I have often heard cleaning business owners speak about their sales and marketing. Often, those who have not studied at a business school simply think that they are the same thing. Sales and marketing are almost completely different from one another.
Marketing usually deals with getting the word out for your business. Essentially, marketing generates leads for you. Sales, on the other hand, is the process of converting those leads into customers.
Today, we will go through the process of selling well. If your cleaning business is still in its infancy, chances are that you will be the one directly dealing with prospective clients. Essentially, your job as a cleaning business owner will also involve a decent amount of selling. Knowing a few basics will go a long way towards increasing your client base!
Salesman Second, Problem Solver First
This is the golden rule of selling anything. Cleaning business owners who are inexperienced in sales generally try to ‘sell their company’. They push the features of their service onto the client and try to tell them what sets them apart from the competition.
However, you do not need to be better than your competition. All you need to do is to complete the job that the client wants you to complete exactly how they want it. As such, the tone of your meeting (or phone call, e-mail, etc.) should not be ‘we are so great because we…’. Rather, it should be ‘You require…/Your business needs…/Your home is…’.
If you can show that you care about your business almost as much as they do, you will have a much higher chance of converting the leads into sales.
An easy way to do this is by asking them questions about the job at hand. This will not only help you better understand what is required of you, but naturally cause them to understand that you care about them.
Provide Them Examples to Build Authority
The best way to tell them of your competence is to show them. If possible, try to source some before and after images of the job you did. Remember to ask the client for permission before you do this.
Usually, people having their homes cleaned will not allow you to take pictures and videos. However, businesses, as well as other industrial complexes will probably not mind it.
Having something concrete to show the client is always beneficial. If you are trying to generate leads online, try putting up the images or videos on your website. If you are meeting a client in person, bringing a folder along with all the necessary material is a good idea.
The key point here is to build authority. Make sure they know your cleaning business is as competent as they come. Having testimonials on your website is a great way to do this as well.
Never be Late
Cleaning business owners that are handling the selling part of their business themselves often make this mistake. If someone registers through their website or contacts them for a quote, they do not get back to them ASAP.
We are not saying that you should leave everything else and contact them immediately. However, you need to show that you care about their business (first point).
Usually, it is best to contact a lead within one or at a maximum of two business days. Try to pick a time that will be convenient for them. For example, it might be better to call a client for home cleaning in the evening (as they may be at work during the morning/afternoon), but morning is preferable for a business.
How to Close Sales That Seem to be Slipping
In many cases, you will have leads that will be slipping away. Whether those leads were generated online or they personally contacted you, there is a chance that your potential clients simply forget about you. Or, maybe they decide that your prices are a little bit too high. In this case, it is important for you to try one last time to get them on your side.
Usually, it is best to offer an incentive of some sort. An extra discount or a special add on. Remember that you do not need to go out of your way to offer this. Do something significant, but easy to manage on your end.
A tactic that many businesses use is offering a limited-time discount. This can be good for internet-based leads where you have not met the person. However, for leads generated where you have spoken to or met with the client, this can come off as ‘salesy’. Remember that your priority is to solve problems, not sell. As such, be careful with a technique like this.
The aforementioned tips should help you get on the right track when it comes to converting leads. If you manage to grow your business to a point where you are unable to manage sales yourself, you should consider investing in a sales team
Better yet, using a professional all-in-one marketing solution such as Auguste Global’s Rocket Fuel can be a great way to avoid all the hassle of marketing, sales, and conversion. It can allow you to focus on doing a splendid job managing your employees and cleaning business and leave the lead generation and conversion to us.