Twice in the last week I’ve had young men knocking at my front door, trying to sign me up for a free estimate for roofing, siding and/or windows. Overall, I was impressed with both guys that came to the door. They were professional, and not too pushy. Having just moved into a home that was already in good shape, and since my brother-in-law is a professional roofer, I declined the offer, at this time.
Before the young man left, I wanted to encourage him a little. I wished him all the best in his efforts, and I asked how the work was going: “Not too great…got 2 leads so far today.” And this was at 5:30 in the evening! If I were the marketing manager of this company, there are a couple of tweaks I would make to try to improve the image and closing prospects of these canvassers.
- Dress Code The young man who came to my door was probably a college student. He was dressed in shorts and a polo shirt–not too shabby. However, he did not have any company apparel. As a homeowner, I’d like to know this is a legitimate company. He told me the name of his company but when we were done talking, I forgot the name. Tip: Don’t go cheap if you have people walking the neighborhoods! Make sure they present your company well.
- Leave Behind Material: I was not interested in their service right then and there. Plus I was in the middle of wrapping up work…so it was not a good time. However, I was impressed with the canvasser. He was good, yet he did not leave me his card or a brochure. Tip If someone is busy or in a hurry, at least leave them with your information. With your business card or brochure in their home, you never know when a homeowner will run across it again and call you or look you up online (hopefully they will be impressed with your online image too).
- Better Organization: The two guys that came to my door were from the same company within days of each other. Tip When doing canvassing, make sure you have a good road map for your sales team. I didn’t like explaining twice we didn’t need their service, especially at dinner time.
- Use Your Own People More: Hiring canvassers can be a good idea if you hire the right people who are personal and “closers.” Those folks are hard to find. Sometimes just using your own people is the best way to canvass a neighborhood. Tip Better yet, use the employees who are truly doing the work in the neighborhood. These guys are not born salesman, meaning they don’t have sales training. While homeowners are often “put-off” by a typical salesperson, a painter in his whites or a carpenter with his red wing boots and saw-dusted hat is very approachable. He can take a break from his project and canvass 5-10 (or more) homes and actually point out where he is working. He can ask the homeowner if he or she would like an estimate while his company is working nearby. This approach is the way to go, because homeowners can look outside their front door and see that work is truly being done at their neighbor’s home.
Do you have any tips on canvassing neighborhoods? What has worked for you?