How to Ensure Your Business
Stands Out in a Roofing Bid
Among competing roofing companies, how can your business set itself apart during the bid process? What can you do to give your business the best chance at winning a bid beyond communicating information well?
We talked with Brent Loberg, Senior Sales Representative at Allweather Roof in the Twin Cities area, to get his take on the bid process. Brent provides his point of view on how Allweather commercial roofing contractors approach the bid process and find ways to stand out.
Winning a commercial roofing bid starts long before a project is out for bid. Loberg relies on maintaining great relationships with building owners and doing the initial legwork to get business in the door. “We have a solid base of longtime good relationships with a lot of customers, and a lot of our business comes from referrals from them,” he says. “Aside from that, our marketing is about communicating information and sharing our unique history.”
“It comes down to hard work,” Loberg says. “You may have to spend a year or two doing that legwork before the customer converts, but it puts you in a good position in the long run.”
“Online marketing helps you get your name in front of more people, but we’re also about doing the legwork upfront,” Loberg adds. For companies both new and established, putting in the foundational work from the start can help build a solid customer base. At Allweather Roof, it’s common to offer free inspections and forecasts for potential customers to deliver value before the bid conversation even begins.
A typical bidding process is competitive—your roofing company may be up against at least five others trying to win the same piece of business. Loberg offered a few ways he approaches the process in order to set his company apart:
How to Bid a Roofing Job and Win
Before Loberg reaches the customer’s roof site he researches the company, the person he’ll be delivering a pitch to, and the site itself so he can prepare a professional recommendation on what’s best. “LinkedIn is huge for research on the people you’ll be talking to,” he says. “It may reveal connections that go a long way, and you always want to find that common ground.” He also inventories an aerial view of the site to get familiar with the area.
Make Four Points of Contact
Loberg relies on four touchpoints that make a difference before a bid:
1. The initial call begins to solidify the working relationship.
2. At the initial call, an appointment is made to inspect the roof site.
3. During the appointment, Loberg takes a creative approach to leaving behind a business card. “I bring coffee at this point with a coffee cup sleeve with my information on it,” he says.
4. After the meeting, Loberg sends a thank you card to follow up.
“By the time you’re delivering a proposal, you should be 75% sold,” he says. “With so many points of contact, you’re in a good position to go into the pitch being authentically yourself.”
Leverage the Brand With Customized Messaging
“A roof is out of sight, out of mind, so we want to think about how to incorporate the roof into each company’s brand,” Loberg says. For example, simply incorporating the company’s logo and vision into the bid and explaining exactly how a roof will benefit their business go a long way. For the presentation itself, “I’m huge on props to offer a visual,” Loberg adds. “I go in and explain the tear-off process, for example, and bring in props to explain each product and the plan for their roof.”
“Ultimately, we lead the pitch as if we’ve already got the job,” Loberg says. “We lay the groundwork so the customer knows exactly what to expect.”
Though the past year has changed a lot about the roofing industry, including the bid process, Loberg found ways to shift to digital means of delivering a bid, combined with contactless drop-offs at businesses. “We use the same process,” he says. “We can still be face-to-face online, so I can still show props and email over a scope of work document.”
Shifts in formats occur at times, but only because there may not be a chance to hand over a printed resource. In these cases, Loberg found it easy to simply create in-person resources as digital documents to be sent over. “I also found it helpful to take a video of myself running through the proposal,” he says. Digital means made it possible, even in a changed world, to maintain a personal connection during the process.
“Improvement comes down to trial and error,” Loberg recalls. “When you stay true to your brand, you may not do a lot of short-term sales pushes, but instead a lot of long-term branding that delivers long, steady, healthy growth.” Here are a few of Loberg’s best tips for roofing contractors looking to up the ante with their bids:
1. Sell it before you get there with multiple points of contact.
2. Present a product or element you don’t think anyone else will include in their bids—and show it with a quick demonstration.
3. Keep it simple with a clear vision of what the client would be buying—the more valuable, relevant information they have, the more comfortable they’ll feel.
4. Balance following up and showing interest with offering ample time to review the bid.
Finally, Loberg adds: “Be bold! Put yourself out there. Do a goofy commercial. You can’t be worried
about what others are thinking of you.” With these tips, a strong brand and a healthy dose of personality behind your bid, you’ll be on your way to winning more business and creating meaningful relationships that last.
Brent Loberg serves as Senior Sales Representative at Allweather Roof. Joining the team in 2005, Loberg has set Allweather Roof’s standard for top-notch customer service. In his work, he carefully analyzes each customer’s roof asset management programs and budget forecasts so they can get the most out of their roof’s lifespan. As a graduate of the University of Minnesota, Loberg remains dedicated to continuing education and hard work in his role at Allweather Roof.
Allweather Roof specializes in commercial roofing systems designed to deliver superior performance, longevity and absolute protection. Located in the Twin Cities area of Minnesota, Allweather Roof was founded in 1925 and its founding philosophy holds true today: provide custom specifications, quality installations, and superior client services. Having installed more than 100 million square feet of roof in the company’s lifetime, Allweather Roof prioritizes maintaining a tradition of excellence, being a one-stop roofing provider, and providing the safest work environment possible.