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Old 01-19-2013, 10:51 AM   #1
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Default Cherge less for potential referrals?

I've been told never lower your prices and I agree. At least where I'm at in my "career". Either charge nothing or stick to your pricing.

One exception that I've considered would be if the ho could be a valuable referral generator. I'm wandering how others would approach this.

I would write more but I can no longer see what I'm typing why does this forum have this bug??
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Old 01-19-2013, 10:55 AM   #2
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I definitely have a few clients I am pretty reasonable with because I know I am their only painter and they always suggest my name to others. I don't tell them I cut them a deal, just don't ever push new pricing on them.
This really only applies to about 5 clients.
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Old 01-19-2013, 10:55 AM   #3
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Why would you lower your price for the potential of getting referrals? That's like giving all the candy away upfront. You want to award customers down the line after they've been valuable referral engines, then that's great. Most people I know that are that generous never even expect anything back in return other than quality work. People that want you to give them discounts for being potentially good customers - those are the folks that aren't going to be good customers.
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Old 01-19-2013, 11:00 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sincere painter View Post
I've been told never lower your prices and I agree. At least where I'm at in my "career". Either charge nothing or stick to your pricing.

One exception that I've considered would be if the ho could be a valuable referral generator. I'm wandering how others would approach this.

I would write more but I can no longer see what I'm typing why does this forum have this bug??

What exactly do you mean by referral generator?

I hope you are not talking about one of the home owners that says "If you can give me a great price, I can get you a lot of work. I have a lot of friends who need a paint job."

Those people are full of it and never generate any leads, as a matter of fact, they are usually nickel and diming the whole time the job exists' asking for free extras the whole way. I almost always pice those types of jobs higher, knowing they are going to be a pain to work for.

Also don't forget, part of the referral you will be getting from these types of job will be "cheap prices". So when you start out with the source of the leads having had you paint for cheap, it is going to be hard to justify your pricing to every follow up job thereafter. It is a slippery slope.

Keep your prices firm, Do a good job, and if they are truly going to ive you leads, they will do so without a discount.
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Old 01-19-2013, 11:21 AM   #5
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interior decorators are notorious for this.....''i need some work done can you give me a bid?...im an interior decorator so i can get you tons of work''.....(insert batting eyes here) ..............kiss my ass

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Old 01-19-2013, 11:26 AM   #6
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I would never give a discount with the expectation of getting referrals. I do have a handful of long time customers who I've received a lot of repeat business from plus a large numbers of referrals. They are quality customers, as are the referrals I've received. I have no problem giving them a modest discount as a way of showing my appreciation and I make sure they know why they are getting it. In my mind it's no different than paying a fee to a lead generating service - except these are usually sure things and of a consistently high quality.
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Old 01-19-2013, 12:22 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wje View Post
What exactly do you mean by referral generator?

"If you can give me a great price, I can get you a lot of work. I have a lot of friends who need a paint job."
If you give me a good price, I will recommend you to my neighbor.
If you give me a good price, I will recommend you to my friend who needs painting.

Then once you get the job, you may hear this.

If you do a good job, I will bring you back in the fall to paint other rooms.
If you do a good job, I will recommend you to my neighbor.
If you do a good job, I will recommend you to my friend who needs painting.

And its a good thing they tell you this - or they surly would have gotten a hack job at a ridiculously high price!

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Old 01-19-2013, 12:52 PM   #8
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Just like painters say "give me a better price, I'm going to use a ton of this." (Me) Oh yeah? How much do you need? (Painter) "3 gallons"......

^^^^ this happens more than you think, or I care to remember.
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Old 01-19-2013, 12:55 PM   #9
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I think research hound is right on with this one. I was kind of thinking more along the lines of trading work for advertising.

I'm sure, over time, it becomes more of a relationship than a gambling proposal. I appreciate the way this has been construed by all.

Also, in general, the "arrangement" at first is more successful if the trade is equal; like I'll give you work if you're posted advertising has generated equally(at least) profitable outcomes for me. For example.

Love the forum. Hate the hack. Just had to say the second part after saying the first part. 😏
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Old 01-19-2013, 01:54 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by plainpainter View Post
Why would you lower your price for the potential of getting referrals? That's like giving all the candy away upfront. You want to award customers down the line after they've been valuable referral engines, then that's great. Most people I know that are that generous never even expect anything back in return other than quality work. People that want you to give them discounts for being potentially good customers - those are the folks that aren't going to be good customers.

Very true, PlainPainter.

My people would never ask for a discount either. I just do it. Two of them don't even ask for a hard copy upfront anymore. They trust I will be reasonable. Funny-I always give them something in writing, but they don't seem concerned with it. I guess if something were really high, they'd bring it up, though!
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Old 01-19-2013, 03:00 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sincere painter View Post
I've been told never lower your prices and I agree. At least where I'm at in my "career". Either charge nothing or stick to your pricing.

