One of our coaching clients recently asked me if I thought that advertising in a "high end" magazine was a good idea for his company. Generally speaking, any advertising is better than no advertising, but not always.
I was reading through a similar magazine for our area the other day, and came across an article talking about EIFS problems and solutions. EIFS is exterior insulation finishing system, and for those of us who live in rainy country, EIFS is to be avoided. I hope most contractors and homeowners in our area know and understand that now.
The writer, however, decided to explain some tricks to ensure homeowners hired the right contractor when replacing their EIFS siding. He said:
There are a few tricks that will ensure you are choosing the right company to replace your siding. Homeowners should request 10 or more references with addresses and phone numbers. It is imperative that you speak with customers who have had an experience with the company that you are considering hiring. This will ensure they're as good as they are claiming.
Once you have attained 10 or more quality references, demand to know the installation techniques and materials that the company uses to install the siding. Good companies will offer you: graded plywood (not OSB for resheeting), a rain screen system instead of a basic moisture barrier, stainless steel nails that won't rust, elastomeric caulk guaranteed to last 20 years or more, and high-quality paint guaranteed to last as long as you own your home.
If you know anything about EIFS installation, you'll know that most of those requirements are going overboard. And show me a painter that will guarantee their paint job for as long as you live in your home. I know folks who have been in their homes for 30 years and more. I had a good friend who just passed away at 92 and he had lived in the same house since 1965. I have a relative who has lived in the same home since 1950.
But this is the part that really got me:
Another point to consider is whether the company you are hiring is subbing out the work to another company. It is meaningless to get a great presentation from a salesperson, only to find that the sub-contractor installing the materials is cutting corners with zero accountability, and has no real knowledge of the product and/or the correct way to install it.
Since when do subs have "zero accountability and no real knowledge of their product"? The reason general contractors hire subs is because they know their work, both the product and the installation, better than a general contractor knows it. They are specialists. And zero accountability? On what planet?
So – advertise in a high end magazine? Think twice. Check out the magazine first, and make sure they don't hire writers like this one.