Successful Life Podcast

Mastering HVAC Sales with Tersh Blissett | Service Business Mastery Podcast

June 30, 2023 Corey Berrier / Tersh Blissett
Successful Life Podcast
Mastering HVAC Sales with Tersh Blissett | Service Business Mastery Podcast
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Show Notes Transcript

Join Tersh Blissett, a renowned expert in the HVAC industry and host of the Service Business Mastery Podcast, as he shares valuable insights on service-based selling. In this video, Tersh reveals the secrets to closing deals like a pro and maximizing your HVAC business's profits. Tune in to this episode of the Service Business Mastery Podcast for proven strategies, tips, and techniques that will transform your sales game.

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[00:00:00] Corey Berrier: Welcome to the Successful Life Podcast. I'm your host, Corey Berrier. And today, folks, we got Tersh blissett. Is it Bissett? Not bbl.

[00:00:11] Tersh Blissett: Dammit. Yeah, you're good,

[00:00:14] Corey Berrier: dude. I mess up Smith sometimes. So what's up, dude? How's it going?

[00:00:20] Tersh Blissett: What's up man? Long time. No see. Right.

[00:00:24] Corey Berrier: So look, let's just pick the con conversation up where we were going.

[00:00:28] What I was gonna ask you is you own an HVAC company. What's the name of your

[00:00:32] Tersh Blissett: HVAC company? Service Emper. I actually own two HVAC companies and their competitors. Service Emperor, H V C, plumbing, electrical, and Tristar Mechanical.

[00:00:42] Corey Berrier: And

[00:00:42] Tersh Blissett: they are competitors. Technically they're competitors, they're in the same market.

[00:00:47] One is high volume, low margin, one is lower volume, high margin, different client, different target audiences.

[00:00:56] Corey Berrier: So did you had, obviously you had one of them first. Yeah. Did you buy the second one for that reason?

[00:01:03] Tersh Blissett: I actually, so Tristar, we started in 2014 and my business partner and I teamed up because he was doing about 4,500.

[00:01:14] He had about 4,500 rental properties that he managed and when I say managed, he wasn't a property manager, but he. Would do all the turns on it. So every time they would leave, it was long-term rentals. He would replace the carpet, repaint the house and do all of that good jazz. But he didn't have an HVAC company to do the HVAC side of things.

[00:01:33] And so we teamed up and so I instantly had 4,500. Houses to work on basically. And so that was a really good thing. But the problem is that they wanted everything at $45 an hour. So it was a very, like, you didn't spend time there. You just patched and go and I started the podcast.

[00:01:57] I started Service Business Mastery Podcast in 2017, and it was really because I couldn't find, I was listening to books on tape, but I couldn't find enough to keep. To keep up with everything that I was trying to learn, really. And I couldn't find anybody in the HVAC world that was doing podcasts at the time.

[00:02:17] So I started my own. And what that did was allowed me to really connect with people that I'd ne otherwise never would've had. The option to connect with, and I wouldn't have been able to ask them questions and pick their brains. And so I was able to do that. And a lot of my listeners were asking, because Tristar was growing between 90 and 120% year over year.

[00:02:39] A lot of people were asking about how I was doing it, the steps I was doing it, especially since it was a very low margin. Operation. And so I was sharing it and I was like, you know what? I'm a glutton for punishment. Let's start another business. And so I actually purchased a business that was in really bad shape.

[00:02:56] And that was at the end of 2019 ish. 2020. I rebranded that company and that's where Service Emperor came from. And so basically, and we restarted. Essentially because I got rid of everybody that was working there. Pretty much all the clientele we fired and started over fresh. Would've been better off if I had just started off fresh and not purchased that other company, but is what it is and people got to follow along.

[00:03:28] Listen to that. So that was in 2020 and then everything happened and the pandemic happened and all of that good jazz in 2020. So we got to experience that as well, but. Along the way, we've been, we were paperless and remote from the get-go. Like that was my intention from day [00:03:46] one with Service Emperor.

[00:03:47] And so we had already mapped that out and we had put policies and procedures in place. We knew what we were doing well before the pandemic ever came to our front steps. So we end up spending 2020 really teaching a lot of other people how to do the same thing how to operate their business remotely.

[00:04:08] Corey Berrier: Interesting. So you're, so you call by call, obviously you're pretty familiar with that, did you? Yep. So you do that in both

[00:04:15] Tersh Blissett: companies? No. In Tristar we do not. Tristar is very much they, you print out your, not printout. They use they use ServiceTitan now. But they, everything is, you know, what your calls are gonna get the day.

