When people come to us to solve their landscaping challenges they have lots of questions. They want to know if we can help them. They are wondering if they will enjoy working with us.
If we pass those two tests they are going to ask more questions about how we work and what everything is going to cost them.
We understand getting the landscape you love is a project that is charged with excitement and fear. It’s a major undertaking that everybody wants to right.
The good news is that getting everything you want is not only possible, but that process can also be predictable.
Over the years we have discovered that unlocking one customer challenge leads to another problem to be solved. We accepted that reality and are thankful that we stayed the course.
Our process is not perfect and probably never will be because every outdoor environment is different. In addition to that, every family is unique in what they are hoping to achieve by upgrading it.
That’s why our goal is mastering the art of combining the two so that we can deliver outcomes that are better than they had imagined possible.
Now it’s time to pull back the curtain and show you how it will make you love your landscape.
There are many reasons that buyers choose to invest in our solutions. We note all of them but we work especially hard at uncovering the most compelling one.
There is one priority objective that stands above the rest. When we discover it the success factors for achieving it are readily identified.
That’s exciting for us and our customers.
If we can be honest it helps people to do the same and that puts all on a path for helping them get what they want. Some of these objectives may surprise you, but hopefully, they will either resonate with you or spark ideas for finding your priority objective.
- A showplace. One that lights up the neighborhood and delights visitors
- Understated elegance. More about tasteful functionality than showing off
- Resale value. Many buyers want to someday recover our investment and make a profit.
- Entertainment. A place for families and children to interact and play together
- Quiet retreat. This is a landscape for the family and the people closest to them
These objectives have nothing to do with the home or the property it sits on. They are windows into the lifestyle that is important to these buyers.
One of the keys to the priority objective is getting everyone on the same path without cluttering the conversation with landscaping elements. That comes later.
The reason for this is that all of the landscaping elements, plantings, outdoor rooms, and special features like outdoor grills and firepits have to complement each other.
We know that most buyers are educated nowadays. That’s good and we want to know what they know. Then we can share our expertise.
The result is a collaboration that works.
The success factors are what customers expect to achieve from our solutions.
This includes activities they envision enjoying, such as swimming in their pool. This gives us the opportunity to discuss general budgets and some of the risks involved.
Any feature that involves water comes with some safety risks. They can be mitigated but it’s our responsibility to communicate them so that everyone is comfortable. It is quite common for a customer to then inquire about alternatives.
These are productive discussions that keep us moving toward their priority objective without the buyer’s remorse that comes from making a poorly informed choice. The point of this stage of our process is that later reversing some decisions can be costly.
The same is true of missed opportunities. They are many ways to relax, play, and entertain. We want to find those that are ideally suited to our customers so they can own them in every sense of the word.
One of our favorite aspects of our customer success process is the perceived barriers. The reason for this is that there are many.
We know that trust is a critical issue with every buyer because we can only do our best for them if we have earned their complete trust.
Over the year’s we’ve discovered some obstacles are self-created, albeit unintentionally. For example, if we use too much industry jargon that can be overwhelming to some people that are unfamiliar with the terms.
We aren’t sure how other companies tackle these barriers but ours is to put them all on the table. We like to pull back the curtain and share relevant stories about past projects, what worked and what didn’t.
This helps people see their situation with fresh eyes. It also makes them realize that their fears are not unfounded and that we have measures in place to ensure that everything proceeds smoothly.
Here are some of the commonly perceived barriers.
- Lack of trust
- Lack of control
- Too many choices
- Confusing budgets
- Unreliable timelines
- Unnecessary risks
- Incomplete information
Getting all of these perceived barriers out into the open gives everyone the opportunity to say what they need to say. This may include a preference for communicating by phone instead of text.
The beauty of this customer success phase is that most of these perceived barriers wash away when the unfounded perceptions are also removed.
Buyers seldom make decisions in isolation. Their family, friends, and neighbors are all potential influencers. This is one reason we also like to know who will be the primary decision-maker.
When working with couples it’s not uncommon for the silent partner to be the primary decision-maker. Due to the inherent complexities of communication, this is why we ask them to choose that person so we can make him or her our primary contact.
We have our ideal buyer’s journey that bends to the needs of every buyer, provided we stay within the guardrails we’ve established to fulfill our promised commitments.
The key to customer success is collaborating within a system designed to keep the project on track.
What motivates buyers can be a complex process that ultimately is decided almost entirely on emotion. We understand and respect that.
Decision criteria used to surprise us. Nowadays we find that if we follow the aforementioned steps to do their part everyone gets what they want. If the journey to the outcome is a smooth experience then that will be remembered when it is remembered.
That’s one of the most gratifying aspects of our work.
We would love to learn what will make you love your landscape.