Let’s review the marketing basics
You’re investing marketing dollars to grow your company, so how do you maximize your investment? Often, it’s the little things that can have the greatest impact on our high-level marketing campaigns. Let’s take a look at how we can squeeze the most out of our investments. We like to call them the “One-percenters”, they can have added impact to your marketing results.
Start with the basics
The list below may seem like common sense; but as business owners, are we paying close attention to them?
- Answering the phone is #1 on the list! The poor homeowner whose air conditioner is out just wants to speak with live person, someone to hold their hand and let them know everything is going to be ok. Also, the customer on the other end of the line can tell when you are smiling So smile when you are answering the phone!
- Be polite and courteous Simple manners are often forgot today!
- Look and act professional This starts with employee appearance, clean uniforms, tucked in shirts, clean shaven, etc….
- Do what you say you’re going to do! Again, this sounds simple, but if say you’re going to arrive between 2-4pm, arrive between 2 and 4 pm.
Guerilla or Grassroots Marketing
- Social Media – is such a great branding tool for HVAC companies! You can create positive impressions about your company for little to no investment. The key is frequency, message, and platform. Don’t try to sell your products and services on social media, simply show what you offer. Lifestyle posts with your employees, their pets, and your customers really help humanize your service company.
- Well lettered, clean vehicles – your company vehicles are rolling billboards, make sure they represent your company well by being colorful, eye-catching, and clean!!!!
- Job site signs – such a simple thing that is often overlooked by many HVAC companies. In the right neighborhood, they could be seen by thousands of potential customers. Tip: Incentivize your customer to leave it their yard for two weeks or even a month, heck the right customer may do just because they really like you!
- Door Hangers – On service calls and installations, hit the surrounding homes, it only takes 5 minutes!
- Refrigerator magnets – simple, cost-effective branding, if you have established a trusting relationship with your customer, make it easy for them to contact you!
- Local sponsorships – Being a part of the local community is huge for residential HVAC contractors. It builds TRUST for your company in areas you serve.
- Local Associations – Joining your town’s chamber of commerce, local BNI chapters , or small business associations will help create a bond between your heating and air company and the local business community.
- Customer give aways – Travel coffee mugs, pens, koozies, kid toys, anything that BRANDS your company builds “Top of Mind Awareness”
How did you hear about us or find us? Ask the follow up question, “What made you Google us?” Yes, we use Google and other search engines to find service providers, but sometimes we may be giving them too much credit! Here’s an example: You are “Joe or Sue Homeowner” and you are going about your day. You go to work in the morning, and you see a billboard for ABC Heating & Air Conditioning, maybe you hear their radio spot on the drive home from work? You walk in your home, and the AC is out! You don’t have a current relationship (maintenance agreement) with a local HVAC contractor. So, what do you do? You Google “air conditioner repair” or something related. You see the search results from Google Guaranteed, search ads, and the local map pack. One of these companies looks familiar to you, but you don’t know why? It’s ABC Heating & Air Conditioning, you recognize them from their traditional branding through billboards and radio. So, you choose them and give them a call.
The moral to the story is, to ask the 2nd question, what made you “Google us?”
Keep your team members informed
Every HVAC company has regular team meetings. This is a great time to discuss and promote your seasonal offers or specials. Do your CSR’s know you are running a “FREE Diagnostic with SAME Day Repair” offer currently, or that your preferred equipment supplier is offering “0% financing?” Again, this may seem like a “no brainer”, but you would be surprised! Make sure they are informing your current customers and new ones looking for service or replacement.
Ask for reviews
Reviews today are so important for home service companies. Consumers today put more value and importance in an online review than a friend or co-worker’s recommendation. Think about your habits as a consumer, don’t you check out the reviews of a restaurant if you’ve never dined there before? HVAC is a huge unknown for homeowners, the purchases and interactions are often few and far between. The average consumer only purchases heating and air conditioning 2.5 times in their lifetime. It is critical to drive consistent review for your business.
Every HVAC company has loyal customers that are ready to sing your praises! Sometimes all you have to do is ask them! You have become a “hero” in their eyes, you repaired their air conditioner in the middle of summer, saving their family from a hot, sweaty, sleepless night! Offer them a gift card, discount on future service calls, or a free yearly maintenance agreement for referrals.
It all works in harmony together
Marketing for you HVAC company is typically a top-down approach. Let me explain….We start with our campaign idea or message. A long-term branding campaign centered around what the consumer is looking for from your HVAC company. There are three important pillars: TRUST, VALUE, and FIXED NOW. Branding around one of these or all three helps align your company with what a homeowner really wants. We brand across traditional channels, such as, TV, radio, and billboards. The same message is repeated on your website, digital paid ads, and any other paid marketing platforms. Now, we must repeat and enforce the message throughout our business. Have your slogan or tagline on your vehicles, jobsite signs, your CSR’s verbally saying on the phone, etc….And by following the simple techniques listed above, it will help your heating and air business capitalize on your marketed leads and gain more new lead opportunities. It will definitely enhance your marketing investment!
Check out our article in HVACR Business!