Industries, an organization recognized as one of the world’s leading metal roofing manufacturers. Todd is currently Vice President of the MRA (Metal Roofing Association) and a Past Chair of MCA (Metal Construction Association). Through his website, he strives to raise the bar on standards and practices to provide property owners with the best possible products for successful roofing projects.
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