Thursday, November 19, 2015
About 25% of Americans are genetically predisposed to experience severe illness from toxic mold exposure. Because it affects everyone, regardless of age, ethnicity, or overall health and fitness level, it's important to completely eliminate mold from your home and avoid certain foods if you have mold sensitivity.
Fast Finish has been successfully treating moss and mold in Salem Oregon homes since 2012. We utilize advanced cleaning methods that help keep the spores from spreading, and eliminating the unsightly effects that cause property damage. For successful moss and mold treatment call Fast Finish today for a free evaluation. They can set up a program to reduce and eliminate the spores that cause allergies around the home...
Saturday, November 14, 2015
2013 was a breakout year for Fast Finish when we introduced roof cleaning as a service. We were getting asked to clean roofs on a regular basis in 2012, so we invested in the training and equipment to facilitate our customer base. We ended doing about 10 per month average in 2013. There are companies that do way more but given that we had other services we were focused on, we thought it was a great number for a new company. We also give a lot of credit to Oregons moss friendly weather and a ton of roofs that have never been touched. Timing was everything as the housing market was turning around and inspectors and insurance were putting the extra push we needed to get roofs in order to sell the property. It was the perfect storm for us. The average cost of cleaning a 2000sq ft roof was right at the $700 mark. Factor in smaller roofs and types of treatment against bigger roofs that required skilled anchoring, brushing and tarping of surrounding landscaping. The average cost makes a lot of sense. A cheap treatment can be as low as $300 to spray and leave. A complex treatment and complete clean out can be $1900 from our experience.
Needless to say, not a bad service to offer in a second year of business. Plus there were many roofs,(about 40 total) that we couldn't or did not do that we could have added to that total..!that was due to physical limitations and injury etc..
So for those interested in how we managed such a business that grew so quickly in our first year, here are the five main components we acquired.,.
More on the how in our next post!
Saturday, October 31, 2015
Salem Oregon rains usually sneak up on us and somehow keep coming. Next thing you know, the dry sunny days are few and far between. As a cleaning company the workload usually moves from outside pressure washing jobs to inside tile and grout cleaning work. Throw in an occasional carpet cleaning package to the mix as well. That is the way it is for residential services. More cleaning is done at or around the holidays, for those who want their company to know they are clean. During this time of year we tend to balance these residential customers with commercial cleaning accounts. For us it isn't a high volume business model. We are not looking for tons of clients. We are a bit more focused on quality of work matched to quality of client. This is the only way we gave insured repeat business. Before we got into the business for ourselves, we learned a valuable lesson. Every year we hired a carpet cleaner from the weekly paper add with a whole house special. Usually it was around the $100--150 price range. We always took the cheaper deal advertised. What we didn't know is what we were not getting in the deal. Now, before I get into it, let me say we were never unhappy with the work that was done.. Visually it looked good and we always felt like we were taken care of after the job finished.
Fast forward to being in the business, I now realize I hired the cheapest price company who basically did a splash and dash. And every year we repeated the process, and it was with the next cheapest add listed in the paper. We never used the same company twice as far as I know and never had a real reason to remember.
In order to make any sense I had to explain the above real scenario as this is the type of company that Fast Finish did not want to become. In order to not jump in that "me too" arena we had to have specific marketing plans in place. We also had to have the expertise and services to match those plans. We had to make sure that there would be clear cut measurable differences that a client could understand and clearly see. This involved relationship building at the highest possible level. It also required a very focused market. Yes, there are jobs we actually turn down if it does not meet or exceed a preset expectation. It does not mean we are elite cleaning snobs. It means we have elite clientele that expect the best and get it.
Every once in a while we get a client who expects the best for nothing, but not many. And usually they become our biggest cheerleaders for the business if handled properly.
We are entering our fourth winter, and business is growing. We are always looking at adding services that make sense. Services that bring value to the customer. Our type of cleaning is an art. It brings surfaces back to new or even better than new often times. There is a huge market in Salem Oregon that requires cleaning and maintenance constantly. Fast finish has carved out a niche market catering to the discriminating client.
Thursday, October 29, 2015
ROI or ROA = return on investment or asset. One of the first concepts taught at any business school or college.
Fast Finish the cleaning and restoration service company has donated hundreds of hours in time and money back to the community for continued education. Daily we are asked for contributions to different local events. As a small company we are simply unable to address everything we would like to financially just yet. So, without guilt we came up with ways to give without breaking our own budget with the resources we have. Those resources being- the ability to clean, restore various surfaces and the ability to digitally market with a great SEO educational background.
Up until recently we only used our digital marketing background for Fast Finish use only. Makes sense. But after an unforeseen injury, that affected the physical laborious part of our industry, we had to focus on the marketing to keep the work flow coming. This created additional business needs that made us restructure how we do business.
Forced to market at the highest rate of return was essential. Knocking on endless doors and stuffing three jobs a day into our calendar wasn't going to work any longer! We needed larger high quality jobs with less frequency to the tune of three to four days a week so the injury could heal in between. The 3-4 jobs 5-6 days a week was no longer viable. Although this had supported us early on it would only serve our business to an early grave. Now as a new TMT business owner, most would give anything to be that busy with that kind of work load. You can envision the hiring of help and expanding with multiple units etc., out cleaning tile and grout, carpets, cement and aggregate driveways forever.
