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Sales

TC3

Headache !
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There have been a lot of discussions here about sales... techniques, success rates, etc.
Some people say that if you 'make' every sale based on the # of calls you get, that you're doing something wrong (mostly pricing too low) ?
I look at it differently. I feel that if I don't make the sale it's because either a.) The customer couldn't afford it. - or - b.) I did something wrong.
Usually "b."
It's really useful info to me to look at what might have gone wrong. The best source would be to ask the customer, but it's not gonna happen like that. "Hey, could you tell me where I went wrong?" Sending out 'feedback' cards would be really handy, if I had the time / motivation to do it !
My gut usually knows what went wrong. I know I have a problem with being clear & moving towards the 'close' ... Most people just want the friggin' price on paper so they can make a decision. If I can do that before I leave site, & do it with confidence, I'm in.
But there's a ton of "What went right?" as well as "What went wrong?"
What makes your sales ?
What blows them ?
 
H

Hobby Climber

Guest
I think a lot has to do with peoples views of trees in general. Some folks just don't give a care about them or their health...or know much about the benefit of having trees on their property! Many know nothing about arborculture so I try to educate them when I can.

I end up spending a good bit of my talking folks out of removing trees when it not needed.

*
A recent example:

-A customer wanted an older but very healthy Oak tree removed. (I always ask why to get an idea as to what is really needed at a job). The customer explained that he's getting old and raking the leaves & picking up branches after a wind is becoming to much for him to handle.

The tree is on the south side of the house and offers good shade to his roof as well as blocks a lot of wind. I explained to him that once the tree is gone, it WILL cost him much more to heat & cool his house. That and the fact that the property value may decrease once the tree is gone. (In my area, a treed lot can fetch up to $5000 over one that has no trees).

At that point he asked me whats the answer? I gave him some options! It will cost $1,200 to T/D & remove the tree, $1,400 including the stump OR $300 to dead limb & prune his tree.

I suggested that with all the money he'd be saving by not removing the tree (and increasing his heating & cooling bill), he could pay some neighborhood kid to rake his lawn for many years and be $$$ ahead of the game!

After he thought for a minute, a grin beginning to stretch across his face as he told me to go ahead and give it a good trim!

*

Again, educate your customer so they can make an informed decision as opposed to just slapping a price on a sheet of paper and handing it to them. This gets them involved so they feel apart of the process and feel comfortable not only with the decision but with you as an arborist! You'll get a lot more business via word of mouth!!!

HC
 

treetx

Traveler extraordinaire
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Great post T and great to read you.

Seeing as though sales is easily a fourth if not a third of the job.

I disagree. Quite frequently it is a.)

For example. Me, my climbing bag and my 020T go for about $50-$60 an hour and customer keeps the brush. So frequently it is that not everyone is my customer. So frequently no = no , I don't want to pay that much.

Frequently no, means no, I don't have the money. No, you are losing to the competition. Frequently that competition is not a tree guy but rather new siding or a new TV.

Scheduling is a good way to close folks. Remember that nobody likes to feel "closed".

Door knob close: wait until you are walking away, turn, and ask them about their reservations.

Spouse/boss close: what do I tell my wife. What do I tell the boss?

I like the calendar close specially this season. "If we can get it scheduled before the spring rush, we can do it for $xyz."

Professionals are busy so even if your schedule is wide open, ask if you should shedule them in.

Note to the wise on non residential stuff where the person who takes the bid may not be the decision maker. Don't take no from the person who can't tell you yes and if you are calling on them, start higher in the organization, then work down. It is harder to work up because most people don't like to admit they simply don't have the decision making authority.

Oh, be sincere, after all, you are not there to "close" them. Sincerity+great references gets me most of my sales.

What blows them? Price. I am not the cheapest.
 

sotc

Dormant hero!!
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So. Oregon
your confidence can make the sale also. if your wishy washy you leave a bad impression
 

TC3

Headache !
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  • Thread Starter Thread Starter
  • #6
Remember that nobody likes to feel "closed".
Excellent feedback already. Thanks Nate & Bob ! (oops, SquishMeister, too !)
On this part of your quote, I just wanted to note that I use the word 'close' in a non-conventional way.
That is, we already know if the customer is going to buy or not, we simply move it in the direction of having it in writing. No ? This is the part where I tend to "buy it back" >>> that is, I ramble on instead of simply clarifying what the agreement is & writing the bid.
Nobody wants to feel pushed or bullied, so true. But they called me... I didn't bang on their door & try to sell them a vaccuum cleaner.
 

treetx

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Austin, TX
Feed back cards....no.

Just ask them. It opens the door to honesty.

Call the bids you lost or didn't hear back from. If they say we went with the competition, ask them what was the deciding factor?

The phone is a great tool.

‘An important scientific innovation rarely makes its way by gradually winning over and converting its opponents: What does happen is that the opponents gradually die out.’

— Max Planck
 

treetx

Traveler extraordinaire
Joined
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Messages
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Location
Austin, TX
Excellent feedback already. Thanks Nate & Bob !
On this part of your quote, I just wanted to note that I use the word 'close' in a non-conventional way.
That is, we already know if the customer is going to buy or not, we simply move it in the direction of having it in writing. No ? This is the part where I tend to "buy it back" >>> that is, I ramble on instead of simply clarifying what the agreement is & writing the bid.
Nobody wants to feel pushed or bullied, so true. But they called me... I didn't bang on their door & try to sell them a vaccuum cleaner.
Getting a signed agreement or PO is closing. That is when the sale is made.

Buy it back!! Ha! Wish I didn't know what you mean :roll: (guilty here)

How do you know they didn't need a vacuum cleaner?

Listen to your prospect when giving them a bid.
 

TC3

Headache !
Joined
Aug 12, 2006
Messages
1,505
Location
Michigan
  • Thread Starter Thread Starter
  • #9
"Listen"
I'm going to work on all of your suggestions... Primarily that one !
Thanks, Nate !!!
 
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