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Old 01-08-2009, 01:17 AM   #1
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Default If you have too much work, don't read this.

Up selling and Service Expansion:

There have been a few threads relating to how difficult work is to find these days. Here are a couple of ideas to consider for improving your bottom line:

A) Main Premise: You have a job. It's in the bag with contract signed. Make sure you are providing every service related to that job that applies to your expertise. If you can competently and professionally execute ANY work related to the painting trade, you must take advantage of this fact on this job. Go over the contract and specs. Ring out every service you can provide so you satisfy the customer and get paid accordingly.

B) Service Expansion: If you can professionally execute other types of work, you should consider adding these services to your arsenal. If you sheet rock and tape, perform excellent carpentry, refinish floors and or furniture, can do electrical work, and so on, I heartily suggest you offer this work. Ensure your insurance and licensing requirements permit this expansion.

Your additional service offerings in no way diminish the fact you are an expert painter. You increase your chances of providing more benefit to each customer. You should definitely offer value added services to your business model. Painting should be your primary focus, but not your only focus.

Interesting Idea: Another poster, in another thread, mentioned having a husband and wife team--one paints and one cleans. I think that is a realizable model and can work well. Most interior repaints I do need cleaning before brush and roller meet ceiling and wall.

Selling is simply showing the customer he/she has a problem that you can solve better than anyone else. If you produce results, you build a reputation.

Selling is simply keeping what you can do well for the customer at the forefront of every conversation relating to getting a job.

Selling is doing what you say you will do, when you say you will do it, and doing it well.

Selling is stressing benefits, not features--Covering the floor with a drop cloth is a production feature. The benefit to your customer is: No paint gets on your new flooring or carpet. There is a big difference between features and the benefits the feature provides. These terms are NOT the same.

For the puristsóthese are ideas and suggestions that work to increase profits. If you donít need any more work, that is great. If you arenít working as much as you want, hm? Read the tag line below.

JTP
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Old 01-08-2009, 01:52 AM   #2
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yep that is what I am doing. I have also teamed up with a cleaner and did cards together. She has an interview on friday at a new property 300 units, and they are falling behind in cleaning and "maintenance" (don't know if that means drywall repair & painting or what ).

She is going to pitch herself, and also let them know about me, I am on the other side of her card But yes additional services doesn't mean I don't know or care about painting. It may be in your marketing that will let a person know you are a serious painter.

I like to work on cars. Everyone has seen a great old school car.. primer covered, raked, and growls right? To those in the know.. you think "man that is an awesome ride.. can't wait to see it painted!!" To others it is "man that piece of junk.. look it isn't even painted"...

I like to work on things, but also like to coat them with a nice crisp coating of protection that just happens to have color There is alot to respect in a great paint job.. I am just willing to repair "it", get in shape to be painted.. and then finish it up Don't think there is anything wrong with that
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Old 01-14-2009, 12:41 PM   #3
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Well said. When I move into a new community to do some work, I imagine myself turning that community upside down and shaking every penny out of it.

I paint, stain decks, power-wash, install garage floor epoxy, you name it. Thinking about creating a carpet cleaning unit in my company. Might as well. It's a perfect fit.

Like I said, turn that customer upside down and shake every last penny from 'em.
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Old 01-14-2009, 10:02 PM   #4
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Well said. When I move into a new community to do some work, I imagine myself turning that community upside down and shaking every penny out of it.

I paint, stain decks, power-wash, install garage floor epoxy, you name it. Thinking about creating a carpet cleaning unit in my company. Might as well. It's a perfect fit.

Like I said, turn that customer upside down and shake every last penny from 'em.
In reality-- this is how empires are built. Build a firm, supportive foundation. Now--build deeply, both hoizontally and vertically. Make sure each block you lay is supported, measured, and fits.

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Old 01-21-2009, 10:03 AM   #5
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Great Post!!! Here is my take on this. I come from a background in Carpentry, so I build decks and offer other woodworking services. I don't mind manual labor, so I offer Moving Labor. I cut my own grass all of the time, so I offer Lawncare. Painting is still my specialty, but I market myself as a Service Provider. Customers really appreciate only having to deal with one company to get multiple things done.

I really like the vision of turning the customer upside down and shaking every penny from them. Get on the job and do everything you can while you are there. I couldn't have said it better myself.
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Old 01-21-2009, 11:29 AM   #6
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Be careful of the terminology you use on these forums... When potential customer do a search these threads DO show up!! From there perspective "turning them upside down and shaking every penny out" might not sound so atractive IMHO. How about letting them see the value of the other services you can provide.
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Old 01-21-2009, 06:31 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by Josh.08 View Post
Great Post!!! Here is my take on this. I come from a background in Carpentry, so I build decks and offer other woodworking services. I don't mind manual labor, so I offer Moving Labor. I cut my own grass all of the time, so I offer Lawncare. Painting is still my specialty, but I market myself as a Service Provider. Customers really appreciate only having to deal with one company to get multiple things done.