But as a prior new business development manager for a multi billion dollar company prior to starting Fast Finish, I saw a familiar already traveled road. The same road that made me start Fast Finish. I wanted to be a small succeful family business with no employees, no drama, no HR, no employee taxes, etc...
In order to make this happen I had to re structure quickly or not only lose the current work flow even shut down the pipeline of clients we worked so hard to attain.
We did this through the magic of digital marketing and redirection to W9 sub contracting. This meant I had to partner up with like minded business in the same industry.( not an easy feat) as most would never engage a competitor. I carefully selected other small companies that would welcome the work in exchange for a small fee. Build trust and give more to them. We could carry on as before, build our reputation, and help another struggling business in return. As trust was being built my SEO time increased and allowed me to focus on all the web site items I wanted to get done but did not have time to do. I also saw a benefit in helping my business's I mentored and partnered with as well. I could grow my income by growing theirs at the same time. After taking several of them under SEO wing we were able to survive the dreadful early years where most business are subject to fail.
Now today Fast Finish will offer private tried and true consultation for those in the industry. It is very hyper focused on the cleaning industry! Unlike most SEO companies we are actually empowering business owners to take control of their own digital marketing and branding themselves. Because,in house is the only way, that is agreed upon in any textbook or advanced class that creates the culture of your business that reflects you !
Not some other companies perception of you..,
Until next post- warm regards
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Thursday, October 22, 2015
Jump into any forum and mention the word SEO and you will likely get the mob with pitchforks and torches ready to administer justice in unkind ways...
Why? Frankly, it is because there are thousands of run of the mill start up companies peddling it like snake oil carpet baggers. There is so much static that no one listens to the message...And though they target a lot of start up companies, and small business owners, they are especially honed in on carpet cleaners, pressure washing and tile and grout type companies. The calls are relentless about fixing your web site and the analytics they have run on your web presence and what you need to do to fix it. I get those calls, or at least I used to a lot more than I do now three years later. After a couple technical questions about what and how they are going go make me a better site, it usually turns into a learning experience for them. I guess the $ 200k budget I had for building a corporate web presence for a billion dollar company taught
me a few things as far as what to do and what not to do. As an executive who inherited this IT department project, I had to track where all this money was going and the return on investment. It made me learn real quick the intangibles of marketing. I had to prove results in this performance based environment, and that meant understanding the details and workings of each change that money made. I look at it as my $200k education.
Even with a team of programmers and IT support people, we made mistakes and bad purchases. How? IT people are not always familiar with SEO and marketing. They might be able to write programs and move things around on a web site, but that does not mean they understand how it impacts it. In fact I would say many have no clue. I learned that the expensive way. You can't just submit your site to a search engine processor and joila, have a top ranking page on Google....
The above collage of SEO option packages
highlight the diversity of the culture. Note the pricing jumps all over the board, with what they offer. Each one with a good, better , best type format. But how do you know what to choose and why?
Most people just pass on SEO of any kind and label it a scam.
And a part of me agrees with this assessment, but not for the same reason. It is a scam for people who actually do it for their own website. They understand how grossly over priced it is and can laugh at how much money they saved by doing it on their own and how much better they can impact it.
But to those of you who jump in on the same scam wagon mantra and have a few updated pictures, videos and rewording....(( Jokes on you)) seriously it is.
Now, if you are reading this and just shut down mentally on the criticism, then that is ok. Perhaps you built your business and have what you need all figured out. You generate enough income, get enough jobs, and did it without this SEO stuff. You are probably a type A personality who has figured out how to just get it done by hard work and relationships. I applaud all your hard work, and yes you have just shown the rest of the world it can be done that way.
But what about all these new business owners, who don't have the time or resources and are pressed with financial payments...,?Will they have the same exact fortune? Can they afford to ignore the opportunity to drive the phone calls to them? Can they rely on door to door and demo to demo with flyer in hand? Perhaps...
I see a real need for SEO help that isn't overpriced and actually delivers measurable results. One that explains what they are doing and why it works and what you can expect by doing it.
I don't know if I am that guy to do that...
I help three new business owners now. The first one fell into my lap when I sold one of my specialty cleaning services to another business. He wanted his business to grow like ours and wanted our existing web presence and phone inquiries to just flow into his. He offered to pay extra on his 3 year contract to do it, so I agreed to take it on. I am very busy with my own business so we agreed to work on it for only a year and go from there. The first month we landed 10 new clients that we can directly attribute to SEO improvements. I suspect ,that winter may slow down, but that the foundation will be set for next year.
I can't tell you how cool it is to see something translate so well so quickly.
This only confirms to me how important this tool is and will be in the future.
I can even boldly say that if Google searches didn't exist... Neither would my business...
But that's just us, in our pressure washing, cement, aggregate, cleaning and sealing Oregon world.
Until next post, peace to you!