Comparing Convenience, Cost Helps Sell Filtered Water Service

by Len Rashkin
Posted On: 7/24/2018

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When presenting water service, you want to position your coolers in a very positive light, in contrast to what the potential customer is currently using (or considering to use) to supply pure water to their employees. If that method is the classic bottled-water service, you might proceed this way:

"Mr. Buyer, our filtration water systems deliver healthy and delicious drinking water for a fraction of the cost you are now paying. Your current system, while the water is perfectly fine, has several downsides: you have to place orders, delivery people interrupt your workday, someone must check on what was delivered, the bottles take up valuable office space, you have at times confusing bottle deposits returns,  you deal with monthly bills and the need to lift those heavy bottles with the fear of someone getting injured or dropping a bottle, water leaking on your floors and damaging flooring or carpeting, and the possibility of running out of water before your next delivery.

"As I mentioned, your water is fine, but with our filtration system, the water goes through same type of filtration that most water processing plants use, just on a much smaller scale."

Note that you or your salespeople must be well-educated on the filtration system that you are offering. If the buyer asks a question and you can not give a qualified answer, you will not be credible in the eyes of the decision-maker.

I have always believed that seeing is believing! The cost analysis form accompanying this article compares the cost of bottled water service versus filtration. As you will see, the focus is on savings over a period of one year and three years. If your dollar savings to the buyer are presented properly and projected out to three years, you will have little resistance in getting a three-year contract.

The form should be printed in a light aqua or a baby blue colored paper. These colors are more conducive to selling water.

When speaking to the buyer, ask whether it would be OK to show them how to save significant dollars over their current method. Now ask to see your competitor's pricing of cooler(s) and usage (number of bottles per month), and assure the decision-maker that you will show him/her a much greater saving on the bottled system than what they are currently using. Explain to the buyer the purpose of the form that you will fill out to reinforce your statement. You may want to just state, "the substantial saving you will get could be used to offset your coffee costs."

After filling out the water form and comparing your prices to the expense of bottled water, which will be substantial, offer the company a one-month free trial of your point-of-use treatment system, to show the many benefits that you described.

You will find this technique very effective, and in my Office Coffee Sales Training Program that is advertised in this month's issue, you can find many other sales techniques for selling both coffee and water accounts.

I can be reached at (516) 241-4883 or by email at, if you need to reach out to me.

» LEN RASHKIN is a pioneer of office coffee service. He founded Coffee Sip in 1968 and later merged it with Dell Coffee, of which he became president in 1991. Sales at Dell topped $7 million. He also founded the Eastern Coffee Service Association and National Beverage & Products Association. He is a speaker at trade conferences, consults on OCS sales and marketing, and is the author of two OCS training programs.