Whether you’re in the process of launching a new home services business or already have one, if you’re not online, you’re as good as non-existent to your target customers.
With 97% of consumers learning about local businesses online, having a strong online presence is extremely important today.
For instance, if you have a local business and the information about you and your services is not up-to-date online, your potential customers wouldn’t know where to reach you.
Similarly, if the information about your business is not readily available to them on the channels they’re active on the most, you could be losing all your business to a competing home services company targeting the same consumers.
And that’s exactly what we don’t want to happen to you!
In this ebook, we’re covering everything you need to know about home services marketing, why it is so important and the strategies that you need to implement right away to reach your target customers with the right message, at the right time.
Why do you need to focus on online marketing for your home services business?
Counter question. You want more money, right?
If you just nodded your head, this is for you. And there’s nothing wrong with wanting more money or being overly driven to grow your business!
Here are some of the reasons why we think you need to focus on your home services online marketing:
1. Better visibility
Online marketing strategies focus on getting your business in front of people. Considering how 63% of consumers start their journey with a brand on the search engine, and how the top 3 search results get 75% of all clicks, home services online marketing tactics like search engine optimization and getting listed in popular online directories enable your business to be easily found by the right customers.
Think about the last time you needed an interior decorator and went physically searching for one from door to door. You most likely simply searched for ‘best interior decorator near me’.
Well, that’s how things work now!
2. More customers
Whether it’s a one-page website, being present in a directory, a review site, social media platforms or the search engine, focusing on online marketing for home services gets you more visibility and hence customers.
It’s like making sure that your advertising posters are in the right lanes to be noticed, without actually having to walk around with them, trying not to get caught for damaging public property. Ouch!
3. Improved local presence
Did you know that when you’re searching for a product or service on the search engines, they use your IP to detect the location? This helps the search engine provide relevant, local results. But you can’t possibly be moving door to door to promote your home services business and hope to be picked up for the right search results.
Focusing on online marketing for your home services business gives you exposure in an audience that is the most likely to become your customers. Take for example the Google My Business profile you last referred to while choosing a deep house cleaning service provider.
4. Increased authority
Let’s face it, you’re not the only one offering home services. You could be offering better services, but your potential customers don’t know that. That’s where online marketing comes in to help change the way your business is perceived by prospects.
For example, your business offers deep house cleaning services. Now instead of just endlessly promoting your discounts, you choose to write about the best practices one should follow at home even after deep cleaning, the search engine rewards you with brownie points, ranking you higher. And this results in you winning the position of an industry expert in the eyes of the consumers who find it on the search engine!
With online marketing for your home services, you don’t have to go convincing people how you’re better.
5. In-person visitors and appointments
When you establish a strong online presence for your home services business, you don’t just see website or profile traffic. You actually see prospects walking right up to you to book appointments and schedule services.
You don’t have to go chasing prospects to make sales!
6. Long-lasting relationships
Yes, online marketing helps you grow your home services business and gets you more customers. But what it also does is give you a platform to remain connected with your customers and build strong relationships.
Considering how average repeat customers spend 67% more than a new customer, and how a 5% increase in customer retention could lead to an increase in profits by 25-95%, we think this makes for another concrete reason to focus on your online marketing.
While online marketing is promising, it can go from exciting to overwhelming really soon. When you get started, you stumble upon so many platforms that your target customers are on that you start to fumble.
You don’t know where you should be creating your profile. You don’t know what your website needs to include. You don’t know how prospects search for home services such as yours. You don’t know what kind of content will set you apart from your competitors.
And worse? You don’t know how to keep up on all fronts and you start to lose track of your leads, leaving money on the table.
So what do you do? Where do you begin?
6 steps to marketing your home services business like a rockstar
Step 1 - Identify your customers, what they’re looking for and get on the search engine!
Before you start marketing, you need to figure out who you're marketing to. Without an understanding of your customers, you're basically just throwing everything at the wall without any insights on what will work.
Build your customer persona, identifying the different characteristics of your potential customer. You can use leading questions to understand more about them, like what their budget is, what their pain point is, etc.
Here’s a simple example of a buyer persona:
Once you’ve built a persona, you can use a keyword research tool to find relevant keywords and questions used by your potential customers. You even conduct an audit on the kind of content your customers flock to. Just make a Google search using your identified keywords and analyze the top results and frequently asked questions to get a better picture of what customers are looking for and responding to.
Or even better, use the Keyword Planner to uncover other related keywords/ phrases that your target market uses to search for your services.
