Your Leads May Have A 2nd Life

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Buying leads is often a necessity for many small businesses as a well established form of advertising, to increase a company’s work flow. Here at CraftJack, we often stress the principals of one’s close ratio in factoring the cost per job versus the more commonly used (and frequently misguided) cost per lead. An example I have been known to use by comparison is advertising your business on a billboard by the side of the highway. Assuming an average of 5,000 cars drive past the sign in a given period and 5 calls (not projects) were a direct result of that advert, you wouldn’t call and request a refund for the other 4,995 cars. You would absolutely need to find out how much business you received from commuters who called after noticing the sign to accurately calculate what your cost per job was in order to determine if that billboard is a profitable form of advertisement for your business. The same is true for lead generation.

4 Steps to Closing More Sales With Questions

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Whether you conduct your sales pitches over the phone or in person, one thing that rings true in either case is that asking questions – preferably the right ones – will help turn more of those leads into customers. One of the single most powerful aspects in the process of selling is actually the asking. The more questions you present to a prospective customer, the more insight you will gain into their needs and objections while simultaneously presenting a more trustworthy presence in their eyes. Salespeople often spend too much time delivering their pitch and not enough time asking questions, uncovering those important elements the homeowner is looking for and the factors that will guide them toward hiring a contractor. Here are 4 simple steps to closing more sales calls with questions.

How Mnemonic Devices Can Help Your Sales Process

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My father, who was in the insurance sales business for 30+ years, used to have this incredible trick he used in sales. Ever since I can remember, he always wore a watch on his wrist. Nothing overly fancy, but a nice watch. And on the crystal face of his watch there was always a very small neon green dot sticker. Now, my father, being the quintessential sales personality that he was, would always address one’s curiosity the same way when asked about the presence of the green dot. It would go something like this:

Client: What is that green dot on your watch?
Dad: Do you have any friends or coworkers in need of long-term disability insurance?


A Homeowner’s Perspective on Choosing a Contractor

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I had an interesting experience this past week that gave me a new perspective on the process homeowners go through when using our service. Ever since moving into our most recent office space this past summer just north of Chicago, we’ve had some phone jack wiring issues that had affected a good portion of the work stations. When we first moved in, more than half of the phone jacks didn’t work. A problem that needed to be solved immediately, as all our phone and internet are connected and we are a 100% online digital communications business.

6 Steps to Closing More Jobs With Better Emails

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Contractors often mistakenly send me emails that were intended for homeowners. Unfortunately, a fair amount of them read like a greeting card my four-year-old  composed at day care. If your follow-up email to a prospective customer sounds like it was written one-handed on your iPhone while stopped at a red light having a side conversation with your buddy in the car, there’s a good chance you will lose out on a lot of potential jobs. Here are six easy tips to help you improve your emails to homeowners.

6 Things Clint Eastwood Movies Can Teach Contractors About Sales

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As the Winter comes into focus, many home improvement companies see a dip in sales, which is to be expected. Here at CraftJack we tend to see a significant drop off in leads and advertising traffic beginning the week before Thanksgiving that extends beyond the New Years holiday. This too is to be expected as many homeowners will likely want to have small projects completed earlier in anticipation of the arrival of Thanksgiving guests in their home, the desire to spend extra cash on holiday gifts, and/or travel. As this is something that occurs annually, it’s a great time to get your ducks in line for the new season that’s just around the bend. This can mean wrapping up and filing recent paperwork, sending out your holiday greeting cards to past customers (see past Toolbox article), or actually cleaning and tiding up your office. Another great opportunity for this down time is to reevaluate your sales pitch and process. Here are some tough guidelines to revising your sales pitch that Clint Eastwood‘s characters could have followed. After all, he called ’em as he saw ’em:

The Benefits of Hiring a Subcontractor

The home improvement industry, like many others, has a wide variety of offerings when it comes to choosing a contractor for one’s project. One of the best pieces of advice for any homeowner making a decision is to allow 3-4 companies to submit an estimate for their work on a project. This allows for  objective comparisons by measuring a company’s history, references, quality of past project, capability of meeting your needs, and most importantly, the ability for the homeowner to make a decision based upon their personal gut feeling when face-to-face.

The variety of contractors submitting bids for the same project can range from small independent contractors working from a van, to large general contracting companies with a dozen crews on both commercial and residential projects. If you fall into the former category and are running a company on a smaller scale, networking with other contractors can allow for greater exposure and revenue through hiring subcontractor. This can help to increase the amount of work you are able to manage simultaneously and allow your company to fulfill specialty requests that you may not currently employ anyone with those skills.

3 Ways Forums Can Generate Leads

Seeing as you are reading this blog post right now, chances are you are savvy enough to navigate the internet and are already using some form of lead generation online. Many contractors and small business owners find helpful information to better improve their own businesses while reading websites, blogs and forums online. These are great sources for finding out the latest innovations and hot topics surrounding your professional field. There are plenty of great forums out there where contractors, like yourself, actively participate in group discussions about anything pertaining to their specific industry and where homeowners can ask for expert advice. Here are 3 ways you can increase inbound leads though online forums:

3 Ways to Stay Passionate About Work

The key to getting business done right is being passionate about what you do and how you do it. While you’re not going to enjoy every little detail of the process, it’s still very important to really like what you do as a whole. Your passion for your work will be obvious to homeowners when you sit down and talk to them about the seemingly infinite possibilities you can deliver to their home improvement project and then again when you step back to gaze at your final product. Here are 3 ways to stay passionate about your work:

Your Handwritten Personal Touch

Every year as we enter the month of June I become giddy, knowing my birthday is approaching. I’m not as openly joyful as, say, when I saw a little boy hoping to receive a bundle of toys, but I take pleasure in the anticipated arrival of birthday cards I’m bound to receive from family and friends. It’s a small joy, but one that makes me feel good inside. In today’s busy and ever evolving digitally advanced world, we tend to see fewer hand written notes, be it a thank you note, birthday card, or even just a simple letter sent from a friend.