Curb Appeal and the WWW

I sold a James Hardie Siding job on Burning Tree in Arlington Heights, IL. several weeks ago.  Driving through the Burr Oak Subdivision I couldn’t help but to notice that the best looking homes remolded were Nu-Concepts Window Co.  (curb appeal has always been an important aspect of our company).  It got me thinking, why if we are the preeminent window and siding company in the Northwest Suburbs (close to 1000 installs completed) is our branding and name recognition fading.  Over 25 years of working in the area, a job on almost every street, 2 major complimentary editorials written in the Daily Herald and hundreds of recommendations   and the highest praise on Angies List  are we losing the excitement we created as all the others tried to emulate.  The answer finally came to me at a meeting I recently attended in Peru IL.  I was invited to tour the James Hardie manufacturing plant..

I discovered very quickly I was out of date in our marketing strategy.. I thought Facebook, Twitter and Blogging was for the kids.  The meeting opened my eyes to the lack of sophistication in regards to the web.  Because of this we have decided to refocus our attention to bringing our customers the history of our company, project information, design concepts and knowledge of product and installation to the communities we serve through the internet.

We specialize in the installatoin of : Marvin Windows, Climate Solutions Vinyl Windows, Certainteed Vinyl Siding, Cedar Siding , James Hardie Fiber Cement Siding, LP Smart Side.  We construct and custom build Portico’s, Pergolas and Cupolas with many design options.  We specialize as a leader in design planning.  After all if your going to spend a lot of money on your home, shouldn’t you see your completed project before you make your final decision?

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Gimmicks

I have a wonderful customer in Lake Forest IL.  They have been a loyal customer for several years now.  First, we installed several Marvin Windows and then about a year later a new front Portico with craftsman style columns.  Now they want to change the old retro looking picture window/awning window to a more simplistic craftsman style double hung/picture window/double hung.  Oh, by the way, these customers are shoppers.  No other company had our design insight and some only carried vinyl windows,  however all the other companies had special offers such as ” NO MONEY DOWN”, “NO INTEREST FOR 2 YEARS”, “FREE LABOR”,  “BUY ONE GET ONE FREE” ETC….. My price for the project, which included Marvin Brand Ultimate Series Double Hung’s and a Picture Window  with SDL grids and custom interior moldings was $4500.00 with 20% down at signing.  My price for Climate Solutions Vinyl Windows with interior moldings and a special grid pattern was $1800.00.  Company #1, the one offering free labor was $2150.00 after 3 price drops and no moldings.  The no interest for 2 years company gave them a price for $3159.00 with no moldings.  I can’t even imagine what they would have charged for a Marvin wood window.

Remember, “There is hardly anything in the world that some man can’t make a
little worse and sell a little cheaper, and the people who consider
price only are this man’s lawful prey.”
- John Ruskin, art and architecture critic

The tin man and the caveman should be long goneby now.  Free labor and huge phony discounts are just gimmicks to entice a potential customer… Great design and service makes us proud to be Nu-Concepts Window Company, Northbrook IL.

Thanks Steve…

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Mixing Products !

The core of our business has always been Arlington Heights, Mt. Prospect and Barrington.  However, when we moved to Northbrook, IL. we seemed to get more involved in Kennilworth, Willmette, Winnetka, Highland Park, Glencoe and  Lake Forest, basically the North Shore of IL.  What I love about Lake Michigan aligned neighborhoods is the diverse custom architecture.  From bungalows to mansions, from tudors to colonials each offer a unique challenge in design and the incorporation  of product that finds natural comfort in these settings…

Sure I would rather install a custom Marvin Window with beautiful thick moldings in a 75 year old mansion than a Vinyl Window popped in, but price is many times a determining factor. For that reason alone sometimes a mixture of product is a good idea.  For example in a two story colonial the living room, kitchen, dining room and family room may require an old fashion looking wood window but the upstairs bedrooms can have Vinyl Windows with beautiful old fashioned thick moldings.  By using Vinyl Windows it can cut the cost of a Wood Window by 35%..

The Northshore , because of its architectural diversity, needs more than a pop-in window salesman.  It needs a company that provides experience in design as well as installation.  The cost for expertise comes with our products installation at no additional charge..

Thanks Steve…

 

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