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Why You Should be Treating Metal as a Specialty Division

John Kenney Metal Subtrade
July 12, 2022 at 2:00 p.m.

MCS influencer John Kenney writes about what you need to keep in mind to be successful in your metal division. 

Roofing has always been a highly competitive trade, and the most successful contractors not only perform high-quality installs but also have been able to separate themselves from the rest of the pack. For several reasons, metal roofing and siding are excellent lines for a professional commercial and residential roofing contractor to provide for their clients. 

Branching out into the metal market will set you apart from the majority of the field that does not install metal or only dabbles in it from time to time. There are a few essential thoughts you need to keep in mind to be successful with metal division. 

Marketing, educating and selling clients 

Metal roofing and siding projects installed with quality and craftmanship stand out on your website and almost sell themselves. Begin to educate the homeowner or commercial buyer on the benefits of metals and why they should choose you to do their next project. A national study by EMA Group showed that more than 53% of respondents replied that they would use a contractor's website information to influence their buying decisions, and over 93% of them will lean towards contractors that use video to demonstrate their projects. 

You do not want to treat metal as a commodity line of your business but as a specialty. Explain to potential clients the benefits of metal compared to other types, or they will choose the cheapest option available. To start this process before the prospect has been exposed to other possibilities, set your website up with blogs containing great content, videos, photo galleries, etc. And don't forget to have testimonial videos from clients with metal roofs installed on their homes or buildings you have done. If you are only in the first stage of starting your metal division, your testimonials can be on the excellent customer experience you provided and grow from there.  

You will need to tweak your selling techniques and deal with the pricing objection on the front end. Your client's main concern will be the cost of metal. Let's use a homeowner in this example. You need to explain that metal roofing is a premium product; they can expect a new roof to cost double or more, depending on your market of what an asphalt shingle roofs cost. Explain that metal can perform for 40-plus years and demonstrate the other pluses of the product you are installing. With metal, don't just try to sell the product. Sell the client the benefits of what the product can do for them. 

Adding the specialty division will reduce competition, allow you to charge more for your expertise, and grow that bottom profit margin. The key is letting your potential customers know you are a metal expert. Don't be shy. Put it on your signs, business cards, trucks, website and brochures. People want to hire an expert and get a long-term solution to their roofing needs. 

John Kenney is the CEO at Cotney Consulting Group. See his full bio here.



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