Learn the Top 5 Ways to Prepare for Growth in Your Home Improvement Business. The home improvement market is set to explode. Ryan Paul Adams takes you through some key tips in our recent webinar to help you learn how you can prepare for real growth in your home improvement business and set yourself up for long term success and increased revenue. Learn more about home improvement marketing.
Download PDF (Slides)
5 Ways to Prepare Your Home Improvement Business for Growth
Hey Everyone. This is Ryan Paul Adams here.
Give us a few seconds while we wait for a few more people who are getting on the webinar.
We’ve got quite a few people on the list tonight so it’s great. I really appreciate everybody getting on here. A few strugglers as well. They can catch up as we go.
Also at the end of this, I will make this webinar recording available online directly on the PME360.com website.
So without anymore delay, let’s get right into it. So today’s topic is the FIVE THINGS YOU NEED TO DO TO PREPARE FOR GROWTH IN YOUR HOME IMPROVEMENT BUSINESS.
The strategies I’m about to share with you are just at the mindset behind getting ready to grow. This is not necessarily the webinar about the actual strategies that will get that growth but the preparations on the mindset. So keep that in mind as I go through the slides.
Just a little background on me. I’m the CEO of PME360. We’ve been powering growth online for small to medium sized business for over 5 years. I’ve been personally working on growing businesses since 2005. I’ve been in the Internet Marketing world for over 8 years with 3 to 4 of those years spent directly on the home improvement market.
I’ve successfully also launched 4 other companies in a variety of niche markets. But what I’m most proud about is I’ve been able to help small business owners generate additional revenues using Internet Marketing.
I think Internet Marketing is one of the most powerful sources to grow in today’s society. It’s just incredible what you can do especially local companies – sky’s the limits, it’s wide open. You can see some of my credentials.
And what I’m most proud of I guess is that I really invested a lot of time and money to get to where I am right now. And the knowledge that I have acquired so hopefully it comes through in some of the things I’ll talk about. And if you ever have a conversation with me, hopefully this amount of effort I put into this comes through.
So preparing for growth in your home improvement business, the top 5 ways that we’re going to talk about tonight are:
- is focus on one thing at a time
- is know what is good enough
- is become the go-to industry expert
- is put on a show
- is create systems
But before I get into those 5 key strategies I want to tell you why I love the home improvement market and why I’ve always been a big fan, why I’ve always been involved in this market ever since my professional career.
Remodeling and home improvement spending is on the verge of taking off. I know a lot of you will say that we’ve been into a recession. I understand that but the guys and gals who have been doing this and had great positioning and marketing all along have not noticed a big hit in this recession as some of you might have felt.
You know an estimated 21 million homeowners want to take about 30.7 million home repairs and remodeling projects in 2011 spending $185 billion in the process. It’s a big market. So if you’re in the home improvement, remodeling market, I feel you’re really in the right place.
And if you’re struggling, not generating the kind of revenue that you hope to generate, there are things you can do to capture more market share. I think that’s probably what it will come down to as your marketing is probably a little off.
You’re probably a little bit scattered and you don’t have the system to scale and grow your home improvement company so again I really think when you’re in this industry, you’re really in the right place.
The value of the products and services in this industry is another reason why I love this. If you’re in the right remodeling segment, home improvement segments, you’re talking about high ticket average cost per transaction.
These aren’t $5 widgets that you’re selling or $50 pins that rely on a ton of volume. You’re in a business that your average ticket price is pretty good. You should be able to be making money and doing very well in remodeling markets.
And what I’m finding is that the high ticket sales in these growing markets, with very few competitors doing the right things to grow. I know a lot of you feel that there is lot of competition but when I really look at what the great companies are doing, there isn’t any competition.
I know it may sound insensitive but if you really do the things that we talk about here, you should find that you have plenty of leads, you’re generating more revenue. Probably, more than what you can handle.
Again, home improvement activity is highest in 7 years. And according to consumer report articles, recently (2nd November), homeowners are becoming more confident in their housing investments.
You know, the new home market is not that strong, although I feel it’s picking up too. But most people are sticking around. They need to get their kitchen updated, new flooring, siding windows, whatever it maybe.
The confidence is improving and they are willing to take the equity that they gained or money that they’ve been saving to reinvest in their homes. And this growth has been seen as great indicators of market conditions.
The projects that cost $25,000 or more are still lagging behind smaller renovations and repairs. But they’re still showing strength and those will continue to grow as well. So what you see is a lot of stats, that’s all. But what does it really mean for you?
