In a service-based business model, to get the results you want for your business, you must deliver the results, outcomes and experiences customers want for their lives. The better the delivered outcome or experience, the more people will pay, and the better the company will perform.
Consider a differentiated approach in order to yield better results and get people choosing to buy more to get a higher level of service for more money.
Time to Elevate Your Game
Aspire to a greater calling - the calling of truly serving customers beyond what other companies think is practical or will dare consider.
Go beyond the things you offer and become the boutique for the discerning homeowner and solve real problems. Become a whole house, system and home performance, smart, access, control, security and customer care service provider for the distinguishing customer with distinctive tastes who wants to be catered to with unique custom solutions and pampered with extraordinary service and a caring and impactful life experience. In other words, shatter the expectations any customer would have for a home services provider.
Once a technician is dispatched, it is all about communication and the customer experience. The customer should feel good about the process and the information shared. The customer should understand the things they HAVE TO DO, what they should CONSIDER DOING, and which things they DON'T HAVE TO DO BUT WOULD ENHANCE THE SYSTEM PERFORMANCE AND LIFE EXPERIENCE. The customer should be able to make smart decisions to be better caretakers of their home. They should understand what to spend based on the information the technician shares.
To differentiate yourself, begin with trying to learn and understand who your customer is and what's important to them.
Change the mission on a service call from selling repairs to finding out what has happened, how the customer feels about it, how the customer feels about their current comfort, health, safety, and energy-use situation, and if they had a magic wand what would they desire a better situation to be. Seek to listen, hear, and understand the customer's truth. When you seek the truth about what the customer really wants, you'll find the customer will be more open and honest.
Happiness is all about expectations. Let the customer know you're not there to sell them anything they don't want, need, can't afford or doesn't make sense for them. Explain you don't want to earn their business today only to lose them as a customer tomorrow when the course of action they choose doesn't meet their expectations. This level of honesty, trust and respect is paramount and more important than any level of rapport, technical expertise or sales skills.
Balance Emotion and Logic
A customer care process that focuses on emotion will get a customer enthusiastic and may result in a customer purchase that yields a sale but then cancels the next day when the customer has a chance to think about it and realize there are no logical reasons to justify the investment.
A customer care process that focuses on logic and lacks an emotional hook for the customer rarely results in a customer making a purchase or much more than the bare minimum. The customer most certainly will not purchase a service agreement.
The key to achieving a balance of emotion and logic during a service call starts by discovering an emotional hook, then provides an adequate amount of logic to justify the investment.
Options Not Ultimatums
"A choice of one is a choice of none." Technicians need to offer customers options not ultimatums -- defined as a final proposition, especially one whose rejection will end negotiations and cause a resort to force or other direct action, often in the opposite desired direction, typically ending relations.
The questions a tech asks should yield the emotional hooks and allow customers to state what they want and why they want it. A technician's job then is to share the appropriate information with the customer as to why they may want to consider making a Band-aid repair, bundled-repair renovation, system rejuvenation, system replacement, life experience enhancement. This allows the customer to discover for themselves the reasons to make specific choices.
The technician should not be tied to a specific result, but rather be committed to the process of providing good information so the customer can make a good decision. If a technician executes the customer care process flawlessly, then they should be happy with whatever choice the customer makes, even if that means doing nothing -- or doing something with another company -- because that is the "best possible outcome" in the customer's mind at that time based on the information provided. The tech and company should be happy if the customer makes a choice with which they are happy.
When technicians and companies fall in love with the process of serving people rather than making sales, more people choose to spend more money to get a higher level of service for more money.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Drew Cameron, America’s Most Sought After Sales & Marketing Strategy Adviser to Home Services Contractors, is president of HVAC Sellutions & Energy Design Systems, Inc.; the premier alliance providing industry-leading marketing planning, budgeting, content and support; sales recruiting, education, coaching, consulting and performance enhancement for Home Services Contractors; and design and economic analysis sales software for HVAC and Home Performance companies. Drew’s 40 years of experience in all facets of running a residential contracting business helps contractors implement effective lead development strategies and build multi-million-dollar profit-generating home services companies. Drew is a renowned author, educator, coach, consultant, inspirational/educational/”irritational” speaker, software developer, industry philanthropist, and a Tom McCart International Consultant Award Winner as well as a Board member, a Foundation Board Trustee, and a Contractor University Founder & Faculty member for Electric & Gas industries Association (EGIA); a Service Roundtable Consult & Coach Partner & Preferred Vendor; and an Air Conditioning Contractors of America (ACCA) member.