Maintenance Agreements are the lifeblood of the leading residential replacement HVAC companies. The first thing that has to happen to set up a Maintenance Agreement program is to create a culture that fosters the growth of the program. When all employees agree that Maintenance Agreements are good for the customer and want to help customers save money the program will be a success. It only takes a few that do not support the program to make it fail. The team needs to have a true desire to help customers save money and have equipment and accessories that make their life easier. And, when the team has a culture of company growth because they see themselves involved in that company’s future, they will support the program.
Discuss what to name the program. Understand that no one wants a “contract” with a service company. They do want discounts and they do want to save money on their utility bills. They also want their comfort system to last as long as possible so it is important to name the program so the customer sees benefit. Extra Privilege Agreement, Priority Club, Discount Club, Energy Savings Agreement are just a few names being used today by the leading contractors. When you ask a customer if they want to become a Maintenance Agreement customer they will typically not want to because it sounds like a benefit to the company, not the customer. Customers are members of Costco and Sam’s Club or they shop at Target or Wal-Mart. Customers want discounts. Customers want to buy, they just want to make sure it is the right thing to do. When we call the program “Service Contracts” or anything that sounds like it the customer will not want to participate. Besides, a “Service Contract” by definition includes service. A Maintenance Agreement includes “maintenance” but not service. It can be confusing to use the word “service” in the name of the program.
Establish an incentive for the team members who sell Maintenance Agreements. Besides $10 for each sold develop a introductory program that gets the team excited about helping customers understand the benefits of becoming a Maintenance Agreement customer. Offer a contest where each Maintenance Agreement sold gives the team member a chance to win a prize like a TV or a dinner or a family prize package to a theme park.
A company-wide meeting to rollout the program will introduce the program and get the ball rolling. At this meeting there needs to be brochures and potential marketing pieces. Introduce the how to offer customers communication that helps them understand the benefits of being a Maintenance Agreement customer. Review the KPIs that show how the Maintenance Agreement program benefits the customer and the company. Teach the team the words to use to get customers asking questions about the Maintenance Agreement program. “Are you a discount customer or will you be paying full price today?” Or, “Be sure to ask your technician how you can save 15% off your repair today.”
Introduce the rollout incentive and have the prize there. Give everyone a start with one entry into the contest that becomes two when they sell their first Maintenance Agreement. Get their commitment that they will help customers understand the benefits at every opportunity. Let them know that there is no turning back, this program is here to stay. Tell them you will offer each of them a Maintenance Agreement on their own home at cost. And, the principals are the first to sign up.
Maintenance Agreements are the lifeblood of a residential replacement company. Offer it to every customer 100% of the time, no fail. Customers are looking for a relationship with their service company. A relationship that helps them take better care of their family. A Maintenance Agreement helps them do just that. A Maintenance Agreement helps the team member make additional dollars so they can take better care of their family. Maintenance Agreements grows the company so that the team members have a future with a growing, profitable organization. Maintenance Agreements offers team members an organization to work for where they have a career instead of a job.