Seriously Bummed!

By almcneil
Aug 19, 2007
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  1. I wish we had a subforum for tech professionals but until we do, I have to post it in here (The Meeting Spot.)

    I'm seriously bummed! :eek: I started up my own in-home PC servicing business last April and by June I was starting to get a call per day. Then the summer vacation season hit and it dropped in half! I tried to stay optimistic believing that at the end of August it would pick up again. Between persons putting off PC servicing due to vacation and the start of school, my business would start picking up by now. It hasn't!! I only have 2 calls booked for this week so far. I just called some prospects who asked me to contact them near the end of August and then declined.

    I need to make a LIVING!!
  2. CrustyOldGeezer

    CrustyOldGeezer TS Rookie Posts: 24

    OK, I'll play devils advocate for you.

    Does your advertising explain why your service is better than your competitors service?

    Are your rates higher, lower or equal to your competitors?

    Why did you set your rates where they are?

    If your rates are the same, why should a customer choose you over the other guy?

    If they are higher, same question, only in all caps.

    If they are lower, does that mean you're not as good? Or not as greedy?

    Does your advertising tell about your skills, and experience?

    Does your personality turn people off?

    Just where and how do you advertise?

    How large a population are you talking to with your advertising?

    How many competitors do you have in this market?

    Please don't tell me that you are relying on "word of mouth" advertising on a startup business. That's only effective after a few hundred, or thousand, satisfied customers.

    I hope this is helpful,

  3. jobeard

    jobeard TS Ambassador Posts: 9,143   +595

    re-evaluate the market. Home users need the help/service BUT will not pay
    reasonable time+materials for the work. You'll spend a lot of time on each call
    but only get minimal payments :(

    look for another career or at least try to serve corporate accounts.
  4. halo71

    halo71 TS Rookie Posts: 1,090

    yeah that sux.....not getting the free beer anymore! lol.... :D Just kidding!!!
  5. almcneil

    almcneil TS Guru Topic Starter Posts: 1,277

    Well, good news, I have picked up 3 new bookings in the past 2 days so my discouragement has abated! Plus I have a few more prospects that sound like they will make a booking.

    Drew, I appreciate your comments/questions but those aren't the issues. I could answer each one but it would take too long. The only one I will answer is the last and, no, my business development is NOT solely based on "word of mouth". I am doing direct to home marketing. I deliver fliers to 400 homes at a time, then followup by canvassing door-to-door. I am getting referrals but most of my business is from pounding the pavement.

    Jobeard, no that is not the answer either. This is my new career as I am now a FORMER high tech engineer (high tech collapsed 6 years ago, hasn't recovered and won't for a long time!) So it's this or bust right now. As for serving businesses, there's too much competition, I don't have those comp skills and they often want immediate response which as a sole operator I cannot provide. That's a dead end for me.

    Halo, although I've only had a few calls lately, I did score wine and SCOTCH!! So there! :stickout:
  6. CrustyOldGeezer

    CrustyOldGeezer TS Rookie Posts: 24

    As long as life is good in your end of the world I'm happy.

    Good luck!

  7. ravisunny2

    ravisunny2 TS Ambassador Posts: 1,971   +10

    Hats off, CrustyOldGeezer!

    That's below the belt, Halo!
  8. halo71

    halo71 TS Rookie Posts: 1,090

    Ravi, that was ONLY a joke from a post he made a while back.
  9. ravisunny2

    ravisunny2 TS Ambassador Posts: 1,971   +10

    I know, Halo.

    I followed that thread (the beery one).

    And, I was kidding, too!
  10. AlbertLionheart

    AlbertLionheart TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 2,026

    I have been running my own business in middle England since 1997 and this time of year is always quiet. The business this year has been lower than the last two years and I put it down to three key things:
    1. Windows XP is more reliable than anything in the past.
    2. There is more competition out there - although they only seem to last a few months because it takes time to build up a client base.
    3. I have lost some commercial clients to remote support by bigger support companies - although I have been providing remote support services for years.
  11. halo71

    halo71 TS Rookie Posts: 1,090

    This is what puzzles me. Surely your service to commercial clients is cheaper than the big support companies. I don't understand this, the last company i worked for did this same thing. They had a team locally that was GREAT! They were always on their game and fixed things in a very timely manner. Then my company decides to contract it out. We started having to call some company based overseas somewhere. Had to get permission from corporate before calling them. Then when you did call, you were on hold most times for at least 15 minutes. Then when you did get to speak to someone you couldn't hardly understand them.
  12. AlbertLionheart

    AlbertLionheart TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 2,026

    Puzzles me too - the problem is that once the former client has found out what a crap service it is, they don't feel like coming back to admit they made a mistake!

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