Looking for Leads?
Where are All the Potential Customers?
by Paul Bieber
Right in front of you in your third desk drawer on the left.
It has been there for years, but you have ignored it. Now, when business
is slow, wake up! Look at the yellow pages or online directory. You can
buy all the lists of businesses you want, but this is the greatest free
source of potential customers you can ask for.
In the list that follows, look up any category in your phone book or online
and see if you have one current customer in there. If you do, then every
person in that category is a potential customer. You will find hundreds
of possible leads. But that is the easy part.
Now, go do something about it. Stop in at each potential contact and ask
to speak with the person who works with their glass needs. You donít have
to be suit-and-tie presentable. Just be you.
What have you got to lose? Absolutely nothing!
If you have a salesperson, give him this article and ask him to report
back to you on the number of cold calls he makes each day and the results.
It does not matter if he makes 20 calls and gets nothing; the 21st could
be the one. You will come up with hundreds of leads and you only need
a couple to come through to turn your business around.
This sounds so simplistic. Youíre right. It is. It takes shoe leather
and time and doesnít cost a dime, but it sure is a lot better than sitting
at your desk waiting for the phone to ring from someone who has already
called four shops to get the lowest price for a broken shower door.
Cold calling is not easy. It takes perseverance. Donít give this assignment
to someone in your office for phone calls. Every business gets calls all
the time trying to sell something. It is a long shot getting a new account
with a phone calling program.
An in-person visit is key.
When you finish calling all the categories in your local phone book, call
the phone company business office and order the phone books for areas
In the October issue of USGlass, the Contract Glazier Confidence Indexô
showed that 19 percent of the glass industry says its backlog is up. Why
arenít you in that group? All you have to do is get the business! Donít
wait for the business to come to you. Donít rub your rabbitís foot for
good luck. Donít pray. Go out there; motivate your company to get new
business. Throw a pizza party for every new customer that comes in. For
the fifth new customer, take the shop out for a good dinner. Have your
field crews stop at every jobsite they see breaking ground to ask if they
have selected a glazier or are open to hearing from a second source.
To be redundant, what have you got to lose? Absolutely nothing!
Companies/Places That Use Flat Glass
Arts and craft supplies
Basketball hoop manufacturers
Beauty supply designers/builders
Building maintenance companies
Colleges and universities
Disaster recovery companies
Energy savings contractors
Fire door manufacturers
Fireplace screen companies
Freezer case manufacturers
Garage door manufacturers
Heavy equipment dealers
Heavy equipment repairers
Hockey rink builders
Lighting fixture manufacturers
Martial arts studios
Noise reduction builders
Real estate management
Refrigeration case manufacturers
Restaurant designers and builders
Screen and storm window repairing
Shower door installers
Stained glass designers
Stained glass repairs
Storm window manufacturers
Storm window repairing
Swimming pool enclosures
Theatre design and sets
Trade show display builders
Can you add any categories to this list?
Please drop me a note at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Paul Bieber has 30 years in the glass industry,
including 21 years as the executive vice president of Floral Glass in
Hauppauge, N.Y., from which he retired in 2005.
© Copyright 2011 Key Communications Inc. All rights reserved.
No reproduction of any type without expressed written permission.