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It's 8:15 am...And Not a Call on the Board

October 22, 2009
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It’s 8:15 am. Your experienced, professional, sales oriented, customer service focused, technically masterful cleaning pros are still at the shop. Ready to go…with nowhere to go.

Now what?



It’s 8:15 am. Your experienced, professional, sales oriented, customer service focused, technically masterful cleaning pros are still at the shop. Ready to go…with nowhere to go.

Now what?

It’s up to you. Dear small-shop owner, put on your Marketing Hat and create some action.

“That which you recognize, you energize.” Mark Victor Hansen

If there are no calls on the board at 8:15 am it is because you have neglected to create them. Your focus has been elsewhere.

We are powerful beings. Watch your words. Words impact reality. Forbid the use of these words at your shop:
  • Dead. (No one’s dying. You just need a few more calls.)
  • Estimate. (Estimate means, “No one is buying. Just go over there and give them a price for work that someone else will do.” Instead, use the word Service Call or Sales Opportunity.
  • Never and always. Get the data and skip the generalizations. Economy. What difference can you make by discussing the economy? Do your part to help our economy and grow your own business.
Discipline your thoughts. Prioritize and take action on your To Dos and projects. If you turn your focus on the tornado…on the “trouble”…it will gravitate towards you. It must. That’s how the universe works. If you focus your words, your thoughts and your energy on making the phone ring, the phone will ring, by mandate of basic universal law.

“Winners do not neglect to do the easy things that cause success. The definition of ‘easy’ is ‘something I can do.’” Jim Rohn

The following is a list of ideas for getting the phone to ring. Keep this list in your Marketing Binder, or Marketing file. Add ideas to the list from your own experiences. Have a brainstorming session with your team, and come up with a few dozen more. When faced with an empty callboard, pull this list out and do something that will make the phone ring.
  1. Call your own phone numbers. Make sure they are working.
  2. Call other cleaning companies and see if they are so busy that they are turning away work. If so, offer to help…and take the overflow.
  3. Go to a restaurant, hotel or office building and find a cleaning problem. Offer to handle it.
  4. Does the weather pose a publicity or public service opportunity? Fax 10 Drought Survival Tips to the local radio station. Email Heat Beaters tips for staying cool to the local newspaper. Flood flyers…why not?!
  5. Call the radio station and offer to do a call in show. Topic ideas…
  6. Bio-terrorism…what would happen if the water supply were damaged?
  7. To drug test…or not to drug test. Invasion of privacy or essential to business people everywhere.
  8. Seat left up…or down?
  9. Antibacterial handwash…are we overdoing it?
  10. Wear a costume. Colonel Sanders started his chicken empire at the age of 65. He donned a white suit, with a black string tie, and traded 11 secret herbs and spices for a nickel a batch. 60 years later, KFC has 12,000 stores and the Colonel is the BRAND. Put a costume on…and press some flesh.
  11. Craft an Elevator Speech…a 10 second introduction of you and your company that’s so compelling that people listening respond, “Wow…that’s interesting. Tell me more…” Here’s what an Elevator Speech is not: “I’m just a carpet cleaner.” A good Elevator Speech is: “Have you ever taken time off to meet a service person, only to have him or her stand you up? Don’t you hate that? At our company, when we say we’ll be there, or service is free.” Craft your Speech and give it to 10 people a day.
  12. Trade out. Trade Cleaning work for marketing, publicity, radio time, and promotional items…. as well as for other services that you may need.
  13. Clean an employee’s home. Then, canvas the area and offer to work on neighbors’ homes. Yep, door to door. Use a bullhorn.
  14. Park a truck in high visibility places: Interstate entrances (if it’s safe to do so); grocery stores; schools; movie theatres; parks; sporting events.
  15. Find a parade. Park the truck next to the parade route. Hand out water from the back of the truck.
  16. Write a controversial Letter to the Editor.
  17. Call your kid’s teacher. Offer to go to your kid’s school and read a story. Wear your service uniform, and arrive in the service truck. Give out company or product samples…a logo spray bottle would work!
  18. Put a sign in the window of a good friend’s place of business. Make it a great sign.
  19. Put a flag or banner with your logo and number on it on your house, car, family member or pet and wave it proudly.
  20. Call folks who said, “no” to the elective items on your list. Ask them again.
  21. Mend a fence. Call a less than satisfied customer and apologize. Offer to help with any cleaning problems to demonstrate how great you really are.
  22. Ask, ask, ask, ask, ask, ask, ask for business. They may say, “Yes, I need your help. Thanks for asking.” And off you go…calls on the board, and business is booming. It really is a matter of you making it happen. It’s easy. It’s something you can do. It may be challenging and fear inducing and a bit stressful to get out there and ask for business, but it is something you can do.
"No mariner ever distinguished himself on calm seas."

A “no calls” day is unacceptable. When it happens, make a change. It’s like falling down…and getting up again. It’s like getting distracted, getting blown off course, and responding with a new focus. It’s up to you to turn the tide. And you are vastly capable of it.

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