Every now and then you'll reach that point.
This was a letter I wrote on one of those days. Maybe a tad on the aggressive side.... but I felt so much better afterwards. Needless to say I didn't hear back and I didn't keep this customer.
YES but in a scaled down version with a slightly softer approach - I've put a collection together of customer response letters HERE that you can use in your own business.
Warning: Just in case I offend anyone I'm letting you know in advance there are non politically correct statements and words on this page!
(Email written to a Plumbing Customer - most likely he was an engineer - they seem to be the biggest complainers...no idea why!)
Wow, if a professional tradesman dares to charge professional fees for his work he is called a rip off!
It seems we make easy targets to stick the boot in, and all because some tradespeople like to run real businesses and not just as a man and his tools working out of his mum’s garage.
Some tradespeople even have the nerve to employ people who work in real offices using the latest in phone systems, job dispatching, satellite vehicle tracking and computers so that our valued clients can receive REAL service at a time that’s CONVENIENT to them.
Sometimes it really feels like tradespeople are dammed if they do and damned if they don’t. Every BBQ or dinner party you attend someone has a story of the dodgy backyard or part-time tradesperson who turns up late or not at all, or that they damaged property or left a large mess to be cleaned up by the client after the job was done.
And then there’s the price!
Everyone wants to complain about how much they paid for such a simple job:
1) if it was so simple why didn’t they do the job themselves instead of calling a professional in the 1st place.
2) everything’s expensive these days, let’s face it a tank of fuel is close to $100 dollars.
3) everything is relatively simple when you know what you’re doing and have the right tools for the job, training and experience to go with it.
And then there’s the professional multiple service truck type business that may charge 2 or 3 times the price of the backyard operation and gives professional service BUT ends up being called a rip-off.
I mean afterall, how dare a real business charge more than a backyard operation, that’s outrageous I hear you say.
Has it ever occurred to anybody that it may actually cost 2 to 3 times more to operate a professional service business than a backyard operation?
No, you seem to think we are all painted with the same brush (a plumber is a plumber).
How can you possibly justify charging more than Joe Blow backyard plumber down the road?
Different types of service are a match to different types of clients.
If you want to save money on the cost of a plumber that’s fine, but don’t whinge and whine when they turn up late, make a mess of your house and/or give you a discount for paying with cash and you are not given a receipt. Oh and to add to that, don’t get upset when they don’t return your calls when the job they did a bandage fix on, becomes another problem, because guess what - you have no warranty and no proof that the tradesperson was even at your house. But on the flip side there are plenty of clients who don’t want the no frills type service and are willing to pay professional fees for a professional type service that supplies guaranteed on time service, uses boot covers and floor covers to protect your home. Your repairs are taken care of by a uniformed, polite and well trained technician and you’re given a real receipt and warranty on completion of the work.
I believe you can’t be everything to every client, but I don’t market my company to look like a backyard operation.
Things like training, amenities, support staff, marketing, accounting fees, legal fees, memberships ETC, ETC, ETC.
A nurse may be paid $25 per hour but they may cost the hospital system $400 an hr to actually employ them.
Ps: Unless you are prepared to take the time to visit my office so I can personally show you what happens from the time you call our office to the time the job is closed off in the accounting package, please stop comparing backyard plumbers to a professional company - you’re trying to compare apples to banana’s.
It’s like comparing a $3.00 fast food hamburger to a $16 café style burger, they may both be classed as burgers but they are certainly NOT the same (and the choice is yours as to which you will eat.... No one is forcing you to buy either hamburger!)
PPS, please feel free to respond as I value your opinion.
So there you have it. My vent.
Feel free to use any of this in your own business... but if you want to get your hands on 5 of my best customer email responses, then be sure to check out the Customer Complaints Email Response Template Pack HERE.