Why Your Business Needs Systems in Place

When you start your own business, you’re the person who manages everything, taking on a variety of different tasks. In the beginning, you can likely keep everything organized in your head to keep tasks moving. But what needs to happen as you grow?

In a podcast conversation with Nick May of Walls By Design and The Business Brush podcast, we discuss the benefit of creating systems and the different phases of building processes.

As you start to bring in more work, you’ll need other people to take on some of the tasks you manage. Putting systems into play allows you to transfer some of the work to others.

Get Started

Check out the following steps for effectively setting up systems to increase your bandwidth.

  • Massive Action – In this step, you’re figuring out what you’re good at and exactly what you want to do.
  • Focus – Once you have an understanding of what you’ll be doing in your business, you’re able to start building your systems to create efficient processes.
  • Scale – Once you have systems in place, you can multiply what you’re doing to grow your business.

As you work through the process, you’ll be able to step back from some of the day-to-day tasks and keep your business running efficiently. Learn more on the PaintED Podcast, Building Processes that Allow You to Get Away.

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World Class Production and Operation Managers

On this episode of PaintED, we talk with production and operation managers from three different companies about everything from hiring and training, to team culture and quality assurance.

Our guest panelists include:

  • Bill Loepp from SPI in Denver, CO
  • Bill Curtindale from SKIS Painting in Renton, WA
  • Matt Orcino from SNL Painting in St. Louis, MO

The panel discussion with these gentlemen was a HUGE hit at the last EXPO in Savannah, GA, and we’re happy to announce that we plan on releasing podcasts every month in which production/operation managers in the top of their field talk shop.

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Building Rapport in Sales Negotiations

When there’s a lot of potential profit on the table, it can be difficult to know how to approach your proposals and sales negotiations. In a recent podcast conversation, Ian Siegner of Siegner & Company and Gina Koert of Shamrock Painting Inc. explained making sales is not always about the numbers. Success lies in building rapport and setting up systems to set your company apart.

The Development

First, determine what you can do with your bids that will make you stand out from other contractors. Answer questions your prospects didn’t even know they had and provide more information in a variety of areas. As you build out your proposals, you’ll spend a bit more time personalizing each one, but it will pay off in the long run.

To use this approach, include information specific to the prospect about their budget or schedule. This is your opportunity to make breakouts and personalize everything based on their needs. In return, the prospect will spend more time reading what you provided and the likelihood they’ll call you will increase.

Pitching the Bid

When you get to the sales meeting, it’s important to develop your own style of relating with prospective clients. Focus on being relational instead of contractual. You can lighten the mood of the conversation by meeting over lunch in a relaxed atmosphere. Then, you can jump into the numbers and run through your proposal.

If you’re doing commercial work, your prospects can relate to business topics, and you can leverage this to make conversation. Open up your meeting by chatting about things your businesses have in common– new technology, hiring employees, etc. This will break down the barrier and start the conversation.

Learn more about building rapport, being confident, knowing when to walk away and adding options in the recent PaintED podcast.

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Using the PDCA Logo

When it comes to reaching your potential customers, you want to let them know you are a trusted contractor. At PDCA, we are focused on helping contractors build a level of trust with customers. We help contractors increase their competitive edge by providing industry standards, a code of ethics, best practices and numerous educational resources.

One of the most popular resources for members is the PDCA logo. You have access to the logo as soon as you become a member of PDCA. Using the logo on a variety of resources is a visual representation of your commitment to excellence. Members are free to use the PDCA logo on their website, business cards, social media graphics, print collateral, t-shirts and more.

In addition to the logo, we recently created a brochure for PDCA members to share with their customers and potential customers. This brochure outlines what it means to be involved with PDCA and helps customers understand exactly what the PDCA logo means. Members can log in and download the brochure here.

We’re always working on new resources to help your business. Click here to view the full list of member benefits.


Not a PDCA member?

Join the top association for painting contractors and get exclusive access to all of our resources today.

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Getting Your Business to Show up on Google Maps

On this episode of PaintED, Ken Tucker of Changescape Web chats with us about how to get your business to show up on Google Maps. Hey, I know you’ve heard us talk about online marketing again and again, but it really is worth your time and attention. I mention it in the podcast, but when a white pages directory was recently dropped in front of my door, my kids played with it like it was some relic from the past that hardly made any sense to them. More and more people are searching for services online, and it’s only going to increase with the next generation of businesses and homeowners. Stay ahead of that curve, and take the advice of people like Ken who are willing to help you get started on building, at the very least, a solid online presence so people can find you.

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The Failure of Multitasking

As an entrepreneur, your brain is constantly spinning and thinking of new ideas. Each day, you’re faced with countless new ideas, but you might not know what to do next. In a recent podcast with Madeleine Macrae, a business growth strategist at MM Macrae Coaching and Consulting, we discussed ways to organize your ideas, take action and reach your goals.

