Best ways to win new business?? Targeting planning applications?

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Hi all,

I'm an established gas engineer/plumber and have recently gone into business with the only decent builder I have worked with. We have a decent volume of work but we're looking to expand, and want to get a number of crews on the go at once.

As such, we need to get a decent amount of projects lined up to justify he additional financial commitment of taking on the appropriate workforce. I should say at this stage that initially we are looking to expand the plumbing arm of the business, with the construction side to follow.

Does anyone have any suggestions? I have been perusing the planning applications in our target areas and there seems like there's loads to go at but wondering if any of you have any experience as to what stage we should be approaching the clients? How soon after their application is registered etc?

Many thanks

Ali
 
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It works for low end lawyers as in ambulance chasing - crack on.

We generally wait for clients to approach us.
 
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If you're looking to expand but can't yet justify the extra expense of employing someone why not look down the sub contractor route? Have a look on the likes of google, checkatrade or other review sites at a company or sole trader that may suit you for temporary work. When the consistency of work increases and you can justify employment then move forward on that.
There are some agencies or recruitment consultants who also run a 3 month trial period where you can employ someone who you only pay for when you need them which may be another avenue to look down.
First steps are always the hardest and never fear failure...you learn far more in the bad times than you ever will in the good!!
 
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I bin every letter that comes from a random builder who has been touting for work through planning applications. They just don't seem trustworthy to me. They could be the best ever, but it just a seems an underhand way of getting business.
 
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Underhand?
Nonsence. It is called targeting, although have no idea of the success rate.
 
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Not underhand just crap.
Similar to ambulance chasers.
Roof paint Cowboys.
Ground clearance (fly tippers) touts.
Personal injury twonks.
PPI Miss-selling gonks.
Pyramid or Ponzi prats.
 
D

Doggit

Not sure where I came across the article, but it seems as though the likes of checkatrade have to pay to go on the site, and when there's complaints, they do nothing, or tend to side with contractor. If you subcontract, then unless you know the quality of their work, you risk your reputation and they're not always available when you need them. It may well be that you've got to start taking on apprentices/juniors, and wait another year for you're new partnership to get known, because it's always a good reputation that works best - just be prepared to tell clients to wait rather than trying to fit them all in when they say jump. You could put an advert in the local rag, and see what response you get, but like others, I'd never bother with the ambulance chasing tactics
 
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