Service area businesses deliver products or services directly to their customers’ locations (like a contractor, plumber or piano tuner). Since their business model brings the service directly to the consumer instead of the traditional local business where the consumer comes to the business, it can be a greater challenge for that business to be discovered by new customers.
No matter what your service area business does, it needs to be found online and off. But unlike your local business counterparts that have a storefront, your business serves an area and therefore can be harder to find. Marketing a service business online may have some disadvantages, but you can overcome them with these simple tips to get found by your local customer!
Understand Your Business Listings
While business listings may not be an exciting place to start, being found online and in print directories through a quick search (whether through Google or flipping through the Yellow Pages) can be the difference between getting a new customer or not.
Business listings are also one of the biggest differences in marketing a service business online versus a brick and mortar location. Most of the time, you do not have a home address, but a service area, and knowing how to resolve this difference in your business listings can be critical to online discovery.
One example is with Google My Business, where you actually have the ability to list your business as a service area business and include the cities or zipcodes you serve. You will find this option on many business listings, just make sure you’re not trying to set-up your local business multiple times in different cities, but instead one listing attached to many different cities.
Another great way to help your service business be discovered by new customers in your local area is to create partnerships with other local businesses. Since service area businesses have a tough time connecting with their local audience because they don’t have a store front, partnering with another local business that does can solve this issue. For example, a contractor can work with a local real estate office to connect to new home owners or home sellers to a contractor who can get their work done. In exchange, the contractor can recommend the real estate business for anyone making improvements to their home who could potentially sell.
Think creatively about who your audience also works with locally to create business partnerships that can be mutually beneficial. If you’re not sure who you could pair with, let us know in the comments below and we’ll help you out!
Make Sure You’re Social
One easy place to get found is on social media. The benefit of social media is you can attract a new audience and keep in contact with your current audience at the same time. Share you latest blog content, your favorite tip, or solicit questions about a certain aspect of your business.
Another benefit is your ability to pay to “boost” posts, for example on Facebook, to share your popular messages beyond your followers and connect with an audience who is not familiar with your business, but likely is interested in it.
Ultimately, your social media profiles allow you to share your expertise and connect with your current audience and a new one. One last benefit is the ability for your customers to become your advocates and spread your message online by sharing your social posts, creating online word-of-mouth marketing.
Create your own easy to follow social media content calendar by starting with our guide, download your copy today!
Keeping in Contact
Whether it’s with current customers or potential ones, make sure you are staying in touch with your audience. This contact can be through email, via SMS messaging, social media or beyond, but if you engage with them them, you can stay top of mind – and after they use your services, they can easily recommend you to their friends and family, thus expanding your audience further.
Determining the best practices for communication comes down to two basic things: content and frequency. First, you want to think of what content your audience wants to read or see from you. Then, you should determine how often you should be sharing this content so it can be the most effective. While certain channels lend themselves to a greater frequency (you certainly would never send emails at the same rate as tweets) – be mindful that more is not always better.
By providing quality content to your audience on a controlled basis, you make it easy for your audience to find you, and easy to talk about you to their friends.
Start being found in your community, online and off with our simple tips for marketing a service business!
What marketing aspects does your service area business struggle with?
from Local Marketing Blog – LocalVox http://localvox.com/blog/marketing-service-business/