TV, radio, newspaper, yellow pages, flyers, and word of mouth. The six main ways field service businesses used to go about marketing their services. Nowadays, with Google, Bing, social media, and the decline in network TV and radio users, traditional ways of advertising have fallen by the wayside.
Before jumping on board and hiring a pricey agency or digital marketer to join your team, there are plenty of things you can do for free that can significantly increase the amount of internet traffic coming to your site. Plus, by making these changes, you can positively build relationships with present and future customers.
1. Get Social
You’ve heard it before, but getting your business onto social media is key to building and maintaining an active base online for generating new customers in the digital age. Having a presence on each platform (even for field service businesses) has its benefits. For example, Instagram can be used as a means for posting “before and after” photos from jobs. Alternatively, it can help to make your company seem more relatable and accessible with pictures of your employees and office(s).
Many customers take to social media to vent about their frustrations or reach out for help regarding issues. Unlike Facebook and Instagram which follow algorithms based on what the user likes, Twitter posts everything in chronological order, making it easy to provide minute-by-minute updates to your customer base. This could regard any delays or issues that could arise and prevent you from helping them. Are the phones down at the office? Is there a storm warning that may prevent your techs from getting out on the field as fast as usual? Twitter allows your customers to stay engaged with your business in real-time.
For most people, Facebook is the platform of choice. Posting regular updates about the company, news, deals, or other happenings can help how current and future customers view your business. Offering incentives, promotions, and other deals via social media can be great ways to market your business - however be careful not to overdo the incentives.
2. Start Blogging
Yep, Blogging. Blogging is a great (and free!) way to get potential customers to check out your business. If you already have a website, most hosting sites provide the ability to add a blog section to your website.
So, why bother blogging?
To put it simply, when potential customers are searching for services - they turn to search engines like Google or Bing to find what they’re looking for. Blogging works as a way to present relevant information to that searcher and lead them to your website. The blog post is beneficial for both parties because it yields important information to the customer, and also leads them to your website.
In the case of field service, a customer may be searching for something along the lines of “how to choose the right electrician (plumber, contractor, HVAC professional - etc)”. Writing a blog post about "how to find the right electrician," and giving valuable information that can help a person make a decision, can help gain trust and hopefully a new customer. It’s important for companies to be viewed as an informative destination for current and potential customers. Plus, blogging allows your business to be shared with potential customers in ways you didn’t know possible. That same article about “how to choose the right electrician” could be shared with friends, coworkers, and family members of the original reader, expanding your influence to people you may not have otherwise reached.
3. Make Changes to Your Existing Website
Consider yourself a customer for a moment: what would you be looking for if you came to your website? Do you have it? Rather than just providing contact information and tidbits about the services your company provides, take the time on your website to write about how your business is different from your competitors. Go into detail about the services you provide and what makes you stand apart from the competition. When your website stands out from your competitors and provides the right information in the right way, customers will be more likely to reach out.
4. Create a “Google My Business”
In case you haven’t noticed already, Google is the mecca for gaining new customers in the digital age. One of the free services they provide is called Google My Business and allows you to place a digital business listing on Google when someone searches for your business. The listing appears in the upper right-hand corner and allows you to upload photos of your logo, offices, provide contact information, an address, phone number, and most importantly - see reviews. With a Google My Business listing, customers will be able to add their own reviews to your business and give you a rating out of five stars, with an optional explanation as to the rating. The listing proves legitimacy and also provides simple and accessible information for a customer looking to quickly make a call.
5. Send Out Emails
Email is a great way to send out updates, news (new blog article, perhaps?), discounts, giveaways, and more! To start, you need a list of emails. Collecting email addresses can be as easy as setting up an online contest or giveaway where entering requires the use of an email. Alternatively, there are ways to add “get a quote” options to your website that collect emails as a means of contacting that customer with a service quote. Once you compile an email list, sites like MailChimp and Emma make it easy to create templates for email marketing that engage customers with your content and lead them to your site (and hopefully your services).
Switch to a Field Service Software
While this can’t necessarily be used as a means for marketing, using a field service software is important for retaining customers in the long run. In the digital age, customers are looking for paperless, streamlined, and simpler ways of doing things. Fumbling with papers can not only be frustrating, but it can make your business appear out of touch with modern times.
Pointman provides field service software to help bring your business into the modern age. Turn paperwork paperless, streamline operations, improve communication, boost productivity, and more!