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Do you email proposals?

If you do you should realize that it will probably be forwarded to a competitor.

A prospect for a roofing job just emailed a competitors proposal even though I never asked her to.

I guess she wanted to prove her assertion that she was getting the same thing for less money.
 

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Do you email proposals?

If you do you should realize that it will probably be forwarded to a competitor.

A prospect for a roofing job just emailed a competitors proposal even though I never asked her to.

I guess she wanted to prove her assertion that she was getting the same thing for less money.

I will occasionally, if they are gonna show it, it doesn't matter what format you give it to them.
 

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Better question is "when to email proposals?"

You opened up a good topic but you should extend your thinking. Who cares about the competition if you
1) responded to the initial inquiry professionally
2) responded to the house visit promptly and dressed appropriately
3) and also conducted yourself appropriately
4) and then placed a price on the project knowing full well that the homeowner wants to do business with you then
5) sent an email copy to demonstrate, yet again, how proficient you are in conducting business.

And so what if they shop around, that is the American way ... but at least they will feel good knowing that they can pay a little more for your services since the other person will just be focusing on price. People buy from people they want to do business with and prove they are worth it so let the competitor win more on price while you win less with more profit!

Best of luck to someone who fully believes that electronic communications simply speed up the process of professionalism.

Brian
 

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I always provide pdf's of contract, bid and legally required contractor lien notices via email. I don't do the high pressure on site closes; if people like me and have heard good things about my work then they will buy what I'm selling. On the other hand, I often wonder if some people read one word on the scope of work besides the price.
 

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E-mailing Stuff

Mel

I took my first sales call back in 1969 for a small home repair job. Since then I have sold all kinds of services to home and building owners and written the book Profitable Sales; A Contractor's Guide. I am a statistics type guy in that I have kept close track of what works and what doesn't, not only for myself but for the contractors of all kinds that have sat in my sales classes and seminars in over 40 states. Here is the reality of mailing, e-mailing, faxing or phoning proposals to your customers. If you want to be an order taker, it works fine. Realize that you will get between 1 sale in 7 presentations to 1 in 9 that you present using that approach.

Face to face presentations will get you to 1 in 4 and even 1 in 3 for those that polish up their sales skills.

If the nice folks won't take the time to meet and review my proposal, then, to me, it is obvious that they either don't want to make a decision or they are looking for the cheapest price they can find. Neither of those works for me. Big waste of time even estimating the job, and worse, you collect a whole bunch of hopes about the various jobs you have looked at and spent the time to E-mail or FAX your quote and you will never see any business from them. Bummer.

Just a thought in contrast to Brians post.
 

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I've done it occasionally for very small projects, I don't give a hoot who they hand it out to...maybe the recipient will learn something. :laughing:

I'll email proposals to past clients, no problem as I've already got the project.

Baseboard: no go

Ceiling: :thumbsup: (past client)
 

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I own stock in FotoMat!
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What difference does it make if you email it? If you provide someone with a paper copy, there's nothing to stop them from scanning it into their computer.

Even if you just tell a person your price over the phone ("That'll cost $1000...."), they can tell the competition "Well, so and so says he'd do it for a thousand.....".
 

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I will never e-mail a quote again, and not for the reasons posted here so far.

I built custom garage storage cabinets for a client a year ago. A month ago he asked me to give him a price to duplicate the cabinets on another wall in the garage (which was twice the size with a lot more things to work around). He asked me to e-mail him the quote, which I did. I got a two line response from him. "Hi Bill, we got your quote. It was quite a bit higher than we expected so we do not want to proceed". I tried calling and e-mailing him for a few days after to no avail. If I had presented the quote in person I would have had the opportunity to sell the project or at least offer ways of reducing the cost.

Bill
 

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Good thread!!!

The only comment that I have is that IF you are going to email a proposal by all means send it as a non-editable .pdf.
What you don't want is somebody showing you a copy of YOUR proposal with different numbers on it.:no:

That is unless the numbers just happen to be higher.:thumbup:


Les
 

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Proposals go out in MS-Word and have a password encryption on them. I don't need the clients changing anything in the proposal and come up later and tell me I need to do this because here it is in print.

HO passing around proposals is nothing new. Photocopy, scan, email, just show the original. If they want someone else to see it, it is nearly impossible for you to stop them. Put a clause on the front page that it is a personal and confidential document that is only to be viewed by the people it is addressed to is about all you can do. Still not going to stop the people who would do it anyway.
 

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By any means necessary!

