Just Started Selling

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Over the years, I’ve seen a lot of people jump in the roofing sales game only to get out without a single sale. Disillusioned, broke and hopeless they stagger away bitterly from what they had such high hopes of achieving only a few weeks prior.

Roofing Sales isn’t for everybody. Sales in general is a hard job… especially door-to-door sales. You have to be half crazy to go walking around a neighborhood and knocking on doors these days. For those that can do it, and do it well, the rewards can be significant.

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If you can’t do it, get out now. Get out while you still have time to get a paycheck… before they turn off your electricity, water or cell phone.

Here’s a recent email from Spencer in Kansas. He’s going to give roofing sales a try because, like so many of us, he’s had a tough time making a living these last 2 years.

First let me say thanks! I think I have read all of your posts, and they have given me a lot to think about. I have just started selling for a company here in Kansas. I truly mean just started… Tuesday. I am still waiting on all of the paperwork, email address, etc. I hope to hit the ground running on Monday.

I agree with your approach/philosophy regarding door knocking. The company gets primed leads thru a few insurance companies, but I think the real success is going to be found in knocking lots of doors, at the right time, with a positive attitude! Any help that you could offer would be greatly appreciated!


Thank you Spencer for taking the time to write.

I’ve posted several articles about getting started selling roofs and I’m humbled to hear that you’ve read them all, but here’s my little bit of advice especially for you based on your email…

Starting is the hardest part.

I’m not talking about getting your business cards or setting up an email address. That’s easy. Anybody can do that. I’m talking about getting started selling… making your first sale. Getting from “Hello!” all the way to picking up the last check from the homeowner.

Selling is like riding a bike. If you can do it just 1 time, you can do it again… and again, and again, and again.

The first one will be the hardest one because you don’t really know anything about selling roofs. You’ve had a chance to read my articles. Hopefully, you’ve been able to listen to the other sales people in your office or even go out with them, but you haven’t sold anything by yourself… yet!

Figure out how to sell your 1st job… on your own… by yourself.

It will be hard, but you can do it. Doing it by yourself, on your own, will force you to learn the business. You’ll ask all kinds of questions and learn more than you ever thought possible about the world of roofing and selling.

It will be an immense amount of pressure doing it by yourself… the kind of pressure that turns lumps of coal into diamonds.

Expect it to be difficult.

If you go in knowing that selling your 1st job will be incredibly hard, you won’t be tempted to quit when it doesn’t happen in your 1st week of selling.

Set a date.

That’s right. Give yourself a date… if you don’t sell a roof, on your own, all by yourself by that date, you’re going to quit immediately and go find another job.

Only you know for sure how much time you can give yourself before things go terribly wrong for your family.

It is difficult for creative people to work with dates, but trust me on this one… giving yourself a date will sharpen your focus and laser-target all of your efforts.

Good luck Spencer.


About The Author

Mike Coday

Mike is a retired youth pastor turned marketing consultant, author, speaker, sales trainer, and sentimental family man. His expertise is internet marketing...and bad Dad jokes.

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  • mandy

    Reply Reply March 8, 2013

    Yes i get alot of them who say oh i dont have roof damage or my roofs not leakin yet u can see it all in thwir gutters of hail hits. And i was lucky enough to not get a stupid one in a hurricane storm tell me their not missin shingles n whatnot. Lol anyway what i do when they say that n of coarse they have gutters is have them walk out n look at them with u. Jus come walk over here n look at this. This gutter has been hit hard….what do u think ur roof looks like? N its got us on a few roofs bc well they wanted to see whats up there. Lol.

  • Michelle

    Reply Reply February 19, 2012

    Thank you again mike, I got it now. I was thinking that was what you were getting at but wasnt completely sure. You have been a big help and thank you for “paying it forward” to the ones starting out in the field. I wish you and your company the best!

