The Keys to Marketing Your Home Service Business
Marketing should not be complicated. Anywhere you look, you’ll find different marketing advice. Magic bullets. Fads. Sure-wins. Lots and lots of software, media, advice and services to buy.
The trick? Focus on the fundamentals, and test what works for your home services business.
Being in the home services industry ourselves, we’ve experimented a lot. The marketing tactics that work are those most relevant to our client base: people who own homes and either need service right now or will in the future — and when they need it, they need it RIGHT NOW.
Other times, they shop around because home repair or cleaning can vary from a quick fix to a nerve-wracking financial investment. You need to establish a mix of relationship marketing and transactional marketing principles. A homeowner nervous about a problem with her house is paying you, a stranger, to come into her house — where she works and sleeps! — to work among her things and not break or steal anything. Oh, and you also need to be good at that thing she called you for. And to be nice.
Marketing fundamentals for home service businesses that need customers to trust them
In all of the digital and traditional marketing channels a home service company can choose from, there are three essential marketing channels that attract leads, convert them to clients and then maintain a long-term customer relationship (assuming you don’t break their stuff and you’re nice.)
- Copywriting (applicable in all marketing/advertising)
- Google Ads/PPC advertising
- Email marketing or email nurturing
This is not universal to all businesses, but for home service companies, these are the essential elements.
Why Copywriting is Important for Home Service Companies
Copywriting generates leads and converts leads to clients. Copywriting is not just text: it’s how your sales person talks with customers; it’s how your customer service rep handles customer issues; it’s how your technicians work with the customer.
Your website needs to convert its visitors. Your direct mail piece has to make a homeowner pick up the phone, not toss it in the recycling. A landing page on your website needs to be relevant to the service it’s selling. Radio talking points need a clear message and a convincing call to action to make busy listeners act. And on and on you go.
Why you would likely benefit from Google Ads, PPC
With search engines placing so much paid content above the organic search results, you not only need strong website content, but you need to get above organic results. Why? Because someone is looking for your service right now, near you. Google Ads thrives for home service businesses. The competition is stiff and homeowners type their clear intentions right into Google.
Getting their attention requires investing in paid advertising that gets you on search results when your organic content cannot.
Organic content is critical, but it takes time for it to take root within Google’s fickle, algorithmic ecosystem. Google Ads allows you to acquire new clients without spending more on marketing than your profit margin will allow.
“But aren’t Google Ads ridiculously expensive?”
No, not necessarily, even in a competitive geography and competitive industry. If you know what you’re doing (and, yes, there is a learning curve) you can establish a budget limit while running a robust campaign.
And, after you attract leads with Google Ads and your convincing copy that shows how professional, proficient and nice you are, in comes email marketing.
The importance of maintaining client relationships with email marketing
For service companies, email marketing and email nurturing is about addressing people’s needs before they ask for something. Because you’re offering a service in someone’s home, they are going to have a lot of questions if they’re a new customer of yours. If they’re a new homeowner or have never worked with a company like yours at all, they’ll have even more questions. Some of them they will ask, some they may keep to themselves and never mention. There are silent barriers that you can break via email that won’t topple over the phone, website or even in-person.
Getting those messages — both simple and complex — out to the right people, at the right time, in the right step in their “customer journey” you’ve heard so much about will go a long way. It will help attract new customers, keep existing ones coming back, and drive referrals.