And what I’m seeing, you’ve got growing market conditions in the home improvement space and if you have a great campaign to capture that market share, there’s a lot of wealth creation that you’ll have here.
And if you have the ability to focus, market, scale and deliver, you can capture this growth. And you should be able to do this extremely well.
And the opportunity is there to make lots of money and build a business but you’re probably sitting on the bench for a while with a couple of different things you need to do. Maybe they’ll have the money. Maybe they’ll have the conviction.
But money loves speed. That means, the faster you cam implement things and get going, the quicker you’ll get generating wealth and building a business that has value. It’s extremely important to recognize the longer that you wait to implement these things the longer it takes to get to where you want to go.
So focus on one thing at a time. Maybe this looks like what you’ve been doing already. But know that I’ve been there. I know what it feels like. You’re the person. You’re the go-to person in your company.
You’re responsible for just about everything. It’s the lack of direction or focus and it’s really hard to delegate. You have passion for your business but maybe it’s lost or misplaced. At the moment, you’re a little bit drained, overworked, overwhelmed.
It’s totally normal. We all go through this as business owners. This is totally normal. You go through periods of feeling great at what you’ve been doing. Other times you just want to give up.
Don’t feel like you’re alone here. This is the nature of what it is if you are involved in this vicious cycle. Most of the time, what I’m seeing in the home improvement market is that, you probably have a poor business model.
You’re probably trying to do too much and have not created or documented systems around what you’re doing: marketing all the way to production of services that you’re offering, as well as how you hire.
There are lots of things you need to do as a business owner. What you should be focusing is probably not what you should be doing right now. So stop multitasking and trying to do everything.
It’s not helping. You have to focus on a single task at a time. Eliminate all distractions. I see this all the time. In the home improvement businesses I talk to…I talk to them on the phone but I hear another phone ringing in the background. They honestly couldn’t feel that they can let that phone call go to voicemail.
Here they are trying to focus on me and power through some sessions and develop some strategies and they feel that they have to answer the phone. It’s super cheap and easy to hire an outsource center to field your incoming calls.
Don’t answer your phone. It’s really a huge distraction. And it’s pulling you in too many directions. The other thing is answering email in real time. This is crazy.
Just because you have email on your phone and you have those little desktop alerts coming up every time a mail comes up alerting you have a new mail, doesn’t mean you have to respond to that mail when it comes in.
There’s nobody in this planet expecting you to do that. So stop the madness, stop the insanity. Schedule one or two times per day that you check email. And do it in your computer. Don’t answer or respond to emails on your phone. This is completely inefficient and unproductive.
So for me, personally, at 11 o’clock everyday I check email for about 20 minutes, power through and get that done. At 4 o’clock before I shut down from the day, I check my email one more time just to see what’s going on and get that off my plate.
And also, do what I can possibly can to eliminate email altogether, to set up systems to route emails to other people to get less email. Focus on doing one task until 100% complete.
That is what most people do. I actually suggest 80% is usually good enough. Get it off your plate and move on. Don’t expect perfection.
As a business owner, it is our brand on the line, we expect everything to be done in perfection, it’s not necessary. If you have ideas, systems that you want to try and get out there, bang them out and move on. Test it, don’t spend too much time and perfect it at that point. You can always go back and perfect it. Get the system, marketing strategies, whatever it is in place and stop wasting time.
Know when something is good enough. Perfection is time consuming and is often unattainable. 80% to 90% perfect is good enough and the cost-benefit analysis of perfection versus time wasted – you have to know what that is.
And say it, perfection does really count so if there is something super high level that only you can do, that really needs to be done well, you know maybe that’s a type of task that needs time, you need to zone in on and get done, get off your plate.
But even those, I really think that you can get it far along enough to maybe pass off to someone else to fill in the gaps or test it out and then go back and perfect it.
Crucial piece of preparing for growth is becoming an expert in your field. You have to be known as the guy or gal in your market for the service you are providing and it’s really hard to become an expert in your field if you are doing too many things.
So focus in, become the expert on one thing.
To become the expert, it’s all about position. You have the importance of creating consistent quality content online and throughout your marketing.
You’ve got to have it. You’ve got to be doing it. Writing a book or what they call a short book (shook) or an online ebook. Positioning yourself as somebody who knows what you’re talking about in your industry.
