On this episode of the Profit Roadmap, we welcome three special guests! We’re excited to have, fan favorite, Mike Callahan from Simple Growth Systems. We also brought in two marketing experts Eddie Childs, Director of Corporate Marketing, and Christopher St. Jean, Director of Digital Marketing at Mediagistic.
In this episode, you’ll learn:
- Proven strategies for marketing home service businesses
- How to use marketing for automation
- Marketing tips for new businesses
- How to win with social media
- The best methods for connecting with your audience
Mike Callahan is from Simple Growth Systems—a Service Autopilot Certified Advisor specializing in the development of next-level automations in Service Autopilot. Mike got his start creating a lawn care business that quickly grew to be very successful. So much so that he had to reevaluate the business so that it could be maintained with the right automated systems in place for sustainable and scalable growth, which is why he started Simple Growth.
Mediagistic is a leading marketing and advertising agency that specializes in the home services industry as well as helping distributors and dealers across the U.S. and Canada. They have been in business for 20+ years, have a staff of over 120 talented individuals and they are located in Tampa, Florida.
Marketing for Home Services
Chris and Eddie both believe that while marketing for every industry has similarities there are some unique challenges that come with home services. Part of this comes from the fact that sometimes people will shop around for home services, and other times it might be a reaction to an emergency like an AC unit failing in summer.
That said, building a traditional marketing funnel that is capturing and qualifying leads is key because their buying cycle will be a little bit longer (outside of an emergency). This is where it is important to utilize things like maintenance contracts, preventative actions, inspections, etc. Getting these clients in the door early on helps build loyalty and trust in smaller services and can translate to bigger tickets in the future.
Mike adds that automation can play a key role in this. He talks about how these early phases are the place to educate clients and then it is easy to transition into upsells and ancillary add-ons. Often, that entire process can be automated with a series of emails that offer extra services (e.g. pest control, fertilization, etc.) and make it easy for the client to take action.
There is also a push to take all of this to the next level with omnichannel marketing. Simply put, this is a way to communicate with clients through multiple channels. A ringless voicemail, text messages, and email can all be drivers of those upsells.
Marketing and Automation on a Budget
If you want to increase your reach, but don’t have a big budget, there are still some steps you can take. Mike mentions how organic posting on social media is a really easy place to start. The important part is to make sure that you are doing it consistently. It doesn’t even have to be a sales pitch, but rather a way to provide education to your potential audience.
Eddie and Chris also point out that if you have a CRM system in place, sending out a quick upsell campaign via email typically can be done quickly and without additional costs.
Remember, email blasts should be done intentionally. A big blast sent to everyone typically doesn’t perform well and can affect your unsubscribe rate. Look to segment your lists based on what is personal and relevant. Connecting with people who have had a recent service or people when it is time for them to have a service soon and haven’t scheduled it yet.
Connecting With Your Audience
People are busy, and everyone is competing for attention. So how do you stand out from the noise even if you are busy?
The simple answer is to “be human” and to “be genuine.” If you’re posting on social media, you don’t have to have a full production crew to make a video. Yes, you can use your smartphone, but the important part is that you are showing a personalized side of your company.
You are showcasing that you are a real person and you are offering services to help the people in your community. Come from a place of compassion and education and you’ll build up your following.
Right now, the algorithms are favoring short video content across all social channels. Chris and Eddie point out that 15-second videos are doing really well on Facebook, TickTok, and Youtube.
Consistency is key. Mike talks about a business that will hop on social media and create a whole bunch of content right from the start. It can be difficult to maintain that pace. It also looks really bad if a potential client comes to check out your page and there hasn’t been any new content for a long time.
Lastly, it is important to remember that gaining a following on social media will take time. Even with regular posting, it won’t be a huge uptick overnight. For businesses just starting out, this can be a plus though. It gives them a chance to continue to hone their social media skills while growing their audience.
If you’re at the earliest stages of your business, it is important to know which steps to take. Even before you start building social media pages or using truck wraps, you need to get clear on your client avatar.
Mike says this is what you visualize as your ideal client. This helps you get clear on who you are serving. Once you’ve got a solid concept of who that is, you can start creating a plan to find and work with them.
Mike also comments on how it isn’t just about using the same old marketing techniques in the hopes of catching your ideal customer. He works with a service business owner who knows that he really wanted to work with a gated community in his area. That area wouldn’t allow outside people to market there so he came up with a unique idea to host a community event. He hired two wood fired pizza trucks and passed out free food and beer to his ideal audience.
Those kinds of strategies will always have a cost, but they give you a distinct edge over the competition in your area.
Chris and Eddie also mentioned that it is really important to get your Google Business Profile set up. This helps with SEO, helps people find you on Google Maps, and adds credibility to your brand.
In addition to those steps, it is also important to think about what you’ll do once you start getting leads. A CRM system is important (as mentioned early in regard to automation and marketing) and picking the right software is crucial.
Want to learn more about Mike and Mediagistic? Check out the links below:
Published June 2, 2023
The following music was used for this media project:
Music: Summon the Rawk by Kevin MacLeod
Free download: https://filmmusic.io/song/4434-summon-the-rawk
License (CC BY 4.0): https://filmmusic.io/standard-license