Six factors of how the ideal supplier helps SPF contractors expand their business
By Juan Sagarbarria
Spray foam contractors need a good supplier who can support their growth. Those that have been around the industry long enough to know the in’s and out’s can grow from the support of the correct supplier. These seasoned contractors have worked hard to grow their business and unfortunately have had to do a lot of it on their own. Now that the industry continues to grow, these same contractors can reach the next level with the unconditional support of the correct supplier for the duration of their partnership. The process follows the same pattern as boxing, where the contractor is the fighter who is sustained and supported by the manufacturer in his corner. Translation: The supplier should be equipping the contractor with resources coupled by powerful knowledge that can propel their business. If you are a fighter that is currently in the game and can’t say this about those in your corner, you might want to reconsider your supplier.
That being said, contenders (contracting businesses) are entering the SPF market every day. Many times, these contractors can be hasty when selecting a manufacturer and potentially wind up with the wrong folks on their side of the ring. In order to avoid this scenario – and hopefully choose the right partnership yielding a fruitful and successful spray foam contracting business – here are six crucial factors to take into consideration.
No. 1 PATIENCE
Like any given industry, SPF suppliers set goals that include attaining a certain market share, which is accomplished through their contractor base. However, it’s how the supplier goes about meeting that goal that makes all the difference for potential contractor customers to put their trust in them. Instead of a supplier who floods the market with too many fighters, then takes a step back and offers minimal support, contractors should opt for suppliers who are willing to go the extra mile; suppliers who achieve the same market share level by building relationships with their contractors and helping them grow along the way.
In the ring, patience is key. Therefore, it is important for contractors to make sure that the supplier in their corner has the patience to help them mature in their market. Contractors should seek out a supplier that is willing to work in concert with them, where constant communication about pertinent issues and discussions about short-and-long-term goals is a regular occurrence.
No. 2 MEASUREMENT & GOALS
Another important feature to look for in a supplier is their ability to provide correct business metrics that confirm the performance of the product they are utilizing. Such metrics can include the calculation of yield and profitability involved in every spray foam application the contractor completes. Contractors should look for a supplier in their corner that invests in tools that reveal these metrics so that the contractor knows what they need to do day in and day out to achieve the goals that add value to their company.
Among the more popular and effective methods that savvy suppliers are putting stock into in order to help their contractors are software programs such as JobPro. JobPro is a user-friendly, Web-based job management tool that helps spray foam contractors easily obtain these metrics, and helps them in virtually all the stages of the SPF project from the initial bid to the final invoice. While working at a jobsite or other remote location, the program can be easily accessed via an iPad or a Smart phone. Suppliers that support the utilization of interactive products such as JobPro – and further put the product in the contractor’s hands – are certainly ahead of the game.
No. 3 TOOLS
In the ring, a fighter needs gloves, shoes, and training. In the field, an SPF contractor also needs the right tools and proper training. So, it begs the question: Is the supplier in your corner providing the training and support you need in the form of marketing, technical training, and business strategy counseling to keep you in optimum shape? If the answer is yes, then you’re on your way to becoming a champion.
The right supplier in your corner always has your back. Whether you need a clarification about a question involving the building science of SPF; or require technical service to troubleshoot your spray foam equipment; or if you could use some online promotion of your contracting business via their website and other marketing services, your supplier should provide you with the correct tools to get the job done.
No. 4 CORRECT WEIGHT CLASS
As an SPF contractor, it is important to determine what your weight class – whether it is lightweight, welterweight, or heavyweight. This translates into where you stand in the industry based on variables such as the size of your operation, how broad is the market that you service, and what kind of goals do you have as a company. With the proper support, the ideal supplier can help you determine your weight class and advise you accordingly with relevant market information.
“How many rigs do you need to service this area?” “Do you want to increase your service area or do you stay put for now and grow when the time is right?” “Is a national builder in the area currently using spray foam?” These are questions that the supplier can and should help you figure out. By being equipped with a broader view of the SPF marketplace and knowing the trends therein, the contractor is better prepared for future challenges.
No. 5 SHARED SACRIFICE & GOING THE DISTANCE
A supplier that is committed to help grow their customer contractor’s business knows that they’re in it for the long haul. Just like the contractor puts their faith and money on the supplier, the supplier should reciprocally provide its complete support. It is a mutually beneficial marriage – but no marriage exists without its rough rounds. Therefore, the supplier will sacrifice its time and financially procure aforementioned resources such as marketing information, equipment, and personnel needed to ensure the best opportunity for success and expansion of an SPF contracting business through thick and thin.
No. 6 A TRUE PARTNERSHIP
In the end, a solid partnership between a boxer and his trainer is what truly produces a knockout. Does your supplier work with you so that you both prosper? Often business is viewed as a value chain. Does your supplier see you as a part of their value chain or are you the end of the value chain? Does the supplier want to support you by working to customize your business for your market so they are truly addressing your part of the value chain? This is where the appropriate building science for your climate zone comes in, the terms to support you for both residential and commercial jobs, the willingness to work with you as you grow with creative support developed in concert with you.
SES Foam, LLC. truly sees their contractors and partners and works to improve their customers business. Ask an SES contractor how the relationship works and you will be surprised about the support level these privileged contractors are enjoying. •
Direct any questions about business growth to SES Foam:
Phone: 855-335-2440 / 713-239-0252