Understanding a Home Improvement Customers Needs
In our business, success from a sales standpoint begins with an understanding of a home improvement customers needs. Part of the customer focus that we talked about in a previous post is the salespersons ability to uncover and assess the true needs of the potential home improvement buyer.
What Are Your Home Improvement Customers Needs
Those of you that have been in the business for any real period of time remember when most home improvement leads came as a result of cold call telemarketing. That's how I started...about 90% of the leads that I ran were cold call telemarketing leads. The reality is that most of those people that allowed us in had no real urgent need for our services. It was my experience that, in fact, many of them were lonely and needed someone to talk to.
Today it's different...the "Do Not Call" laws have really put a dent in our ability to generate a large number of home improvement leads. The good news is that a lot of the outbound marketing techniques that are in use today allow for a more targeted approach, putting you in a position to talk with potential buyers based on actual needs.
Also, many of us have at least researched and attempted some inbound marketing techniques. Whereas the old style of marketing required a bit of "pushing, " inbound is more about "pulling," in other words, about putting yourself where people with needs are and are doing research/asking questions.
Bottom line, lower quantity of leads, but much higher quality of leads.
How does this relate to understanding your home improvement customers needs? Since today we are more often invited into a customers home, instead of inviting ourselves, you'd think that people already know their needs; why else would we be there?
Home Improvement Customers Need Utility Not Quality
I spend a majority of my time working with home improvement owners and sales people, helping them to understand how to better communicate with their homeowner prospects and a major area of counseling that I find myself coming back to over and over is the topic of quality vs utility.
It's really easy to get this one backwards...I know I did. Because we are so passionate about the products we carry and services we perform, we want to communicate the quality of those products and services to our customer as quickly as possible. But can I tell you something that may be hard for you to swallow?
Your customer doesn't give a flip about Quality....yet!
Talking about quality before talking about utility is worse than putting the cart before the horse. Talking about quality first, before determining your home improvement customers needs, reaffirms the used car salesman mentality that, unfortunately, a lot of people equate with what we do.
The best home improvement salespeople help the customer understand when, or even if, they need their product or service by listening first, then educating.
It's then, and only then, that the quality of your products, services and your company becomes important to home improvement customers.