I send out propsals by any means necessary. I will send you a fax, email, snail mail, word file, pdf or any format that the customer needs. I usually send out estimates from Quickbooks which is in .pdf format. It really doesn't matter to me what they do with my estimate as long as they open it and read it. I don't care if the competition sees my price. The more proposals I send out the more chances I have to get jobs. If the competition is stupid enough to do a job for my price then he probably doesn't know what he is doing anyway.
 

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I think if they want just an email from you, don't want to talk to you or anything like that then they are just shoppin you and you might as well just not send anything.. cause unless you are the cheapest they will go somewhere else anyway. Waste of time. I don't know when the appropriate time to email anything to a customer is.. maybe you guys have agreed and they gave you a down pay and you just need to send the details.. something like that would be cool.
 

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Now I would never:

a) send a proposal for work that I didn't look at or ...:no:

b) do a proposal for work I haven't looked at.

(plus I don't do "free" estimates...except for that baseboard one above...first one in years...and I got....zilch to show for it.)
 

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I email all my proposals. Before I changed my way of doing business I wondered if emailing them was any good myself. Now that I get a contract before any proposal goes out. Now I don't have to worry about someone shopping around. It's the best thing I ever did for my business.
 

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Mel

I took my first sales call back in 1969 for a small home repair job. Since then I have sold all kinds of services to home and building owners and written the book Profitable Sales; A Contractor's Guide. I am a statistics type guy in that I have kept close track of what works and what doesn't, not only for myself but for the contractors of all kinds that have sat in my sales classes and seminars in over 40 states. Here is the reality of mailing, e-mailing, faxing or phoning proposals to your customers. If you want to be an order taker, it works fine. Realize that you will get between 1 sale in 7 presentations to 1 in 9 that you present using that approach.

Face to face presentations will get you to 1 in 4 and even 1 in 3 for those that polish up their sales skills.

If the nice folks won't take the time to meet and review my proposal, then, to me, it is obvious that they either don't want to make a decision or they are looking for the cheapest price they can find. Neither of those works for me. Big waste of time even estimating the job, and worse, you collect a whole bunch of hopes about the various jobs you have looked at and spent the time to E-mail or FAX your quote and you will never see any business from them. Bummer.

Just a thought in contrast to Brians post.

Loved your book!
 

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If it's a client that you've worked with before and you've built a relationship with, I can see emailing a proposal. But when I "deliver" a proposal, I'm there to SELL the job, not give a price. I'd call the price in over the phone before I emailed a quote on a project.
Now, if it's a commercial project, and you're trying to be the lowest bidder, and interested in doing volume work, I can see emailing a proposal to be a valid method of delivery.
You don't even have to be a super salesman. If you're at the jobsite, on your hands and knees with a piece of material, showing the homeowners exactly how it's going to be installed; "do you want it this way, or that way". And you pull out your grid paper and start sketching a design (or startup your software on your laptop). If you start from the beginning, during the proposal, working with the client like you already have the job, believe me, they will admire you taking the extra time to go over the details. And your proficiency will shine to them in your knowledge of your trade.
That's how you get jobs! :thumbsup:
 

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If it's a client that you've worked with before and you've built a relationship with, I can see emailing a proposal. But when I "deliver" a proposal, I'm there to SELL the job, not give a price. I'd call the price in over the phone before I emailed a quote on a project.
Now, if it's a commercial project, and you're trying to be the lowest bidder, and interested in doing volume work, I can see emailing a proposal to be a valid method of delivery.
You don't even have to be a super salesman. If you're at the jobsite, on your hands and knees with a piece of material, showing the homeowners exactly how it's going to be installed; "do you want it this way, or that way". And you pull out your grid paper and start sketching a design (or startup your software on your laptop). If you start from the beginning, during the proposal, working with the client like you already have the job, believe me, they will admire you taking the extra time to go over the details. And your proficiency will shine to them in your knowledge of your trade.
That's how you get jobs! :thumbsup:
I think I'm a bit ahead of that curve in some ways. I never met these people before. 350 mile trip. My site and it's info, plus my e-mailing pics and other how-to let the people know what to expect. And all indications are that I and my work are up to expectations. Including the mis-matched socks.
As you and others here know, being 100% honest in all actions and words are easy to duplicate. Lies and misleading info will tell that tale in a hurry.

I do more than 1 job a week entirely by e-mail. ANd I have yet to ever meet some of my clients in person. :w00t: One walked up on a job to see what I was doing one time. 6th. project for that person and didn't know him from Adam. Did a few more for him since. Others? Did work will they were away or at work. Sent bills, got paid. Still don't who they are. :w00t:
 
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