Question: I know you've talked about service businesses in the past, like washing windows, cleaning offices, auto repair and plumbing. But is window washing a legitimate income producer.....in a depression?!
M.A. Omaha NE
Answer Marc Charles:
In 1988 I started a business washing windows.
I focused on two things: businesses with store fronts and direct marketing.
Actually, I'll rephrase this......I focused on businesses with storefronts who were currently getting their windows washed.
Almost all of the businesses in downtown Wausau WI were getting windows twice a month...year round.
I complied a list of qualified prospects...business and building owners.
I approached all of them with two direct response sales letters. The first letter was an introduction and "soft" sales pitch. The second letter (mailed 2-3 days later) was an offer they couldn't refuse.....free service for one month.
The response was unbelievable. I met with every business or building owner face to face when they called in response to the letter. I closed 80-90% of the deals.
Within two months I had about 14-16 businesses paying $100-$500 month for my window washing service. The average charge was $175.
14 x $175 = $2450 per month
Granted, this doesn't seem like a lot of money....but it was only part time! Within 12 months I had 20-30 clients -- all from referrals.
Now....this wasn't during a depression. Today, most business and building owners will leave the windows dirty.
But, some businesses can't to have dirty windows...like restaurants, galleries, clothing stores and other retail businesses on main streets.
So....I still think service businesses can be profitable....and many of them can be done part time or "on the side".
But make it easy on yourself....focus on qualified prospects and use direct marketing.
I hope that helps!
"The King of Business Opportunities"