Friday, September 26, 2014

5 Keys to Building a Successful Local Plumbing Business

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Seeing that some of our customers are local plumbing businesses, I thought that this week I would cover a few ways that you can increase your sales. Typically, local plumbing businesses are a dime a dozen, so in order to gain more business and become successful you need to make yours different and unique from the competition. Today, we are going to be looking at five different ways you can set your company apart of the rest in an attempt to get more business.


#1: Be the Friendliest

When you think of different plumbers or plumbing businesses, you don't necessarily think of the world's nicest people. Not mean, just not actively friendly. One huge thing that can help you establish a long lasting relationship with customers is just being nice. Go out of your way to be particularly friendly and helpful to your customer. The best way to establish long term relationships with your customers is to care about the best interest of the customer, not your wallet. Being friendly and helpful will play a huge role in new customers becoming repeat customers.


#2: Get on Social Media

Want to interact with potential customers more? Get on social media. Not only can you interact with your customers on social media, but you can also potentially see what your competitors are doing and who they are interacting with. When you do get on social media, make it a part of your branding. For example, put your Facebook and Twitter information on business cards that you give out to customers. Better yet, put your social media information on your work trucks. Make sure that if you do get on Twitter and Facebook, don't neglect customers or fans that try to communicate with you. If you get on social media, make a conscious effort to make sure that your accounts are active. It is better not to have social media pages at all than to get one and never use it. Inactive social pages make your business look bad and can leave a bad taste in potential customers's mouths. Although getting on social media can be a commitment, it can help increase business through brand awareness and customer interaction.


#3: Market Online

Online marketing is one of the biggest components to being a successful local plumbing company in today's society. I could write a blog post dedicated to online marketing, but I'll try to keep this short and concise. Three extremely basic categories that you should be utilizing in online marketing for your local plumbing business are social media, search engines, and trade networks. Facebook and Twitter both offer advertising options at reasonable rates that can help put your brands in front of your target audience. Both social media platforms offer extensive ad options that allow you to know for sure that your message is put in front of your exact target audience. As for search engines, I recommend advertising your business on both Bing and Google. Both search engines offer "pay per click" advertising where companies can bid for top search engine positions when customers search certain keywords. For example, when someone searches "[City] [State] plumber" on Google or Bing, you can set up a campaign to have your company pop up as one of the top results. Pay per click ads are a great tool, and you can choose how much you are willing to pay per click in addition to setting up daily budgets. Search engine advertising is a great tool to increase local plumbing business. The last thing I want to touch on in regards to internet marketing is trade networks such as Angie's list. Getting your company listed on these different trade networks establishes trust in the customers mind before you even provide them a service. In addition to establishing trust, trade networks can also be a great source for picking up local leads.


#4: Start a Referral Program

Referral programs are a great way to increase business. The basic model of a referral program is that you give already happy customers a chance to save money on their next purchase by asking them to refer your company to friends of theirs that might need a service of the sort. No two referral programs are the same; every company needs to build a referral program based on their business model and customer demographic. If you really provide a good service and do a quality job, you will find referral programs to be extremely beneficial to increasing sales.


#5: Be Happy

If you want your local plumbing business to be successful, you need to be happy as the owner. You are the cornerstone of the company, setting an example for all the employees to follow. You need to be a good example, but you also need to hire good staff members. Quality employees will make your life a lot easier and you will be a lot happier overall as a business owner. Happiness as an owner will often times rub off on employees and help the success of the business in general. If you are miserable as an owner, I recommend selling it off in favor of pursuing a career you would enjoy more. Business success is important, but personal happiness should be prioritized over financial success.


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