ICS Magazine

Marketing Strategy 101 for Commercial Clients

October 6, 2011

For someone starting off in commercial carpet cleaning, where do you look for potential clients and business? Here are three target groups that would be responsive to outsourced commercial carpet and textile maintenance.

Property Management Firms
Often they handle not only residential properties but small commercial units also. This is a localized group of potential clients. The property management firms often build in the lease agreements funds for carpet cleaning/janitorial services. This can be a bit tricky, but understanding that these funds can be backed out of the janitorial contract or that you can assume the contract entirely is the first step.

Making the property management firms aware that this is a possibility is the second step. In your presentation to them, show how quality carpet and textile maintenance will extend the life of their investment and provide a space that is more attractive to potential end-users.  Several strip office buildings, managed by one or two property firms will give you the contracts needed to realize the income you are looking for.

Networking Groups
Take the time and make the financial investment in facility management networking groups. The International Facility Management Association (www. IFMA.org) and the Building Owners Managers Association (www. BOMA.org) are two very good networking groups with locations in every state. On their websites are the locations of each chapter and how to become involved.

Warm Calls
The old fashioned method. Only this is not the telemarketing, mail-blitz method we were taught. Call with a purpose! Call the facility manager directly and ask questions. Most people love to help, and love to hear their name being used in a conversation. Have a conversation with the facility manager. Ask him or her how they are currently maintaining their facility? Are they happy, if so what do they like about the service? These could be tips for you, here you will find out who your competition is and what they are doing right or wrong.

Offer to come and meet with them to talk about your company! Remember there is still no obligation on the part of the client, this will be important to them, as their time is valuable also.  Offer to spot clean an area, provide a test cleaning or take a look at their upholstery for them. Above all, be consistent! Make follow-up calls on a once a month basis with the client. Be polite and friendly!

Commercial carpet and textile maintenance is about building relationships. Be prepared to invest time and effort.  Some research and consistent contact will help open doors for your commercial business to grow!