What a double-glazing salesman can teach you about marketing. Yes, really.

StormDo you remember the big storm in the UK last Christmas? I’ll never forget it, because the whole front of my house leaked.

I was working in my home office, when I heard the dreaded drip-drip-drip. Pushed by gale-force winds, the rain was seeping under the windowsill and landing on the power adapter for my iMac. Then I checked the front bedroom next door. Oh no! That windowsill was leaking too. I went downstairs to watch TV. Argh!!! So much rain was coming in that water was running down the walls from upstairs.

Clearly, the windows needed replacing.

I soon discovered that everything I’d heard about double-glazing salesmen is true.

One scribbled a quote on a compliment slip. The next day, his office phoned and offered a reduced price – unsolicited.

Another made a big show of calculating the price per window, immediately crossed out the total and wrote a lower price for no apparent reason.

I asked one if I could get references from local customers. He said: “I could point to any windows on your street and tell you I did them and you’d never know.”

Then I met Martin. He wasn’t the cheapest, but he was the most business-like of the lot – by far.

He emailed CAD visuals of each window, captioned with individual prices that were calculated to the penny. The quote included insurance and guarantees to reassure me. He told me: “The price is the price. I don’t haggle like the others.”

What’s more, he gave me a list of every job he’d ever done in the area, and invited me to contact any of them. One previous customer told me: “Martin did my windows 12 years ago and they still look amazing.” Another said: “After he did my windows I recommended Martin to my whole family. They are all as happy as I am.”

Guess who I chose to replace my windows?

No prizes.

What you can learn from this

  • Offer superb service to stand out from the rest, especially if you’re in a business with a poor reputation
  • Don’t offer discounts unless you get something you want in return
  • Be open and transparent (like my new windows, ha ha) about your previous customers

photo credit: ComputerHotline via photopin cc

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