This has been a rough year for everyone. And the global economy, as we knew it, is but a thing of the past. Every single industry has been disrupted. And, from this point on, only those businesses that can stand against the tide will be able to come out on top.
Today, we interview David Seruya, CEO of the Home Warranty company, Total Home Protection, on how he intends to see his company succeed through these turbulent times, against all odds, with innovation and persistence.
Tell us a little bit about Total Home Protection? Who is your target market?
David Seruya: Our target customers are homeowners—whether they’re intending to keep the home or sell it—that are around 35 years old and older, with an annual household income of $150,000. Or at least, it had been for the past couple of years. We’ve found the most success in this particular age and income bracket, but I expect there to be changes to come in the future.
And, what kind of services do you provide your customers?
David Seruya: Presently, Total Home Protection is the ideal solution for any family that is looking to protect their homes from unexpected home repairs or replacements. We offer two combination home warranty plans that cover approximately 20 home appliances and systems: The Gold Plan and the Platinum Plan.
No matter what plan is chosen, however, our policyholders enjoy 24/7 customer service. Now complete with a custom AI-based platform where they can connect directly with THP employees, the technician working on their repairs/replacements, and get direct real-time updates on how the work on their home is going. This, I believe, sets us apart from the competition. Along with other efforts for full transparency when it comes to coverage: which includes any listed item that was in good working condition upon the activation of the plan.
What has Total Home Protection done to prepare for the difficulties that may be brought about by a post-COVID economy?
David Seruya: These are unprecedented times, and we understand that seeing everyone through such difficulties would mean adapting to the quickly shifting economy.
Specifically, we understand that not every homeowner will be able to afford even our standard plans (up to $40 per month.) So, with that in mind, our team here at THP has been exploring the idea of adding more affordable plans that limit coverage in exchange for a cheaper fee, worth around $20 or even $10 per month.
Do you have any advice to give to a friend looking to rebuild or grow a business in a Post-COVID economy?
David Seruya: The time for automation has come. If you’re looking to grow and scale up your business at such a time, you’ll need to integrate workflow automation and artificial intelligence into your processes. After all, the hiring of personnel and workforce management are quite costly, and oftentimes, not the most efficient solution. Unfortunately, it’s also incredibly difficult to find ambitious, motivated employees nowadays. And unemployment benefits make it even harder to draw people with talent away from their homes.
So, when you compare those difficulties to the sheer convenience and efficiency of the technologies of today… Well, the benefits of the latter are quite obvious. And, as a business owner, it’s your responsibility to explore all that and find a way to make use of it so that you can stay on top of the game.
In what way have you applied the advice given above in your business this year?
David Seruya: That honor belongs to our new proprietary CRM. A custom platform that we designed for Total Home Protection that will allow our policyholders to connect with us at full transparency. That means real-time updates on their repairs, direct communication with our technician network, and so on. All to provide the best possible customer service – while simultaneously reducing our operation costs and giving us insights on how best to improve our services in the future.
What No.1 principle guides you through your business?
David Seruya: Test everything… and never fall in love with an idea.
I’ve found that this kind of trial and error approach has been the reason for many of our successes… Not being afraid of failure, and just pushing forward whenever we can, that’s what allows us to keep going without ever looking back.
Name one thing that helps you both with your business and personal life.
David Seruya: I listen to a lot of podcasts! It’s great for winding down and it also keeps me well-informed on all the relevant news inside and outside of the industry that I work in.
My favorite podcast to date has to be Brad Lea’s Dropping Bombs podcast. It’s the perfect podcast for entrepreneurs looking to solve problems, push boundaries, and, of course, scale a business. Another one of my favorites would have to be the Joe Rogan Experience podcast.