Any builder with a good number of years in the trade behind them will likely be able to relate to the frustration of missing out on a building quote. Perhaps you’ve thought that you were developing a very friendly and fruitful relationship with a client, only for the crunch to arrive and the client to… choose another contractor. Why does this happen? It could be because you haven’t heeded the following secret – though it’s not so secret any more – to winning more quotes.
Be wary of coming across as a salesperson
You’ve probably drawn upon all of your marketing prowess in order to impress a client and try to convince them that you are the builder who can best meet their needs. Perhaps you’ve pointed out your long history of success in similar projects and kept trying to knock down your prices… only to find yourself, well, disappointed again. Where are you going wrong?
Frankly, you’re probably going a bit too heavy with the marketing talk. This kind of approach can be very counter-productive because you’re portraying yourself, however unwittingly, as a salesperson. And, as many of us have been taught, you can’t trust a salesperson. During negotiations, the client’s view is that, as you have a vested interest in sealing a deal with them, whatever you tell them is biased at best and untruthful at worst.
Prioritise getting the price correct, not low
As we alluded to earlier, your ultimate aim is to convince the client that you can best meet their needs. However, you might not even have a clear idea of what those needs are. This might have led you to resort to the rather generic perception that, say, the lowest price is what they are after. However, as we have previously hinted on our blog, an overly cheap price can actually leave the client feeling uncomfortable and suspecting that you have missed out a crucial expense.
Basically, as the builders’ business coach Graeme Owen advises, the winning building quote isn’t necessarily the cheapest quote – instead, it’s the quote that offers the solution to the client’s most significant need. And the price doesn’t have to be cheap – just accurate. At My Build Estimate, we can certainly help you to discern the most accurate price for your project – but how can you learn a client’s biggest need? Wouldn’t that be the work of a psychologist?
Getting a good insight into the client’s requirements
You can learn what a client wants by, quite simply, asking them. Or, to be more specific, asking them a set of straightforward “need-uncovering questions”, as Graeme Owen terms them. He cites the example of a builder, “Tony”, learning that one client – being a lawyer and, as a result, knowledgeable about how contracts could be misconstrued – was scared that he would get a bad deal because “Tony” was based far from his own city. The builder was, however, able to reassure him by providing extensive details about how and why parts of the project would be carried out.