“Quality, quality, quality. Never waver from it, even when you don’t see how you can afford to keep it up. When you compromise, you become a commodity and then you die.”
—Gary Hirshberg, Founder of Stonyfield Farm
Here’s how a friend of mine buys a new car…
He figures out what kind of car he wants — the make, the model and the options. Then he calls all the dealerships around him and asks for their “best price” on what he wants.
When a salesman quotes a price lower than all the others, my buddy calls all the other dealerships back and asks if they can do better. He repeats this a couple of times — and the price gets lower and lower.
When one of the dealerships finally offers a ridiculously low price, my friend buys the car from them.
With just a little effort, he always gets a smoking good price.
The name of the game could be “how low can you go?” And the loser is always the dealership.
See, a new car is a commodity. A car is going to be pretty much the same no matter which dealership you buy it from.
When something’s a commodity like this, you can always beat up the vendors on price. When it comes to commodities, all that matters to customers is the price.
Unfortunately, roofing contractors can be seen as a commodity. I mean, a roof is a roof, right?
Wrong. All roofs are not the same — they’re not like identical cars rolling out of a factory.
A roof can be done well — or it can be done poorly. A roofing contractor makes a number of decisions when installing a roof that affect the end result.
So how do you avoid becoming a commodity — something that customers view as the same? How do you avoid getting beat up on price?
The answer is quality. Quality, quality, quality.
By focusing on quality, you become valuable to customers. You get a good reputation, and you stand out from the pack.
Because nobody wants to be a commodity.