When I began writing this column, I wanted to offer general information on cold calling that was applicable to most if not all industries. However, I recently made the decision to make some of my columns more industry specific to address the "special´ needs of some industries. So today´s column is dedicated to cold calling tips for the janitorial industry. Because I work with a number of janitorial firms in the Bay area I can offer some unique prospective to achieve not only your sales goals but also generate more leads and quality appointments. Here are a few of my tips"?¦.
If you only offer residential services, consider expanding to commercial. The contracts are much larger the money is much better and while you may not receive cash payments as you might with residential accounts, the commitments tend to be more long term. Also commercial accounts tend to have a set budget for janitorial services that residential accounts may not.
When developing your market, look into targeting the following; Pharmaceutical firms, Biotech Firms, Computer based firms, Financial Institutions, office buildings (non-union).However"?¦
Consider mailing info to large office building and hotel managers. Why? Although most workers have a union, emergencies do happen, companies do stop handling everything in-house and find outsourcing more cost effective and thus need to vendor out the work. Things change..I´M NOT SUGGETING CROSSING A PICKET LINE. But better to have info in place just in case. Unionized buildings are not your ideal market but things do change.
Always ask for the Facilities Manager, Owner, or whoever out sources their janitorial or maintenance contracts.
If they vendor out their contracts find out if they are happy (because they may not be) and when they´ll be accepting outside bids.
Make sure they have a budget for janitorial services particularly if they´ve never used one before.
Think about offering a special package for residential or commercial services. The point is not to be afraid of cross selling.
If you do expand, make sure that your equipment is up to date. No cash to buy new equipment? Consider leasing from a larger firm or starting with one or two smaller more inexpensive pieces first. Better to start smaller and grow over time than buy a lot of equipment before you have the accounts to help pay for it.
If you offer commercial services, consider developing a division specifically for residential accounts. Not only will this improve your cash flow, but you also expand your clientele base and market. Many firms make the mistake of only going after larger commercial accounts because of the pay out. But smaller accounts offer smaller payments that can sometimes see you through a particularly rough cycle. Get enough of these and you may make enough to cover quite a few bills. They can also lead to larger accounts. And don´t make the mistake of thinking residential accounts are small accounts. There are a lot of homeowners with large homes that need cleaning and pay big $$$.
Promotional coupons are still a great way to offer discounts. Be sure to have them handy in your office and for direct mail pieces.
The bottom line is to expand your thinking regardless of the industry. There are a lot of competitors vying for the same business as you are so stand apart from the rest. If you think of new ways to expand your market you´ll be way ahead of your competitors in the long run. Good Luck.
Tony Wilkins is the author of "Telemarketing Success for Small and Mid-sized Firms available in most bookstores and online at www.amazon.com and www.xlibris.com you may also find out about his workshops and services at
http://stores.ebay.com/telemarketing-success via e: mail at firstname.lastname@example.org or phone 415-267-4872 .If you´d like to be notified of a new posting for this column ,please contact Tony Wilkins at email@example.com