Business Lessons from the Gutter Guy

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Lessons that can help you promote your business are all around, if you know where to look for them, and I got a good lesson in how to approach potential clients from the guy who ended up installing our gutters. Here’s what happened.

1. Identify The Need

The gutter guy was doing an installation next door and saw that we had no gutters at the front of our house.

The lesson: keep your eyes peeled for chances to offer your business services. When you know how to do something useful, and someone else isn’t doing it, that’s a business opportunity.

2. Make A Friendly Approach

The gutter guy came over and asked to speak to us. Of course we said yes — there’s never any harm in talking to someone. We weren’t able to talk to him right away, but set a time for later that day.

The lesson: Approach potential clients in a friendly manner. Some people are put off by a hard sell or overt marketing, but offering to have a chat isn’t threatening — and could end up benefiting your writing business.

3. Offer Help

Here’s where the gutter guy shone. After our chat, he offered to measure and provide a quote, no strings attached, which he did within minutes. By this time, we were already impressed by his attitude.

The lesson: Be businesslike and show the client how you can help. Be prepared to outline your services and provide quotes if necessary. This is a list of potential benefits.

In this case, the gutter guy won the sale because he had pertinent facts and figures at his fingertips. He was able to say what the process was, how long it would take, what materials he would need and how the job had to be paid for.

Sound familiar? In addition, he provided a tailor-made solution for our circumstances, not a cookie-cutter template.

4. Be Ready for Action

The next day, the gutter guy turned up with his materials and crew and started work and we had our gutters installed within a week.

The lesson: With a new client, timely follow up is essential to build the relationship. In this case, the gutter guy delivered what he promised and stuck to the schedule. So you’d better believe that the next time we need gutters, we’ll be calling him (and we’ll recommend him to others, too.) Isn’t that what you want for your business?

This is an updated version of an article published on Get Paid to Write Online.

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Pro writer (B2B/B2C). Antiracism writer. Co-host: Introvert Sisters podcast. Global citizen. She/her. Sharon’s Anti-Racism NL:

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