How to get more clients in your trades business in 2020 Relying on word-of-mouth may be an effective marketing tool but for the modern tradie, there is far more to consider in order to effectively attract new customers. From creating websites, joining social media groups and posting images of recent jobs, tradesmen or their partners, must possess a myriad of skills if they are to stand out from their competition and get a steady stream of jobs. Not sure where to start? Here are our top tips for marketing as a tradesman.
- Set up a website
A website is one of the first things customers look for in their search for a company. It shows their list of services, opening hours and the best ones may take bookings and include a pricing estimator. The first thing you should prioritise when building a website is putting useful customer information at the forefront. Here is a list of important information you should include:
- Your business name and address
- Qualified licenses and insurance.
- Contact details (such as telephone and email)
- Information about your business (if you have a unique selling point, state it clearly in your ‘About Us’ section)
- REVIEWS REVIEWS REVIEWS..
- Any trading bodies and trading scheme you are registered with
- Photos of previous work and reviews from happy customers
- Rank your website
With your website in place, the next step is to make sure it is easy to find. To do this, you should turn your attention to search engines (Google and Bing are the most popular). A new 2-3 page website does not rank as well as an older 20+ page website. While there are many methods for ranking well in the search results, some are more effective for small businesses than others. Your digital marketer can write useful content that helps customers make decisions about what they are looking for, materials and colour schemes and helping them understand common problems in their home (which your trade helps solve).
- Get listed on free directories
To support your search ranking efforts, you’ll want to get your business listed in local online directories. Some of the most popular and trustworthy directories your business should be listed with include:
- Google My Business
- Local Search. www.localsearch.com.au
- Search Frog. www.searchfrog.com.au
- Pure Local. www.purelocal.com.au
- Yelp Australia. www.yelp.com.au
- Hot Frog Australia. www.hotfrog.com.au
- Star Local. www.startlocal.com.au
- Go Guide. www.goguide.com.au
- Yellow Pages. www.yellowpages.com.au
As well as service and trade-specific directories (some charge you to be featured):
- Use the power of social media
Social media is a powerful tool for reaching audiences who are yet to come into contact with your business. In fact, according to online sources, almost 50% of tradesmen claim to win new business solely with the help of social media channels. What’s more, social media platforms are free to use, so you don’t need a huge budget to get started. Joining local Facebook groups is a great way to share your website and facebook page with people asking “Anyone recommend a good local plumber who does …?” Your Facebook page needs to include a mobile number and website so they can contact you quickly. If you cant answer the phone during the day, make sure you use a receptionist service to take messages and text them to your phone.
- Send out business cards
Business cards can be a quick way to promote your services and you can hand them out to people you meet on the job (and give them one for a friend) or put in a letterbox of someone you can see needs your services. They should include your name, your business name, your service summary, website URL, facebook link, contact details and a company logo.
- Display photos of past jobs
Customers typically choose tradesmen who have photos of similar jobs (to theirs) on their website and Facebook pages. They are most powerful combined with a customer review.
- Gather reviews
According to recent internet surveys, approx. 75 per cent of consumers trust local businesses more after reading their positive customer reviews. These can be free reviews on Facebook or Google My Business, but they could also be on paid platforms such as Hipages, OneFlare, service seeking etc.
- Send out emails to your mailing list
Did you know that email marketing is the most cost-effective form of advertising? If you have a mailing list you of contacts, from quotes or past jobs, email marketing could be an effective way to keep in the front of their mind. In fact, email marketing is 40 times more effective at acquiring new customers than the two biggest social platforms, Facebook and Twitter. If you are emailing new customers, make sure they have opted in to receive your mail. Don’t send them more than 1 email a fortnight. You also need to include unsubscribe links at the bottom of every email you send. Include information of value to them. Offering them special deals or rewards, or asking them to refer a friend might work in your favour.
- Sign up for Google My Business
Google My Business (GMB) displays your business name, address and map, contract details, Google reviews in a prominent way on the right hand side of Google Search results. To register with GMB, firstly you will need to fill in an application via Google. Here you will need to upload company information, such as your address, opening hours etc. Customers can also review your business through GMB to give it an overall “star rating”. It’s a wonderful service.
- Be helpful
Being helpful by writing great informative content and producing videos to explain how to check or do things is a great way to show customers your business and build trust. Video sharing platforms, such as YouTube, are excellent for building your brand awareness. According to HubSpot, 90 per cent of customers use product videos to help them make purchasing decisions, while adding a video to your emails can boost click-through rates of up to 200%. Creating “how-to” and explanation videos allow you to interact with new audiences and build your reputation as a competent and trustworthy business. Good Luck! I hope these tips help you get more business. Please reach out if you need help.