Companies charging higher prices must look different from the crowd of competitors. This applies to car dealerships, restaurants, clothing stores, and carpet cleaning companies.

Consumers need to be able to easily identify businesses offering higher levels of professional service. Since there are far more low-level cleaners, high-priced companies must clearly communicate that they offer more. If interested consumers cannot readily find what they are looking for, they will end up settling for a lower-priced company.

It is equally important for budget-minded consumers to realize when they are dealing with the wrong company for their needs. Both sides waste time when they are mismatched and the business owner attempts to justify having higher prices.

Help quality-minded consumers

Consumers expect more expensive companies to look the part. The company image and sales message are the only things consumers see when choosing a company.

Purchase decisions are based strictly on that image and sales message.

Everything a consumer sees creates the company image in his or her mind. The appearance of the vehicle, technicians, printed marketing materials, website and advertising are major factors when potential customers make critical judgments.

Consumers are looking for a company that provides more than typical cleaning services. They want a long-term relationship with a company that will solve a repeating maintenance need in a professional and pleasant way. These customers care about their home and know how much grief a careless workman can cause.

They are intimately aware that good help is hard to find and are willing to pay for the best if they can find it.

Images and messages to avoid

In order to justify charging higher prices, the company must avoid the look and message of a lower-level service company. Below is a list of strong indicators for a consumer that the company is not intending to work in nice homes.

  • Company names that suggest affordability, a speedy response, heavy-duty cleaning and masculine themes.
  • Poor writing, bad grammar and typos.
  • Inconsistency of logo, style and message suggest a lack of attention to detail.
  • An emphasis on low price and a focus on equipment.
  • Photos of commercial jobs or extreme soiling conditions. These cause consumers to wonder if the company knows how to work in a nice house.
  • While all companies should offer a satisfaction guarantee, over emphasizing it tends to make consumers think that they may need to use it. This lessens confidence.

Positive images and messages

The above list contains easy disqualifiers used to eliminate companies from consideration.

Companies that remain under consideration by high-end consumers also emphasize their strengths. Consider the following indicators that reinforce the idea that a company might be worth the higher price.

  • The company must appear clean, modern and organized. The customer is looking for a cleaning company, so these characteristics are key.
  • The company should appear confident in its knowledge of and expertise in the services it offers.
  • The company name is descriptive of cleaning a nice home and includes words such as “elegant, prestige or premiere.”
  • Servicing high-end homes should be reflected in the copy and graphics used. Photos of technicians working in nice homes carry a strong message that the company is accustomed to working in delicate environments.
  • A female-friendly look is important. It does not help to appear as if the marketing was designed by a guy for other guys. Safety is a major consumer concern. Women want to feel comfortable with the technician who will be coming into their homes and sense the company is sensitive to the security needs.
  • Noting the number of years in business or technician experience helps establish confidence and reliability.
  • Displaying industry certifications, association involvement and social media endorsements sets a company apart from new or budget companies. These consumers are looking for the best. There should be plenty of evidence to support that.

Winning the best customers

Companies that cultivate the image of a cleaner that specializes in high-end homes are the ones that win the consumers willing to pay the higher prices. To look the part they must show that they understand the needs of these consumers and can manage the details of their own business.

Steve Marsh is the creator of the Be Competition Free Marketing Program. He is a 30-year veteran of the carpet cleaning industry, an IICRC-approved instructor and a Senior Carpet Inspector. Marsh is a marketing and business consultant who provides a turn-key program for attracting better customers. For more information, log on to