One exception that I've considered would be if the ho could be a valuable referral generator. I'm wandering how others would approach this.

I would write more but I can no longer see what I'm typing why does this forum have this bug??
There is no way to predict a good referral generator. You can kid yourself about it all day long but in the end, people will refer you or they won't. I agree with everyone above that believes a person telling you they will give you referrals to get a lower price a) are usually the worst customers and b) never refer anyone (or refer other people that want a low price). They don't value you to begin with so what would make me believe they would suddenly value me enough to give out my name after they selfishly get what they want? Its an oxymoron.
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Old 01-19-2013, 05:11 PM   #12
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I always have a hard time not rolling my eyes when I hear a potential customer say this during a bid. It usually, but not always, means I'm going to lose the job to a low bidder. I will usually reply with a "that's great, and I will definately take that into consideration" with a big, sh!t eating, grin on my face.
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Old 01-19-2013, 05:35 PM   #13
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Saying that is a potential clients way of telling you that your wasting your time.
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Old 01-19-2013, 06:06 PM   #14
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I've seen it suggested on bad TV shows that a ho should say something like "I can get you lots of future business if we can work out a deal" to secure the best deal with a contractor.

I think it's usually a tell that the ho is a price shopper, and thus usually not going to result in a sale.

After my 'sh!t eating grin' response, I take the opportunity to sell the ho on my services, and it sometimes works, usually not.
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Old 01-19-2013, 06:19 PM   #15
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Two issues,

1)

Betty, "Lucy, I had Sincere Painter paint my house, and he only charged me $5,000. Give him a call"

Lucy calls you, says that Betty recommended you. You bid $6000

Lucy, "why are you charging me so much more than you charged Betty, our houses are identical"

-------


2) Real story:

Many many moons ago I was being referred by one HO . I had a ton of work from her and all her friends.

As I was papering a small powder room for her around Christmas time, I got the silly notion that what a great way show my thanks and appreciation if I did it for free. It was only going to take me six hours and she had been the catalyst for a LOT of work.

So I did. I finished the job, she asked me if she could pay me now, and I said it was a gift in consideration for all the referrals she had given.

Never heard from her or any of those friends again. Never figured that one out and never gave away any more work.



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Old 01-19-2013, 06:58 PM   #16
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I'll add that my best referrals have historically come from jobs that were homeruns. (gross $$ and margin) Those are the people that truly appreciate a well done job and are willing to pay for it.
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Old 01-19-2013, 08:38 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NCPaint1 View Post
Just like painters say "give me a better price, I'm going to use a ton of this." (Me) Oh yeah? How much do you need? (Painter) "3 gallons"......

^^^^ this happens more than you think, or I care to remember.
Be glad I'm not near your store.

"GIVE me a couple 5ers. I MAY be going to use a ton of this."
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Old 01-19-2013, 10:36 PM   #18
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I agree with everything that's been said so please don't blast me here... I have purposely lowered bid amounts knowing it would help me lock up a potential client. I did this in my first year of operation with the owner of a carpet retail business. I purposely lowered his bid by a couple hundred on a 5k exterior.

I still made a great profit, he was very satisfied with everything, and in turn has become my best lead generators. Every time a get a job that originated from his lead I think about how much business that $300 discount created me.

I agree that if this is a situation of "I promise to pass your name along" then don't walk away, RUN! However, if you believe this customer could generate a lifetime of leads based on their stature then go for it, just make sure not to lowball yourself today on the POTENTIAL of referrals tomorrow.
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Old 01-20-2013, 05:59 PM   #19
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Arrr I love it. If every person who said I will get you more work came thru I would still be doing just the Referal jobs from my first year in business!!!!!!

When I hear those words now I just shudder. Now days i always politely say lets get the first job out of the way and then worry about referrals!
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Old 01-20-2013, 06:28 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Repaintpro
Arrr I love it. If every person who said I will get you more work came thru I would still be doing just the Referal jobs from my first year in business!!!!!!

When I hear those words now I just shudder. Now days i always politely say lets get the first job out of the way and then worry about referrals!

G'day Steve

Yeah when a potential client says that Im like yeah

when the phone rings and they say they got my number from so and so then I will be like thats great but until that happens I'm like yeah thanks appreciate that ?

Text msg below I did some work for a client a small commercial job which isn't my scene the commercial game

But the client is like yeah I need this painted at home and so and so just bought a house and also needs it painted

I'm like no worries just give me a call when you would like me to drop by and have a look at the work to be quoted


Then in the txt if all good we will keep you busy ? lol wow what a promise

I'm only now booking in July 2013 if they don't hurry up it will December again like the date I got the txt

But yeah they will keep me busy lol
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