As a professional plumber, you know your way around a u-bend, but do you know the best way to market your business and establish authority in your industry?
Home service professionals often spend so much time overseeing their crew, making appointments, and taking care of business that they are too busy to devote time and resources to marketing their operations. Plumbing internet marketing is the key to success, and it’s easier than you may think.
Digital marketing, including building a plumbing website, may seem overwhelming — especially when your days are already filled with jobs — but today’s online tools and guidance make it easier than ever. With this quick guide, you can start benefiting from online marketing right away.
The five essential online marketing strategies for a plumber are:
- Create a mobile-responsive website
- Commit to email marketing
- Pick a primary social media channel
- Manage your online reviews
- Start a simple blog
Start by creating an action plan for your online marketing strategy, and then set a timeframe to complete each action. Here’s a closer look at how to accomplish these five strategies.
1. Create a mobile-responsive website
Many home service businesses do not have a website, but having your own website gives you an advantage when potential clients search for plumbers in your area. Whether they are looking through a search engine like Google or asking their friends for recommendations through social media, your future customers will likely look up your website to get more information before calling to make an appointment.
Your website doesn’t have to be fancy, but it should be mobile-responsive. This means that the website will be just as easy to scroll through and navigate on a smartphone as it is on a desktop.
Try Constant Contact’s Website Builder tool to get your site up and running in just minutes.
When building your website, include at least four pages:
- Home Page: welcomes your future customer
- About Us Page: tells your story while sharing your experience, training, and expertise
- Services Page: provides an opportunity to make visitors aware of all the services you offer
- Contact Us Page: includes your address, phone number, and any other methods of contact
You can always add more later, but these pages should be your first priority.
2. Commit to email marketing
How are you gathering information about your current customers? Make sure that your billing and scheduling processes include a request for your customers’ email addresses, as you can use that valuable information to stay top-of-mind when they need your services.
Email marketing typically yields a high ROI, or return on investment, compared to other marketing initiatives. You can maximize the impact of your email marketing efforts by providing customers with something of value. In addition to keeping them up to date on your new offerings, consider providing useful content like tips for preventative maintenance or relevant community information.
Templates are available to make a professional-looking email quickly, so there’s no need to become a marketing expert. Along with growing your email list, you should focus on consistency. Send an email at least once a month to your customers, even if it’s just a holiday greeting.
3. Pick a primary social media channel
To turn social media from a time-suck into a useful outreach platform for your business, you’ll need to select a primary social media channel and keep it consistent.
It’s essential to select a social media platform that your target demographic actually uses. If you’re not sure which one to pick, you can simply ask which platform they prefer as part of a survey.
Once you’ve chosen Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, LinkedIn, Pinterest, or another platform, it’s important to keep your social media presence consistently updated. Make a business page with your business name, share industry news, post pictures from recent remodeling jobs, and highlight your business’ unique values and strengths.
While it’s not necessary to post every day, you should still engage your followers regularly. This is a good opportunity to ask customers for reviews or testimonials of your work.
4. Manage your online reviews
Today’s referrals come not just from friends and family, but also from reviews online. To attract as many new clients as possible, you’ll need to manage your online reviews.
To start, claim your business through Google My Business, Yelp, Angie’s List, and other platforms that people use to search for home service professionals in your area. For each of these online listings, double-check that the spelling of your business name, address, phone number, and website are all listed correctly. Add in as much detail as possible.
Then, check your reviews. Take the time to thoughtfully respond to each review, whether negative or positive. If a review is positive, you can thank your customer for trusting you with their project.
If it’s negative, you should remain professional. Acknowledge the complaint and apologize for their disappointment without making excuses. Then, offer to further discuss the issue offline by providing your phone number.
Your future customers understand that not everything goes right on the job, but they will appreciate your customer service efforts. Try to reply to reviews as quickly as possible, and don’t forget to ask your satisfied customers to write something on your behalf.
5. Start a simple blog
Content marketing is an effective way to position yourself as an expert in your industry. If you utilize search engine optimization or SEO, you can also rank higher organically when people search for the keywords you include in your blog. For example, if they search “fix a leaky faucet,” you can use that exact phrase for the Google algorithm to notice you.
Add a page to your website to highlight your blog. Think about common questions your customers ask and use your blog to answer them. For example, you might offer the top five best remodeling ideas based on your experience or give DIY tips to help prevent future plumbing problems.
Get creative, have fun, and publish on a regular basis. You can share what you’ve written on your business’ social media page.
Bonus strategy: paid advertisements
Digital marketing can take time before you see the results of your work. However, you can get more leads faster if you’re able to create a marketing budget for paid digital advertisements.
Consider Facebook Ads or Google My Business as platforms for paid ad campaigns, which can be targeted effectively for the exact demographics you seek for future customers.
While these two differ on the backend when it comes to advertisement setup, it’s worth the effort to familiarize yourself with both — doing so will enable you to share effective messages and images with as many current and future customers as possible. Even if you only use one, you’ll still see better results than you would by using outdated newspaper or phone book ads.
Want to learn more about paid advertisements and digital marketing in general? Check out Constant Contact’s The Download. This free marketing guide for home and building services will help you make sense of online marketing.