A sales pipeline filled with leads is an invaluable element to keeping you in business. Word on the home improvement contractor street, however, is telling us that lead building has taken a nose dive.
Just because sales are trending up right now doesn’t mean you should stop collecting and contacting referrals and leads. Your bottom line goals depend on the health of your sales pipeline. If you want to hit an additional $100,000 in sales by year end, the number of leads in your pipeline will help you determine if you can make it.
If you don’t have enough prospects in the pipeline, that’s a definite sign you need to focus on some prospecting. If you do have enough leads but your close rate is bad, find a way to strengthen that close rate, such as adding a financing program.
Following are simple techniques for home improvement dealers to build a pipeline filled with qualified leads.
REFERRALS. Tap into the positive energy of current customers.
When you finish a project and your customer is happy with the work, ask for a referral. Not the asking-type? Leave a referral card listing your social media channels and website link. Customers can leave testimonials on your social pages or share the referral card with friends and family. Use your social media channels. It’s a missed opportunity for businesses that aren’t using social media for their prospecting efforts.
AWARENESS. Stay in front of customers and prospects.
As demand and buyer behavior change, your prospecting strategies should evolve, too. Find new ways to stay in front of your potential customers.
- Use Apps. TikTok reaches an entirely new set of prospects and many contractors are benefiting from lead-boosting video clips.
- On Hold Messaging. Use a customer’s hold time to state an influential message: “Dreaming of an upgrade? We’ll help you pay for it with our affordable financing!”
- Email signatures. Your email signature is prime real estate. Add a simple call to action such as “Like our work? Refer us!” Make sure your email signature includes your social media links, phone number and website address.
- Invoices. On paper invoices, add a personal note to thank the customer and ask for a friends or family referral. On digital invoices, add a link to your website referral or testimonial page.
FOLLOW UP. Patience and tenacity are valuable.
Your customers and prospects are busy people…and after they hang up the phone or finish reading your email, it might be a while before they even think about your business again. Make sure to create a follow up schedule that reminds prospects you exist, but doesn’t make them wish you would stop reaching out altogether.
Schedule calendar reminders to email or call your past customers every three, six or 12 months to ask how they’re doing and how you can assist them in new ways. Also ask if their friends and family need any renovations or upgrades.
Foundation Finance makes it easy to interact with customers and prospects by providing customized financing brochures, email and social messaging, and eye-catching posters and window clings. If you’re not part of our dealer network, it’s easy and free to enroll.