reputation 1

How to build a good reputation as a tradesperson

Reading time: 4 minutes

Building a reputation as a reliable tradesperson takes time, but it’s the best marketing tool you have - and best of all, it’s free. Former tradesperson Andy Simms explains why reputation really matters, and how you can build one to be proud of...

I’ve spent years working in trades, and if there’s one thing I learned for sure, it’s that reputation is king. If you’re working for yourself, then how you manage each job dictates how successful you’ll be in the future, with the success of each job compounding to grow your reputation over time.

That’s the thing about reputations - you have to think long term. No one builds a reputation overnight, and while one great job will make you a hero to that particular customer, it’s only a drop in the ocean when it comes to your whole career.

Building a reputation relies on consistent good work and attitude.

reputation 2

How to build a good reputation

The great news is, it’s simple. Only two core ingredients are essential to build a great reputation: quality work and customer service.

Here are some of the key things that you need to do:

  • Treat each job as the most important - Every single customer and job should be treated like they’re gold dust. Every project is another step on your reputation ladder, no matter how simple or small.
  • Be consistent - How you operate as a business matters. Know exactly how you’ll deal with your process from start to finish. How do customers contact you? How long do you take to get back to them? Do you give them comprehensive quotes? What about a guarantee?
  • Do quality work - Take care and pride in every task you do. Treat every customer as though they’re your toughest critic and will question everything you do - can you justify all the decisions you're making? Are you cutting any corners?
  • Professional service and respect - Proactive communication, taking your boots off at the front door, updating the client at the end of the day - small things that all add up. The more you demonstrate professionalism, transparency, and the idea that this client is currently your employer, the better off you’ll be.
  • Remember the adage - Underpromise and over deliver... always.

Remember, this is about you feeling good too. The more pride you take in your work, the more your reputation grows. Check out our article on the habits of successful tradespeople if you want to focus on being the best.

reputation 3

Share your successes

The thing about a reputation is that it can’t be a secret - people need to know about you and what you do for your reputation to grow and spread.

You can’t spend money and instantly generate a good reputation for yourself, but you shouldn’t be afraid to put yourself out there and make some noise about your successes.

Local word of mouth will always be crucial, but you can expand this in other ways. Using social media, building your own website with testimonals, developing a profile on MyBuilder are all great ways for to show off your customers’ satisfaction and can all start to grow your image for potential new customers.

Ask your clients to post reviews so other people can really see how good you are - Google Reviews are great for this but you’ll need a business profile first.

Think about creating a document with all your feedback so you can keep track and address any issues and collect testimonials to use in marketing materials, your quotes and on your website. This all helps support the idea that you’re trustworthy.

Yes, you can pay to tell people about what you do. But an excellent reputation means no more putting your hand in your pocket to get work. People will find you rather than you always looking for jobs.

reputation 4

What a reputation does for you

Building a strong reputation is practically a reward in itself - knowing that you’re a good tradesperson with satisfied customers gives you a huge feeling of pride and accomplishment. But there are other concrete benefits too:

  • A stellar reputation and the recommendations it creates are more powerful than any other marketing. When someone else recommends us, it’s “social proof”; we know they must be good if our friend trusts them.
  • Customers often don’t get other quotes when a job comes through recommendation, so it’s easier for you to land the work. You can also raise your prices in line with your reputation - people are happy to pay for quality and reliability.
  • You can build relationships quicker with customers as you’re already starting from a place of trust.

A good reputation is something money can’t buy, but with hard work and the right demeanor, it can be earned.

Growing your business