I really like the vision of turning the customer upside down and shaking every penny from them. Get on the job and do everything you can while you are there. I couldn't have said it better myself.
Josh-- As you can tell, I am not a purist. Prospects want and need a wide realm of services. If you can trim the tree, wire the outside light, lay the stone, do the tile, why would you not add these valuable services to your work kit?

The key is each and every service you provide must be professional. The more professional skills you have, the more service you can provide. Pretty obvious.

I, as the customer, am most pleased to have one service provider do multiple tasks. It's easier and more efficient to work with one individual that's proven him/herself.

Don't become a general contractor. Do provide excellent service in areas you have good experience and expertise. If you can clean a mean carpet, don't sit home waiting for a paint job, clean the carpet.

At least--that's my take--Now please remember folks, there are a lot of painting contractors that don't have to clean carpets to make a living. These are the contractors that have viable and well thought out business models and marketing in place. Regardless of the bad economy, the well-planned painting contractors here will survive to paint another year.

Simply put--if you cannot make a living by painting exclusively, enlarge your vista and add other services. You may find that by building deeply and widely, as suggested in another post, you'll eventually wind up with a dynasty.

JTP

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Old 01-21-2009, 06:37 PM   #8
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Be careful of the terminology you use on these forums... When potential customer do a search these threads DO show up!! From there perspective "turning them upside down and shaking every penny out" might not sound so atractive IMHO. How about letting them see the value of the other services you can provide.
Aaron61-- You make a good point. I often use more dramatic and less appropriate language when writing about business. Words are very important.

Although I am not particularly concerned about the greater world reviewing what I've written, it is good practice to be attentive to good business principles. These principles may dictate different terminology when making a point.

But, this is a forum for painters and the business of painting. I think prospects will understand Josh's comment in context.

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Old 01-22-2009, 10:46 AM   #9
 
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Originally Posted by aaron61 View Post
Be careful of the terminology you use on these forums... When potential customer do a search these threads DO show up!! From there perspective "turning them upside down and shaking every penny out" might not sound so atractive IMHO. How about letting them see the value of the other services you can provide.
I agree, and we spend alot of time complaining about how the low-ballers get the jobs. This "turning upside down" business is exactly what our prospective clients are afraid of. I am happy to charge more, when I can explain that my quality of work and service is worth it.
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Old 01-22-2009, 09:47 PM   #10
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JT

The results in this thread so far suggest that most people here have too much work. Sometimes I feel like we have too much, but I will keep reading regardless.



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Old 01-22-2009, 10:06 PM   #11
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JT

The results in this thread so far suggest that most people here have too much work. Sometimes I feel like we have too much, but I will keep reading regardless.
Scott--

Which brings us to an interesting point: How much work IS too much work?

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Old 01-22-2009, 10:10 PM   #12
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Scott--

Which brings us to an interesting point: How much work IS too much work?

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A calendar of closed sales that takes you too far beyond the size at which you would be comfortable operating, beyond which you aspire to grow into. It is possible to see the tip of that iceberg, no matter what your current size.



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Old 01-22-2009, 10:14 PM   #13
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A calendar of closed sales that takes you too far beyond the size at which you would be comfortable operating, beyond which you aspire to grow into. It is possible to see the tip of that iceberg, no matter what your current size.
Which brings us to another item: Unplanned success may bring about unplanned failure.

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Old 01-22-2009, 10:18 PM   #14
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Which brings us to another item: Unplanned success may bring about unplanned failure.

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If you sell more than you can produce, or commit to a level that you cant deliver. To me, there is no such thing as unplanned success. Anyone can book work, the success is in timely and financially responsible delivery.



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Old 01-22-2009, 10:25 PM   #15
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If you sell more than you can produce, or commit to a level that you cant deliver. To me, there is no such thing as unplanned success. Anyone can book work, the success is in timely and financially responsible delivery.
Scott-- I like your specificity. What you said works for me.

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Old 01-22-2009, 10:36 PM   #16
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There is nothing more important right now than intelligent use of time and money.



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Old 01-22-2009, 11:49 PM   #17
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I've been offering furniture re-finishing, drywall hanging/taping and now texturing. Definitely a good idea to offer other services as long as the product looks professional.
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