You have control over your home service business and are living the entrepreneurial dream. The only thing that can make it better is making your day-to-day easier. When things are easier, you have more control. When you have more control, your business is healthier and can grow faster. This is where CRMs and lead management come into play.
You might not have talked about CRM software (Client Relationship Management Software) or sales pipelines very much during trade school. But, it’s definitely a business trade secret.
Whether you want to work from a private island, double or triple your revenue, or just want to take a vacation, a CRM is what’s going to get there.
In this article we’ll cover everything you need to know about CRMs, lead management, and how both can make your business and your life a little easier.
In this crash course you’ll learn:
What is a CRM?
CRM stands for Client Relationship Management software. A CRM is like a rolodex or an address book, but better.
It helps you track your customers’ contact information, their account history, your team’s work history, jobsite photos, PDF files, property details, manage your prospects, track materials used on each job, and other important notes you make to stay organized.
The difference between using a computer, a filing system, or pen and paper is that a CRM works like a database that your entire team can use in the office, in the field, or even on vacation. Everyone has access to the information they need to be successful.
What value does a CRM bring to your business?
A CRM helps you and your team manage your clients, leads, relationships, and communication. You can keep track of everything from client details to business goals.
Here’s how home service business entrepreneurs use their CRM to run a smoother business:
Improving business efficiency
Ryaan Tuttle launched his handyman business in 2017. He started using Jobber’s CRM right off the bat to help improve his workflow and manage his growing client list (which is now 300 clients and counting).
Ryaan asks his prospects to fill out a work request, which is automatically updated in Jobber.
He skips site visits and goes straight to sending his clients a detailed quote. A tech will show up to the jobsite with a to-do list, which is kept in Jobber’s CRM in the client’s account.
When they’re done the job, they hit “complete” in the Jobber app, which automatically sends an invoice to the client.
All this information is stored in Jobber, so his team can look up a client account, view what work has been completed, see if the invoice was paid, and check what materials were used for the project. His team never misses a beat if they have to return to the jobsite.
What I’m trying to do is be somewhere on an island, and all I’ll need is a wifi signal and my cell phone. It’s the rationale behind every move I make in this business.
–Ryaan Tuttle, Owner of Best Handyman Boston
Working with a team and offering great customer service
A growing team has its own set of challenges. If your team doesn’t all have access to your client information, then they might struggle on the jobsite.
Hal Denbar quickly learned this when he ditched pen and paper to modernize Patriot Pool and Spa.
“If you have ten people with ten communication lines then that’s so much one-on-one communication. A CRM makes it simpler: one person sends something to Jobber, and everyone knows about it,” Hal explains.
Without it, his team could have forgotten about small, but important, details like locking the back gate, minding the dog, moving the lawn furniture, or recording repair parts for specific client properties. “It’s so important for any company with any volume of customers to have that information on file.”
Techs on site can take pictures and notes, and put them in customer accounts. “If a customer calls in and asks a question, I can actually pull up a job, see a picture of it, understand exactly what they are talking about, and easily give them directions.”
Hal’s team finds a ton of use in their CRM because of how quickly and easily they can share information. Once a profile is built or edited, that information can reach 35 people instantly.
“If you have ten people with ten communication lines then that’s so much one-on-one communication. A CRM makes it simpler: one person sends something to Jobber, and everyone knows about it.”
––Hal Denbar, President of Patriot Pool and Spa.
Marketing to existing clients
Maintaining your existing client lists is one of the most cost effective sales and marketing strategies out there. Knowing who your top customers are and engaging them is extremely important for your business’ health. A CRM can help you with that.
If you’re getting ready for busy season, or just want to stay on top of your clients’ minds, then contacting your top customers with appointment booking reminders will go far.
Brannon and Mary Ann Fowler, owners of The Trash Can Cleaners use Jobber to market to their existing clients and even upsell additional services. This has grown easier than ever now that their CRM integrates with postcard and email marketing.
“We send out an email blast to our existing customers and remind them that we can wash their driveway, roof, fence, cars, etc. with the same equipment,” Brannon and Mary explain.
“It’s not unusual for us to book thousands of extra dollars in revenue with a pressure washing add-on. Our customers trust us and know we are consistent––it’s an easy sell. Because they are already set up in Jobber, it’s easy. Their credit card and all of their information is already on file.”
