Changing the DIY Landscape - The 7-Power Contractor

Changing the DIY Landscape

DIY means Do it Yourself.

Was a time in my life I liked the challenge of doing home repairs myself. I worked as a Tech and didn’t want to have to pay someone to do what I thought I could do myself. This was when I was young and money was tighter.

What I quickly realized, I could do it but not as well as my friends who were contractors who specialized in tile, wallpaper, carpentry and more.

Have you worked for your spouse or significant other lately?

I worked long and crazy hours at my family business and when I’d get home late and parked my van in the driveway if my wife was standing at the door waiting for me it wasn’t going to be a good thing. Either one of my kids did something or there was a project ahead for the few hours left before I could collapse in my bed and get a few hours of sleep before starting another long and crazy day.

And I was sharing a story with a group of Techs I was doing my Sales Power! workshop with about how much I hated to see a box in my home from IKEA® when I finally would get home from work. Mind you…this is no knock on the great stuff IKEA® sells at very reasonable prices but I knew I’d be scrambling to put together what was in this flattened box into something that resembled shelves, furniture or something else.

How I wished my wife had just paid up and had a furniture store deliver it to me assembled and installed properly in my home.

Plus, if I made the tiniest mistake with these home improvement projects right down to doing something like hanging curtains, there was going to be no end to the abuse. I actually liked working at my friend’s homes because most of them couldn’t do anything handy and their significant others thought I was the second coming of someone who appeared in an episode of This Old House™. In truth, I was not. But in the land of the blind, the one-eyed man is king and these people honored my expertise.

Where is all this going?

There is a change in the demographics in this country as I and my fellow baby boomers have reached the point we don’t want to do it ourselves anymore. We want to have enough money to hire you to do it. And this shift from DIY to hiring you is creeping down to the younger generations like the Millennials. They are both working and trying to stay working and keeping their jobs, or advancing at their jobs and leisure time is precious. Strapping on a tool pouch in this rapidly disappearing time of time off is not attractive. So, they too would prefer to just making money and hiring you to do it.

My suspicion is Home Depot® saw the shift and that’s why they changed their tagline from “You Can Do It. We Can Help.™” to “More Savings. More Doing.™”

To support that, I read a story at by Susan Gunelis that also speaks to the transformation of their slogan and the change that consumers have from watching all these home makeover shows and thinking they can do it themselves to wanting to have better things to do with their time than install laminate flooring.

People at the big box stores are smart marketers. They have preferred vendors to help people hire someone to use their stuff and install it for you.

It would be smart for you as a contractor to benefit from what they’re seeing in this move from DIY to hire someone. I’m not advocating working for the big box stores. That’s your decision and it should be based on a lot of factors.

What I’m saying is your pitch in your marketing and sales should be to reinforce what they, the customer, is not coming right out and telling you. They will pay if you can free up their precious leisure time, you can make it a no hassle experience, they can have what they want when they want it and if a problem occurs you’ll be back to make it right.

It’s a great time to be a contractor!

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