[00:04:33] Like you, you know you're not to exceed is $250. If you get anywhere near $250, you just send in the estimate and go on to the next call. So it's pretty much the average ticket price is $240 and you just roll with it. You know, you're gonna catch, you know, eight calls that day and Right.

[00:04:52] It's, it is what it is. But

[00:04:54] Corey Berrier: you've hit the sweet spot for that. Audience, so

[00:04:57] Tersh Blissett: to speak. Yeah. Absolutely.

[00:05:00] Corey Berrier: Alright, so what about the other business? Do you use call by calling that We

[00:05:03] Tersh Blissett: do, yep. Yep. We Throughout the call. So like as soon as the technician arrives, they're checking in with the dispatcher.

[00:05:11] And that's a loose term dispatcher is really more of a service manager. And then after they've checked in with 'em, like tell 'em the age of the equipment, the, and the what type of system it is and everything. Once they diagnose the system, they check in again. W. Just via text message, not calling or anything, and, or Slack, I mean not text.

[00:05:37] And then they go, they work through what the best plan of action is at that point. Whether, what options to offer, how to approach the person if the. Manager we don't have a full-time like salesperson who would get on the call, get on the phone with the homeowner. That's a step that we're probably working towards versus having the service manager talk to people.

[00:06:05] But for the most part, our technicians are selling techs and they can present the options and then check in with the with the dispatcher. After that, after they've presented the options and decided on what option they're gonna go with.

[00:06:20] Corey Berrier: So I think this process is fascinating. I think it's fascinating because I'm surprised that it sounds like you got your processes down to a, you know,

[00:06:30] Tersh Blissett: obviously there's definitely areas to tweak for sure.

[00:06:33] But yeah we've been playing with it a lot over the winter, especially. Well, I'm just

[00:06:38] Corey Berrier: curious why a lot more people don't do this, cuz it seems crazy to me that if you don't have service slash selling techs why you would leave that gap of time between the service tech diagnosing, talking to the customer and then waiting for that se selling technician to come out.

[00:07:00] So sometimes that could be hours. May. Hell yeah. Maybe even a day sometimes. Yeah. That's a massive loss.

[00:07:07] Tersh Blissett: Yeah, it leaves a lot of money on the table, and it also leaves the opportunity for uncertainty. So like, they'll say, yeah, we want a salesman or comfort specialist or whoever is gonna come out here and do it.

[00:07:17] And then they'll, they're thinking about it, your technician's done a 10 temporary fix, or, you know, added refrigerant to get 'em through the night, or whatever the case may be. And then they're like, oh, you know, we're comfortable. We're just gonna let it ride and see how long it lasts. And then all of a sudden [00:07:32] you've lost the sale, you lost the opportunity, even present the sale.

[00:07:36] Yeah, I just

[00:07:37] Corey Berrier: see seems like one out, you know, and we talked about this earlier, but outside of follow up, that seems like the biggest gap I see in the industry.

[00:07:48] Tersh Blissett: That's definitely one of them. And it's not comfortable to get, because it's, you're thinking outside the box. The people that are doing it, it's.

[00:07:58] You're, you have to change the way technicians think. Managers think. Sales guys think like people who are used to going out into the field and doing the walkthrough and everything. They're no longer doing that really. They're sitting in an office behind a camera and they're chatting with two or three or five technicians, and each one of those technicians are there.

[00:08:25] You know, body moving in around the house and everything, and it actually is, it's way more efficient. The people who really don't like it are the ones who like going in and chit-chatting and spending two hours with the consumer and like to develop that relationship. Where now it's the technician who has to develop that relationship and yet, you know, all the burdens on the technician to, to be the one who.

[00:08:51] Gives them all the warm and fuzzies and all that stuff, and a lot of times I find that. The consumer trusts the technician, excuse me. Consumer trusts the technician far more than they tru Trust the comfort consultant. Even if the comfort consultant is like the best guy or gal in the world, the moment you say, Hey, this is my comfort consultant.

[00:09:13] And then they're like, you mean your sales guy? And then they're like, yeah, sales guy. And then they're like, oh yeah, this guy's about or gal's about to try and sell me something. So instantly you got a guard up and if it's a technician, and I've even tried putting salespeople in technician clothing, put 'em out there like a maintenance tech.

[00:09:33] I mean we've had success doing that in the past. But having one person be able to manage three or four or five people, And if you can successfully do it I've seen companies out there that do amazing things with it. We're not killing it yet, but the process is there and it can be accomplished if you put forth some effort and trial and error it.

