How To Be Great at Prospecting For Roofing Sales

By Mike Coday •  Updated: 10/21/23 •  7 min read

You want to be great at prospecting for new roofs, right?

Quick Summary

  1. Importance of the Opening Line: The first impression is crucial. Salespeople need to have an engaging opening line that resonates with what the prospect might be thinking or needing at that moment, rather than focusing on self-promotion.
  2. Understanding the Prospect’s Perspective: Successful prospecting requires empathy and the ability to enter the conversation already happening in the prospect’s mind. It’s not about the salesperson’s agenda; it’s about addressing the prospect’s concerns or interests.
  3. Professional Appearance Matters: Before a word is spoken, appearance communicates a lot. Salespeople must present themselves in a manner that suggests they are worth the prospect’s time and trust.
  4. The Power of Listening: Effective salespeople are those who listen more and talk less. They encourage prospects to speak about their needs or issues, providing valuable insights on how to approach the sale.
  5. Expertise is Essential but Not Enough: Knowing the product or service inside out is important, but it’s not the sole factor in making a sale. Salespeople must learn how to leverage their knowledge appropriately without overwhelming the prospect with unnecessary information.
  6. Responding with Relevance: Salespeople should answer the prospect’s questions concisely and avoid going off on tangents. Providing additional, unsolicited information can derail a positive interaction.
  7. The Risk of Over-sharing: Over-communication can be detrimental. Every piece of information shared with a prospect should serve a purpose, guiding them closer to making a decision.
  8. Customized Sales Training Opportunities: The author promotes further, in-depth training for those serious about improving their prospecting skills, suggesting personalized coaching or programs like those offered in the Roofing Salesman University.
  9. Team Training for Improved Results: For companies with sales teams, the author highlights the availability of comprehensive training systems designed to enhance the prospecting skills of multiple employees, contributing to overall business growth.
  10. The Journey to Greatness in Sales: The overarching theme is the pursuit of excellence in the sales process. The author encourages salespeople to aspire to greatness, implying that following these guidelines and investing in further training are steps on the path to significant professional achievement.

Let’s get straight to the point…

#1 Have a Great Opening Line

You get to the front door, knock, and then they open the door. So far, so good, right?

What you say next few has everything to do with whether or not you and the prospect will keep on talking.

If you’re going to be great, you have to put yourself in your prospect’s shoes.

What would you want to hear?

Your opening line has to be great, but here’s where so many salespeople fall short.

They have no understanding of what is great, and what isn’t great. They just don’t have a clue!

They believe they are great, or their company is great, or their product is great, or their roofing crew is great, or…you get the point, right?

Now, I’m not saying you’re not great. Maybe you are, but I didn’t answer the door to hear you talk about yourself and how great you are.

Remember, you knocked on their door. They didn’t knock on yours.

A great opening line enters the conversation the prospect is having in their mind at that very moment and helps them steer the conversation towards your service as the answer to their problems.

When you learn how to do that, you’ll have a great opening line. Obviously, every prospect isn’t thinking about the same thing the moment they open the door, but they’re all thinking about similar things. Who are you? Why are you at my door? Are you dangerous? When are you going away?

[Tweet “Remember, you knocked on their door. They didn’t knock on yours. #salesprospecting”]

#2 Look Like You’re Worth Talking To

As you already know, most communication is silent.

What gets communicated before you ever say a word, the non-verbal communication, is much more powerful than the first few words that come out of your mouth. They can’t hear everything you’re saying, yet, because your image is talking very loudly.

That’s just the way the world works! Don’t get mad.

Recognize it and change so you can take advantage of this fact about communication.

Even the Bible says, “Man looks on the outward appearance, but God looks on the heart.” Unless you’re selling to God, you have to look like you’re worth talking to.

#3 Quit Talking

Great prospectors are good at getting the other person to talk.

Until your prospect tells you how they want to be sold, you’re only guessing.

If you have an amazing gift for reading non-verbal communication and body language, you might guess right occasionally, but most of us need our prospects to open up and tell us which way they want to be sold.

Here’s a very important point, if your prospect is talking, they want something.

Your job is to get them talking long enough to figure out exactly what they want…and then sell it to them!

#4 Know Your Stuff

Knowing your stuff is important, but that alone won’t make you a great salesperson.

This is why great installers aren’t automatically great salespeople. They have to learn how to use their knowledge. They must learn how to sell just like they learned how to install.

Once an installer learns how to sell, they can be amazing salespeople, among the best, but very few installers ever learn how to make the transition because they are more comfortable making money on installations. Installation comes naturally so they usually stick with what they know and are more comfortable doing.

Even if you know your stuff, and you’re following Rule #3 (Quit Talking), you already know that you do not want to spill everything you know about your product or service to your prospect.

Most likely, they don’t even care. They care about themselves, not you.

Even if they do care, you won’t have to volunteer the information, they’ll eventually get around to asking you about it.

Here’s the rule: If they ask you about it, you better know your stuff. Otherwise, resist the urge to tell everything you know.

#5 Only Answer The Questions Asked

If you’ve had the same experiences I’ve had, you’ve watched in horror as a rookie roofing salesperson snatched defeat from the jaws of victory.

They had the sale and then they lost it. It happened so fast.

How did they do it?

They answered the prospects’ question and then kept on talking about something the prospect never wanted to know about in the first place.

Every word, every phrase, every sentence is a bridge to somewhere…

Before you open your mouth and answer a question the prospect never wanted to know about, you better be absolutely sure you know where that bridge is going because those bridges seldom go anywhere that makes you more money.

I want you to be great. You deserve to be great.

If you want more in-depth training on sales prospecting, check out my booking page for more information on working directly with me to grow your business.


P.S. If you have a team of hard-working prospectors, but you’re not getting the results you want, check out my Sales Domination System in the Roofing Salesman University. You can get personalized prospecting training for your entire sales team from me in the convenience of your home office.

Mike Coday

Mike started selling roofs in '95 while working as a youth pastor at a small church in North Texas. A decade later he transitioned to speaking at industry conferences and training outside sales teams. Today, he works exclusively as the premier consultant to roofing company owners who are driven for growth.