Plumbing Zone - Professional Plumbers Forum banner

1 - 13 of 13 Posts

·
Banned
Joined
·
913 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Does anyone use this opportunity to ask for referrals? If so, how do you do it? Ask them to refer you or ask them for a name and phone number?

I'm toying with asking for referrals by saying something along the lines of "Mrs. Smith, it was our pleasure meeting your expectations (price, cleanliness, quality service etc). As a thank you for your time today, I would like to send you a coupon for $10.00 off on your next service."

At this point, I am expecting them to thank me. My next response "Can you think of anyone who may need our services so we can send them a coupon too?"

What do you all think?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,951 Posts
I hand out magnets. We are strictly word of mouth down here and we have received calls from other HOs after seeing our magnets on their refrigerators. I wish we did more of what you mentioned but the higher ups don't allow it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
50 Posts
We've tried that

It works about 12% of the time, the rest you usually get hung up on or they feed you a line.

It's actually an old PSI tactic.

You have a better chance asking friends and giving out your card to everyone you meet on the street

But I wish you luck
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
913 Posts
Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thanks for the input guys.

We do the magnets, door hangers sometimes (lots of no soliciting neighborhoods here), and stickers. Our word of mouth works very well. I want to implement something for the times when I am very slow at the office and the phones are not ringing. If I keep forward momentum, the slow times will pass faster.

I can live with a 12% return! If people hang up or are rude, I would be shocked and definitely discouraged.

Monday was dead and today we were slammed. Tomorrow will be very busy too. I feel Bi-Polar - up-down, up-down, down-up, etc.

Cannot wait til this crazy recession is over!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,951 Posts
Like you have mentioned in past threads, thats service. I ran around all day with calls, but yesterday I was trying to find my 8 hrs.
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
913 Posts
Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Like you have mentioned in past threads, thats service. I ran around all day with calls, but yesterday I was trying to find my 8 hrs.
You're not kidding :laughing:. Our only saving grace, one of our plumber's was out sick. So I only had one in the office looking at me for work. When it's two of them and DH, I can't get anything done.

On a positive note, we did make some changes and we are more profitable! Rather than whine, I am trying to be proactive and make something happen.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,951 Posts
You're not kidding :laughing:. Our only saving grace, one of our plumber's was out sick. So I only had one in the office looking at me for work. When it's two of them and DH, I can't get anything done.

On a positive note, we did make some changes and we are more profitable! Rather than whine, I am trying to be proactive and make something happen.
I hear you on that, if it works for your area then I would go for it. It might not generate return service but then again it might bring tons of it. I respect owners that want to get their feet wet and try new things.
 

·
WILLPLUMB4$
Joined
·
584 Posts
Out of 1000 door hangars we got about 3 back. Good jobs but after laying out for the door hangars?? Probably won't do that again. I put a rewards program on the back of my buissness card if I get one of my cards back from a new costomer with your contact info on it, I will send you a $25 gift certificat to one of our fine local eateries. Never had to buy 1 card for this reason. My cosomers refer they refer because they love me, and want there fiends to have a similarly pleasent experience.
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
913 Posts
Discussion Starter · #9 ·
I agree Will. Our customers refer us because they love us. No one sells out for $25.00.

The $10.00 off coupon sent to a friend was our way of saying, if such and such is a friend of yours, they are a friend of ours too! Nothing more.
 

·
Plumber Manhattan Beach
Joined
·
828 Posts
I do follow up calls to make sure that the customer is satisfied with the service. I don't ask if they have anyone in mind that needs plumbing. When I'm finishing my service call I give them 2 coupons. One for next time for them so they will use me for sure and one for their friend. The refferal coupon works really good. I also send a thank you card. Sometimes they call me and thank me for the thank you card.This is the coupon my wife designed.
Gift card.jpg

I laminate it and when the customer uses it I get it back and it keeps going in circles.

Our thank you card says this:

Our business is growing because of referrals from a clients like you,
and we thank you for your thoughtfulness in passing on our name.
We love to assist others so please don't hesitate to send friends and family our way.
We promise to provide them with the same great quality and service.
Thank you for your business. We look forward to serving you in the future. Please take a moment to leave us feedback
at www.wcplumbing.biz on our Contact Us Page.

West Coast Plumbing and Sewer

Signature
 

·
WILLPLUMB4$
Joined
·
584 Posts
I do follow up calls to make sure that the customer is satisfied with the service. I don't ask if they have anyone in mind that needs plumbing. When I'm finishing my service call I give them 2 coupons. One for next time for them so they will use me for sure and one for their friend. The refferal coupon works really good. I also send a thank you card. Sometimes they call me and thank me for the thank you card.This is the coupon my wife designed.
View attachment 394

I laminate it and when the customer uses it I get it back and it keeps going in circles.

