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How Do You Guys Deal With Aggressive Customer.

 
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Old 03-16-2008, 04:46 PM   #21
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Re: How Do You Guys Deal With Aggressive Customer.


I would spin the whole thing around and ask "what's your budget?"

Cabinet prices can vary as we all know. So can flooring and other elements.
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Old 03-16-2008, 04:48 PM   #22
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Re: How Do You Guys Deal With Aggressive Customer.


Send me $20 if you are so concerned with my links John, and I'll think about devoting some time to them in order for you to sleep better at night.

And reread my reply, I rewrote in while you posted, maybe it's more clear. If not I can't help you any further.

This whole thing is a simple process. I deal with exactly these issues that you think are insurmountable on a daily basis and they take up about 10 seconds of the a conversation with a lead.

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Old 03-16-2008, 04:55 PM   #23
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Re: How Do You Guys Deal With Aggressive Customer.


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Originally Posted by Jason W View Post
I would spin the whole thing around and ask "what's your budget?"

Cabinet prices can vary as we all know. So can flooring and other elements.
We ask this question, and I can't tell you how many people get coy. They don't seem to understand that we will give them as much bang for their buck as we can. We have a set markup and our prices are competitive with the better fence companies. But we won't compete with lowballers - if they want cheap fence, they can have it, but not from us.
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Old 03-16-2008, 05:16 PM   #24
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Re: How Do You Guys Deal With Aggressive Customer.


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Originally Posted by Susan Betz View Post
We ask this question, and I can't tell you how many people get coy. They don't seem to understand that we will give them as much bang for their buck as we can. We have a set markup and our prices are competitive with the better fence companies. But we won't compete with lowballers - if they want cheap fence, they can have it, but not from us.
I just had one like that last month. I gave them a price on some of the work but stopped at the kitchen work because they didn't give any thought to there budget amount for this work. I explained that in there space I could give them a kitchen for 10k that they wouldn't be very proud of and I could also give them a kitchen for 100k which would be over the top for there needs. I told them that it is a good design followed by careful planing that would bring the best results for them and cautioned that any contractor who would throw out a number without cabinet, floor, counter top, and appliance choices would be leading them down the wrong road.

Well she got other contractors to show up, and yes, they started throwing out all types of dollar amounts. When she asked what they had in mind for cabinets and flooring they said they would look into it and let her know what her choices were. Most of them never called back. I got a call to come back out to meet with her on Tuesday. Why, because she figured out that I wasn't about to be irresponsible and throw out a useless bunch of numbers that meant nothing. We will sign a design/estimate agreement on Tuesday where I will be paid in advance to give her a responsible estimate and she will be able to see what she is getting and make changes accordingly.

John E, Good luck with wingin' it.
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Old 03-16-2008, 10:05 PM   #25
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Re: How Do You Guys Deal With Aggressive Customer.


I disagree with a lot of you.

What about the customers needs?

I mean after all they are paying for your services, shouldn't you try and make them happy?

How is price shopping a waste of time? Wouldn't some one be an idiot if they just had something done with no idea what the going rates are?

I fully understand our time is valuable, but I know whenever I am making a major purchase, I research it, weight the various options, etc. and I expect my customers to do the same.
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Old 03-16-2008, 10:29 PM   #26
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Re: How Do You Guys Deal With Aggressive Customer.


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Originally Posted by bdog1234 View Post
I disagree with a lot of you.

What about the customers needs?

I mean after all they are paying for your services, shouldn't you try and make them happy?

How is price shopping a waste of time? Wouldn't some one be an idiot if they just had something done with no idea what the going rates are?

I fully understand our time is valuable, but I know whenever I am making a major purchase, I research it, weight the various options, etc. and I expect my customers to do the same.
Price shopping customers isnt the problem, everyone does it like you said. The problem is the customers that want a price auction. They get everyones price and they try to force everyone down as far as they go. They only care about the price not the quality.
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Old 03-16-2008, 11:20 PM   #27
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Re: How Do You Guys Deal With Aggressive Customer.


I'm just a rookie but I always start my estimates out with a little info about the process (estimate/review/plans/contracts) and a worksheet which includes job specs and budget. If the two don't match I just let them know there not realistic goals.
I like what someone said about showing previous work and ballparking it, however I'm sure some would debate that and it definately depends on the job details
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Old 03-17-2008, 09:45 AM   #28
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Re: How Do You Guys Deal With Aggressive Customer.


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Originally Posted by cincycontractor View Post
I like what someone said about showing previous work and ballparking it, however I'm sure some would debate that and it definately depends on the job details
I agree with this, in my past work anyways. Ive met way to many people who have like a deck on a 2nd floor apartment thats rotted. They need it replaced and are thinking $400-$500. When you say more like $6000 they about pass out. There would have been no point in figureing out exacly what it would cost because I knew what they were thinking. This deck thing happend a few days ago.
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Old 03-17-2008, 12:13 PM   #29
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Re: How Do You Guys Deal With Aggressive Customer.


And all of these wonderful posts come down to the same thing in my mind: Serve your client's needs while serving your own.

Don't waste time...
If you're not asking about budget, schedule, materials, etc. at the first meeting with your client, then you're not getting down to business. You're wasting your time and your client's time.

Offer solutions, not products...
How do you expect to pass the qualifying test your client is putting you through? Do you think charm and a bunch of pretty pictures of past jobs are going to get you the sale? Pfffffftttt. Not likely. Meeting your client's needs is what gets you the sale. Solving their problems is what gets you the sale. Anticipating their problems and offering solution choices are what get you the sale. Crowing about the fine joinery in your finished product is just vanity (pardon the pun) and again, a waste of time.

