Part 1 of two articles. (Read Part 2.) If you invested $25,000 in a media campaign or online promotion via pay per click and the results were dismal, you’d be irritated. Burned.

On the other hand, being someone with some experience in marketing, you might think: Nothing ventured, nothing gained. In marketing, you have to experiment and be open to new ideas.

The alternative is getting stuck with a handful of tried-and-true lead sources. That works fine until one or another of those sources starts to produce less. Think of the companies in this industry that clung to telemarketing until the bitter end.

Here’s a better way to invest that money to produce quality leads that are a sure bet. Put it into service work, especially handyman, i.e., low-cost home repairs.

Few home improvement companies bother to do this. On the other hand, companies in the HVAC and plumbing industries — superficially much like home improvement operations — find that by offering low-cost services such as duct cleaning or heating/air conditioning tune-ups, they’re first in line when it comes to big-ticket projects such as replacing the home’s furnace or air conditioning system.

All or Nothing

Home improvement companies often want all or nothing when it comes to generating new business. Either sell the whole project or move on to the next lead.

But what would happen, say, if your company, that carries gutters and gutter protection, offered a gutter cleaning service at minimal cost to past customers or to anyone else? Think of how easy it would be to canvass for a service like that. Place door hangers throughout a neighborhood and your phone would ring an hour later. And what if you did more than that? Such as offering, for instance, a full range of home repair services? If you already have a service department, adding a handyman service, or division, isn’t difficult. If your service tech is already booked solid, you may have to acquire an individual who specifically handles handyman-related calls.

The important thing is to start with one key individual who can deliver the services you’re offering, whether it’s carpentry or gutter cleaning or anything.

You could also subcontract those services. But if the workload is there, it makes sense to have a full-time person on your staff. And having that person be an employee means that you’re not worrying about the subcontractor going back and doing the bigger job on his own. —Sales and marketing consultant Tony Hoty has been a home improvement company salesperson and owner. Visit his website or reach him at or 888.447.3969.

More REPLACEMENT CONTRACTOR articles about maintenance services and lead gen:

Generate New Business: Home Maintenance Services Supply Your Best Leads, Part 2   Free Gutter Cleaning Gets Home Improvement Company New Business

Pain to Maintain? Deck maintenance services can be a good way of staying in touch with past clients and getting in touch with new ones

Changing the Lead Diet: Just like a healthy diet for your body, your company needs a healthy variety of leads