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“Contractor and Remodeling Marketing? Good Luck With That!”

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The other day I was mentioning to someone that I help power growth for remodeling contractors and home improvement businesses. This person was also in the marketing industry and had done a lot of B2B consulting at some big companies. Very smart guy and you could tell he was passionate about his clients.

So when I mentioned to him why I do what I do and that I am just really passionate about the remodeling industry and helping those types of businesses, he kind of laughed at me or what I was saying (same difference right) and interrupted me...

"You work with remodeling contractors? Good luck with that! I have been burned several times by contractors and they aren't the type of people I would choose to help if I was you. In my opinion, contractors are beneath lawyers on the todem pole of professions people love to hate on."

This wasn't news to me and I handled it well and at that end of the conversation he could see why I continue to work in the remodeling industry. And if I had more time I would scour Google for some statistics to share with you on how many people distrust remodeling contractors, plumbers, HVAC contractors, general contractors, roofers, etc. It's a large amount, we all know this.

Some contractors are terrible at what they do. And some aren't even in the business to actually do the work, they use this industry as a means to scam others. It happens in every industry including mine. If I had a dollar for every horrible company that calls themselves an "SEO provider" or "guarantees first page ranking on Google", I would be retired. The point is, your so called competitors make it harder for you, but if you do the right things, it's actually pretty easy to stand above the crowd.

Bad businesses make it harder on those who aren't doing the right things, and easier on those who are.

This statement I bolded and I made it really big for you so you wouldn't miss it.  It is really important to understand this! 

Bad contractors are something I had spent a lot of time thinking about and why I feel so strongly about having a solid reputation online is so important for quality remodeling businesses to have. And the fact that most of society doesn't trust you is another reason why your prospects abuse your time, ask for all this free information and free estimates, and then hire someone else without so much as a phone call/email/thank you or box of cookies. Time isn't valuable right? Spending 1 hour with a prospect or even an entire week on something and not getting anything in return stinks.

Contractors are not held in high regard in our society. You arent on the same level as some other professions, but you are right there. Is that fair? No, its not, but you can thank all the shady contractors who rip people off and do lousy work for this.

What Are You Going to do About It? 

It is what it is and you need to work 10x's as hard in your market to overcome it, or you can just work smarter than everyone else. You cant just show up and expect to give an estimate and land the project unless you have what I call "positioning" or "credibility". Remember, your best prospects are dead scared to make the wrong hiring decision for their next project. Your image and reputation are everything and having a poor reputation is as bad as having NO reputation.

Be the clear leader in your local market. This is the only way to beat your true competitors and the scammers and win over the hearts of your prospects. And hint, hint....have an awesome reputationa and proof that you do things the right way allows you to charge more and stop chasing time wasters.

  • Develop a Unique Guarantee - show your prospects you will go to the end of the earth for them and stand behind what you do
  • Develop a List of Unique Benefits - what makes you better than your competitors. List it out for the world to see.
  • Develop an FAQ Section - your prospects are afraid to make the wrong choice. Think like they do and write out a detailed list of the top 10-15 fears and questions that are going through their mind and answer them on your website and in your marketing material. Everything from cleaning up a job, to contract, payment terms, what makes you different, and what to do if a mistake is made.
  • Develop an Awesome Website - you need a great website to really compete. It has to be well made, super fast, and mobile responsive. It needs quality content and a strong offer. Poorly thrown together Godaddy sites or a site developed by your 12 year old son aren't going to cut it anymore. Your website should be a lead producing machine and your #1 marketing asset. If its treated like an expense, you are missing the boat.
  • Reputation and Reviews - you have to have awesome information out there beyond just your site. You need to get found on at least the top 20 local and social sites for a long list of reasons I will cover later. And you need reviews. You don't need 100's but you need at least 20 solid reviews left online at sites like Google + Local, Bing, Yahoo, Yelp, and even Angies List (which I am not a big fan of, another discussion for another day).

    I am also not talking about simply copying and pasting testimonials to your site. I am talking about reviews left by clients on other sites. This won't happen by itself you need to actively engage your past clients and ask them to do this. Having lots of great authentic reviews is one of the best ways to show your dead scared prospect that hiring you is the best decision they will ever make.

  • Referral List - most smart consumers will ask for a list of referrals before they hire you, especially if its a big remodeling project. Don't give it to them, at least not until you have an agreement in place to move forward. If your prospect asks for a referral list to contact, tell them you would be happy to do that but you don't allow prospects to contact your past clients until you are in agreement that you are moving forward. This shows you are dead serious about what you do and you don't bug your past clients for just anyone.
  • Stop Doing Free Estimates - this is a bit outside of what this list is really about, but instead of an Estimate, call it a consultation and outline exactly what the person will get in that consultation. Listen, if you selling a new roof or window package, you will have to give an estimate, but you can position the estimate and pre-qualify the prospect on the phone before you go driving all around town and waste your time.

    Make sure they are the right fit before you do anything else and develop a detailed phone intervie consultation before taking the next step. Your prospect won't know what hit them and you will automatically be cast in a different light. And if you are selling a big ticket remodel, charge for every second of your time especially for the estimate!

Be the Clear Market Leader. Competition Doesn't Exist If You Do.

You can set the precedent in your market, stop chasing lousy prospects, earn more money in less time and actually get to take a vacation once in awhile if you invest in becoming the clear market leader. Competition does not exist when you invest in your reputation because so few remodeling businesses do any of this the right way or at all.

So I say to all those out there who have been burned by a remodeling contractor, shame on you. You didn't do your homework if you got burned. I have never been burned when hiring a contractor and I have personally managed over 50 projects myself. Invest some time online reviewing your choices, narrow it down to the top 3 and start contacting those businesses. May the best remodeling contractor win!

Need more help growing your remodeling business? Take advantage of all the FREE resources I have on www.RyanPaulAdams.com and my download my "3 Killer Ways to Grow Your Remodeling Business" today. 

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