13 Jan Doing Landscape Lighting Construction in Stages
By Mike Gambino
Landing a new client takes a lot of time, effort and resources.
So once we have them, wouldn’t it be nice to keep them for years to come?
To make clients happy and improve their outdoor living areas, we can do the landscape lighting construction in stages when the budget is not in place to do everything all at once. Not only will this method give us recurring revenue, but it will also give our clients what they want — even if that’s not possible with the budget they have today.
Constructing in stages became even more popular during the recession when clients’ price points went down. We used this strategy with great success, and now our clients are ready to start adding on again.
Here are some tips us on how to keep clients for life by doing landscape lighting construction in stages.
Breaking the project into stages can benefit both us and the client.
From the client’s perspective, doing landscape lighting construction in stages helps them spread out the cost of the project. So they can get the end product they want, even if they can’t afford it all at once. Some clients are also more comfortable doing things a section at a time because it feels less overwhelming.
Working in stages helps our business because it provides a steady cash flow. It will also bring in more revenue: Doing a project in stages costs our client more in the long run because we’ll have to schedule. travel to the site and set up our crew and cleanup for each phase and we charge accordingly.
We can also work with clients with a range of budgets when we do things in stages. If they can’t afford the initial proposal, we see what does work for their current budget and go from there.
Another advantage to constructing in stages is that you we’ll work with the same client for multiple projects.
So the lines of communication are already set, and both us and our crew are more comfortable with the clients and the site.
Presenting Stages to Clients
Once we present the entire project and find that budget is not there to make it happen at that time we mention the possibility of doing the project in stages early on, even as early as during the initial consultation.
We explain that with stages we’ll be able to create everything on their wish list and end up with a cohesive landscape lighting system. That simple statement helps plant the idea.
Then we are specific with what each stage will include and what areas will be affected. It is easy for the client to assume something is included in the current phase that isn’t so we are very clear about that.
We also, make sure they understand it’s a work in progress. There might be times when the old and new areas don’t match perfectly, but the theme will be cohesive — which is more important.
Keeping them focused on the big picture will make them happier with the process, making them clients for life.
What to Know About Landscape Lighting Construction in Stages
While there are benefits, constructing projects in stages requires more upfront planning.
When creating the overall design, we think about how to break it up into stages. and take into consideration the price, materials needed, logistics and time needed for each stage.
After we’ve broken the design up into different sections, then we figure out when we’ll install each an make sure to do the stages in the right order — or at least make our client understand the cost to of doing them in the wrong order. We need to make sure a later phase in the design won’t damage an earlier one.
We explain our concerns to the client, and suggest a specific project order or plan for the possible difficulties.
How to Make A Project Look Complete When It’s Not
Although we’re building the space piece by piece, it doesn’t mean the area has to constantly look like a work in progress.
Of course, it’s easier to do when each phase is contained or separated ie: frontyard, backyard, sideyards.
But when we’re working on a portion of a yard and both the areas with no lighting and new sections are seen together, it becomes a little more difficult and noticeable.
This landscape lighting blog is published by Mike Gambino of Gambino landscape lighting inc. all rights reserved. Mike is a professional landscape lighting system designer/ builder and has been designing, installing and maintaining landscape lighting systems for more than 20 years. Mike resides in the Los Angeles area with his wife and 2 sons. To visit his website go to www.Gambinolighting.com . To inquire about hiring Mike please click here .
Blog articles may be published with permission on other websites without editing or removing links.