Ask Mr. Marketing: There’s no free lunch
By Rob Weinberg
Free marketing tools aren’t generating sales calls. Now what? Anthony Magazzi, Durham, N.C.
Though you’re in the exterminating business, your dilemma is common to every industry. The problem’s root cause is your reliance on free marketing tools.
Lots of folks believe if they use enough free marketing tools they’ll grow their business, and to a point they’re right. However, there’s a saying where I come from; “There’s no free lunch.”
Translated? You get what you pay for, and sooner or later you have to pay — either by coughing up for advertising or by losing sales to a competitor willing to be more aggressive than you are.
Were I in your position I would initially set aside a $500 budget to invest in locally focused online advertising and coupons, with an eye to driving traffic to your website.
Next, explore joining the local chamber of commerce, Rotary club, and BNI chapter. If you’re up to the challenge, go speak in front of Rotary and Kiwanis clubs about the importance of pre-emptive insect work on homes and businesses.
Also regarding businesses, explore relationships with professional business management groups BOMA and NARI, as well as with local property management companies that handle small groups of units.
And while your website appears adequate, it could benefit from more pictures, customer testimonials, copy editing, and key words in the source code. You might also add a blog and a page of free advice to help draw in more organic traffic.
Why not run a promotion to service two homeowners for the price of one (doubling your customer database).
Then send a postcard out to anyone you’ve worked with, met, went to school with, dated, or stood next to on line at Starbucks. Remind them this is prime bug season and they should be taking extra steps to protect their home and their family — the two most important things in their lives.
Bottom line: there’s lots of competition from local and national firms hustling for business. Sales don’t happen by themselves, and just hanging out your shingle’s not enough.
Take control and build your business on service, price, and relationships, while finding some way to stand out of the crowd.
With that said, I wish you a week of profitable marketing.
Mr. Marketing’s spent 30 years solving marketing problems and developing profitable solutions. Get his personalized attention at www.askmrmarketing.com.
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