Monthly Archives: August 2016

Online Reviews Generate More Leads for Your Contracting Business

The Secret to Generating More Leads for Your Home Improvement Business

Let’s say you have an excellent product. Your sales, service and installation teams are top-notch. And as a result, you have happy customers – customers who are so happy, they give you tons of positive online reviews.

Way to go. That is certainly commendable, and it will serve you well if a customer searches for you and reads those reviews.

But why are you waiting until that moment to create a customer?

I’m often asked, “How do I improve online reviews?”  Today, a positive online review is like a firework. If not used, it’s just a cylinder wrapped in paper. But if you set it off, it can be heard for miles and completely light up the sky.

Likewise, your positive reviews need to be activated so they stand out to your potential customers in this noisy, crowded marketplace. Following are four ways to share your reviews so they bring you even more customers.

Signage

Many home improvement contractors underestimate the value of signage because we usually don’t locate our business right off a commercial thoroughfare; it’s typically not profitable for us. (However, if you do happen to have such a location, you should certainly make the most of it, like this business here to the right.)

Our strength, though, is that we leave our business location, and that’s where signage can get really powerful because of its reach.

If you’re not promoting your reviews on your trucks, I would highly suggest it.

Whether it’s the nosy neighbor who sees your truck doing a job next door, the countless people stuck behind you in traffic or your friends and family in the community – they all have the potential to look up your reviews online – they just have to be prompted.

On your truck, tell all of the people who see your truck daily to “Check Out Our Google Reviews!” or “Find Us On HomeAdvisor!” Not sure you want that on your truck forever? You can always start off by testing a magnetic sign.

Additionally, you can also take advantage of this method with yard signs and give your customers’ neighbors a way to engage with your company – even if they’re not ready to buy just yet.

Sales Materials

In the home services industry, you’re bound to have countless business cards, brochures, pamphlets and digital presentations to help sell your products and services.

These are all well and good, but they’re often YOU talking about how great YOUR company is.

The only problem is, the customer doesn’t believe you.

However, they do believe what other customers just like them have to say about your company.

So, don’t make your potential customer have to ask you for customer reviews or testimonials at the end of a presentation – lead with them. Show them some of  the referrals for your contracting business

Before you get into the materials or the methods that they care little to nothing about, put them at ease by showing them how happy your other customers have been with your services.

Distribute these fantastic reviews throughout a sales presentation or brochure and you won’t have to beg your potential customers for their trust at the end of it.

Your Website

If you’re like any of us, you likely put a lot of effort into getting people to your website.

But once they arrive, are they overwhelmed by all of the positive reviews of your company?

If not, they should be.

With today’s technology, there are many ways to do this…

You can have a page dedicated solely to customer reviews; you can feature some of the best on your homepage; or, you can get a plug-in that transfers your positive reviews across the internet to your website, which is something we do for our clients at gFour Marketing through our Authentic Feedback™ system.

Social Media

There are two sets of people are typically visiting your social media pages:

  1. Those who know and like your company
  2. Those who are researching whether they want to do business with your company

In either case, you benefit by showing both of these audiences your positive reviews.

For those who already know and like you, it just gives them more reason to confidently tell their friends and family about you.

And for those who are considering doing business with you, it helps for them to see in yet another place the pride that your company takes in its happy customers.

Posting your positive reviews on your company’s Facebook page is also something our Authentic Feedback™ systemdoes for our clients so they consistently have positive messages being sent to their current and prospective customers.

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Certainly, taking the necessary steps to get positive reviews is absolutely vital to the success of your business. However, it’s the promotion of those reviews that will take your business to the next level  by bringing you more customers, closing more sales and resulting in higher profits for you and your company.
BTW – To find out How to Boost Your Online Reviews Without Begging for Them, click here now to check out our On-Demand Training.
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Direct Mail Can Grow Your Contractor Business

Hispanic Woman Checking Mailbox

As I was going through my own mail the other day, I thought about our 2-Part Webinar Series: Does Direct Mail Still Work?, and I couldn’t help noticing just how BORING all of my mail was!

First of all, there was very little of it – just a few bills and a couple magazines. As an entrepreneur, I see this as an opportunity… and you should, too.

So many home improvement business owners want to put all of their money into internet marketing because it’s the hot new thing, but how can you possibly be heard in such a crowded space? I just visited one web page that had 6 (SIX) ads on one tiny webpage.

In today’s cluttered media landscape, direct mail is one way to stand out from all of the noise and get more leads for your contracting business.

Second, none of the pieces in my mail were very interesting or engaging.

The bills were – well – bills. And the magazines were simple and forgettable. There was nothing personalized, oddly shaped, interestingly designed or anything I could interact with.

Direct mail offers home improvement contractors the opportunity to engage with your customers through…

Personalization: With direct mail, you can certainly personalize a piece with a customer’s name; however, depending on your database, you can get specific with birthdays, anniversaries, phone numbers and even URLs set up just for that customer. The possibilities are endless, but it all goes a long way in standing out to your prospective customer and getting more leads for your contracting business.

Shape, size & color: You don’t have to just do the same old boring letter or postcard… you can do an oversized mail piece, one that’s 3d or has a shiny foil exterior – maybe even one that’s highlighter yellow or neon green. There are so many options that can make your direct mail piece say, “pick me, pick me!” as your prospective customer slides it out of their mail box.