Data Dump

The first step to take is to get the exciting ideas out of your head and onto paper. To keep yourself engaged, use the old-fashioned pen and paper. This allows you to edit as you go and truly focus on the content. When you’re doing this, always remember no idea is too small. Focus on organizing the content, and understand you may or may not be implementing the ideas.

Focus on One Goal

Next, it’s important to pick one goal to be the focus of your efforts. It’s a common myth that multitasking will help you be more productive. The truth is that multitasking is great for items you can check off a list, but you cannot effectively take on multiple goals. Clearly define what your main focus will be and how it will help grow your business.

The Process

Write your ONE goal on a fresh piece of paper, then make three columns. Label the columns with the following:

  • Hell Yes – ideas that will absolutely help you reach your goal
  • Hell No – ideas that will not contribute to reaching your goal
  • Maybe – ideas you do not know about.

Now, go back to your original ideas from the data dump step and place each one under a column based on how applicable it is to your main goal. Once you’re done, cross off the “hell no” and “maybe” column since you won’t be using these at this time. If it’s not clear to you that an idea will help reach your goal, don’t do it.

Ready to get your ideas into action? Hear more from Madeleine on the recent PaintED podcast and check out her website.

 

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7 Reasons Why Painters Should Use Google Ads

This is a guest blog post from PDCA Friend Sponsor, Changescape Web.

Running Google Ads can be a very important part of an overall digital marketing strategy. There are a lot of great reasons why painters should consider doing Google Ads.

How Painters Benefit From Google Ads

1. Get Immediate Results
So what do Google Ads really do? It comes down to the fact that Google ads can get immediate results. You can pay to get yourself at the top of Google. Now it is an ad – it’s not an organic search. When you have an immediate need to drive business, the way that you’re going to make that happen is by paying Google to run Google ads.

2. Control When You Get Leads
Painters have a big seasonality to their business across many parts of the country. One of the great things about doing Google Ads is that you can turn them on and off as needed. This can be based on season (exterior ads in the summer, interior in the winter), or if you develop a backlog and don’t need leads you can turn the Google Ads off.

3. Intention Oriented – Focused on Buying Decisions
You can really do a great job of focusing in on intention oriented activities. That means running ads targeted for very specific buying behaviors. Google is absolutely king when it comes to intention. When somebody is ready to make a purchase or ready to make a buying decision, Google organic search and Google paid ads are the most effective. Nothing is going to beat them. Facebook advertising is great, but it usually doesn’t perform anywhere near what a Google ad does when it comes to conversion when somebody is ready to make a purchase.

4. Google Ads Feed SEO
Here’s a really big missed opportunity that we see a lot of people not take advantage of. If you’re going to run Google ads, it has a really strong compliment to what your organic search ranking is and how it’s going to operate. You can learn a lot by running Google ads and incorporating what keyword phrases are used to fire the ads and getting the results. Then, make sure you are rolling those keyword phrases into your organic search engine optimization strategy.

There’s not any specific hard evidence that doing Google ads in combination with your organic SEO is going to help your organic SEO. I tend to think that it can only help if your ads are really well done and it might possibly hurt if your ads aren’t, but there is no confirmation from Google about this.

Regardless, the keyword phrase and analytics data that you get from doing Google Ads provide important insights into your SEO strategy.

5. Inexpensive Way to Test Messaging
Another overlooked aspect of Google Ads is that it provides a relatively inexpensive way to test your messaging. By looking at the performance of your ad copy and your ad headlines, you can see what messaging is working and driving the best results. Running multiple ad variations to test ad headlines and ad copy is an important feature of Google Ads. It can also help drive down the cost per click while improving conversion – leads from phone calls, text message, or form fills to your business.

6. Dominate the Search Results Page
Google Ads gives you the ability to round out dominance on the search results page. You can have your ad show up at the top of the page. Then you can show up on the Google Map results and in the organic listings. When a searcher sees a painter in the ads, the Google Map and in the organic listings on the first page, it conveys a massive amount of trust to the searcher.

7. Supplement Organic Listings
If you are not showing up on Google Maps or in the organic listings, running ads gives you the opportunity to show up for search phrases where you don’t show up organically. Even if your organic ranking is strong, there are probably some searches that you want to be found for but don’t rank for, so running Google Ads can bridge that gap.

Getting Started With Google Ads

If you would like to learn more about Google Ads for Painters, check out a recent webinar we did which you can watch at your convenience. We cover:

  • Understanding Google Ads (formerly Google AdWords)
  • How to use Google Ads
  • Why you should consider using Google Ads
  • How Google Ads compliments organic SEO
  • Why most Google Ad campaigns fall short
  • How to set the right Google Ads budget

Are you doing Google Ads? Please share your insights with us!

Photo by Vojtech Okenka from Pexels

 

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