How to Follow-Up On Painting Estimates to Increase Closing Rates

Guest post by Brandon Lewis with The Academy of Professional Painting Contractors.   Apparently, it’s a dirty word… because even painters don’t use it very much. When I ask if they’re doing it regularly, painters are ashamed to admit – they aren’t. It’s embarrassing really… Lest you get offended because your mind is where it shouldn’t be, the “F-Word” I’m taking about is “Follow-Up.” Specifically, follow-up on estimates done in a thorough, proven, and most importantly persuasive manner. This is important for both residential and commercial painting leads. Even large, successful and profitable painting companies can drop the ball here – leaving untold thousands on the table because they “think” they are maximizing their follow-up efforts. If you want your follow-up to be powerful, let me ask you to “Turn Up the T.E.M.P. 3X” on your unconverted estimates using this powerful acronym – T.E.M.P. 3X.   When you turn up the T.E.M.P. 3X, your unconverted leads are contacted using four mediums simultaneously for three rounds of contact at minimum. Please note: From an operational standpoint, I recommend you phone, email, text, and mail in that order… unfortunately P.E.T.M. does not spell anything easy to remember 😉 T is for text: Text message all of your clients because open rates and reply rates are higher for text than email. More people are likely to immediately reply to you after leaving a voicemail.   E is for email: Email your clients because many of them process their personal business out of their email box in their own good time and will get back with you.   M is for mail: Yep! Good,...

Use of Color in Marketing

The use of color in marketing might seem like a no-brainer but it’s more than just picking pretty hues. Color is an important tool because it impacts how we think and behave. Using different colors directs your eye where to look and helps decide what is important information. It puts content into context for your audience.   When deciding the best use of color, you want to choose shades that will make an impact on your audience. Bright, contrasting colors will stand out and draw attention to important information. They typically promote activity or a call to action. Softer colors promote mental or visual tasks. They may look more beautiful from a design perspective but may be harder for your audience to read. The key is to strike a balance between the two.   The use of color and its impact on your psyche has been studied for years: Red: very powerful and energizing; often the go-to color to get someone’s attention Yellow: fun; evokes cheerfulness and optimism Orange: a great combination of red’s power with yellow’s friendliness; offers a sense of motivation Green: one of the most-seen colors in nature; gives sense of balance and harmony Blue: one of the most-liked colors around the world for its calm and soothing qualities Purple: most commonly associated with spirituality, imagination, and luxury Pink: a softer version of red; often a sign of hope Brown: a very natural color; portrays structure, security and protection Gold: commonly represents confidence and luxury Black: a sophisticated color; great for high contrast and easy legibility White: often used for its simplicity and cleanliness   When...

Pipeline Organization

Do you have a bazillion projects on your to-do list that you can never seem to keep straight? You should be using pipeline organization! A pipeline provides a visual representation of your work in progress. It’s a place to organize your tasks and follow the progression until complete. It’s the easiest way to keep track of many different jobs and the status of each. The beauty of pipeline organization is that it also makes collaborating and working with other people possible by providing all the information in one place. There are several online pipeline organization programs available for you to use as a way to manage your tasks and projects. I use Trello to help me manage the PEP blog. Take a look:     Across the top of the “board” are the stages of producing a new blog post. I keep a list of ideas in the first column. As I move through the process, I drag the blog idea card through the pipeline. By the time you read this, the “Pipeline Organization” card will be in the “Published” column. I also share this board with other people in the office – anyone can add new blog ideas or choose one and write it! PEP users can (and should) make use of PEP’s pipeline feature that allows you to track your job from start to finish (from the estimating process through scheduling jobs and invoicing). Whatever your field of work, you’ll find pipeline organization a useful tool for managing of all the many projects on your to-do...

Should I Be Writing a Blog?

YES!   The answer is YES. You should be writing a blog for your business.   A few weeks ago we talked about WHAT  a business blog is. Now let’s explore WHY you should be writing a blog for your business. The reasons are almost endless! Why should I be writing a blog?   Because consumers are online. Think about the last time you needed to buy something. The internet is now the #1 place that consumers go for information about products and services. Much of the research about what to buy happens online – whether you’re looking for a car, a dishwasher, an electrician, or a painter.   Because you want customers to find you online. The most important way to get people to your website is to offer as many opportunities as possible for them to find you on the massive World Wide Web. To do this, you want to continuously add fresh content to your website. Writing a blog post regularly will do this. Blog posts more “searchable” content, and the more the better! You should also share your blog posts on social media, which creates additional links directly to your website and, again, the more the better, am I right?   Because you want to be an authority in your industry. People like to work with experts in their field. So establishing yourself as an expert is good. Writing a blog will help do that! Writing about your business, related work, and the industry will build trust and trust will generate customers. Plus you may stumble on some helpful new information along the way. It’s a win-win!...

What is a Business Blog?

A business blog is one of the most cost-effective and easiest ways to promote your work. It can drive people, or “traffic” to your website, increase your sales, establish you as an authority in your field, and help you reach new markets. Here are the 5-Ws of blogging:   WHAT is a business blog? A blog is a regularly updated web page featuring short informal articles and commentary, in this case, about your business and related industry. Here at PEP, we typically write about topics related to small businesses and the painting industry.   WHO am I writing for? Customers and potential customers will read your blog. (Anyone who isn’t a customer is a potential customer, right?) Different blog topics will attract different people so write about a variety of things to cover the work you do.   WHEN should I blog? An active blog shows your business is alive, loved and maintained. The more often you post to your business blog the better your results. But consistency is more important than frequency, so just set a schedule for yourself. If writing a new blog article multiple times per week is too much, aim for once or twice per month.   WHERE does the blog go? Post your blog on your website and share the link on social media. This creates more “searchable” content on your website and additional links taking people to it.   WHY blog? A blog will drive traffic to your website, attract new visitors, and potentially increase your sales. It helps to establish your presence in the industry. The benefits of blogging are almost endless....