Updated: Nov 10
The Gringo Has a Spine
"Hi, I am looking for movers" a man asked in broken English. He was replying to an advertisement he saw on Facebook in English for moving services in Monterrey.
"Yes, how may I help you" I responded.
"You are talking in English, great. Are you American?" he asked, excited and relieved at the same time. He was eager and happy to be speaking with a native English speaker.
"Yes" I responded.
The caller turned client was relieved to have an American mover in his area. His relayed the horror stories regarding moving companies in Mexico and he was relieved to see another solution was available.
"So do you guys rent a truck or do we rent it" he curiously asked. I told him we can take care of that too since we recently made a deal with a local moving truck rental company in Mexico.
His job went down smooth, and he was able to practice his English with a native English speaker. Word spread quickly of the different & safer way to move in Monterrey. "Its good knowing that someone isn't going to lock your stuff in a truck and try to ask for a lot more money than originally agreed" he told me after the move.
"To know the truck is rented and belongs to a company we all know let's us know that we can find our things and the person who rented it" he added. "and to have movers who actually move instead of pretending to move while adding hours is a bonus - you guys rock"
Moving in Monterrey, Nuevo Leon
I began to heavily promote our new way of moving and, in no time, companies were contacting us looking to make deals/partnerships and clients were jumping in from all angles - most of them wealthy and not really concerned about the cost of moving and more concerned about the integrity of the movers. The price, however, is on the affordable scale for the middle-class - and definitely a bargain for the high-income clients
Ayudantes Mudanzas, which is an incorrect way of expression the term "moving helpers" is the name of the group I started on Facebook. "I do not think the name is good" said Jesus, one of the doubtful minds behind the creation. I am okay with being imperfect, to me, it's perfect because it's honest and just.
Some clients will call and ask to speak with someone in Spanish, but when I tell them its an American owned company and I do not speak Spanish fluently, they continue in English - even if it is broken.
As the two of us tango with each others language, bond and trust is made over the phone. Without even thinking much about it, the decision to go with our company for their move is already made before even discussing the cost. Again, safety, security & certainty is what most of them are seeking.
They prefer to go with an American rather than a Mexican based company. I ask them why all the time. The answer is almost always the same: Americans are good at business - more trustworthy and honest.
The Mexican Connection
Other innovators and tech-minded Mexican companies began to take interest. We met with Muvit Mexico, another brand based out of Monterrey, NL. They made an app where movers with a truck can connect with clients. Their algorithm gave the client a quote based on the distance of their move and the size truck they selected. The client would click and a team with a truck would arrive in a matter of hours to handle their move at the quoted price.
They wanted us to be a premium provider for them; we politely declined the offer. Our vision is something a little different - more basic. Although we can provide trucks, our main focus was the skilled labor. This is were we would get a firm grip on the market.
We began talking to fire departments, telling them they can earn extra funds for their department while engaging with community they serve. Cash is king, and people were happy to serve.
In Mexico, a lot of people have small moving trucks (fletes) and even 3.5 ton moving trucks with a closed box & ramps. However, the drivers generally do not like to load, nor do they feel like hanging out all day while the client tries to load their things for transport.
We saw a great opportunity. We quickly became the go-to guys. We moved quick, we didn't mind buying the proper equipment to make our job easier, and we had a name to make as we built our brands reputation from ground up.
We were selective about the people who we did moves with. Eventhough friends wanted in, they had to prove that they could wrap furniture and move things without gouging walls or rushing a job that called for extreme caution.
"Come on, we aren't doing anything else today. Let's run some drills at your place" I tell Mario Perez, a lodge brother and a fellow entrepreneur. We would wrap my furniture, mastering the art while improving our service time.
The best investment for any business is in the self. We built up our own confidence by doing the extra work, clients could feel our confidence over the phone - plus the pictures we have online spoke volumes.
Posting Up With Clients
"Wow, these pictures are real. You are really the guys on the pictures I saw on the internet" clients would seem star-struck when they would meet us. Hug, smiles and selfies - clients would upload to Instagram before we would even get a chance to do it ourselves.
"Thank you for calling Ayudantes Mudanzas, this is Rome. How may I help you today" another call gets answered, and another eager client is happy to talk to the American who is dedicated to making great changes.
"I just need to move things around inside my apartment. Do you guys do that?" a client from one of the many towers in downtown Monterrey call and ask.
"Absolutely, we are masters when it comes to towers. We have the right dollies for tower moves" I ease their minds.