Lastly, and most importantly, direct mail is how your customers WANT you to communicate with them.

In fact, take a look at the pie chart below. A recent study by Catamount Marketing shows that consumers prefer communication via direct mail over all other forms of media – including newspapers, television, radio and even the internet.

WC Jul 2016 Chart

And this makes sense. Consumers want to know they are important enough to your business that you would send a piece of mail to them specifically; they can sit down and review it when they’ve dedicated time to do so; and it makes it easy for them to take action on your offer if they’re interested.

So, I hope you’ll join me for Part 2 of our webinar series, Does Direct Mail Work? this Wednesday, July 27.

We’ll focus on how to use direct mail to generate leads simply by using your existing database – you don’t want to miss it!

Click here to register now for FREE.

Does Direct Mail Still Work To Get Leads for Your Contracting Business?

Last weekend, Adi and I got to spend another great Independence Day in the Florida Keys with her EO (Entrepreneurs Organization) group… and like previous years, it was a BLAST!

(Here’s a picture from the crazy good seafood buffet evening.)

Screen Shot 2016-07-12 at 12.14.34 PM

Food, drinks, family, friends, fun!

I don’t know about you, but as an entrepreneur I tend to spend most of my time with other entrepreneurs.

– We understand each other.

– We tend to think alike.

– We tend to always be looking forward… believing our best days are in front of us.

– We are driven by self determination to pursue a life of our own creation, our own design, our own ideas, our own work… and are willing to accept the results that come from this.

Sometimes the results are great, sometimes not so great. But, the underlying thing that inspires us is the ability to pursue and enjoy FREEDOM in different aspects of our lives.

For example:

The freedom to earn as much money as we want.
The freedom to spend our time as we want.
The freedom to spend our time in relationships we want.
The freedom to live out our life’s purpose… as we want.
In fact, increasing freedom in the areas of time and money specifically seems to be the reason most of us went into business in the first place.

So, give this idea some thought:

Is your home improvement business giving you the ability to enjoy more and more freedom… in the areas that are important to you?

If not, why? What must happen for you to enjoy more freedom?

Whatever it is, it’s in your power to make it happen. Your future is what you make it, so seize those opportunities to grow your contractor business and take your business and your life to the next level.

Finally, for all of us living here in the U.S. who get to run our own companies, work to increase our levels of time, money, relationship and purpose freedoms, let’s take a minute to acknowledge and give thanks to the men and women that over 240 years ago made our way of life today possible. Let us never forget the sacrifices they made, the wars they fought and the blood they shed so we could enjoy – Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness.

I hope you and your family are enjoying the summer of 2016.

Now, on to business.

One of the big questions I hear all the time is…

Does Direct Mail Still Work?

I’ll give you my short, simple answer: Absolutely it does!

Now here is the caveat: The effectiveness of your direct mail campaign to grow your contractor business is going to be determined by the exact same factors as every other marketing or lead generation you do… that is, are you sending the right message, to the right people, using the right media?

This is a BIG topic so we are going to dissect it in detail this month with 2 live online trainings.

Part 1: How to Use Direct Mail to Generate New Leads (Wednesday, July 13)

Part 2: How to Use Direct Mail to Generate Leads For Your Contracting Business From Your Existing Database (Wednesday, July 27)

I have a feeling these will be very popular so take a minute now to get yourself registered and add these trainings to your calendar. You won’t want to miss out.

How to Find Your Abundance and Become a Wealthy Contractor

I’ve just returned from an incredible two weeks away from the office…

Adi and I started our adventure in Scottsdale, AZ for the CCN Owner’s Summit, which is always a blast. We got to catch up with good friends in the industry and meet entrepreneurs who are finally committing to working ON their business more than IN it – which is always exciting to witness!

Then, our business trip turned into a family vacation out west. However, I couldn’t get business out of my head on one of our excursions, so I recorded a video with you in mind.

So often, we let limited thinking creep into our minds… Watch this video to remember the abundance of opportunity around you (excuse the fuzzy audio in the middle due to heavy winds… the message is worth it!):

WC Jun 2016 Video2

One example of a business owner who sees endless opportunity for her company is Tara Dawn of Opal Enterprises. In the Success Spotlight below, find out how you can think beyond “good enough” to grow the number of repeats and referrals for your contracting business like Tara did… 

Success Spotlight

In 2014, Opal Enterprises had a good level of business coming from repeat and referral customers – a healthy 33%. However, Co-Owner Tara Dawn knew there was an opportunity for this profitable number to not just be good – but to be GREAT. 

So, she challenged gFour Marketing with raising that number, and our team got to work…

We reestablished awareness of Opal Enterprises with Tara’s past customers through a Client Reactivation Campaign. This boosted both repeat and referral business – two profitable income sources.  

On top of that, Opal Enterprises activates all new customers in the 1into5 Program so they:

  • Know they are appreciated
  • Share positive feedback online
  • Refer Opal Enterprises to friends & family
  • Stay connected to Opal through newsletters & email
  • Return to Opal with additional business

By implementing these methods, Tara’s repeat and referral business has grown by 30.3%!

For more details on Opal Enterprises’ success, download the case study by clicking here.  

Do you see an opportunity to increase your repeat and referral business like Tara?

Call our office today to schedule your free strategy session with a member of our team, 305-856-8788.

We look forward to hearing from you and helping you discover hidden profit opportunities in your business!

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