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A Service Story

May 16, 2024
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Turbo-charge Summer HVAC Profits

May 8, 2024
Don't jump at every new scheme. Analyze call data. Give your 'big hitters' every opportunity you can.

French critic/journalist/novelist Jean-Baptiste Alphonse Karr coined the phrase “the more things change, the more they stay the same,” when he was writing about the nature of existence.  When it comes to maximizing your HVAC business profits this summer, that statement has never been truer.

Consumers are in a “tion” mindset, as in inflation, recession, and election. Regardless of politics or personal views, the “tions” are tugging at the subconscious of the client. Additionally, we’re squarely in a REPAIR ECONOMY when it comes to the products and services we offer, compounded by the fact that HVAC is a “grudge purchase”, meaning if they don’t HAVE to buy it, they don’t WANT to.

Slow it Down a Bit

First things first, don’t get burned by the "Shiny Object Syndrome" and be chasing every new idea, looking for a silver bullet, or a ge- rich-quick scheme. If you want to make money, you’ve got to do the work and do it consistently. That said, there are a few profit enhancers that can powerfully impact your profits.

Let's Go to the Phones!

Analyze your call data. Listen to calls, go sit in the call center, shadow the CSRs, whatever it takes. You’re paying more than ever to get the phone to ring, so you need to ensure that you’re converting calls into visits and ideally, to sales. If there’s hurdles or friction in the CSR process, you need to solve it before you waste too many calls.

TRUTH: When someone calls and doesn’t book, you may never hear from them again.

Best, Better, Good

Prioritize your calls. Not all calls are created equal, so you need to identify the best money opportunities and move those to the front of the line. Think about calls as dollar signs; one $ is less of a priority than $$$$. This will require making an easy-to-follow grid to empower CSRs and dispatchers. It will mean considering no time windows for appointments. It will definitely result in having to reschedule some folks.

Prioritize your techs. Think of it like a batting average. Look at who converts the best and for the most on which types of calls, then put them in a position to “get a hit”. Forget "windshield time" or other outdated rules.

Favor Your Big Hitters 

Prioritize your techs. Think of it like a batting average. Look at who converts the best and for the most on which types of calls, then put them in a position to “get a hit”. Forget "windshield time" or other outdated rules. Focus on "best tech to best opportunity" even if that means getting to a call a little later to ensure the right tech gets there. Then, manage that tech call-by-call to optimize results.

Love the One You're With

Love the one you’re with. Slow down, follow a clearly defined process, and make it all about the customer. You do this every day, the client does not. Make sure they get the full customer experience from your company every time. Running less calls better translates into higher efficiency and more profits. Don’t burn calls by rushing techs on and off jobs. Don’t burn calls by overloading techs, so they get in-and-out too quickly. Slow down to boost profits.

Other tactics exist. But remember: culture consistently crushes strategy. Establish a culture of "WOWing" every customer one at a time. You’ll be glad you did.

CB Hall of Fame member Tom Casey, Jr. is  the "Been There, Done That" Mentor for True Legends Consulting, Ponte Verdra, FL. He can be reached at [email protected]

Add-Ons, Upgrades & COMMUNICATION

by Aaron Husak

Offering products that complement HVAC system replacements can increase your profit margins. Since you're already on the job site and have invested in acquiring the customer, it makes sense to maximize your revenue potential. Here are some upgrade suggestions:

  1. Attic Insulation: If you don't provide insulation services, partner with an insulation company to offer upgrades or replacements. Removing existing insulation if it's compressed, water-damaged, or infested with rodents can improve energy efficiency. Air-seal the attic floor and install new insulation properly to enhance the system's performance.
  2. Air Filtration Products: Upgrading the customer's filtration system to a 4-in. media will enhance indoor air quality and protect the HVAC equipment. Communicate the cost of replacement filters for the specific system you're using. to ensure transparency.
  3. Return Upgrades: Evaluate the capacity of the existing return duct to provide adequate airflow for the air conditioning system. Offer to increase the return duct and return grille or add a second return, especially for systems rated at 4 or 5 tons.
  4. Register Upgrades: Replace existing registers with new high-flow registers to improve air distribution and aesthetics.
  5. Fight for 5-Star Reviews! Positive online reviews are crucial for attracting new customers. Here are strategies to encourage and respond to reviews:
  6. Automated Review Requests: Utilize software that automatically solicits customer feedback upon job completion. Set up automated follow-ups at 24 and 72 hours to remind customers to leave a review.
  7. Monitoring and Engagement: Ensure the review request system is working correctly and monitor the results regularly. Respond promptly to both positive and negative reviews to demonstrate your commitment to customer satisfaction.
  8. Establish direct contact with the owner: Include contact information on invoices, encouraging customers to reach out directly  to the owner if they're not completely satisfied.
    Address concerns and resolve issues proactively to prevent negative reviews.

    Aaron Husak is owner and CEO of Balance Comfort, Fresno, Calif., and a member of the CB Influencers Class of 2024.