[00:10:02] Corey Berrier: Well, you know, I talked to a friend of mine Nate, his name's Nate. I can't, cannot remember his last name to save my life. But anyway. He owns a company called Free to Grow. You've probably heard of them, Nate and Charlie. I don't know Charlie's last name either, but, so they've just implemented this process as a fractional option for companies.

[00:10:24] So in other words, they'll, yeah, so they'll, so they've got one guy, his name's Michael. And what he does is same concept. He just does it for multiple companies. Right. Multiple smaller companies. Like you're not gonna get a huge company, him do it for multiple companies, but like your one to five, maybe five to 10.

[00:10:43] You know, and I think, you know it's a fairly new process that they've just implemented, but

[00:10:48] Tersh Blissett: I think it's, so they're doing it fractionally, they're doing it for other companies. Yeah. That's a really good idea because there's so many people who don't want to learn to take the risk of doing it because they have to learn a new process.

[00:11:03] But if they have a process that's already dialed in and they're doing a good job of it, I mean, so they are essentially salespeople and they close the deal for the technician. Yeah, that's a really cool concept. It

[00:11:17] Corey Berrier: is dude, [00:11:18] and it, and look, it makes sense that, you know, when you said, well, if you try to put a, you know a any kind of tech really into that selling position, it's gonna be hard.

[00:11:31] It is gonna be hard. And I don't even know if it's just the fact that they're used to walking through the house. That is part of it. But I also, you know, most service technicians. Don't enjoy that process. No. They don't enjoy having that conversation, and quite frankly, they'd rather give up some of their commission in order not to have that pro, that conversation.

[00:11:51] Tersh Blissett: Yeah. A lot of technicians are that way. I've had really good technicians who have just left because we had talked about it. Like, they were like, no I can't, like my anxiety just won't let, just won't handle it. I'm like, are you serious about the conversation? Just talking about doing this? We're you're gonna leave?

[00:12:10] I'm like, man, that's crazy. Like it's wild.

[00:12:15] Corey Berrier: Yeah. No I totally agree. But look, they, you know, most technicians, obviously they're good with their hands. They like fixing stuff where I'm the opposite. Like, I'd rather just, I'd rather sell it all day long than I would. Try to fix something.

[00:12:31] I just, that's just me. Like, I'm just not great with, you know, that's just not my personality, so to speak. Yeah. Yeah. Yeah I think it's a, you know, I think they're gonna do really well with this. I think they're

[00:12:43] gonna

[00:12:43] Tersh Blissett: do really well with it. Yeah, if they're able to do this and, you know, make it work, like obviously you, I think you'd have a struggle if you are in the same marketplace as someone else.

[00:12:56] Like if you do two in the same marketplace, that could be a challenge. But I think that's definitely. If people are willing to give it a wholehearted chance, not just like half-ass do it, but just come in and do it flat out. I believe that you are they given a process too? Are they sharing the process, do you know?

[00:13:22] Yeah,

[00:13:24] Corey Berrier: so I, you know I don't know if, I guess it's all right for me to tell you this. I don't know why it wouldn't be. I have no idea, but I guess I'll find out. Yeah, so basically, you know, it's. You know, it is Joe's Joe Ra, it's his process, right? So the, so it's pretty simple. What they do is they fly out, like the sales guy flew out.

[00:13:44] He'll spend a week with The technicians and the company and the owner and figure out their processes, get to know them, which makes total sense. Exactly what, when I was working with people with their sales teams, that's exactly what I would do. You've gotta build relationships with those technicians, the service technicians.

[00:14:01] Yeah. In order for them to trust that you're gonna close your, their sale for them. And so they build a relationship with them, get to know 'em personally, and then it is really pretty simple. Like they just hand the call off, they hop on Zoom and. There's a presentation already there because they're in communication with the tech.

[00:14:19] I mean it's a no-brainer if you ask me.

[00:14:22] Tersh Blissett: Yeah. I foresee that becoming a challenge, that they grow so fast that they don't have enough people to manage these technicians.

[00:14:33] Corey Berrier: You may be right. I know that. Yeah, you may be right. You know, they. They've got one guy right now. I think they've got two more guys.

[00:14:41] Cuz I was thinking about going and working with them on this. Cause I think the process, dude, like for a sales guy, this process is a, it is a no-brainer. Like I gotta show up on Zoom present. Yeah.

[00:14:52] Tersh Blissett: And you're moving through these calls so, so fast. And it's like you could do three times, four times as many calls a day than you could if you were going.[00:15:04]

[00:15:04] By each house And doing a presentation. Yeah. I think they're

[00:15:08] Corey Berrier: averaging six or eight calls a day. Yeah. So imagine closing six or eight deals as a comfort advisor every day. Right. Opposed to the two or three you're probably doing now, maybe four now. Cause it's summer, but you are still working your butt off of those four tag on

[00:15:22] Tersh Blissett: sales.

