Wednesday, October 25, 2006
On Free Estimates....
Service companies are notorious for offering "free estimates" to prospective customers. There's only one reason why they offers these free estimates.
The reason: everybody else offers them.
The problem with offering free stuff is that your free stuff becomes useless once somebody else offers that same free stuff. And you can't go any lower than free. So you're stuck. Stuck doing the same thing as everybody else. Stuck doing the same thing forever and ever. Stuck offering free estimates when everybody in the world also offers free estimates.
Of course, you could be a little different. You could do what we do. We give you 30 free lottery tickets if you invite us into your home for an estimate. Yep, we pay you for estimates. That's even better than free.
Inevitably, somebody will wake up. They'll discover that rewarding prospective customers for estimates can be just as rewarding for your business. And then they'll start offering free lottery tickets. And then we'll have to do something different.
Of course, I never thought that we would still be the only cleaning company in the world to utilize the pay for performance program. But we are. So who knows? Maybe nobody will figure out our version of the free estimate after all.
Some things never change. Some businesses do change. Two Maids & A Mop changed a long time ago. Our industry didn't.
Thanks goes out there to all the cleaning companies out there that offer free estimates. You make our business look a lot better.