How To Bring Added Value To Your Presentations

Posted: January 27, 2013 in Between A Rock And A Hardscape

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“In the absence of value, your customers will default to price comparison. Understand what value you bring to your potential customers.”

Even with all the information available on the Internet, your customers will only have a small amount of knowledge when they sit down with you to talk about pavers, retaining walls and other landscape offerings. So how do you set yourself apart so your customers do not make a decision based solely on cost?

You can try to educate them, but you run the risk of sounding too “salesy”, or even worse, you provide contrary information to someone who believes everything they read on the Web.

Or, you can bring added value to your presentations.

Here are some suggestions:

1. Bring additional options for your customers to consider.

If your customer wants new pavers in their driveway, add an option to do it in permeable pavers. Give them a price to do an overlay on their plain concrete front porch with matching 45mm pavers. Add a funky, curvy border to the driveway to define the start of the walkway to the front door.

Whatever the project, have a few cool options priced out and ready to present.

2. Bring a list of references along with your project photos.

Your customers will check you out online, so there’s a good chance they have already seen your websites photo gallery. Present them a list of references from work you have done recently (the last 2-3 years preferably). Include the customers names, addresses and phone numbers. Some customers will just scan the list for projects in their neighbourhood, but others will go see the driveway you installed last year or call one of your previous customers to confirm they would recommend your company.

3. Bring a design that your customers can visualize.

Your customers do not install Hardscaping for a living so help them see your vision for their space with a great design. If you usually draw plans on cocktail napkins or an empty package of Export A’s, enlist the help of a qualified designer to help you project a professional image. If 2D hand drawings are your preference, learn how to use Google Sketchup to bring 3D images to life. You will close more business if your customers can imagine living in the space you have designed.

4. Bring a project checklist.

Customers have no idea now many steps it takes to install a driveway, a patio or a retaining wall. So tell them!

Provide a checklist for the entire project so your customers have an understanding of the complexity and duration of your work. It will help make sense of your labor costs and imagine what other contractors will do if your customers ask for their project checklist!

5. Bring your industry certification to life.

Most customers you meet will not understand what ICPI or NCMA mean to them, no matter how much research they have done. So help them understand how certification sets you apart. If they want a new driveway, place your ICPI course manual in the middle of your customers dining room table. Tell them that you use a minimum of 6″ of base under your driveways because it is the recommended industry standard. When you recite standards from these huge course manuals, it will help legitimize your price. And your customers will be wary of other contractors who suggest using quantities that do not have industry standards as context.

Find ways to bring added value to your customer presentations. Your customers will thank you by signing more contracts for more dollars than you could ever imagine.

Happy Hardscaping!

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