Rainbow International offers a variety of services. But our ideal job is water and fire restoration.
In the past I have written about the fundamentals of water and fire damage. I’ve talked about the damage that water can do in your home, the adverse health effects of water in your home, the importance of mitigating fire damage immediately. The information I gave you was designed for the general public. If you personally had water or fire damage in your home, you would want to know the information I gave you.
Today I am going to give you very different information. I’m going to address this article to the concerns of a very small population. I’m going to tell you why an insurance agent would want to refer work to me.
My hope is, that the next time you meet an insurance agent, you won’t say, “Oh, I know a guy who does water and fire damage. He sure would like it if you sent him some business.” Instead you would say, “I know a guy who does water and fire damage, he can help you keep your customers.
This will come as a complete surprise to him, but my talk today is inspired by Troy Barrentine. I was once telling Troy about all the wonderful information I give to insurance agents, when he asked me a question. “What’s in it for the insurance agent?” I said, “I’m letting them know I’m going to take care of their customer.” And Troy said, “That’s great. What’s in it for them?”
I thought hard about his question, and I realized there was a serious gap in my strategy. I recently learned how one of my competitors was addressing that issue. I spoke with an insurance agent who told me that she always recommends a particular company. Whenever she does, they bring their ice cream truck and give her free ice cream. So I spent yesterday pricing ice cream trucks.
But today I would like to share with you four more substantive reasons an insurance agent would want to refer work to me.
1. We will show their customer’s empathy. I entered this business after my home was destroyed by fire. Water and fire damage are often accompanied by enormous emotional trauma. We understand what the customer is going through.
Why is this important to the agent? Most people don’t know anything about water damage. When you leave, they really don’t know if you did your job or not.
Since I started this business, I have had the opportunity to check behind my competitors seven times after they dried a home. None of those seven homes were dry. In all of those homes, the customers were breathing the spores of hidden mold growth. But none of those seven customers knew that the company they hired to dry their home did not do their job. When I go into a home, I dry the home thoroughly. I do that so I can sleep at night.
But I’ve come to realize that that is not how the customer will judge the job. When it comes to water damage, the customer’s perception of how well the job was done is almost completely dependent on how much they trust you. That trust begins with empathy.
2. We will protect the health of their customers. Fire and water damage can introduce critical health hazards into a building. We take the extra steps necessary to protect the well being of their customers.
If you can imagine a scale of how carefully restoration companies address the health concerns of their clients, we are the extreme end of that scale. There is no other company in Charleston that is going to take the precautions we take for the client’s health.
Every year, I perform thousands of dollars worth of services that I am not reimbursed for. Most of those services are done to protect the customer’s health. Those precautions are first and for most the price of conscience.
They are also the insurance I pay to avoid a future lawsuit. The insurance agent is the unnamed beneficiary of that insurance.
3. We will minimize the cost of the loss. One responsibility of a mitigation company is to put the customer back where they were before the loss occurred at a reasonable cost. We’re not supposed to remodel the home at the expense of the insurance company.
I want to give you just one example of that. In the Charleston area, about 40% of the carpet is lost on most clean water losses. In the past 5 ½ years we have saved 100% of the carpet on clean water losses.
Ultimately, this helps everyone who owns a home. If insurance claims are controlled, it holds down the price of homeowner’s insurance. But it’s critical to the insurance agent.
4. We will do everything in our power to make the insurance agent look good. The insurance agent worked hard to get that customer. We want the agent to keep that customer for life.
This is a lot harder than it sounds. Disaster restoration is a shockingly adversarial industry. Restoration companies pit their customers against the insurance company. Customers pit restoration companies against the insurance companies. Adjusters pit customers against restoration companies. When this happens, everyone loses.
I have seen customer’s who got new kitchens, who were so angered by the process, they couldn’t enjoy it. But the biggest loser is usually the insurance agent.
We all want to have our cake and eat it too. But often the insurance company is in the position of paying for the cake, and not eating it. They pay for the claim but lose the customer. My goal is to remove confrontation from the experience. I want the insurance agent to receive the customer loyalty that they just paid for.
There’s one thing I truly want you to take away from this article. I want to create loyalty between the insurance agent and their customer.
I want to make the agent a hero by showing their customer empathy. I want to make the agent a hero by protecting the health of their customer. I want to make the agent a hero by removing confrontation from the process.
So the next time you meet an agent, you’ll say, “Hey, I know a guy in the disaster restoration business. You need to meet him. He’s determined to make you look good whenever you have a claim.”
Rainbow International performs water and fire mitigation in Charleston, North Charleston, Summerville, West Ashley, Johns Island, James Island, Kiawah Island, Seabrook Island, Mount Pleasant, the Isle of Palms and Sullivan’s Island.
Whenever disaster strikes you remember, there’s always a Rainbow after the Storm.