[00:15:23] Yeah. And that, I mean, you wanna ask how people get to $11 million a year in sales as a comfort specialist. Like that's how it is. Yeah.

[00:15:33] Corey Berrier: A hundred percent, dude. Like I, I think it's a no-brainer. Well they do the same thing with their call center stuff, right? They, you know, they, it is a fractional call center, so they do calls for multiple companies and they've successfully done that.

[00:15:46] So, and they look, they've only been around since 2020. Seems like a lot of companies been around since 2020. It's a wild time dude. Wild time. Yeah. Right. I've never seen anything like it in my life. So, yeah. So what, so from the time that you got purchased your last the last company, I already forgot what you called it.

[00:16:10] Service Emperor. Yeah. Service Emperor. So you started out at X and then have, you've grown that business to what, if you don't mind me asking, 3 million. 3 million and the other one is more than that. I

[00:16:23] Tersh Blissett: would imagine you've had four and a half. Yeah. Okay. Four and a half. Yeah. It's a very and that one is very much it is just on Cadillac cruise control.

[00:16:33] It's just running on its own. Tim and I, we don't really do anything with it. It's there just to make money. Print cash. Yeah. Well, is it

[00:16:45] Corey Berrier: getting, so you're in a you're in Savannah, so you've got about the same type weather as I have here in North Carolina. Yeah. So you guys have been cranking probably for like two weeks.

[00:16:54] Tersh Blissett: No, it's been it's in the seventies. It's upper seventies here. And it hasn been house is still slow. Yeah, it's crazy. This is the craziest year we've ever had where it's the weather has not gotten hot and it's been crazy be, we've been using outbounding and all of that. To stay busy and we have stayed busy.

[00:17:19] One of the things is diagnosing the entire system on every call. That's something that we, you know, didn't do in the past very well anyways, and that we've stayed busy doing that. But yeah, it's the, it's not heat driven. We have not made our revenue because of the hot weather. It's supposed to be in the nineties next week, a couple days, but now it's been in the low eighties.

[00:17:45] Upper seventies probably. Global warming. Yeah, probably. It's normally in April. Normally April, may we're starting our first heat wave where we're getting into the upper nineties for at least a week.

[00:18:02] Corey Berrier: Wow. That's a tremendous amount of time. Yeah. To lose, you know, to lose, not to lose, I shouldn't say lose, but like,

[00:18:10] Tersh Blissett: kind of you are losing.

[00:18:12] I mean, especially if you were banking on it, if we actually had a commercial j a really big commercial job that started a month late and so it kinda was a saving grace for us because it took up a ton of manpower and we would've been overwhelmed with not providing wow. Service like we pr like we.

[00:18:32] Child ourselves to being, providing had the weather been as hot as it normally is, but now we're ready for it. That job ended up last week and so we're ready for that heat wave to come through. I bet.

[00:18:46] Corey Berrier: So let's talk about the wow service. What, you know, from your [00:18:50] standpoint, what does that look like?

[00:18:53] Tersh Blissett: Answering the unasked questions before they're asked. Okay. An example, just having a very clear picture of what to expect throughout the process. As soon as the text message goes out to the consumer that we, you've booked the call, there's a video link there that just has me saying, all right, this is our process.

[00:19:16] This is what you should expect throughout the process. Most people only change out their system once in a lifetime, maybe twice in their lifetime, if that is a situation where you have to replace a system. Then we're gonna go through that process and I'm gonna explain it out to you. You know, explain the whole process to you very clearly.

[00:19:32] If not good, if we can repair the, repair your system, perfect. If we're just doing a maintenance, that's even better. Kudos to you for being proactive. If this turns into something where it's like in an expensive repair, don't fret. We have financing, like having all of that out there in the get go in the beginning just lets everybody know that there's solutions to every problem that we present.

[00:19:59] If there's a problem that's presented to 'em and then the follow up after the fact. Whenever we ha I have it set up automatically so that anything between like I think it's 500 and like 2000, they get sent one gift card or a card and a thing of candy or whatever. And then anything from like the next tier up to like 3000, 3,500, something like that, a different.

[00:20:29] Gift basket goes out to 'em, and then anything above that, another different gift basket goes out to them. And that's all set up automatically just to say thank you for, you know, trusting us. And then if we change out a system for 'em, we have on their anniversary of their system. Replaced.

