As the home service industry continues to grow, HVAC companies have to find ways to distinguish themselves from their competitors. One way they can do so is by adding new trade lines, such as plumbing, to their services.
Plumbing is a great bolt-on trade line for an existing HVAC company that offers obvious advantages. It’s not a seasonal business and is recession-proof. Regardless of the economy, a homeowner isn’t going to ignore not having hot water or being able to flush the toilets
Advertising and marketing for plumbing is different than HVAC, which generally has a longer sales cycle. Plumbing is emergency-driven. When customers have plumbing problems, they need them fixed immediately. If a customer’s air conditioning is just not cooling like it used to, he or she might shop around for a few days.
Word of mouth is very important, as well. Plumbers are not inexpensive. Once they make a service call, a customer doesn’t want them to have to turn around and come back in a few days if the problem wasn’t fixed properly. If customers need a plumber and they call you, make sure you get there as quickly as possible and get their hot water up and running or get their drain unclogged. Give that client the peace of mind that you corrected the problem instead of making a temporary fix.
Offering an additional trade line has one major marketing advantage. When making calls, your technicians can use the opportunity to educate existing customers about the new services.
WHY CONSIDER A FRANCHISE?
When adding a trade line, it can benefit an HVAC company to capitalize on an existing franchise brand, such as bluefrog Plumbing + Drain. Franchises offer access to back-office systems that work right out of the box. Instead of building systems for marketing, client acquisition, team development, finances, and service standards from scratch, they are ready to go.
Becoming part of a franchise also gives you access to the knowledge of fellow franchisees. If you decide to open up a plumbing shop on your own, you can’t just call every other shop in town and ask what they are paying people. Having a network of plumbing professionals available for guidance is invaluable.
An existing HVAC company has an advantage when it comes to recruiting employees — even in a different field, like plumbing. Referrals are the best way to find quality workers, and people who are in the home services industry already have entry to networks of trade workers. You already have a better route to finding people.
People want to work for companies where they have the ability to grow. If an owner has a sincere desire to grow the business and its employees, they are going to be able to find good people out there.
HVAC companies are perfect candidates for expanding their service lines through a franchise partnership. By having offices, business infrastructure, and a service fleet already in place, the overhead of providing new services is greatly reduced. In addition, access to the back-office systems offered by a franchise partner can only benefit your existing services.
By adding a trade line, you can offer extra services to your existing customers, grow your business organically, and maximize the sale value of your company as part of a long-term exit strategy. Wealth-building begins with a goal, and expanding service lines through a franchise partnership can help you reach it.
Publication date: 7/24/2017