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How to deal with references?

Discussion in 'Introduce Yourself to the Community' started by nick4634, Nov 26, 2012.

  1. nick4634

    nick4634 Member
    Messages: 35

    As I'm growing my business and adding new residentials, I've been having potential customers ask for references, which isn't a problem as all my current customers are always happy with the job I do. But I don't want to have my current customers bothered with phone calls from prospects and possibly upset them.
    Should I call up my current customers and ask them if its ok to have people call them, which seems like it would bother them even more?
    How do you guys handle this?
    Thanks for any help
  2. grandview

    grandview PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 14,609

    Ask your customers for a referral letter and keep them in your file and make copies when needed.
  3. BC Handyman

    BC Handyman PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,943

    yes, thats the way to do it, good luck this year

    REAPER 2000 Club Member
    from 60050
    Messages: 2,230

    Give them your wifes and your moms phone #.

    You could use 2 phones and give them a 3rd # as well.
  5. nick4634

    nick4634 Member
    Messages: 35

    haha I'm only 18 so no wife but I was thinking of giving them my mom and grandmas phone number since I do plow both their driveways
  6. ringahding1

    ringahding1 Senior Member
    Messages: 264

    Do you have a website? On our website we have a testimonial page with REAL testimonials. If you give references to potential clients, make sure they are the ones on that page....2 - Birds and you look professional!

    I do agree, ask current customers if it is OKAY...if you have any good commercial account connections...HUGE plus!
  7. alldayrj

    alldayrj PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,108

    I do online testimonials but on the jobs where people are thrilled i ask if they can give me a quick blurb to put on a referral sheet and may i give out their info to potentials. They always say yes.
  8. birddseedd

    birddseedd PlowSite Veteran
    Messages: 3,516

    customers that ask me for referals are annoying. they are typicialy teh snoody types that are only going to go with you if you lowball the price anyway.

    in my experience
  9. grandview

    grandview PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 14,609

    if I had your type of customers,I'd quit plowing.
  10. birddseedd

    birddseedd PlowSite Veteran
    Messages: 3,516

    o_O you dont even know who my customers are...
  11. nick4634

    nick4634 Member
    Messages: 35

    Its funny you say that, I have 15 residentials so far and have probably given quotes to 20+. So far nobody has asked for referrals and I haven't lost any customers from last year. This lady has a very nice lawn with a drive that is already tough to plow due to rock walls everywhere that you would normally push the snow and while I'm not the best at reading people, I can tell she wants top service for the lowest price and will haggle over everything. I don't want to do the job for free but I also don't want to deal with headaches of a nit picker when my current customers are all great
  12. birddseedd

    birddseedd PlowSite Veteran
    Messages: 3,516

    I woudl still take it. but then again im desperate. its nice when you have the cash flow to pick and chose out the bad customers. some guys on here wont do anything but a zero tolerance. i think that's kinda extreme. but i want to be more than self employed.
  13. Mr.Markus

    Mr.Markus PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,783

    It's not just about referrals. It's getting creative too. I'm very small town, most people know my truck(s).
    I have some older customers who are just head over heels for what I do for them and always ask "What can we do to thank you.?" I always suggest something free, a thank you letter in the local paper.