Try expressing instead of impressing...
Tell your client's what you can do to make this job better or more usable for them. Show them the value in the services you provide that others are not interested in (like grab bars, comfort height potties, wider doorways, warming drawers at a comfortable height instead of near the floor, small accent windows that add natural light and charm for little cost, etc.). Don't try to impress them with how good your company is, show them. Show them you're truly interested in this being their project, that it reflects them and meets with their wishes and desires. Offer suggestions on how to make the budget work for them, instead it just being a number they feel enslaved and limited by.

Get to the point...
You need the answer to four basic questions before you can reasonably discuss a project with a client.
  1. What is the scope of the project?
  2. What is the schedule for the project?
  3. Who makes the decisions regarding the project?
  4. What is the budget for the project?
If you don't know the answer to those four questions at your first meeting with the client, then you're wasting your time and your client's time. These are the four questions Michael Stone recommends in his book, "Markup & Profit: A Contractor's Guide". A great book for our industry. All aspects of it.

Design services are intellectual property,...
and are therefore a product that must be accounted for, just the same as installing a counter top. You have fixed and variable costs associated with creating that design and you should be paid for those and earn a profit on them. I suggest that if your design services are built into your overhead then you can charge for them the best way that suits you. Before, during or after. Makes no difference to the bottom line.

If you don't find yourself doing this on every job you discuss with a client, then ask yourself, "whose time am I wasting and why?" and "Is there a way to make my time work better for me or to earn more in less time?"

Food for thought.
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Old 03-17-2008, 01:00 PM   #30
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Re: How Do You Guys Deal With Aggressive Customer.


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Originally Posted by Mike Finley View Post
Send me $20 if you are so concerned with my links John, and I'll think about devoting some time to them in order for you to sleep better at night.
I expect the real reason why you don't want to resurrect that website is that the 'free' grab bars were about as convincing as a free lunch. What surprises me is that you continue to leave the link in your signature. I expect, though, it's the fact that I've pointed it out that makes you obstinately leave it there.

John
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Last edited by Double-A; 03-18-2008 at 03:46 PM. Reason: typo... Double A edited it for pie slinging.
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Old 03-17-2008, 04:12 PM   #31
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Re: How Do You Guys Deal With Aggressive Customer.


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Originally Posted by john elliott View Post
I expect the real reason why you don't want to resurrect that website is that the 'free' grab bars were about as convincing as a free lunch. What surprises me is that you continue to leave the link in your signature. I expect, though, it's the fact that I've pointed it out that makes you obstinately leave it there.

John


Come on John, enough already. Are you trying to get this thread closed?
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Old 03-17-2008, 04:33 PM   #32
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Re: How Do You Guys Deal With Aggressive Customer.


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Originally Posted by Jason W View Post


Come on John, enough already. Are you trying to get this thread closed?

Point taken

John
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Old 03-18-2008, 12:24 AM   #33
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Re: How Do You Guys Deal With Aggressive Customer.


wow, thanks for all these input.
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Old 03-18-2008, 01:22 PM   #34
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Re: How Do You Guys Deal With Aggressive Customer.


OK folks, let's keep it professional. If you want to sling pies, take it to PMs or email but quit screwing up other folks posts with your egos.
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Old 03-18-2008, 02:25 PM   #35
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Re: How Do You Guys Deal With Aggressive Customer.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Double-A View Post
OK folks, let's keep it professional. If you want to sling pies, take it to PMs or email but quit screwing up other folks posts with your egos.
We need a fighting forum on this site.
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Old 03-18-2008, 02:43 PM   #36
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Re: How Do You Guys Deal With Aggressive Customer.


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We need a fighting forum on this site.
Before we can do that, I'd like to know how many guys here own guns, how many guns each has, how tall are you, what is your "boxing" weight, your mixed martial art skills, etc.... then we can properly divide your forums into :

1. Heavy weight championship;

2. Middle weight champ;

3. Bantam weight champ (Turkey type);

4. Featherweight champ (Chicken type) , and...

5. Ant/Fly weight champ!
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Old 03-18-2008, 03:01 PM   #37
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Re: How Do You Guys Deal With Aggressive Customer.


Man I wish we could move this to a bar like the good ole' days before the internet.

I could see one of those free grab bars coming out of the van real quick.
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Old 03-18-2008, 03:06 PM   #38
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Re: How Do You Guys Deal With Aggressive Customer.


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Originally Posted by SelfContract View Post
Before we can do that, I'd like to know how many guys here own guns, how many guns each has, how tall are you, what is your "boxing" weight, your mixed martial art skills, etc.... then we can properly divide your forums into :

1. Heavy weight championship;

2. Middle weight champ;

3. Bantam weight champ (Turkey type);

4. Featherweight champ (Chicken type) , and...

5. Ant/Fly weight champ!
I'll start, 12 assorted handguns, 2 shotguns, 6 rifles.
I'm 6'7" tall, Weigh 265. Have never boxed but can hold my own in "street".
Back belt in karate 2 years training in tai-qwan-do.
I have a punch impact ratio of 925 psi.
Since I am basically a coward I prefer to take on the fly weight division!!
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Old 03-18-2008, 03:28 PM   #39
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Re: How Do You Guys Deal With Aggressive Customer.


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Man I wish we could move this to a bar like the good ole' days before the internet.

I could see one of those free grab bars coming out of the van real quick.
Would that be one of the real ones or one of the "non-existant" ones? And yeah, I totally agree, I think there would be a whole lot less insulting personal comments. Internet muscles aren't as easy to flex when there is the risk of losing a tooth.
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Old 03-18-2008, 03:31 PM   #40
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Re: How Do You Guys Deal With Aggressive Customer.


I sub out most of my fighting stuff. I do the easy ones myself, but all the difficult stuff goes to guys who do know the colour of the boathouse at Hereford

John

(anybody spot the reference?)

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