How a warranty can also be a sales tool
Most pros realize that warranties are a great way to demonstrate confidence in their service and differentiate them from competitors. But did you know that warranties can also lead to more future sales? After all, when you’re doing a warranty follow-up, you’re calling on one of your best prospects: a previous customer. The key to using the warranty as a sales tool is staying on top of when a warranty expires.
USE WARRANTIES TO KEEP IN TOUCH
Matt Shoup, president of M&E Painting in Colorado, believes that being proactive with a warranty is key to winning work. He advises, “Don’t wait until a customer calls with peeling paint; stop by on an annual basis for a paint checkup and evaluation. Make sure you catch an opportunity to serve them before they do. This shows your customer you really care.”
Shoup tracks customer warranties through his Outlook email program. “You can easily add birthdates and paint-iversary dates. When we’re alerted of a pending anniversary, we do a drop-by, where we stop by to check in, say hi and make sure all the paint is holding up.”
Other pros use automated emails, either through their CRM (customer relationship management) or email program, to send warranty alerts to customers. A simple approach can be to schedule future warranty alert emails when the final project invoice is issued. Alerts can be sent yearly or however frequently makes the most sense with your offering. If you’re sending multiple notifications (i.e., 1x per year for 3 years), you want to make sure the language of your final email is different so that the customer is notified that the warranty is ending.
Be sure to cc: yourself or the individual responsible for tracking warranties on all alerts so that you’re aware of what’s coming due and who might be calling. If you’re someone who prefers to be ahead of the customer, you can also schedule an alert just for yourself in the time frame that suits you best.
While customers will appreciate receiving notice of a pending warranty lapse, what they’ll appreciate even more is a fast response to a call for you to address an issue. As Shoup notes, “Many companies are too eager to put warranty work on the back burner because it takes away from current income-producing jobs. In my opinion, it doesn’t matter when that customer has produced income for you. Just get the work done; serve them with excellence, and they will continue producing income for your company over time.”
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