When it comes to online marketing for home services, construction, and contractors, there’s no easy button or magic wand to wave. But if there were, it’d look a lot like an email opt-in form.
I know what you’re thinking: “Email? Really? Isn’t email dead?” Not even close. As reported by OptinMonster:
- For every $1 you spend on email marketing, you can earn as much as $44. (That is not a typo.)
- 90% of Americans use email — and open it up to 20 times a day.
- Email has a significantly higher engagement rate than social media: 23ish% to 0.6ish%, respectively.
Surely, an online marketing strategy with that much oomph is complicated, expensive, and time-consuming, right? Wrong.
Email marketing is simple and affordable, and by leveraging automation tools, you’ll actually be getting leads in your sleep.
Follow these simple steps to get started with email marketing for your construction or home services business.
1. Invite customers to sign up for your email list
If you’re thinking, “Why in the world would anyone sign up for my email list?” that’s some good insight. To be honest, no one wants your “newsletter.”
What they do want is content that’s meaningful or helpful to them in some way. So, from the get-go, put yourself in your customer’s shoes. What might entice them to hand over their email address?
How about a free preventive maintenance checklist? Or a PDF with 10 questions to ask a home builder? Or a simple discount on their first purchase?
Here’s an important note: Businesses that violate the CAN-SPAM Act can incur significant fees. The law is nuanced, but with Constant Contact’s easy opt-in tools, you’ll never have to worry about compliance.
Ready to find more leads and get expert home services and construction marketing advice, all in one place?
2. Send an automated welcome email
Some businesses are hesitant to send emails to their customers because they’re concerned about “bothering” them or being too “salesy.” I get it. No one wants to be that guy.
But here’s the thing: When someone gives you their email address, they know what’s going to happen next. They know you’re going to contact them about your services. By pressing “submit” on that opt-in form, they’re actually asking you to reach out to them.
So don’t miss this opportunity. As soon as a prospective customer gives you their email address, respond right away with an automated welcome email that delivers the content or discount you promised.
3. Send an email to your list at least once a month
Shortly after your initial welcome email, send a second message letting customers know where else they can find you online — so you can engage with them in multiple places.
Then, at least once a month after that, reach back out to your list with a good mix of helpful resources and promotional material.
Please hear this: Your emails are not the place to go into high-pressure sales mode. The point of email marketing is to “nurture” people into a business relationship with you. If every email focuses only on selling something, you’ll turn people off. That’d be like asking your boyfriend or girlfriend to marry you every single time you see them.
Instead, simply add value. Remind your prospective customers that you’re there for them, and make sure they know all the problems you solve. Give DIY tips, offer product reviews, do interviews with your team, provide money-saving advice, and so on. Occasionally, run a discount offer or limited-time deal.
5 quick tips for creating effective emails
- Make sure your emails look great – You don’t have to be a professional graphic designer to create attention-catching emails. Constant Contact has done the hard work of developing construction email marketing templates so you don’t have to.
- Proofread carefully – Every email you send communicates something about your business, and poorly written messages full of lousy grammar and typos do not make a good impression. If writing isn’t your thing, get help. At the very least, use a tool like Grammarly to avoid big mistakes.
- Watch your metrics – By keeping an eye on key data like open rates and click-through rates, you’ll learn what resonates most with your customers. You may need to experiment a bit before you see your metrics improve: subject lines, lengths, layout, and even color schemes can impact how much engagement you get.
- Segment your list – If you have different audiences, create different emails for them. Segment your list into homeowners and commercial customers, for example, so you deliver content that’s 100% relevant and 0% noise.
- Consider other ways to use automation – Your welcome email series is only the beginning! Automation tools make it easy to follow up with prospects who respond to your calls to action— clicking a link in an email campaign or downloading a specific piece of content from your website, for example.
Get our free guide to online marketing for home & building services
Email marketing is just one piece of your marketing puzzle. If you’re looking for more guidance for marketing your home & building services business online, check out The Download: Making Sense of Online Marketing for Home & Building Services, and get your phone ringing off the hook.