One of the key skills you need to build a security guard company is knowing how to find clients. This market is highly competitive, and guard services are always in demand. You must know how to reach clients effectively to succeed in this industry.
This article covers nine ways to find clients for your security guard company.
Why are you better than your competitors?
The first step in the sales process is to ask yourself – why is your security company better than the competition? It’s difficult to be objective about one’s own company. However, this step is essential and must be done correctly.
Your prospective clients will likely ask you, directly or indirectly, why they should choose you. It’s best to be prepared beforehand. Differentiate yourself by having a clear answer that shows why you are better. Focus your answer on specifics and keep generalities to a minimum.
Avoid answering this question by telling customers that “you offer the best service” or similar generalities. Everyone says that. Instead, narrow down the specific reasons why you are better. Maybe you provide guards that are specialized and have particular training. Perhaps you know an industry very well. These are just some examples.
How to find and get contracts
The security guard agency industry is very competitive, and finding new clients willing to sign long-term contracts requires dedication. These are nine time-tested techniques that you can use to build your business. None of these techniques require a large budget. However, they do require effort and perseverance.
Start with the first three steps. Once you complete those steps, focus on a handful of strategies that will work best for you.
1. Focus on a niche
The biggest mistake you can make is trying to be the right solution for everyone. This strategy seldom works. Small security guard agencies have a higher chance of success by focusing on one or two key niches and becoming experts in them.
Here are two examples. Agencies that operate near residential developments may want to specialize in providing services to property management companies. On the other hand, you may want to focus on offering security to plants and similar locations if you are located near industrial parks.
2. Who is your ideal client?
Determine who your ideal client is. This depends on what niche you decide to focus on and your capabilities. This step is essential because it helps narrow your potential client list. Consequently, your sales and marketing efforts will be more focused and effective.
Let’s use the examples discussed in the previous step (#1). If your security guard company services residential developments, your ideal client may be a property management company. You must take that decision further. Do you want to work with small property management companies or larger ones? You get the gist.
Once you have determined your ideal client, you can build a contact list. This list will direct most of your efforts.
3. Have a follow-up process
Making a sale during your initial contact with a prospective client is unlikely. Even if prospective clients like your company’s offers, they will likely have to follow their procurement process. Instead, they will either decline or ask you to call them in the future. This response is normal and expected. Don’t give up.
Selling is a marathon where strategically applied persistence wins. You need to have an effective follow-up process to do this. It doesn’t need to be complicated. Contact every prospective client that said ‘no’ or asked you to follow up ‘later’ regularly. Don’t contact them too often. Otherwise, they will grow tired of you. Instead, wait a few months (e.g., 4 to 6 months) between contact attempts.
4. Cold calling
Everyone hates cold calling. Businesses hate making and receiving cold calls. However, they can work well when done correctly. They are a great tool to build a security business quickly, at least initially.
Cold-calling prospects to drum up is difficult. This is why most companies avoid it. It is also why you can use it to differentiate yourself from competitors and reach potential clients.
Use the list you developed in step #2 with your ideal clients in the niche industry your company will serve. Do some research (e.g. LinkedIn) to find out the names of key contacts. Call them to find their security guard needs and explain how your company can fill them.
LinkedIn can be a great tool to build a business. They offer a Premium service that enables you to contact people in the platform that are outside your network. This is a great way to connect people who might be very hard to reach through cold calling.
Your initial objective is not to get them to buy your service. Instead, it’s to get them to the next stage of the sale, which is a phone call. Provide them with key information points and focus on on how your company can meet their needs.
6. Trade should your clients attend
Trade shows are great for building a business. Attend trade shows and events in the industry niche you want to serve. Focus on local and regional tradeshows since your clients will likely be local.
7. Niche industry associations
Join the industry associations that your potential clients use. Most associations provide ‘associate’ or ‘ vendor’ memberships to companies that service their clients. These associations offer several opportunities to meet and market to their members.
8. Government contracts
Federal and state government agencies are one of the country’s most reliable buyers of goods and services. More importantly, they buy services during good times and recessions. These contracts can provide great opportunities to grow your business.
Consider which government agencies use private security guard services. Most federal, state, and municipal use security guards to manage the entrance and monitor perimeters. The sales opportunity is substantial.
Fortunately, finding federal and government contracts is simple. The registration and search process are online. Winning a government contract, on the other hand, is not easy. Competition is very high because every business wants to bid on these contracts. Expect the process to take some time, and be prepared to charge very competitive rates.
You can’t build your business quickly by bidding for government contracts. However, it is a great way to grow a security guard business that already has some traction.
9. Covering a growing payroll
One of the challenges of working with commercial clients is that they pay invoices on net-30 terms or longer. Waiting 4 to 8 weeks for payment can be challenging for security guard companies that need money sooner to cover payroll.
Security agencies that can’t wait that long for payment should consider payroll financing. Payroll financing allows you to get an advance on slow-paying invoices from customers with good business credit. Most companies use it to finance the agency during the growth phase.
Do you need payroll financing?
Does your agency need funds to make payroll? We are a leading payroll financing (factoring) company and can offer competitive terms. Click here for a quote or call (877) 300 3258.