R.J. Patel, Sharon Tinberg, and Bruce Vance on proof, process, people

A one-time customer is good, a recurring customer is better, but when you have a client that brings your company revenue for decades, this is the best kind of all. At the ARCSI Cleaning Convention last year in Chicago, residential cleaning rockstars R.J. Patel of Prestigious Cleaning Team, Sharon Tinberg of Rags to Riches, and Bruce Vance of Town and Country Cleaning and ISE gave a presentation entitled “Secrets to a Lifetime Client: Proof-Process-People.” Here is a recap.

Customer Lifetime Value

Why do clients leave?

  • 1% pass away
  • 3% move
  • 14% lured away by a competitor
  • 14% turned away because of dissatisfaction with the product or service.
  • 68% leave because of poor attitude or indifference on the part of the service provider’s staff

We have influence over 96% of why the client leaves us or decides to stay with us.

Proof, Process, People

The secret to keeping a lifetime client is in the proof, the process, and the people. Identify best practices and relate to what they really mean. After that, it’s all about the execution. You tell your clients exactly what you will do. By communicating clearly what is supposed to happen, you set reasonable expectations. This is part of your process.

Indifference comes from your employees not knowing what services your company is going to and/or the client not knowing what you will deliver. It’s important to provide a written Scope of Work to the client at the confirmation of the job. Include exactly everything you will do. It is understood that you will deliver what you promise. Have a clear understanding between your client and your team/staff. This is critical to having a repeat customer.

“Care, custody, and control” is an insurance term that means that the project that was being worked on at the time was damaged within your care. It is not covered under liability insurance. If it is an accident, it will be covered. You can get insurance to cover this, but you’ll need to talk to your insurance agent about it to find the right coverage to protect your team/staff. If your insurance company doesn’t understand what you’re talking about, find a new agent. Do not admit fault when talking to the agent.

How your people look is important. If your team looks professional, does professional work, and uses professional tools that are clean, your company will come across as professional.


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