And after this offer it as a free giveaway on your website or have it in your table when people come in to talk to you or give it away on your sales presentation. You know the top things to know before you hire at whatever your industry is, that could be a good book. You got to have something. You got to have the content to position yourself as an expert in the market.
This is not easy to do but it is a necessity as you try to prepare to grow. Leverage social media channels. I’m not going to get into a lot of social media marketing right now but it’s extremely important as well as reputation marketing.
We’ll be doing another 11 hours just for reputation marketing and social media. It’s extremely important. I mean everybody who is looking for remodeling contractors, home improvement, HVAC guy, plumber. Where are they going? They are going online. Every single one of them.
Whether they are referred to you or not, they’re doing research about you. And if you don’t have enough information or enough good reviews, you’re not going to get that business. It’d be extremely hard. Your competitors are going to start doing this if they haven’t already.
It’s only going to be a matter of time before they get a jump on you, so get going. Start doing this stuff. Learn have to do it or hire somebody that knows how to do it for you.
Traditionally, marketing is one of the easiest things to outsource. So if you are overwhelmed with having to create a website or making a website better, with SEO, local SEO, link building citations, video marketing, social media, Facebook, all of these stuff it can be overwhelming.
But it is one of the easiest things to outsource to somebody else. I’m not trying to sell my company here but I just want to show that a lot of people do this stuff very well.
Although I think we’re ahead of the curb with a lot this stuff. We can take a market, say it’s plumbing in
And we can just go and do it. We can create great content for you, videos, backend annotation panels for email marketing, social post. We can go take it off your plate. You don’t even need to get involved.
So really think about being involved in a high level in your marketing but not the guy who does, well, all this stuff because the only value you’re going to bring here is in the content. You can record it through your iPhone, or on your computer or whatever and hand it off to somebody else to create all the content and distribute it.
You know you can be the one doing that but it’s going to be a waste of time if you try to become the expert at Internet Marketing. But you need to be creating some content. You need to be involved in some level.
And you’re thinking outside the box, there’s a bunch of different ways: podcasts, webinars, how to videos.
Get an Iphone and every job you go into whether by a previous contractor or something you’re running into. Take out you phone and have someone to shoot you talking about the problem. Post it in Youtube and we can market that and position you in the market as person who knows what he’s talking about.
Another great way to position yourself as an expert is starting a radio show. I know it may sound a little bit crazy but the radio show isn’t necessarily getting 10,000 listeners every time you put the show on. It’s really about positioning.
Think about the power of telling somebody that you have a radio show. You know, you’re a roofing guy in
Think about positioning, there’s a bunch of ways you can do that. I think radio is a good way and you’ll be the only person in the whole state that has his radio show. Then dominate the knowledge base in your industry and there’s a lot of ways to do that. There’s a lot of industry forum or associations.
Get involved. Get some content up there. And again an assistant or an outsourced marketing agency can do this for you.
Putting on a show you are selling high ticket items – most of you and even if you’re not, you still want to put on a show to really differentiate yourself from your competitors.
And to be able to put on that show, you really have to know the people you want to talk to. So really know your demographic data and get that throughout your marketing so you’re really talking to one person versus 20 different groups of people.
Sell the lifestyle and be memorable. I think you can do that by selling a lifestyle. I’m talking about put on a good presentation when you want to sell something. Don’t just assume that you have the business.
Have some promotional marketing stuff with you. Nice looking brochures. Really be the person you’re marketing at. The other guys aren’t going to do this. So if you can sell that lifestyle and be memorable, you’ve got a huge advantage over your competition.
You know in putting on a show, there’s a couple of things you can do. It’s not just getting the sale. It’s what you do after, too. Send them a box of fresh baked cookies from your local baker. Send them a thank you letter – handwritten.
Things like these go a long way to show appreciation. And every single consumer and customer that you have wants to feel appreciated.
Don’t assume that because you do the work and they give you money that’s the end of it. And the relationship is over. Take that extra step and really show them that you appreciated that they gave you their hard earned money to do what you just did.
Create and improve system. This is the one that I feel like contractors, home improvement businesses and remodeling companies struggle with the most is how to create and improve systems.
It might not be something that you’ve thought about yet. You know, you’ve been in this business for awhile. You’ve been getting jobs. You’ve been doing okay.
But the only way to grow beyond this point. You’re probably at that point now that you’re not quite sure “how do I take this thing to the next level?” you know you’re kind of pacing along and not really sure if you could have a business that has a value. The only way to create value is to take your brand and wrap a nice tight system around it. And make a list of everything you do and how you do it.
