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Old 11-19-2007, 11:13 PM
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Pro-Scapes Pro-Scapes is offline
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Originally Posted by Chris J View Post
I guess I must be drawing too much attention to myself with my truck graphics and the sort. I get more of these calls than I care to, but I usually don't rule anyone out until I have had the chance to meet with them and share my presentation. Maybe one day I'll figure it out like you guys have, and somehow get only the people that are going to hire me to call. I must be too optimistic at times. I sometimes believe I could sell ice to an Eskimo...

I have found out more than once prequalifying via demographics is a no no. We have done over 50 fixtures for some clients you guys would never market to. Take the calls as they come Chris. It keeps your name out there. At least the phone is ringing. In the last 3 days we have gotten more inquiries than we have in the last 3 months.
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Old 11-19-2007, 11:53 PM
pete scalia pete scalia is offline
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Location: Long Island, New York
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Originally Posted by James Solecki - INTEGRA View Post
Joey... I just checked my 'close ratio' for 2007.... It was 95%. As for making more money, well I do just fine thanks.
To steal a line from one of my favorite Tv programs in the 70's- Get Smart

I find that very hard to believe.
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Old 11-20-2007, 02:44 AM
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sprinkler guy sprinkler guy is offline
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Originally Posted by JoeyD View Post
A great demo technique is to set the kit up on Thursday night or Friday night then leave it for the weekend. This way the neighbors will see it, maybe guests will see it, and the homeowners get a chance to soak it up. I encourage them to feel free to move the ligths around just to get them involved. Obviously you always want to time the demo around the gardner or landscaper coming by to do maintenenace as there will be some wiring exposed.

Joey D.

Something I've done couple of times, back when I did demos, was leave the lights up for 3 nights, then come back in the middle of the day and remove everything. Don't tell the client that they were going to be removed, just come and take them out. The minute they get home you'll get a phone call asking when the lights can be put back in.

I haven't needed to do a demo for the last year or so, but I will get right back out there with the old kit the minute work starts to slow down.

For you newer guys, Joey is offering a great resource. Talk with your local supplier, or manufacturers sales rep about helping you with a demo or two. These guys can offer you many years of experience to help get the ball rolling. Some suplliers might even have a demo kit that they rent out. This can help minimize some of your early costs as you grow your business.
Sean Billante
Southern California Landscape Lighting
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Old 11-20-2007, 07:58 AM
Mike M Mike M is offline
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The gears have been spinning since you guys started talking about multiple day demo's. I'm putting a portable weather-tight kit together. Thanks for the tips.
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Old 11-20-2007, 10:05 AM
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JoeyD JoeyD is offline
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Mike you dont need to worry about putting the kit togeather. My kit is exactly that. The units take the weather abuse and when they start to show signs of failure at the quick connects I can supply more or refurbish the unit. Mind you this will take years to happen. You can customize the kit for the fixtures you want but my Demo Kit is a great starting point. It is everything you need. I will start a thread over in my Unique forum that posts the flyer. I will also try and make a video of the demo kit so you guys can better see how it works.

Our sales reps have demo kits that they can loan and assist with setting up demos.

Last edited by JoeyD; 11-20-2007 at 10:13 AM.
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Old 11-20-2007, 10:25 AM
irrig8r irrig8r is offline
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Originally Posted by pete scalia View Post
To steal a line from one of my favorite Tv programs in the 70's- Get Smart

I find that very hard to believe.
Pete, knowing James as I do, he's not really one to boast or inflate the truth... I take what he says at face value...

And so what if it was only 90%?

I get the feeling that he is well prepared for any potential sales opportunity that comes his way. He does his homework, prequalifies his prospects in some fashion, and most of his work is from referrals...

James has a passion for this stuff that might even surpass that of our old buddy Mike G.
Landscaper. Irrigator. Illuminator. Music lover. Coffee drinker.
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Old 11-20-2007, 11:20 AM
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JoeyD JoeyD is offline
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Old 11-20-2007, 11:29 AM
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INTEGRA Bespoke Lighting INTEGRA Bespoke Lighting is offline
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Location: Muskoka, Ontario, Canada
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You gotta have PASSION for what you do man! Without it you are just another tin-man selling your wares in a cluttered marketplace.

An aside: Earlier this year my Wife and I were hosting some clients to a rather special dining experience.... I had stepped away from the table for a few minutes to speak with another client who was there... as I returned to the room and towards our table, Our guest (the Mrs.) leaned over to my Wife, touched her arm and whispered into her ear: "You just have to love the passion that James brings into the room."

It's all about the Passion!

Do you find yourself discretely walking around your friends homes during parties adjusting their dimmers, lights, lamps, shades? Then you just might have the passion.

Do you find yourself re-aiming light fixtures at public monuments? Then you might have the passion.

Have a GREAT day!
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James Solecki
INTEGRA ~ Bespoke Lighting Systems ®
JSLDesign Inc.

Affiliations: IESNA, IALD, IDA LO, MBA
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Old 11-20-2007, 11:37 AM
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JoeyD JoeyD is offline
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James, you are unbelievable!

What is that a Canadian Stop Sign??

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Old 11-20-2007, 07:18 PM
bmwsmity bmwsmity is online now
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Location: SW Ohio
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Originally Posted by Chris J View Post
I would suggest keeping a demo kit on hand just in case. I'd try to sell them without the demo, but If I were you I'd probably offer to come back with the demo if I didn't close the deal on the first go-round. All in all, I do believe the customer feels they are getting more if you give them a demonstration. And I do know this much: when I did demonstrations, I stole jobs from other contractors on a daily basis (even when their price was much, much lower).
It's funny. I offer free demos online and in the yellow pages, but I've never had anyone ask for one.

Also, to date I've only lost one job to another contractor...any other estimates that didn't get sold were due to lack of financial ability on the customer's part.

Even the best demo can't sell someone that doesn't have the money, so that's wasted time.

In the case of the one job I lost to another contractor, it was because the other contractor came up with the idea of lighting the driveway from the trees, and I'm not gonna set up demo lights in trees, especially when that design idea wasn't prudent to begin with - the contractor was just a pure salesman.

I can see how a demo MAY sell someone on more lights, but I'm still leaning toward sticking with my current approach.

I should also add that I take good pics of all of my work, so I have a strong portfolio that usually hits all the design elements that the customer wants to see beforehand.

With that said, one thing I do believe in is showing customers the fixtures I will use in person. Nothing quite illustrates the quality of my products like personally handing a customer a Malibu accent and then a Unique solid brass accent.

Thanks for everyone's input thus far. Much appreciated.
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