Other respondents (23.7%) mentioned using Facebook groups, Yelp, Review Buzz, and Nearby Now for promoting their services and tracking their reputations.

Though this is excellent, the survey also shows there is plenty of room for contractors to get better at spreading the word about their brand, services, and professionalism. The importance of marketing is still a practice most HVAC contractors need to learn about and practice.

It is easy for consumers to judge contractors who bring all these tools and instruments to the job as trying to jump up their price.

Survey respondents certainly told us that many of their competitors tell homeowners this. So, the need to tell your own story and get the word out is more critical today than ever before. This is the key to your market difference engine.

The Importance of Training

High-Performance HVAC contracting is not easy. If it were, everyone would be doing it. Getting technicians trained in the technology and communications aspects of testing and measuring and then sharing results with customers is key to closing more sales.

The Difference Engine can be the education you provide your techs.

David Thompson of Thompson’s Heating and Cooling, Fort Worth, TX, says, “NCI courses have greatly increased our duct job replacement sales after we explain and show the homeowner how their system is starving for air. We use the analogy of walking down the street trying to breathe through a straw. This is a great word picture sales tool.”

Others say the high-performance approach sets them apart in their marketplace. For example, one respondent, Beau Prince of On Time Service in Birmingham, AL, says, “I believe this training creates higher standards of work and accountability.”

Prince, a service technician at On Time Service adds, “Testing and measuring as taught by NCI is a more professional way of doing work. I feel like it makes our team more knowledgeable than competitors.”

Training is one of the most valuable things contractors can do for their people. Some comments from respondents were pessimistic about the cost to train techs who leave at the drop of a hat.

But most believe that even if that happens, those well-trained technicians go into the industry knowing how to do things right. Isn’t that great for the entire industry?

The Difference Engine of Modern Times

Respondent Mike Greany of Aire Rite Heating and Air Conditioning, Corona, CA, sums it up nicely: “As the saying goes,” he says. “If you don’t test, you’re guessing. Customers want to be more educated than ever before. They seem to appreciate the added value performance provides. From a company standpoint, performance pays!”

In the end, it would be safe to say that in the 21st century, High-Performance HVAC contracting is the Difference Engine of modern times. It goes far beyond the traditional up-selling and servicing of higher-efficiency equipment. By addressing airflow through testing and measuring, and understanding how ductwork conditions impact comfort and efficiency, contractors can genuinely bring value to their customers and get paid handsomely for it.