Then together with your team, poke holes in it. So you’re creating systems and then you can go through with some of your team members: production team, in-house office staff and see if you miss anything.
You should have systems for your sales, marketing, production, in-house contracts. Everything bound with your business should have a checklist around it. Test every thing, refine it and repeat.
That’s how you create systems. You should be dedicating a good amount of time every week on this system and improving it. Don’t just assume that you have systems now, it’s the right way to do it.
Look at incorporating technology to make systems better. If every thing’s right now, you just repeat the checklist, maybe it’s time to look at getting better systems that you can scale and grow.
And finally, the mentality for growth, you have to have it. You have to want to grow. Staying where you are is not good. Okay. And this is really important to understand.
If you are pacing along and you’re generating the same amount of sales you did last year or a little better –whatever, you’re basically pretty flat in your growth curve.
You better believe that there is a competitor in your market that is not happy where they are. They’re going to want to grow. They’re going to want to implement all the things I’ve just talked about.
So if you’re staying where you are and if you have that mentality, those competitors that will gain market share will push so hard that your sales right now without competitor incursion. Their sales will grow. And it could happen over night. It could happen a couple of years. Whatever it is, it will happen.
So being happy with the status quo is not good. If you honestly believe that you can stay where you are and be fine, you might want to think about you’re not necessarily have a business that you can sell because if you have sales that are constantly flat, you can’t ever get.
You can’t present that to somebody who is interested in buying your business. If you have flat sales year after year, you’re not implementing any new ideas, services, systems. It’s not something that anybody else would really ever want.
The other thing is, get out of the chaos and craziness by growing. And this sounds a little bit strange to a lot of you but the only way to get out of the craziness of your business.
If we go back to the slide where we showed the cycle of the madness that you’re involved with right now. The only way to get out of that is by growing.
When you grow what happens, you get more money. There’s more cash coming if you’re placing products and services correctly.
There should be more money coming in, which allows you to do what, allows you to hire, allows you to get more stuff off of your plate. Reinvest in your products and processes and achieve your big dreams. Whatever those are.
And no business is static. It’s dynamic. It’s constantly changing. Your industry’s changing. Marketing is changing. Your sales are changing.
And if it is flat and static, there is something wrong. So you want to be a market leader. You want to be constantly looking “what’s the next thing down the road”, “what are people going to want”, “what would my customers want down the road”, “how do I deliver them a better service and better products within that service”.
If you’re not thinking like this, you don’t have the mentality for growth. I really feel you’re in lot of trouble if that’s the case. And whether you’re burned out or not, that’s another issue.
And maybe it’s time to really consider that maybe owning your own business is not the best thing. If you can’t bring in the right people and grow, you’ll going to end up where you are right now and maybe it would be better for you to do something else or go work for another company because you’ll just end up getting disappointed somewhere along the line here – especially if you’re thinking that you’re building a business when really your business is disguised as a job. And a job that is much more complicated than working for somebody else.
And again you know your competitors will, I think you really need to understand this, because in any market I look at it’s getting more competitive. But not for the guys and gals who do all these. It really isn’t.
The people that really implement all this stuff and really want grow and do the thing right, competition doesn’t really exist for them you know. And I don’t think it will ever will. To be honest with you. But the people that are kind of floating along here, that’s where competition problems come to life.
Before I lead you guys into this last thing, I just wanted to take a few minutes to answer any questions. I know I went through all these a bit fast. I want to apologize. If any of you miss this, again this will be put in the website as well. I’ll post it into social media.
So here’s a question that came in here.
Let’s see. Let’s take this first one.
Dave asks, you mentioned focusing but right now, I am out on a job as well as selling and running a company, what do you suggest I do?
Oh this is typical. I mean most home improvement companies especially on the smaller side. Small businesses are running the same thing. What they’re doing, they’re doing everything. What I suggest probably the easiest thing to outsource to somebody else or hire someone else to do within your company.
And this really depends on what you’re doing. You’re really the face of your company so the selling if you’re really going to do anything, that’s probably the thing that you should be doing as to the guy meeting people and getting it…you could probably get the estimates off your plate or if you have a good system, you should do the assessments very quickly.
But I would say don’t stop selling. Be that guy for now. Look at getting somebody else involved that can do your internal management. An office person (you know).
For $20 an hour, you can get someone really good. Really know who you want to hire here because that’s really important. You can probably even hire a person that’s not on payroll – through another staffing company or whatever.