By identifying your potential customers, you can plan your marketing around their interests and preferences and cater to their specific needs, increasing your chances of acquiring new customers.
Step 2 - Establish authority, build trust and generate more leads with content marketing
Content marketing is a powerful and sustainable marketing strategy, letting you educate your customers, address their concerns, and build a long-term relationship with them. With content marketing, you aren’t pushing your products, making customers less hesitant to read what you have to say.
With your industry expertise, you can give expert advice to your potential customers, provide free advice without any strings attached, and make your potential customers eager to read more content from you.
When creating content, here are some best practices you can follow to grow your business:
- Create content consistently. When sharing content on a regular basis, you can make your customers eager to hear from you and build your reach organically.
- Be authentic in your content. Don’t create content for the sake of it. Instead, when sharing a content piece, ensure that there are a few compelling takeaways that the customer can use immediately, and reap benefits from.
- Establish your authority. You don’t need to talk about everything related to your topic. Instead, it would be better to focus on a niche and establish yourself as an expert on that specific topic. This way, you’ll be trusted for your specialization.
- Experiment with content. Your prospects consume information differently. So make sure you dabble with different content formats checklists, videos, how-tos and more.
Here’s an example of content marketing in the home services industry:
Step 3 - Get your business in front of your customers on social media and online directories
Just creating content won’t do! While your brand will get indexed on search engines, you still need to grab the attention of your customers.
Customers are easier to reach and market to with social platforms and directories. Share and repurpose your content on social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter, bringing more visibility to your business and its services.
You can also list your services within relevant online directories. Since these directories are made for easy reference, your potential customers can easily find you when they search for solutions similar to what you provide.
Step 4 - Push your home services to the forefront and generate more leads with smart advertising
Organic traffic is great. But sometimes it’s the extra push that you give the business that gets you in front of your customers (faster). This is where advertising on search and social media comes in.
Here’s an example on a home services advertising campaign on search:
Now every customer is different. How they choose to interact with your business or how they search for home services such as yours, is going to be different too. You can’t possibly be advertising across every digital channel and directory out there!
You need to automate your marketing and advertising campaigns in such a way that they get your value proposition in front of the right people, at the right time.
So divide your budget across all lead generation platforms to reach a wider audience. Optimize the spend per platform based on the leads generated from your campaigns and the conversion rate per channel. But to be able to do so, you’re going to need two things on your side:
- The right kind of offer that makes the prospect see value in your home services (offer a free consultation, a free trial, freebie or a workshop)
- The right technology stack to auto-optimize your campaign across all platforms (ability to learn from market data, auto-optimization, backed by marketing experts)
Step 5 - Nurture your leads and them to turn them into appointments and bookings
When you go online and start to establish a presence for your business, you’ll see that most of your prospect customers choose to interact with you online too. Gone are the days when most would pick up the phone to call you or drop you a message to book an appointment. They’d rather submit a quick form and let you be the conversation starter.
While content marketing and your advertising campaigns will do the lead generation for you, what happens next is what determines your success.
50% of the leads go with the business that responds first. But 85% of them won’t respond to your emails or phone calls. That’s where you plug in a growth hack to nurturing your leads.
Take the text message first approach and set up smart automations to follow up with them. Rope in phone reps to help you strike a timely conversation with the leads as soon as they make an interaction. Let them be the first ones to speak to the prospect, understand their needs and qualify them for you before you make your offering.
But don’t stop there. Connect your calendar to your marketing automation suite and CRM to sync your information about availability to book meetings with your soon-to-be customers.
We say “customers” because this text-first approach along with the mix of automations and phone rep expertise has time and again delivered a 91% success rate.
Step 6 - Delight your customers and make sure you get reviews
Once you start delivering home services to the leads you generated through online marketing, make sure delighting your customers is of utmost priority to you.
While we have no doubts that you’ll do your best, it’s also great to document this delight by requesting them for ratings and reviews on the services delivered on your social media profiles, directory listings or simply your very own website.
These reviews and ratings act as social proof, doing half the convincing while selling your services. We found that home service businesses with social proof on their side got 15% more conversions than those that didn’t focus on getting their customers to speak for them.
Market your services with smart strategies to acquire and retain customers
As a business in a competitive industry, you need to be able to stay updated with the latest online marketing strategies and consumer trends.
Your analytics can tell you a lot about the changing needs of your customers, which ads and content they are responding to, and even what they are looking for.
Tap into this data and optimize your approach to deliver better experiences for your customers and increase opportunities for your brand to acquiring new customers.