Golf shoes and bag on the garage floor.

Best Sales Practices: Finding Common Ground

Every professional painting contractor has his or her own methods for winning the job and closing the sale. For Terry Begue, owner of Begue Painting of Hartville, Ohio, finding common ground with prospective customers is key.

Look before you quote

Keep your eyes open when you arrive for your first estimate, Begue says.

“If the garage door is open, I look inside for golf clubs or kids’ toys or a croquet set, and it gives me a little clue,” Begue says. “When I go into the house, I look for pictures on the wall for family or a workout area. I find out what’s important to them, and I make sure that they know that’s important to me.”

Making the connection

There are many ways to make a connection, Begue says.

“If they have a swing set in the backyard, I love talking a little bit about my kids,” he says. “If they have a workout room, I like to let them know I wish I had more time to work out.”

“It’s showing them that you’re like them,” he adds. “You’re not some shyster trying to bilk them out of the kids’ college fund, you’re just a regular guy or a regular gal providing a needed service.”

Bottom line: Be like your customers

If you happen to be from the same town, that can also be used to make a connection.

“A lot of times that gets me hired alone, just the fact that we live in the same area or the same neighborhood,” Begue says. “Finding common ground is powerful because people tend to want to work around people that are more like them.”

Related story

Read more of Terry’s sales and marketing tips for your painting company in his story: 7 Ways to Communicate “I’m a Professional” … Without Bragging or Turning Off Customers