Following Up on Painting Estimates Makes Painters More Money Per Hour


Hey, It’s Brandon Lewis with Painter’s Weekly. I’m coming to you from the road in Dallas, Texas, where I’m putting on a regional training for a corporate client, helping their owners learn how to increase their closing rates and to raise their profit margins. One essential element of a powerful sales process is follow-up. First, good follow-up cannot make up for a poor sales process. Meaning if you’re not pre-positioning, if you’re not presenting using overviews, and diagnostic surveys, and gifting, and audits, and post-positioning packets, etc., you’re still going to have a weak sales process. But if all that’s in place, good follow-up makes a huge difference.

I hear owners consistently tell me, “Brandon, I just don’t have time to do follow-up, I’m too busy,” or, “I don’t want to follow up because I feel like I’m being a pressure salesperson, I’m using high-pressure sales tactics.” Well, I’m here to tell you, that just isn’t the case. Number one, when you follow up on a $3,000 average transaction size, which is probably what your sale’s average size is in painting services, you’re selling a major purchase. Major purchases take longer to close, and if you stop following up after a few weeks, you’re going to miss the lion’s share. But more importantly, I want to tell you what it really costs when you say that you’re too busy to follow up.

So let’s look at some numbers, okay? And the first thing is, when you go out to do an estimate, you’re probably going to spend about an hour and a half. You’re going to have to drive there, spend some time with the client, and drive back if you’re doing a really good, thorough presentation. And let’s go back to that number again. Let’s say that your average job size is $3,000 and your average close rate is 40%. And let’s say that you have an on-site close rate of 10%, meaning that of the 40%, one out of four actually signs right there on-site. What that means is, for every hour you spend doing an estimate, you are generating about $300 in gross sales. $300. That’s it.

That means you’re only generating, per hour, in the on-site time, $200 per hour in sales, because so many of them close after, right? We know this. Compare that to follow-up. Let’s say that you have 35 open estimates, and that in an hour and a half of following up using our four-point follow-up process — with our templated emails, texts, phone scripts, and also, our mail pieces — that you can get two jobs to close just by following up. That generates, essentially, $6,000 in sales, okay? That means that you have just closed $4,000 per hour in sales, versus the $200 that you close when you’re following up just going after estimates for the first visit.

See, most owners have never taken the time to calculate just how much money, how many sales are generated in follow-up, so I’m here to tell you that hour per hour, you make more money following up than you actually make, in most cases, writing estimates. Now, you have to do one to be able to do the other, and follow-up cannot solve or make up for a poor selling process. But I’m here to tell you that if you will take the time to follow up thoroughly, and if you will let your follow-up coincide with the sales cycle, you will end up making a lot more money in this business. I’m Brandon Lewis with Painter’s Weekly, where we’re empowering painting contractors to become entrepreneurs. I hope to see you next time. How did we do? If you rate this transcript 3 or below, this agent will not work on your future orders