Want to know more about using your strongest and closest assets to grow your business? Get exclusive tips from Stan “Dirt Monkey” Genadek.
“It’s not unusual for us to book thousands of extra dollars in revenue with a pressure washing add-on.”
––Brannon and Mary Ann Fowler, owners of The Trash Can Cleaners
Managing cash flow and payments
Managing your clients is important, but understanding your cash flow is essential. Keeping track of invoice opens and payments is key, but that can be tough to do without a centralized system.
Andy Weins, owner of JDOG Junk Removal & Hauling Southeastern Wisconsin uses Jobber’s CRM to input and track client information easily, efficiently, and in a repeatable way across his entire team.
“It’s simple:” Andy explains, “create a client profile once. Your team can make notes and attach photos during or after appointments, and view invoice history so you know who has paid you and what invoices are overdue.”
Knowing client invoice history has helped Andy’s team communicate with customers in an informed and smooth way.
After each job visit is complete, Jobber reminds the team to send an invoice. Just a few clicks from the Jobber app and the invoice is sent to the client. This keeps the team on track, cash flow positive, and eliminates a lot of Andy’s back-end paperwork.
Looking for tips on cash flow? Read more about how the pros from the Jobber community do it.
“It came down to entering client information twice, three, or four times, versus only entering it once in one minute with Jobber’s CRM. Jobber was worth my time.”
––Andy Weins, owner of JDOG Junk Removal & Hauling Southeastern Wisconsin
What is lead management?
Simply put, lead management is the process or system you use to manage prospects. You can develop your own way of staying organized and informed about each and every lead so you know exactly how many times you’ve reached out, or how close they are to signing a contract.
The Value Lead Management Brings to Your Business
They key to managing clients is having clients, even if you have a few. If you can grow that client list by managing your prospects and leads, then you’re setting yourself up for success.
Keeping track of what buying stage your prospects are at is essential for closing deals and winning jobs.
If you forgot that you’ve called or emailed a lead after a site visit or a sending a quote, then you could run the risk of losing that job.
It’s pretty difficult to stay on the ball with all your prospects if they haven’t signed a contract yet (or paid you). But, those are some of the most important people to stay on top of.
Making mental notes or filling out a spreadsheet aren’t the most convenient options. Your best bet is lead management or sales funnel management software.
It sounds technical, but it’s really not, especially if it’s already part of your CRM.
Lead management helps you use your CRM for your sales goals. You can track your business goals and customer and lead communication efforts when everything is in one place.
Not quite sure how to perfect follow-up emails after you send a quote? We’ve got your back. Here are 38 tips on how to follow-up after a quote.
Using lead management you can:
- Identify different prospects at different stages of your deal
- Tag and filter your prospects and organize your leads by date, readiness to buy, and communication used to contact them
- Disqualify prospects who don’t answer, aren’t a good fit, or who you haven’t followed-up with in a while
How to Use Your CRM for Sales and Lead Management
By organizing your leads, you can have a better handle on your cash flow for your monthly and quarterly goals.
Keeping your lead list organized helps you strategize your prospect outreach.
That way you know which accounts are leads so you connect with the right people, or which prospects you should close so you meet your targets.
You could track all of this information in a spreadsheet, or manually input it into your CRM.
Another option is to use a CRM that does this for you automatically, like Jobber does.
For example, when you create a new entry on a client account or receive a new client appointment through Jobber’s online booking software, Jobber automatically tags the client as a “lead.”
Jobber only labels the account as a “client” when your client approves a quote or pays a deposit. Jobber also does this when you create a job for the client, or when you send them an invoice.
Alternatively you could manually add notes and tags on each client account in your CRM.
That way, you can see the amount of outreach you’ve completed for each prospect, and know what buying stage each lead is at. By doing this, you’re able to see which leads have been contacted, closed, won, or lost.
It’s up to you to decide how advanced you want your lead management to be in your CRM.
But, when you can identify the difference between leads and active clients easily, you’re able to make different decisions when you’re starting out your relationship or keeping in touch.
That way, you can get back leads faster than your competitors, and win the work in the short run.
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