Are you in the process of setting up a new marketing plan for your home improvement business?
Home improvement marketing has evolved in leaps and bounds over the past few years due to significant changes in buying habits – with many firms struggling to keep up.
So, what’s the difference between an ineffective marketing plan, and an effective one?
Having specialised in helping home services companies make sense of the changing needs of their customers, I’ve put together some of the potential ways your marketing plan could end up losing you profits.
1. Not setting out clear goals in the beginning
The start of any good marketing strategy should always include setting SMART goals. It doesn’t matter if you define these yourself, or you sit down with an agency and work them out together, as long as you have something realistic to work towards.
These goals should be SMART: Specific, Measureable, Attainable, Relevant and Timebound. You won’t believe how many businesses make the mistake of underestimating the amount of effort/work it will take to reach their revenue targets.
In order for your set goals to be SMART, you need to look carefully at relevant data, including your average customer value and how many more customers it’s going to take to achieve the desired results, along with your website’s current conversions rates.
2. Not factoring in what your customers want
When it comes to your marketing campaign, ignoring your buyer personas is the number one biggest mistake you can make. If you don’t factor in what your ideal customers care about, and the challenges and problems they face, then how are they going to relate to a word they’re saying?
3. Not being customer-focused
Perhaps you’ve taken your buyer personas into consideration, but is that reflected in your content? Another huge mistake many home improvement businesses make is turning their website and blog around so it’s all about them – when really it should be about their customers.
So, spending most of your time talking about your latest company networking events, profits, or the awards you’ve won probably won’t win you many new leads.
Your blog should be regularly updated (2-3 times per week) with helpful, quality content that THEY will want to read about, such as the best solutions to their problems, or helpful checklists and ways to find out for themselves about things such as potential costs and timescales.
4. Being salesy instead of helpful
Your customers like to do their own research in their own time, so jumping straight in for the sale is a bad idea, regardless of the platform you do it on. Instead, you should be focusing on providing informative, helpful and unbiased content, without always trying to push for your next sale.
Remember, not everyone that lands on your website will be ready to buy – they might not even know if your solution is right for them – so you have to provide relevant content that will help them make an informed decision, and the best way to do this on via your blog.
5. Not giving visitors a clear path to follow
It’s all very well providing your visitors with amazing content on your website or blog, but if you don’t give them an opportunity to move onto the next logical step, they’ll probably just click away without giving it much thought. That’s why introducing multiple touch points, and call-to-actions (CTAs), is important.
CTAs are bright, clear buttons that can be placed at the bottom of your content, and around your site, to help move visitors onto the next step and convert them into leads. They can be something as simple as signing up to a newsletter, or they can contain content offers such as to download a free ebook or guide.
6. Not engaging with your audience
Social media tends to be overlooked as secondary in many marketing plans, but in my experience, this is a mistake. You should not only be using platforms such as Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn to share your content, but also replying to comments and questions your audience has.
I’d also recommend taking the time to reply to genuine questions on your blog, as this not only helps the person asking (who could become a valuable lead, by the way) but also anyone else who happens to come along looking for the same answer.
7. Sending unsolicited emails
We’re truly living in an opt-in age, and it’s now considered bad email marketing practice to send out unsolicited emails out to potential customers. There are plenty of reputable services you can use to gradually build up your email lists by getting your visitors’ permission first.
With so many tools now at your fingertips, there’s no excuse for being sloppy and sending your marketing messages out to anyone and everyone, with the hope that something might stick.
I hope you’ve enjoyed reading, and by now you should have a better idea of what to avoid when planning out your next marketing strategy. An experienced digital or inbound marketing agency should be able to help you avoid these pitfalls, but hiring one is not essential.