Does this sound familiar to you?
“When they started, it was great. But over time, it’s like they just stopped caring. And now they’ve had so much turnover, I don’t even know who to call anymore.”
You hired a landscape company thinking it was going to be different this time. They talked a good game in the sales process, but now you’re just not feeling the love anymore.
We run into this problem all the time with prospective clients. You’ve been burned before, so your natural response is to be skeptical that we’ll be any different than the last landscape company (or the one before that... or the one before that). We understand. And you’re right to ask the question:
Six months down the road, when I’m not a new client anymore - when the sales guy has moved on to the next deal - am I still gonna be feeling the love from Yellowstone, or am I gonna be right back where I am today?
Here’s how we answer that:
Let’s start by acknowledging that there are a lot of reasons that a vendor-client partnership can go south: repeated service failures, personality conflicts, personnel changes, just to name a few.
But nothing is as damaging to a vendor-client partnership as when a vendor allows their client to stop feeling important.
You don’t get responses back from the vendor as quickly as you used to (or at all). Your weekly email updates stop. Your monthly property walks get rescheduled constantly. Routine preventative maintenance checks are replaced by frantic calls when something is broken.
As a client, you stop feeling important when your vendor stops communicating with you.
Because we understand that, this is how we handle our communication with our clients. We create weekly, monthly, and annual touchpoints to help measure how our clients feel about the services we’re performing for them over time.
Weekly. Every client is assigned a dedicated Account Manager. You’ll have their cell phone number and email, so you’ll always be able to reach them if you need anything. Every week your Account Manager and Branch Manager meet to discuss, in detail, everything that’s going on with your property. If there are any open issues, that’s when they’ll figure out how and when they’re going to fix them. Then they’ll relay the solution and the timeline to you. Some clients ask for formal reports each week, other prefer a short email on Friday afternoons. We tailor our communication methods to meet your schedule. What’s important is that you have the information you need. How we get that information to you is up to your personal preference.
Monthly. After the contract is signed, our salesperson doesn’t just shake your hand and run off to chase the next contract. For many clients, he or she will be in touch every month to check in and see how things are going. It might just be a phone call, a quick meeting in your office, or a lunch – whatever works best for your schedule. We want to make sure that our service teams are doing the things that were promised, and if we start to slip in any area, we want you to know that we’ll do all we can to make it right, as quickly as possible.
Annually. We send out a brief, but insightful survey to all of our clients every year. Our corporate Client Services team will send you a link to an online survey to measure how happy you are with our services. When all the responses are in, our company President and the entire Executive Team dedicate time to review every single response. If they see anything in your survey that tells them we’ve got an unhappy customer, they’ll be on the phone immediately with your Account Manager and their Branch Manager to see that it gets resolved.
So, if you currently find yourself not feeling appreciated by your current landscape contractor, start by defining a clear communication schedule. Bringing back that loving feeling may not be as simple as setting a recurring event on your calendar, but it’s a good start.
We began a recent post with the quote, “Consistently Communicate that you are Competent and you Care.” When your vendor starts their service philosophy from this mindset, it’s much easier to believe them when they say they’re going to be different than your last vendor, or the one before that.
If you’re ready for a competent, caring landscape partner, schedule a meeting with your local Yellowstone Landscape Professional. We’d love to meet you.