Our thank you card says this:

Our business is growing because of referrals from a clients like you,
and we thank you for your thoughtfulness in passing on our name.
We love to assist others so please don't hesitate to send friends and family our way.
We promise to provide them with the same great quality and service.
Thank you for your business. We look forward to serving you in the future. Please take a moment to leave us feedback
at www.wcplumbing.biz on our Contact Us Page.

West Coast Plumbing and Sewer

Signature
Do you let them get the 25 off the trip/ service call or "job".?
 

·
WILLPLUMB4$
Joined
·
584 Posts
Does anyone use this opportunity to ask for referrals? If so, how do you do it? Ask them to refer you or ask them for a name and phone number?

I'm toying with asking for referrals by saying something along the lines of "Mrs. Smith, it was our pleasure meeting your expectations (price, cleanliness, quality service etc). As a thank you for your time today, I would like to send you a coupon for $10.00 off on your next service."

At this point, I am expecting them to thank me. My next response "Can you think of anyone who may need our services so we can send them a coupon too?"

What do you all think?
We've done the follow up cards/ happy calls/ costomer survey cards etc. my recomendation to you would be to assign this task to some one else.

You are most likely to close to the work that will be reflected upon and may become defensive or "big headed". I'm not judging you hear, I just think that the way we do it is that a part time girl does all this stuff,
1. If the costomer gets nasty and they may, you were there in the middle of the night like the super hero you are and got things all better, but now that the costomers pain is gone they are thinking did this guy get over on me. They call cousin Eddy and sure enough you stuck it to them good, so now while they got you on the phone they are gonna give you a piece of there mind and oh yea want some of there hard earned money back....
The sweety pie doing your survey can only apologize and look into the issue.
This is obviously a worst case senairio, you will also have the opposite happen where costomers rave about how amazed they were at your professionalism.

The third party involved allows you too look at the results of a complete survey to properly assess what it is that you really need to do and really need to stop and what it is that you may be able to do to increase your "fan base".
You would most likely be as well off if not better by targeting your existing costomers ie:
When you clean a sewer ask to look at the water heater write down the serial # send the water heater a $25.00 birthday card. You could make it funny, if the heater is more than 15 yrs old send it one with an AARP message. That sort of thing. But better yet, do mailings to your existing costomers, this will keep there TOMA= Top of the mind awareness up, and also inform your fans and remind your existing fans what all of the services you would be happy to provide for them.
I've had costomers that will buy a water softner from a softner guy cause they didn't know we did that sort of thing, or "do you do gas?" They ask because they don't know.
Hope my rambling helped.
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
913 Posts
Discussion Starter · #13 ·
We've done the follow up cards/ happy calls/ costomer survey cards etc. my recomendation to you would be to assign this task to some one else.

You are most likely to close to the work that will be reflected upon and may become defensive or "big headed". I'm not judging you hear, I just think that the way we do it is that a part time girl does all this stuff,
1. If the costomer gets nasty and they may, you were there in the middle of the night like the super hero you are and got things all better, but now that the costomers pain is gone they are thinking did this guy get over on me. They call cousin Eddy and sure enough you stuck it to them good, so now while they got you on the phone they are gonna give you a piece of there mind and oh yea want some of there hard earned money back....
The sweety pie doing your survey can only apologize and look into the issue.
This is obviously a worst case senairio, you will also have the opposite happen where costomers rave about how amazed they were at your professionalism.

The third party involved allows you too look at the results of a complete survey to properly assess what it is that you really need to do and really need to stop and what it is that you may be able to do to increase your "fan base".
You would most likely be as well off if not better by targeting your existing costomers ie:
When you clean a sewer ask to look at the water heater write down the serial # send the water heater a $25.00 birthday card. You could make it funny, if the heater is more than 15 yrs old send it one with an AARP message. That sort of thing. But better yet, do mailings to your existing costomers, this will keep there TOMA= Top of the mind awareness up, and also inform your fans and remind your existing fans what all of the services you would be happy to provide for them.
I've had costomers that will buy a water softner from a softner guy cause they didn't know we did that sort of thing, or "do you do gas?" They ask because they don't know.
Hope my rambling helped.
We don't have a third party, but it may be worth looking into using someone part time. I do think I am too close to the situation since I took the initial call and most customers know I am one of the owners.

I tried to make the calls, but everytime my stomach is in knots. Funny thing, if I worked for someone and they said call these 25 people and get feedback, I'd get it done in no time flat and do an excellent job of it. I can not believe I am letting this FEAR immobilize me!

:laughing: Love the water heater birthday card idea!!! We do follow up with our fan base via a personal newsletter. I'm looking for immediate things I can do when it's slow to bring in sales.
 
1 - 13 of 13 Posts
Top