Advertising isn’t just about having your logo and information in the local newspaper. There are tons of ways to make potential customers aware of your business. Here are some ideas to get you started:
Let Your Customers Advertise for You
The easiest and most cost-effective way to get new business is to have past customers refer you to their family and friends. If you do quality work and leave a good impression, they’ll want to tell others. Not sure how to ask for referrals? Check out "How to Ask for Referrals and Get More Clients" or "25 Ways to Ask for a Referral Without Looking Desperate."
Help in Community Projects
Volunteering for community projects, like planting trees in a public park or working on a Habitat for Humanity home, doesn’t just help your community, it helps you, too. It gets your name out in the area, advertises your work, and shows your generosity all at once. Check out some volunteer opportunities in your area here.
Go to a Show
Take advantage of home shows, trade shows, and industry conventions to promote your business and meet potential clients. The people there are interested in learning more about you and what you do, so be prepared, professional, and talk with them.
Put Your Logo on Your Truck
Having your company name and logo on the side of your vehicle is an easy way to help people recognize your brand. There are a number of options out there depending on how much you’d like to spend and your design. A lower-priced option would be some magnetic door signs and having vinyl graphics applied to your vehicle is typically the mid-priced option. If you’re looking on the more expensive end, you can get your whole vehicle wrapped with a custom design.
Set Up or Update Your Website
Let potential customers find your company just by browsing online. Having a website instantly makes you easier to find. Make your contact phone number visible on every page, list your service area so people know where you operate, and include a contact form to make it easy for them to reach out. If you already have a website, open it on your phone. If it doesn’t look good to you there, it’s time to make it mobile-friendly. People don’t just browse websites on their computers anymore, so you need to make sure those using phones can find the info they need, too. Fortunately, there are some great options available to help you create a clean, professional, mobile-friendly website. Squarespace and Weebly are a couple of good examples.
Retarget Potential Customers
Has there ever been an ad that’s followed you to every site you visit? It's called ad retargeting and you can do it, too. Services like Perfect Audience and AdRoll can help you start showing your ads to people who are likely to use your services. Spend as much or as little money as you'd like, and once someone lands on your site they'll start to see your ads on other sites they visit. They might not be ready to buy the first time they reach your site, but seeing your name and logo over and over means you'll stay top of mind when they’re ready to move forward.
Master Social Media
Set up Facebook and Twitter pages for your business. Make sure to fill out your profile and contact information. Then, actually post on your pages. They're perfect for sharing helpful tips and content with your past and future customers. Posting informational (not just self-promoting) content shows you're an expert in your field and can be trusted to provide your audience with useful information.
Advertise Your Past Work
When you finish a project, talk to your customers to see if they’d be willing to write reviews on your Facebook page or website. People read reviews for everything nowadays, and a good review can do wonders to convince potential customers to hire you. Pictures are another great selling tool. Take before and after photos (with your customer’s permission, of course) and showcase them on your website and social media pages so your prospects can see the great work you do.
Create Some Campaigns
Sending emails to past and potential customers to check in and to announce promotions you’re running is a great way to stay top of mind. Setting up a few email campaigns in advance can help you stay in touch even when you’re too busy to type an email yourself. Estimate Rocket has transaction-based follow up campaigns for leads and past customers, but you can also check out services like MailChimp for more promotional campaigns.
It may be tempting to jump in and try all of these at once, but spreading yourself too thin can lead to you feeling overwhelmed and seeing less effective advertising results because of lack of information and planning. I’d recommend choosing one or two places to start and learn as much as you can about them. Once you’ve set up and mastered your first couple ad spaces, pick a few more to dig into. You’ll be hearing from new customers in no time.