I had an interesting call with a client (Steve) the other day. Steve runs a very successful house painting company in Bridgeport, CT, which he’s built up over the past 25 years. He called me to transfer his LocalPainterQuotes.com account (our old service) to CraftJack Profiles.
In the process of setting up his account we got to talking about the lead generation business, sales, and how to be a successful painting company. Now, Steve has more opinions than a talk show radio host and you can feel his passion for his business when he speaks. About half way through our one hour and fifteen minute call, Steve unleashed his opinions on lead generating services.
Steve believed that the glory days of the 80′s, 90′s and early 2000′s, where painters could make a great living off referral work alone, are long gone (something we hear from a lot of house painters that work with us). The rough economy paved the way for a slew of lowballers that have driven prices down and competition up. This isn’t only the case for painters, we hear this from all types of contractors.
Steve then explained why lead generation services are a must for his business.
Steve is a sales man. That’s part of what makes him so successful. He knows that he will close a certain percentage of jobs for every homeowner he can get in front of. So the more people he can talk to, the more jobs he will win. That’s why he uses lead generation services in addition to other forms of advertising.
I asked Steve what he felt about not being able to reach a certain percentage of leads and how that affected his outlook. He said that he mostly does not request credits for those leads and chalks it up to advertising costs. He made the point that unlike retail stores, contractors have very low overhead. They don’t need to pay rent and utilities for an office space. Because they don’t have a storefront with people walking by, contractors have to spend extra on advertising to make up for it.
If a store owner has a space in the mall and 20 people walk by without coming in the store, does the store owner get to ask the landlord for a discount on his rent? No! Owning a store is just the cost to get in front of customers. Not everyone will buy. Not everyone will even walk in.
I thought it was an interesting point. But I know many contractors don’t share his view. What is your opinion? Share it in the comments below…