Temporarily find somebody that’s really hungry and wants to learn what you do. So that’s my suggestion is, if you’re in the smaller side and doing the stuff you say you’re doing.
Focus on selling because that’s what’s going to keep the money coming in – you need to be that guy and get somebody else to do the other stuff.
Carol has question. Are you suggesting we put our average stuff and you’ve got an upside?
Okay Carol I know what you’re asking here.
It’s a tough one.
What I’m saying is, when it comes to your marketing. If you are going to put up terrible stuff, it’s not going to work. But most of you are very smart. You can put out some good content.
And it shouldn’t take you that long once you get good at it. Or again, you can hire someone else that is an expert who can do it for you making it look good. You’re good enough stuff.
I’m talking about if you have no system now, if you have no web presence, if you have no sales strategy, it’s just getting something in place. You can probably do a lot of this stuff in a couple of hours getting foundation written out.
You know the process of how you deal with every single lead, prospects, client meetings. And follow that process through and get the stuff documented that would help done just getting off your plate.
And then test it, go back and you can work on it but waiting and not doing it because you’re overwhelmed because there is so much to do is not an answer. I think that’s the point.
Most of you, like, I deal with the same thing that you need to do because never ever stops. You always need to be working on developing new stuff. So I would just suggest setting aside uninterrupted times, shut everything off just power in. Start building your system, the documenting whatever it is you’re doing.
Jake asks, how do I possibly have the time to do everything you said. I work 6 days as it is. I don’t have time to make content, do any social media stuff nor do I have time to learn what you recommend?
Well, you have a major problem here. First of all, if you work 6 days a week, it’s an unsustainable model. You’re going to burn out.
And you must recognize that you really need to take a whole 2 days off every week. To be reenergized and be great at what you do.
Personally, I don’t answer email, I don’t answer the phone from Friday 4pm till Monday at 9am. It’s just non-negotiable. I’m not willing to sacrifice my family and my own health for the sake of clients or my business. It’s not worth it. I’ve done it. It’s not fun. It’s not worth doing.
So you’re got to make changes in your work and in your life to get some of this stuff off your plate and don’t do it. But you can’t work 6 or 7 days a week. That’s just crazy.
But what you have to figure out is what are the things in your business that you can give to somebody else. You have to able to trust somebody to do something. You know whether it’s initially you know spouse, or your kids, or neighbor. Whatever it is.
There are all kinds of people out there looking for work. If you can outsource 10 hours whatever it is to somebody else there’s your weekend. That 6 days week you talked about, you just got it back.
And the 10 hours a week you can give to somebody else. That’s not a lot of time, you can give that and another 10 here, another 10 there and pretty soon you will be able to grow and you’ve got people employed.
For as what I recommend as far as to how to make contents or social media. There are tons and tons of resources out there and taped resources and stuff.
It is good place to start learning Internet marketing. Sempo is an organisation that puts out a lot of great content of webinar around Intenet Marketing. There’s a ton of them. Let me just start taking a little bit of time researching the definition you need and you’ll find an expert that can help you. We can also help you.
We offer a 30 minute free strategy for a small to medium size business owner. So if you’re interested, I don’t know how long I’m going to offer this honestly because it depends on how many people I’ve put already and few in the pipeline.
Email me at radams@pme360 if you just want to talk or something. I’m more than happy to do that. It’s 100% complimentary. I don’t expect anything in return. I just, if you need some help we can certainly help you there.
Systems – This question comes in from. We’ve got no name for this one. Do you have any new courses or books on developing the one book recommended everybody checks out is the Checklist Manifesto – can’t remember the author. I should’ve that prepared but checklist manifesto. You can go to Amazon. You can get the Kindle version or buy the real book.
It’s really good at developing systems. Let’s see what else do I have for systems E-myth. You got to read the E-myth by Michael Gerber. If you haven’t read that book as a small business owner, you’re missing out.
There’s an incredible amount of resources in there. And I think these are the two books I recommended right now. Checklist Manifesto and E-myth. There’s a lot of books out there that you can. Maybe we should create a list but that’s all.
That’s about all that I have for today. I really appreciate everybody that jumping on the line. Hopefully I’ve provided some value here.
And again if you want to talk and ran through our free strategy session just shoot me am email and I’ll put you on the schedule. I look forward to talking to some of you.
Have a great day and we’ll talk later. Bye.