  • Michelle

    Reply Reply February 19, 2012

    Thank you Mike for the advise. I agree with you on not being able to take the potential customers to the next level. I have been trying different ways of getting them to actually talk to me instead of warding me off and found one that works rather well. While training all we did was knock and of course never went through the whole sale of the roof so im not sure how to proceed from yes there is damage and A claim can be filed. If it isn’t too much trouble could you give me like scenario and example of kinda what to do? Im a visual learner and once i hear or see it Im good to go. Thanks again you and your website have been a trendous help.

    • mike

      Reply Reply February 19, 2012

      You can waste a lot of time trying to “make the sale”.

      That’s when you beg, plead, cry and try anything to make the give up and say, “okay, I’ll buy a roof from you.”

      That’s just way too much work.

      I teach our people how to “tell the sale.”

      When you “tell the sale”, you walk your prospect through the entire process from calling the insurance company to picking up the final check… and how to get warranty help after the sale.

      People are scared to death of the unknown. The biggest hurdles you have are building trust and credibility.

      When you tell your prospects what is going to happen and interject yourself into the process, you help remove their fears and build trust at the same time.

      Here’s how one module sounds…

      “Well, Mrs Smith, it sure does look like you have damage. I’ve taken some pictures here on my phone. Look at these hail hits. Can you see them? This is why your insurance company is going to allow us to put a new roof on your home. Your next step is to call your insurance company and file a claim. Do you have a local agent? Good. He/She may ask if you already have a roofing contractor selected. If so, here’s my card. You should give them my information if they ask…”

      Do you feel what I’m trying to communicate to you about “telling the sale”?

  • Michelle

    Reply Reply February 14, 2012

    Hi Mike

    I have read alot of your articles and boy have they helped! I was hired by a roofing company 2 weeks ago, went training with their lead sales guy for 3 days then put out on my own. I have no problem knocking doors I knock every door that I think there might be damage or looks like an older roof. The majority of doors i knock want an estimate but the owner told me to tell them that its best for us to meet with the adjuster, go to bat for them and that we work off of the adjusters report and try to get them a new roof by giving them a discount of the amount of their deductible. We dont physically measure the roof we go off of the adjusters measurements, i dont even know how to measure a roof and i feel at a disadvantage. When i knock doors  I have heard way too many times that sounds too good to be true and pretty much closes the communication. I want to help people get a new roof, feel secure about using our company and feel like they have made a good decision but i am having no luck. I have also heard my roof is not leaking so why go through the headache of getting a new roof, we have a roofer and the door shuts, i just want an estimate or ill call you when i need you. If you have any advise you would like to share please do. Thank you for sharing all the information you have on your website it has helped tremendously!  sharing all the information you have on your website it has helped tremendously! 

    • mike

      Reply Reply February 19, 2012


      Thank you for your comments.

      It sounds like you are getting some positive feedback at the front door, but are not able to take the prospect to the next level.

      Here’s my suggestion:

      Instead of trying to make the sale at the front door, set an appointment instead.

      Gather as much information as possible (e.g. already inspected?, ins company, deductible, etc.) Set a hard time and date to come back for a presentation.

      Once you have your appt set, ask the lead sales people in your office for advice about how to proceed based on the information you gathered.

      When you find it hard to make sales, always lower the bar and ask for a smaller sale first. Instead of asking for their roofing business, ask for a few minutes of their time. Build on these smaller obligations until you get to the final “yes”.

      Hope that helps!


  • I have seen a lot of new door-to-door salesmen come and go throughout the years. The number one reason for people failing in this business I think is the “fear of knocking the door syndrome”. They drive around in their car aimlessly all day. Finds a house that looks “not too scary”. Gets a fast rejection, and jumps into the car again.

    As you say Mike, this business isn’t for anybody. But I think more people would have suceeded if sales managers had a better understanding on where the problem actually lies. There is no point of teaching a new sales rep how to close if they don’t dare to knock the door…. They would make 0 sales anyway!

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