Article 3 of 3
Quality – Speed – Budget
Welcome back to the final article in this series which covers the contract proposal.
In the first article we covered what to say to a prospect when you speak to them for the first time on the phone.
In the second article we covered the importance of identifying a client's fear as it will be the key driver behind their decision to choose a particular builder.
In that article we used Quality and the key priority to demonstrate examples.
So now let's cover speed and budget.
Speed & Budget
Not because the client says, "I want it finished ASAP or I'm only prepared to pay $xx.."
If you listen to that nonsense you are being played. They're just negotiating and saying what they think they have to say in order to get the deal they want.
You need to go deeper and uncover a genuine 'need' rather than a 'want'.
So when a client tells you they want a top quality job as soon as possible at the lowest price or they will give the job to another builder don't assume they want all 3 boxes ticked (Quality - Speed - Budget). Instead, go to work on identifying what the real need is. The #1 factor.
A couple of examples.
A client has the wife's family coming over from the UK for Christmas and they are planning on staying with them.
Obviously the client's priority here is for you to build as slowly as possible! (LOL)
But let's assume they do want to be in by Christmas. Sure, they don't want to pay more than they have to and sure, they want a good quality build but the dominating factor is timing. What happens if the home isn't ready?
Hotels are pretty expensive over Christmas.
This could be a major concern right?
So, once you establish that this is the #1 driver behind a decision, the thing that keeps your poor client awake at night, you can address it. And the way to address it is head on. Create a draft schedule when you produce the estimate. Use a template and modify it with proposed dates and show how you plan to have this job completed on time.
Ask them, "What date are the other builders GUARANTEEING to finish by?"
"You don't know?"
"Crikey! Ask to see their schedule, that will tell you straight away"
"They don't have one?"
"Well...you know what they say, a failure to plan is a plan to fail"
And that's just for starters. Once you move past the estimate stage and into the quoting stage put some more meat on that sucker. It's got to be done before you start the job anyway so get onto it now and use it to win the job. By the time you are ready to submit your 25 page quote you'll also have a fully detailed schedule that can be included with it.
Add Your Guarantee
And to round it off you can customise your Unique Value Proposition (UVP) which is a fancy name for a guarantee so that it resonates with this particular client.
"We promise to complete your home on time...or we will put you up in a 5 star hotel and give you $1,000 a day spending money."
Does that make you sweat?
Good, it's supposed to.
If you do not have the ability to deliver new homes on time then you should not be targeting these clients. Either improve your business so it delivers value or do something else because you're just wasting everyones time.
On the other hand, if you are a professional builder you have nothing to worry about. Variations attract an extension of time. Incremental weather is recorded and added to the contract. Professional builders have the systems in place and manage this process in their sleep. So if that sounds like you, then you need to clearly communicate your strengths while highlighting the hopeless inadequacies of the '2 page quote builder' who bumbles along running from one catastrophe to another.
You're The Professional
You know it.
Make sure your prospects know it too.
That way you wont be messing around and marking jobs up by 20% markup in order to compete with the amateurs. You'll be the builder of choice that works on a premium margin and attracts the premium clients who are ready willing and able to pay.
The Next Step
To discover how you can win more jobs at higher margins, make sure you are following the proven sales process that has been developed by builders for builders.