As an installer who wants to succeed in business, it helps to be more strategic about how you approach your sales and marketing efforts. That means understanding who your customers are, their requirements, how to reach them and then planning and budgeting for success. Before doing anything, you will need to create a marketing plan. The word business plan and marketing strategy can seem daunting but simplified, all this plan needs to have are the following: who is your target market, how can your services help them and add value to their lives, how will you reach new clients and get them to notice you, what marketing channels will you use and what is your budget?
We recommend the following 7 tips to boost your sales and marketing endeavours as an installer.
Regardless of how big or small a business is, having an online presence is crucial because your customers are always online. According to We are Social, South Africans spend an average of 8 hours and 32 minutes on the internet per day via any device. Remember, any website is better than no website, so make use of free platforms to get your website up and running whilst you have enough budget for a more professionally designed one. With Google My Business, you can create a simple website that looks great in under ten minutes. It’s completely free, and easy to create and edit from your computer and phone. The most important information that your customers need to easily and quickly see are 1) services you offer and 2) contact details. Other elements to include are testimonials, social media links, gallery of projects completed, partners you work with etc.
2) Google Business Listing
You can attract new customers with a free business profile on Google. Your business profile appears right when people are searching for your business or businesses like yours on Google Search or Maps. Easily create and update your free listing using Google My Business. Just another free tool to help you stand out, and bring customers in.
3) Social Media
It comes as no surprise that social media is the holy grail of small business marketing. Social Media allows you to build relationships with your customers, target specific audiences, control your budget and easily measure your results. The most popular platforms which will work well for installers are Facebook and Instagram.
– Begin by creating a Facebook Page for your business and use this to share information regarding your services but also value added content that will be beneficial to your customers. Remember, when it comes to content on social media, it’s always about the customer and how you can help them as opposed to your business and what you do! Join local community Facebook groups, specifically the ones covering the areas your work in. Often community members will be enquiring about the services you offer and this gives you a direct opportunity to promote your business. You can also use Facebook Marketplace to advertise your services for free.
– Instagram is becoming quite popular in South Africa. You can use this platform to share behind the scenes content such as installations, video tutorials and pictures of happy clients.
If both options seem overwhelming, start small. Remember: you don’t need to do it all. Take a focused approach and start with Facebook to build your social media marketing efforts.
4) Pay-Per-Click (PPC) Advertising
PPC stands for pay-per-click, a model of internet marketing in which advertisers pay a fee each time one of their ads is clicked. The two most popular forms of PPC advertising are:
Google Ads enables advertisers pay to display brief advertisements on the very top of Google searches. You can ready more about how the adverts actually work and what it involves here. Google Ads helps your business to be found by people on Google precisely when they’re searching for the things that you offer.
Relying on your content to organically reach your customers on Facebook is a rookie mistake. Facebook advertising is a powerful tool that enables you to create very targeted adverts to market your services. You can start off with a very low budget of R500 a month and gradually increase this. Remember, the more you spend on adverts, the more people on Facebook, it will be shown too.
5) Online Classifieds
Don’t underestimate the power of online classified websites such as Gumtree. These websites are usually free to place adverts on and reach a large audience very quickly. The best part is that your adverts are shown to people looking exactly for the services you offer.
6) Word of Mouth / Referrals
Never forget how powerful word of mouth referrals are; letting your customers speak on your behalf builds trust and credibility. After every successful installation, encourage your customers to send you a testimonial and leave a review on your Facebook page. If a customer is satisfied with your work, don’t be afraid to ask them to recommend you to their friends and family.
7) Print Marketing
The most important aspect of print marketing is the fact that it is ‘tangible.’ Print media offers the consumer a sensory experience and when done right, can yield great results. Why not consider printing flyers with a discount code for your services and hand them out at traffic lights and post boxes to reach new clients. You could also speak to your local hardware and electrical stores about promoting your services with an even bigger discount flyer for their customers. The local community newspapers reach a large number of people and often have great advertising opportunities. You may not always have the budget to advertise weekly or monthly but request that they inform you about any advertising specials they may have.
The above sales and marketing tips, when executed correctly, can have a profound effect on the success of your business. We understand that small businesses don’t always have the budget to pay someone to handle their marketing, but it might make sense to spend a little money paying someone to help consult on strategies and providing you with tips on how to get started.