[00:20:50] We send them a card and balloons, if possible, to their workplace saying happy birthday to their air conditioning unit, you know, because it just, why not? It's not normal. So we do it and it draws attention to them and they're like why do I get, it's not my birthday. We know it's your air conditioning unit's birthday.

[00:21:10] We just wanna say thank you and also. You know, it's time to do a checkup on it too, so let's get that booked. And so just little things like that are, we have a whole lot of them, but those are the ones that kind of come to the top of my mind there. So,

[00:21:28] Corey Berrier: Dude, look, I hope everybody really paid attention to what,

[00:21:32] Tersh Blissett: oh, actually there's another one that's a game changer I completely forgot about.

[00:21:35] We have Mary she's a masseuse massage therapist is what she is. She doesn't like being called masseuse. Whenever we sell a system to somebody we schedule her to come. And she's a mobile massage therapist, and she goes to their home and gives them a massage to help de-stress during a stressful time.

[00:21:59] Dude, that's next level.

[00:22:00] Corey Berrier: Yeah, that is next level. So you must do things like that for your employees too, whenever they do certain things. CSRs or whoever it is. Right? So where, what does

[00:22:10] Tersh Blissett: that look like? Really? So like anniversaries of spouses? Yeah. We send bouquets, we send edible arrangements, kids' birthdays, we send them gifts.

[00:22:22] The. During our Christmas or not Christmas, our kickoff party, we'll have a, like the whole crew will come to like our place and we'll set up like a 250 foot long water slide. And [00:22:36] then everybody will just hang out with the family and everything will just hang out, have low country boil that kind of thing.

[00:22:41] And we'll do that, you know, typically twice a year because we're remote, we don't see each other in person a whole lot like. Physically in person. So we try to do that and then once a month we'll get together at one of our customers, like commercial customer restaurant, and have meals together, a breakfast kind of get together as a company-wide meeting.

[00:23:04] Yeah, that's super

[00:23:05] Corey Berrier: cool. And that really builds, you know, a culture outside of a culture.

[00:23:10] Tersh Blissett: Yeah, that's our goal with it because it's easy to get disconnected because we don't see each other like physically touch each other every day. We don't have an office to go into. We get on Zoom and so like when people are checking in and checking out at throughout the day, they'll, they can hop on our Zoom and it's like a.

[00:23:28] Digital cubicle. And so they're there. They can check in, have conversations, go into a breakout room to have conversations if needed. But otherwise they don't, you know, we don't really see each other in person, so that's kind of why we do that.

[00:23:48] Corey Berrier: And you're really ahead of the game having this stuff dialed in before 2020.

[00:23:51] So I know a lot of people struggle with. You know, I know it's hard to manage people that are remote. Doesn't sound like you're having too much of a hard time with it, but I think a lot of people do have a hard time with it. Why do you think that's just because of the freedom they get after being in the office, or what do you think the reason for that is?

[00:24:10] Tersh Blissett: Some of that is but some of it, like it takes a special personality because you have to be self-motivated in order for it to work because there's so much freedom that you can also. Attempt to get away with not doing anything because you, you went from somebody being over your shoulder constantly to now you have this endless amount of freedom.

[00:24:36] That's one of the reasons we implemented the Zoom because we found out. The hard way that we had one C s R answering the phone while she was getting her hair done, and we could hear it on the call recording. And so we were like, oh no, we gotta figure out a way to not that, not let that happen again.

[00:24:54] So, That's when we implemented the Zoom thing and everybody has to be on camera and checking in. And then we also use a program called Hub Staff that it actually monitors your activity on the computer. So it shows how productive you're being throughout the day. And like if you're. If you're below 50% productivity, like it, it takes screenshots of your screen showing that your mouse hasn't moved in 30 minutes.

[00:25:24] So like, what are you doing? Because everything that you're doing, you're supposed to be doing is follows, or you're supposed to be doing, you know, happy calls and this other stuff. And if you haven't done anything for an hour, you know what exactly are you doing. So it will actually clock you out if you go a certain period of time and you haven't done anything at all.

[00:25:45] No kidding. Yeah. Yeah. So and then it'll take screenshots. So sometimes, and your screenshot will be like, Facebook pulled up. You're like, well, but see it also forces you to take breaks too. That program has a mandatory like after you've worked four hours, you must take a 15 minute break that type of thing.

[00:26:08] Because it's easy for us to get into the groove, especially if you have a d like me and you're just like in it. And then all of a sudden you're burnt out after two days because you haven't stopped. So it really forces you to stop and take a break and breathe or, you know, [00:26:22] 15 minutes, then 30 minutes, then like an hour or something like that.

