By Tammy Vasquez
For those working in the home service industry, having an established marketing plan is essential. It is critical to business survival due to the abundance of entrepreneurs in any given field. To be successful, customers need to know who you are, where to find you, and what services your business offers. Having a top-notch marketing strategy can set you apart from the competition and have your phone lines ringing with people making appointments.
For some in the home service industry, the thought of creating an effective marketing plan can cause instant stress. The truth is, marketing doesn’t have to be a complicated part of running your business. In many cases, the best option is to outsource the overly technical or specialized items to companies that specialize in the field. SEO or SEM services can be complex, so finding a trusted company with expertise is beneficial and gives business owners peace of mind.
The same goes for website management. Managing website updates, creating content, responding to comments, and other digital marketing components can be overwhelming and time-consuming. This takes business owners away from what they do best: running a business. Performing a cost-benefit analysis can help you determine whether you should keep marketing development in-house or outsource the work.
No matter what is decided, there are several things a business owner should consider when developing a go-to-market strategy for their business. Whether you’re unveiling your brand to your community, introducing a new product or service, or going through a rebrand, these tips will help you stand out from the competition and generate more leads for your home services business. .
Focus on messaging
Before you start sending marketing materials, ask yourself if the message meets your sales goals. Is the message consistent with the brand mission and does it create a positive brand image? Are you staying true to your brand? All of these questions are important because you want to make sure the customer understands who you are as a company and your values. As a business owner you want to sell more than just a product or service, you want to sell who you are as a business. This builds consumer loyalty.
Embrace social media
In many cases, entrepreneurs are in love with promoting products or services on social media. This is a common mistake as users simply ignore these types of posts because they see them regularly. To stand out and be recognized, use social networks differently. Use it to showcase your business in a fun way. Customers like to see their technicians at work. A selfie with the customer or a positive post about a successful installation will get more attention than a post about the next product you’re trying to sell. Posting photos is a great way to connect with customers and build your brand at the same time.
Keep your website up to date
A company’s website is its visual representation online. Before even setting foot near a physical location, customers visit a company’s website. It is important for business owners to polish their website as part of their marketing efforts. Make sure all of your services are listed and explained, phone numbers are accessible, and hours of service are posted. Most importantly, make sure your brand message is present on the website. People should be able to visit your website and clearly understand who you are as a business.
Claim your Google business page
Claiming your Google Business page is one of the easiest things you can do as an organization. Google is the most used search engine on the Internet, and it is essential that your business has an online presence. When consumers search for something online, local businesses appear. This helps make your business visible when customers search locally. The Google My Business page gives consumers access to your business name, location via map, star rating and reviews, phone number, and hours of operation. Keeping your Google My Business page up to date is an easy step and a great way to expand your reach with consumers.
Use outbound marketing calls
Calling existing customers about updates, service recommendations, and product news makes them feel valued. It also helps companies to stay in constant contact with their customers. Not only can this potentially generate leads and retain customers, but it will also make the customer feel valued. Outbound calling programs are a great investment in the future of your business and can help your team develop an ongoing relationship with your customers. Just call the consumer and remind him of the necessary maintenance.
Videos are a tool that can be used in all facets of your marketing efforts. According to a survey by Social Media Today, 69% of respondents prefer watching a short video and 87% of marketers said video provides a positive ROI. Entrepreneurs can use videos as a marketing tool through social media, their website, or other marketing means. A short video on HVAC safety or explaining tips for avoiding frozen pipes will get more attention than a simple post on the subject. Not only does this establish the entrepreneur as a thought leader, but it can also make the business more recognizable to customers by associating faces with the brand.
Marketing is a key opportunity for any home service business to expand its reach and build a brand identity in its market. Although some tools are more expensive than others, investing in the process can help the business grow exponentially. For a business owner, use different marketing tactics to increase brand exposure and increase leads. Whether it’s getting more calls to customers or posting a video of an installation, keeping your brand in front of the consumer will help your business be profitable year after year.
Tammy Vasquez is the senior head coach for Business development resources – the leading provider of business training and coaching for home service entrepreneurs across North America.