Industry Snapshots: the d5R Dish
random gleanings from under the remodeling radar
Angie, meet Randy
Have you heard about Randy's List? In an email exchange yesterday, a deep South remodeler described it as "the Angie's List for contractors!"
d5R: "I've heard remodelers wish for something like this for years, and I know that other sites have tried (and failed). In a nutshell, how could you see this helping your business?"
Remodeler: "I have had clients that did not pay and then found out later from my friends that they also lost dollars with the same guy. I could have avoided him.
"I had another client that did not pay and found out that he was an attorney and did this to every contractor that worked in the condo complex because the legal fees were inexpensive to him (most workmen never sued to collect).
"I have a client that had a 17-year-old son who put a bad report in about us online and when confronted they refused to follow up and remove it because 'it was silly and didn't really matter' (they did not consider how they would feel in the same situation)....
"The site is also used to praise your clients and 70% of the reporting is for good purposes. One fellow lets his clients know that they are receiving a great rating on Randy's List. I have now signed up."
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Show him the money
Email from a high-end Midwestern remodeler:
"I really do like what I do, but when I drive around I have the palpable sense that there just isn't any money in the economy. I do have a few clients with resources but they need a break now and again -- aren't you hearing that same thing from your other contacts -- that people just don't have any extra money to spend right now? And you can include DC in an election year -- this might be the only time when people there hesitate to spend as they can't be sure that they'll still be there next year. I think."
What do you think, d5R readers? Feel free to comment below
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Costs are rising. So what's all this about "deals"?
Email from another remodeler:
"We have a lot of design agreements and contracts out there and if we had all that work we could bring back some employees we had to lay off. However, people want pricing deals and we are not a pricing deal. Our products, our trades and their materials -- everything for us is skyrocketing! We get notices of price increases every day. So closing sales takes a while -- sometimes up to a year."
True for you as well, d5R readers?
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How'd it work out?
In this post from Sunday, Seth Godin might have been speaking to remodelers:
"It turns out that the light fixtures a builder used in my kitchen a few years ago have all begun to fail. One by one, each one stops working.
"My guess is that he has no idea, and continues to confidently install these fixtures, his go-to choice for kitchen lighting. And why not? He doesn't know that they only have a relatively short life. He doesn't know because he didn't ask.
"Doctors and consultants and builders are often hesitant to ask about how something worked long after the work is done. It feels like nothing but a chance to hear a complaint.
"It's not. It's a chance to show that you care. And a chance to learn how to get even better at what you do."
Reach out to your clients, remodelers. Ask them how things have worked out.
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Also overheard -- remodelers on Twitter
Michigan remodeler: "Slowest two months I've ever had, to be honest. Gave me time to regroup and focus on what I need to do. Male escort is an option."
Virginia remodeler, on reports of declining jobless rates: "I'm still getting resumes and job apps for position I ran 4 months ago...Not so good as published"
Maryland remodeler, on pro photography: "Worth every penny of the additional expense -- they sell and show case our work every time and everywhere we use them!"
Georgia remodeler, on Pinterest: "Friends...help us! We ALMOST have 100 followers on Pinterest. Click the link and follow us please!!!! ...""
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Digital crack for women
Speaking of Pinterest, the "virtual pinboard" has quickly become a huge influencer for women consumers, who happen to make most remodeling decisions. Check out this article in yesterday's Washington Post. Wrote Petula Dvorak: "Pinterest is the hottest new social-networking tool. And it’s digital crack for women."
"Lots and lots of hype," according to this report, which said users spend more time on Pinterest than on LinkedIn and Google+ combined. "But is it deserved?"
What do remodelers (and other marketers) need to know about Pinterest? Here you go.
Got a Pinterest story to share? Post it below, or email leah@daily5REMODEL.com.
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