Note: I’m writing this on my laptop at Starbucks on Sunday, February 26. It’s about 8:40 a.m.
Seattle’s Best Construction, Inc. came to Pathmark Digital asking us to evaluate whether there was an effective alternative to the $15,000 cost of exhibiting at the Seattle Home Show. The show runs for nine days and with a day for set-up and another for tear-down and would require 250 man-hours to staff the show.
Over the last seven years they had booked a total of 17 projects (an average of 2.4 per year) from leads generated at the show. They learned through the Builders Association that 2+ projects was typical for similar companies exhibiting at the show. The $15K was not the concern; it was the disruption to current projects.
I said, “Give me half the $15K budget, skip the show, stay on your job sites, and let me see what I can do.” Paul didn’t blink. He took a curled blank check from his wallet, signed it, and told me to fill out the rest.
I GEOFENCED THE HOME SHOW
I had Aaron from ReachLocal geofence the Century Link Event Center from February 18-26 for me. Every mobile device that entered that show was fed a cookie that would deliver an SBC remodeling offer of a free quote, and $500 off or a free kitchen counter upgrade.
Everyone that had self-qualified by attending the Home Show was presented that offer through the Google, Bing, Yahoo and Facebook ad networks with an estimated frequency of six. We also pushed the offer out in real-time through our Pathmark Listings Powered by Yext dashboard.
THE CLIENT CALLS SOUNDING DISTRESSED
On Sunday, February 26 Paul called my mobile phone at 7:10 a.m. while I was on the treadmill. It was the last day of the Home Show. Was he drowning in remorse for not having attended? I didn’t think so.
He asked to meet at the Redmond Way Starbucks. I arrived right at 8, still in sweats and Seahawks hoodie. Paul was already there, looking exhausted, staring blankly at a bottle of Evolution Fresh orange juice.
Paul and his wife Michaela immigrated to the United States in 2006 from Romania in search of the American dream. They became proud U.S. citizens two year later, but while Michaela is now fluent, English remains Paul second language. Still, his message was clear. “Gary, whatever you did, turn off please. We have now work for two years.”
In the last eight days he had worked ten hours a day, driven south to Tacoma and north to Everett writing total of 42 estimates, just over 5 per day. He told me there had been entire months when he doesn’t write five estimates. He had 24 signed contracts and 19 deposit checks in a SpongeBob SquarePants folder he had borrowed from his daughter. He has six more appointments today and Monday.
SPONGEBOB SQUAREPANTS FOLDER FULL OF SIGNED ESTIMATES AND DEPOSIT CHECKS
I opened my laptop, logged into my dashboard and removed his offer. Paul looked genuinely relieved. I called Aaron and caught him en route to the golf course. I had him lower the geofence around the Home Show. Aaron said the show isn’t over yet. I said, “Yup, and there are guys in polo shirts there standing on sore feet. My guy’s feet are probably sore too but he has a folder full of signed deals. Aaron chuckled, “The Fuj strikes again. Gets his client all the Glengarry leads.”
I said to Paul, “Thank you for trusting me. Are you ready for a website?” He took a curled blank check from his wallet, signed it, and told me to fill out the rest.
Postscript: Of the six subsequent appointments he received four commitments bringing the total to 28 in 10 days. Lead acquisition cost 125.00 each. 60% close rate. Average project $38,244.