[00:26:25] I can't remember the sequence, but Interesting.

[00:26:29] Corey Berrier: Yeah, that mean that makes sense. You've gotta, you know, just like you said, people like you and me we're if we don't force ourselves to take a break, we will just power through for hours at a time.

[00:26:40] Tersh Blissett: And that's like today we start, we started our first conversation earlier this morning.

[00:26:45] I've had two other conversations, podcast interviews since then, and then now this one. And after this, I'm gonna be like, mentally I'm just gonna be spent.

[00:26:53] Corey Berrier: Spent. Yeah. A hundred percent. Do you? Yeah, absolutely. Well it's, yeah, it makes sense. Well, so it is just hvac, right?

[00:27:05] Tersh Blissett: Hvac, plumbing. Electrical. Okay. You commercial and residential.

[00:27:10] Corey Berrier: Is that hard? Okay. So that's interesting because that's a struggle for a lot of people. It is. It can be a challenge, that's for sure. It because you just like having the personality types that can self-manage well. You also have to have a personality types that can do. Hvac, residential and commercial or plumbing, residential and commercial.

[00:27:32] Tersh Blissett: And then there's some people that just can't, and we just, that person just stays residential or that person just stays commercial. Yeah, that makes

[00:27:40] Corey Berrier: sense. What are you, and I don't know if the information you know, I don't know if we'll ever get the right information, but what have you seen.

[00:27:50] Since you have all three and the tax credits, I'm shifting gears slightly. The tax credits, what is it called? The you know inflation Reduction Act. Yeah. So we're right. I don't know if the actual guidelines of that have come out yet, but are you utilizing that as a sales tool at all?

[00:28:11] Tersh Blissett: No the only reason that I'm not is because like I've had the VP of client relations, I think is his job of all of Johnson Controls.

[00:28:25] Jci, like he's the head guy. One of the head guys in Johnson Control tell me that he's been on the podcast multiple times and we've had this conversation about this. He's gone into super depth because that's his job is to advocate for us. In Congress that's, he's pretty much lives in Washington DC because that's how much time he spends there.

[00:28:47] And his name's Chris fourth, and he told me, and he's told me on the podcast, so I can share this, like it's so uncertain, like they're saying one thing, but. There's a good chance it's gonna be something else. Or, you know they're giving these freedoms to per state, so each state gets to decide how they wanna do things, and then some states are gonna base that.

[00:29:16] Their income are, they're gonna base how much they give out on the medium income of the county. Some are gonna be statewide, so there's so much uncertainty and they still don't know. They said that it'll be 2024 before they actually know what they're gonna do, and then they'll retro pay it for 2023, which makes zero sense to me because if I promise one thing and then they retro pay half that amount, Then that consumer's coming after me, they're not going after the government, they're not going after, they're coming after me for that, and I'm getting sued for it.

[00:29:53] So I, I just say, Hey, look this is the guideline. Interpret it as you'd like. So maybe, fingers crossed we're gonna get something. But it's the government, so I don't know. [00:30:08] And I don't wanna speak for 'em.

[00:30:10] Corey Berrier: It's pretty convenient. Somebody else will be in office by then, hopefully. Fingers

[00:30:14] Tersh Blissett: crossed.

[00:30:16] Right. But the prob the problem is that it's it's coming down to the state's decision on what to do. And so each state is going to, it's gonna change up things. Because here's the thing if I'm in Atlanta and our median income is, I don't know, let's just call it $50,000, okay? And I make $48,000, then I'll get the, I'll get entire, you know, $8,000 or whatever it's gonna be right towards my system replacement.

[00:30:49] But if I live in rural Georgia, middle Georgia, the median income is. Let's call it 16,000 and I make 48,000, then I'd get $0 towards that. So, so it really, there's so many factors in there and there's so many people who live. In a rural quote unquote rural county, but they work in a city cuz they're tr they're driving in or they're like me where I live in a very rural county because I live on 250 acres and I'm an hour outside of my service area.

[00:31:26] So like, I'm completely remote and so the money that I make does not match my income at all because it's. Vidalia Sweet Onion, you know, farms. That's what we have here. And so this very like migrant workers, and that's what surrounds us in our county so that the median income is very low compared to our service areas.

[00:31:52] Median income is much higher.

[00:31:55] Corey Berrier: Yeah, is wild. Dude. It's almost like, you know, I can name a bunch of things, but it feels like it's just one of those things that. Gets promised in order. Yeah. To get voted in. Right. And then it just never really works out. Right. It just, it's weird to me how it's weird to me how they can even, well, I mean, I could go morality, but that, I don't know how much morality the whole.

