Reprise – Selling Fear!

The ADA is here to stay and continuing to lever it may be a key to your business!

Paul DelFino

In June 2015 I posted a blog on the HMI site title “SELLING FEAR” . I thought it was a reasonable discussion on the basics of how the American Disabilities Act can impact a concrete lifters/levelers business and how entrepreneurs should lever it.

Times and things change so I thought it was important to revisit this critical discussion lest we become embroiled in the hot topic of the day and begin to forget the basics.


We are clearly currently in an environment of regulatory roll back. I recently became curious as to whether the ADA had hit the radar screen as a target for regulation change/elimination.  Of course there were a few outliers but it appears the basics of the ADA which effect concrete lifters and levelers in not under serious consideration for change. It remains the law that, The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) of 1990 defines a ‘trip hazard’ as any vertical change of over 1/4 inch or more at any joint or crack.  


The National Safety Council reported that:

Falls are the third leading cause of unintentional death in the U.S., accounting for nearly 32,000 deaths in 2014, according to Injury Facts 2016®.

The risk of falling rises with age. In homes and communities, more than 31,000 people died in a fall in 2014. In the workplace, nearly 600 people died and 47,000 were injured in 2013.

According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS):

  • 65% of fall-related injuries occur as a result of falls from same-level walking surfaces;
  • Over one million Americans suffer a slip, trip, and fall injury every year;
  • 1 in 6 of all lost-time work injuries result from slips, trips and falls;
  • Slips, trips and fall injuries make up almost 20 percent of all job related injuries;
  • It is estimated that these injuries result in an average of 11 days away from work;
  • Approximately 19,565 people die in the U.S. annually due to injuries caused by unintentional falls;
  • According to OSHA, slips, trips and falls cause 15% of all accidental deaths;
  • Slips, trips and fall injuries account for between 12 and 15 percent of all Workers’ Compensation expenses;
  • Slips, trip and fall injuries cost employers approximately $40,000 per incident.

These kinds of numbers should help you convince the most skeptical of the need for repair.


Every entity struggles to keep the focus on Safety. Your challenge is to cut thru the tons of “stuff” out there and get your buyers and referrers thinking ‘trip hazards.” Sometime good marketing is merely informing and educating and presenting “thought leadership.” In today’s world video is growing experientially.   (Are you aware that it is anticipated that video will account for 80%+ of all web traffic by 2020). Why not help your prospect think of the need by sending out video.

I recently ran across this free video from the Safety Memo Publishing Company on YouTube:

Why not send this video out to your prospects as informational. It cannot be construed as overly promotional but it does help you send your message.


Are you a concrete lifter or are you a “Trip Hazzard Eliminator?” Does all your marketing material include hazard symbols and colors to aptly help position you and how you can help others with their risks and problems. Why not have a brochure in the shape of a warning sign. Do you really want to differentiate yourself?


  • Do not forget that the ADA could be your businesses best friend.
  • Do all you can to position yourself as an efficient alternative to law suits and injuries.

Last Point – If you want to see where the real money is; GOOGLE “Trip Hazard Attorneys” in your county. It is a fast growing part of the law. Be sure to send those law firms your marketing material since they tell every new client on the defense – “FIX IT!”

Paul DelFino is a principal of the consulting firm Opportunity Inc. For nearly two decades he has assisted entrepreneurs in growing their businesses, responding to economic downturns and merger and acquisition activity. He has consulted with HMI and RaiseRite for over a decade. His publications include “Avoiding Skewed Entrepreneurial Strategies” available from all on line booksellers.

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