How to Build Partnerships as a Gas Engineer
They say no man is an island, and the same could be said for businesses.
As a gas engineer, you’re undoubtedly working in the same area as some others in the field. Especially when advertising your services, it can become obvious how many other gas engineers you’re stacked up against.
But far too many fall into the trap of thinking nothing positive can come from this competition. The trades world shouldn’t be as cutthroat as some other industries, and it’s a smart business move to see beyond the ‘competition’ and look at creating ‘win-win’ situations.
These ‘win-win’ situations are what we call ‘partnerships for success’ – and here’s how you can create your own.
#1: Look at cross-promotion opportunities in other trades
A gas engineer and an electrician; a gas engineer and a flooring specialist; a gas engineer and a HVAC engineer.
These are all examples of two different trades that could hugely benefit from each other’s help. Domestic customers renovating homes or commercial work often require the expertise and work of more than one type of tradesperson.
As a gas engineer, contacting local electricians, plumbers, letting agencies, or other service providers and inquiring about a potential partnership could be the start of a hugely beneficial relationship. All you need to do is simply ask if they would be willing to promote you if, in turn, you promote them.
This relationship is so powerful because it captures extra business with little to no effort. A customer looking for an electrician could find anyone. But if you are recommended by your partner, they are much more likely to find their way to you.
You may even be able to arrange a deal in which a percentage of the sales are donated to the referring company. This should roughly even out if both partners are referring customers, but it helps provide an incentive to refer as many customers as possible.
#2: See if there are any opportunities with other gas engineers
A smart business owner can always see beyond the competition to find lucrative win-win situations. It might seem impossible to partner with another gas engineer, since they’re doing the same work as you.
However, it’s not always so clear-cut. Some gas engineers focus mainly on installations, and others on servicing. Why not set up a cross-promotion agreement with a gas engineer who specialises in work you do not? This way, you can help each other find more work without stepping on each other’s toes.
Similarly, every gas engineering business has a rough maximum distance they’re willing to travel for the job to remain profitable. If you’re getting a lot of leads in another area, you could try to partner with a gas engineer there. While you pass them jobs closer to them, they’d pass jobs closer to you. This way, you can both cut down on travel times and run a more profitable business.
You may even be able to target services that you do not currently have the ability to offer. Many small businesses and sole traders would love the opportunity to branch out into offering further services to their clients, but are constrained by costs.
For example; if another engineer offers power flashing and you don’t have the equipment to do it, you can offer their service and get paid for it.
Relationships like these could even mark the beginning of a fruitful business collaboration or merging in the future, if that is something both parties are interested in exploring.
Why partnerships work: a quick explanation
Partnerships like these (otherwise known as partnership marketing or partner marketing) are brilliant for 3 main reasons:
#1: It benefits engineers through a feedback loop of recommendations
These partnerships all link back to word of mouth and recommendations. They are by far the single most important source of work for tradespeople – gas engineers included. No kind of advertising can top a simple recommendation from someone you know and trust who has had firsthand experience with the service.
Getting word-of-mouth from another respected professional only adds another layer of credibility to the recommendation. By helping each other out this way, both partners can end up finding lots more long-term and repeat customers.
#2: It benefits customers through improved service quality
We live in a time-poor world now, and many of your clients value those who can recommend other professionals so they can get their projects completed.
When you can give them recommendations, you are giving them an ‘above and beyond’ service. You save them the time and hassle of finding other professionals and save them the headache of dealing with unknown tradespeople.
Partnerships like these are actually welcomed and loved by clients!
#3: It costs nothing and is completely risk-free
Partnerships are free marketing – It literally costs you nothing to set up an agreement like this with other professionals and can be more lucrative than any other type of marketing.
And if other engineers don’t want to partner? You lose absolutely nothing. It’s a low-risk and high-reward strategy that every gas engineer should look into – especially when they’re in the process of setting up and growing their business.
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- Visit our resources centre where you'll find more articles like this one and our free gas rate calculator.
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