- Spread the Word – You finally know your stuff. That’s wonderful, but does anyone else know about it? Referrals are gold. Have you called up everyone you have ever known to let them know what you are offering? Even the people that you don’t like will help spread the word through gossip.
- Personal Introductions – Hunt down every realtor in the area and personally introduce yourself. Nick also left them with a business card because they will see it a few more times and think of his face. The more people see you, the more they become comfortable with you.
- Impressive Portfolio – Keep 10-15 good pics of your best work handy. This builds trust because it shows them that you can do what you say you can. People trust what they see. Then they tell other people about it when they know they’re looking because everyone wants to be helpful.
- First Impressions – Never disagree with anything people say unless you know them well. Would you make a deal with someone if they disagreed with you? Me neither. Sell them on a bigger vision later if needed.
- Effective Bidding – As the saying goes, “nobody buys a drill because they need a drill. What they need is a hole.” Stop trying to sell construction materials and labor. Focus your proposals around solving their problem. For example, The Smith family doesn’t just want a finished tv room. What they want is to finally have “that place” where the entire family can get together and enjoy each other. All purchases are based on emotion.
Being First Matters
Sometimes you will still lose a bid when your price is perfect, sells the comfort, and nothing disagrees with the buyer. It happens because you may be late to the party.
There are a thousand things that can go wrong, but it can only be right once. I buy stuff when I “see it”. If a proposal comes my way and excites me, I do the deal right now.
There is nothing faster than email. Sending proposals by email means that your buyer can read it on their phone over lunch, during a boring meeting, or while waiting in line. It is an added layer of comfort that you are offering to your buyer. This is what BidVoice is designed to do if you ever want to send bids and invoices from your phone.
Another benefit to professional-looking bids sent through email is that it shows attention to detail and further helps sell the buyer on your solution. It makes them think you have your stuff together.
Disagreement Kills The Deal
You don’t have to change your political views just to make a buyer happy, but you do need to avoid letting them know that you disagree with theirs.
Most people want validation that what they are buying is a good decision. Would you make a deal with someone that shows up to bid a job and disagrees with you? I wouldn’t.
It just doesn’t happen that way. It only takes one person to agree, and the buyer will likely not be the one to do so.
A few years ago, I purchased a 50″ flat screen and invited a buddy over to check it out. I was excited. His first words were, “why didn’t you get a 55″?” Well, that was a total buzzkill. Did I ever invite him over to watch a movie? Nope.
Remember: Your buyer is excited about the project and any disagreement will be seen as a buzz kill. You will not win that bid. Being excited for your buyers will win more bids.
The Goal Of Any Bid
Your proposals should all have 1 thing in common, and that is letting the buyer know you’re on the same page with him or her. The easiest way to get on the same page with your buyer is to connect your solution to their emotional want.
This means that your bid can’t look like a technical manual. You aren’t selling them 42 sheets of rock and some new carpet. You are selling them a comfortable space where they can recharge and spend time with loved ones.
Everyone is willing to buy comfort, but nobody wants to buy a new carpet or pay for labor. All purchases are emotional.
Try this: include problem, solution, and benefits sections to your proposals that convince your buyer that he or she is purchasing a solution to the discomfort that caused them to seek bids in the first place.
Remember: You charge for construction materials and labor, but sell comfort. That is what your buyer is trying to purchase.
The proposal template at BidVoice includes these sections by default because they are critical to winning quality bids from new buyers.
Don’t Drop Your Price
If the customer doesn’t like what you are quoting at the current price, they still won’t like it at a discount.
The key here is to move the price higher and add something of value to the project. You don’t want the buyer to feel like you have no solutions and are wasting his or her time.
The goal of any proposal should be to make the buyer see more value in your solution to the project than the money it costs. This is why the lowest bid rarely works in the long run.
Many buyers will have a tough time explaining what they really want, so it is your job to dig in and figure it out.
It’s like buying a new truck. Would you prefer a “plain Jane” truck or one with lift and custom wheels? Most guys would take the wheels every day.
Remember: It’s almost always not about the money.
Bidding Is Not A Race To The Bottom
The big secret about bidding is that price is almost always near the bottom of a buyers list of concerns. They have already decided to spend the money. What they are looking for now is how much value they can get out of each contractor.
Losing a bid means that the buyer didn’t have confidence that what you were offering would solve their problem. They liked the vision of your competitor better.
Do you normally aim to be the lowest bidder, and is it working?
Try this: raise your price and include a special feature that you know the buyer wants. Spending money makes us feel good, so make sure your bid includes whatever will make your buyer feel good about awarding you the bid.
Remember: (again) It’s almost always not about the money.
So, if you want to win more bids, remember:
- It’s almost never about the price.
- Move your price up and include value.
- You’re selling comfort, not materials and labor.
- Nobody makes deals when there is disagreement.
- Being first to submit makes a difference.
I hope you find great success as you grow your business. Luck is created, so start making yours today.