[00:32:24] Tersh Blissett: There, like the p loan the loans that they gave out to these, to businesses that, for one, they gave out loans to businesses that didn't need it, and then they denied businesses that did need it. And so like there were so many HVAC and plumbing and electrical companies that stayed working throughout all of the recession or the recession throughout all of the pandemic and everything, and.

[00:32:51] Just by the grid of their teeth did it. And they kept paying technicians. We paid all of our people. We didn't lay off anybody the entire time. And to get denied this additional loan amount just to. Have extra cash flow because you've used up all your cash flow over the period of two years. I think that's such a slap in the face.

[00:33:16] And then these other companies getting millions and millions of dollars that didn't need it. That's just, that is ridiculous in my opinion. But that's a soapbox that I don't, probably don't need to be standing on.

[00:33:28] Corey Berrier: No, I, yeah, I'm pretty sure we have the same feeling about this whole thing. It's pretty, it's ridiculous.

[00:33:33] Well, I, you know I really obviously didn't go this way, but I have to bring something up. I was talking to a friend of mine yesterday. He was, we were having very similar conversation and I ask him, I say, well, have you seen the movie or, I mean, it's not a movie. I think it's a show called

[00:33:52] Tersh Blissett: Utopia. [00:33:54] Oh yeah, like a, the European the English or there was an English co version of it.

[00:34:00] I think they made a, they might have made American version of it too with

[00:34:02] Corey Berrier: John Kza in it. I think so. A

[00:34:06] Tersh Blissett: couple years ago. Yeah.

[00:34:08] Corey Berrier: Like 2019. Yeah, I think so. That completely described what happened in 2020.

[00:34:14] Tersh Blissett: That's funny because I didn't even think about that. I think I seen it in 2019. Dude,

[00:34:20] Corey Berrier: go back and look to see when that bad boy was released and then go back and watch it.

[00:34:25] And it is mind bending. It is absolutely mind bending. I really don't get on this, I really don't talk about this too much on the show because you know, we all know what happens that, but yeah. Yeah. So I would just suggest going back and checking that out because it will twist your brain.

[00:34:42] Tersh Blissett: So the British version of it came out from 2013 to 2014, and then it looks like the American version came out in 2020.

[00:34:55] Yeah. Early, right? Yeah. Yeah. And so, And then it, the season two was canceled. Apparently. It was too similar.

[00:35:05] Corey Berrier: Well, the first one was, I mean it's insane, dude. It's insane. And it just makes me question a lot of things, which again, we don't have to get into all that because I'm sure, you know, we can talk for the next hour about that.

[00:35:16] But all right. So, Right. So let me ask you, I know you guys do a lot of automations and I'm not gonna ask you what automations you do specifically, cuz I know there's thousands. But Yeah, what would you say, you know, for the average, you know, let's just say the two to 5 million, the two, two to $10 million contractor, what's some things that they could utilize, whether it's ai, whether it's not ai?

[00:35:41] Right now that would help. That would help them to, you know, shore up some of these processes that take up a lot of their time.

[00:35:51] Tersh Blissett: Automating follow-ups, automating leads automating Google reviews. That's such a simple one. And automating the responses to Google reviews, it's that's too simple as well.

[00:36:09] And the way it's worded by AI sounds better than the way I worded things. So, and it takes the emotion out of it. Like this one time I got a bad review. It's been, it's is with Tristar and the hardest thing about a rental property is the renters lash out at the service company. Even though we didn't work for the renter, we worked for the property.

[00:36:37] Owner or the property manager. And the property manager is the one who said, no, we're not replacing their bathtub. But the renter wanted the bathtub replaced, and the renter gives us a scathing one star review because we wouldn't replace the bathtub. Our hands are tied like. You wanna pay for it? No, we don't wanna pay for it.

[00:36:56] That's why I pay rent. Don't give us the one star review. Give the property management company or the owner of one star review. Don't give it to us. But either way, I was extremely emotional about that, but I sat and I waited a day or two before I responded, and I feel like it was a thoughtful reply. But this is back in oh 20.

[00:37:16] 17, 20 18. So this is before, you know, you had AI doing things like this and what I would've given to have AI just immediately come back with a very thoughtful and very analytical response to their one star review so that I didn't have to do it myself. That's [00:37:40] just one of those things that I'm grateful that it's there now.

[00:37:44] Fingers crossed. I don't get any more one star reviews. We, I feel like we do a pretty good job avoiding one star reviews. We really, if I get a four star review, we're like, why did you, why'd you only give us four stars? You know? But we have I've built in tons of zaps. I mean, like we, we talked about earlier, I have like 3,500 zaps that get zapped every single month.

