Dealer Keys to Success
by Joe Mills
April 5th, 2016

The Stories That Build Trust With Customers

How risky is it to do business with your home improvement company? How do you think a potential customer that doesn’t know much about you would answer that question?

It may surprise you, but a recent statistic that I read says that people look at the risk of doing business with a home improvement salesperson similarly to the risk of doing business with a used car salesperson.

“But, I have perfect reviews on Angie’s List,” you might say.

The reality is that no matter how good your reputation is, homeowners have an assumed risk when they’re doing business with you. It’s the same type of risk we all feel when dealing with a salesperson.

“OK, so everyone thinks that. So what?” I bet it would make some sense that there is a relationship between customer perception of the level of risk and the price they would be willing to pay to reduce that risk.

Bottom line…if you’re selling high-value products and can’t afford to give them away, help your potential customers understand that doing business with you represents the least amount of risk, compared to doing business with your competitors.

I’m sure you’re instinctively doing a lot of this already anyway by cultivating positive reviews, getting testimonials, etc.

But in talking with our dealer partners and their sales teams, I believe that maybe the most effective time to do this is in the house.

There are three stories that you and your team have to master in this area…

     Personal stories—Help your team craft personal stories that aren’t just about their experience, but about opportunities they have had to help other/similar customers in ways that send a “risk aversion” message. Even the newest salesperson can have these types of stories.

     Company story—Many of us have been involved in organizations that require salespeople to be able to quote the company story verbatim prior to being let out on the street. How “risk averse” do you think that message is?

     Product story—While we would all agree that people buy from people first and the company second, at the end of the day, your customers’ biggest concerns regarding risk may have to do with the product itself and its overall ROI. Ask your vendor partners to help you describe and depict how they think their product helps a  homeowner avert risk.

Communicate the message that doing business with you, your company and your products represents the least amount of risk, and your closing rates will climb and margins will increase.

So…how risky is your business?

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