[00:38:09] But, and it's. Tons of just staying in contact with people. Those are some of the automations that, like the 365 day follow up. That's one that I really need to, I need to revisit it again because I created it several years back. And basically if it's system, or if the estimate's not closed, it follows up with the client for 365 days and just nothing pushy.

[00:38:42] Just a text message, email once a week here and there. And it's, we've closed deals. I actually have a, how much is $49,000 job that closed today. That is from that 365 follow up that we, I went out there almost a year and a half ago. I went to this house and this 365 follow. Just reminded her top of mind and she was like, yeah, it had, thankfully hasn't gotten hot yet, but we need all four of our systems replaced, or three of our systems replaced, and $49,000.

[00:39:24] And I just talked to her today about it. And so we're gonna, we're doing that on Friday and it's just because of that follow up process.

[00:39:33] Corey Berrier: So much money left on the table

[00:39:35] Tersh Blissett: for follow up. There really is and it's easy for me to forget how often, like how much of that stuff that, because the girls in the office they're the ones who hear it.

[00:39:46] I don't necessarily hear it. This one, they just happened to reach out to me directly because I was the person who went out and did the comfort consulting on the job. And but there's tons of times where follow up just. Brings top of mind. But the thing about it is you have to be very careful with, we also follow up with people we don't want to have as customers again.

[00:40:10] So you have to be very careful that you mark your do not services very well in the system and very clearly in the system. Because we've had a couple of them where the girls renewed them and the guys will message me and say, Why are we going out here to do another tuneup at this place?

[00:40:29] These people never approve anything that we do. We mark them as a do not service. They complain about every job we go out there. They only approve the tuneup specials that we do once a year. And that's it. And I was like, man, that slipped through the crack. I apologize. And So the, that's happened a couple times.

[00:40:51] Whenever you start building out automations, you just have to be very careful of that.

[00:40:55] Corey Berrier: Yeah. Yeah. That makes sense. And I can imagine, you know, being a newer, you know, being a newer company, normally it's really hard to let go of that person that, you know Yeah. Is pain in the ass. It's so hard because you think, well I can still fix it, I could still make it work.

[00:41:14] I probably not gonna make it work

[00:41:17] Tersh Blissett: a hundred percent, man. And it's, that's one of the things that I still struggle wrapping my head around. But every time we give [00:41:26] discount, every time we say, yeah, we'll do it even though that's, that customer's not our avatar. Every single time it's come back to bite me in the ass every time.

[00:41:37] Not one time have I ever said that customer is not our avatar, but we're gonna do it anyways. Has it been successful? Never.

[00:41:47] Corey Berrier: Gotta stay true to what you know, you know?

[00:41:49] Tersh Blissett: Right. It's crazy. Yeah, it is crazy.

[00:41:52] Corey Berrier: Well, ts dude, this has been a great conversation, my man. I really appreciate you coming on. Could you could you tell everybody where to find you and where to name your podcast and all that good stuff

[00:42:02] Tersh Blissett: that you already know?

[00:42:03] Service business And that's where like if you wanna listen to us, all of the links to all of the podcast catchers are there on the site. All of our social media is there on the site. There's even a little button at the bottom. If you have any questions, you can click that button and voice record a memo to me and it comes to me or Josh and we'll respond to it.

[00:42:26] And yeah. Connect on LinkedIn or anywhere else, any of the social media sites we're always there. I will tell you, I will forewarn you that you're probably gonna get AI responding to you initially, but eventually it will be me. And it's typically the same day within a couple hours. It's me responding.

[00:42:47] If you're talking to any, anybody on social media that has the at church bli identifier or whatever at me.

[00:42:57] Corey Berrier: Well, I'll, and I'll just encourage everybody, like when you go listen to t's podcast, review the podcast because it's really hard to get reviews sometimes and like it is, you got some great people that come on.

[00:43:08] And I'm not saying that cuz I was on the damn podcast, but like you do have a great lineup and I enjoy listening to it. So anybody please go check it out. And rate and review. Review the podcast cuz it's super important to us.

[00:43:21] Tersh Blissett: Absolutely it is. And Apple does not make it easy to do it. It's very difficult to review on Apple, but if you figure it out, please leave us a five star

[00:43:31] Corey Berrier: review.

[00:43:33] Oh, that's right. Well look, my man, I appreciate you and appreciate you coming on

[00:43:38] Tersh Blissett: today. I appreciate the invitation, man. It was really good hanging out with you. Thank you brother.