If you are hoping to grow your HVAC business, passively waiting for word-of-mouth referrals and pay-per-lead sites to send new clients your way isn’t going to cut it. By taking control of your HVAC marketing to create awareness for your company and to drive leads directly to your business, you can increase your client funnel and boost your bottom line!
Rethinking Your HVAC Advertising Strategy
Did you know that 80% of consumers have said they changed their minds about a recommended product or service after reading negative reviews online? This means that even if you are generating interest through advertising means such as positive referrals, potential clients are still going online to conduct more research, and what they find will significantly influence their purchase decision.
To corner the market on new leads and convert a higher percentage of referrals, you need an HVAC marketing plan that will:
Create awareness of your company and services
Present your business as a trusted authority in your field
Enhance your reputation
Build loyalty with repeat customers
Not sure where to start with all of that? Here are seven of the best HVAC marketing ideas that are sure to get your phone ringing.
1. User-Friendly Website
Consider your website your online storefront. Much like you would want your clients to walk into a professional environment and be greeted with a warm welcome if they visited your office, you want to provide consumers with an inviting and easy to use experience online as well.
Website load times longer than 3 seconds, hard to find contact information, and vague service descriptions will all result in lost business as your visitors walk right out of your virtual door. And as 57% of all US web traffic comes from a smartphone, a mobile-friendly website is a must for creating a user-friendly experience. If you haven’t refreshed your website in several years, take some time to honestly evaluate if your site is creating the impression that you want.
2. Local SEO
Local SEO (local search engine optimization) is one of the most critical tactics in your HVAC marketing strategy. When users search online for a residential service provider, Google knows that they are likely searching with the intent to find a local business, and they provide their results accordingly.
Google uses several factors to rank nearby businesses, such as location, keywords, online review ratings, and even social media engagement. The top three companies recommended by Google appear in the local 3-pack listing at the top of the page and get 44% of all clicks. Only 8% of consumers choose to “load more results” to see the lower-ranked companies.
Claiming and completing business listings on sites like Google, Bing, and Yelp allow your company to be included and rank higher in their local search results. As we mentioned previously, another key factor for a top-three ranking is online reviews and ratings. Studies have found that 63% of the time, the top three listings on Google are the companies with the most authentic reviews.
Reviews also drive local Search SEO and in particular, your review score and review volume. If your HVAC business is not earning many reviews and in particular quality reviews, think about how you can elevate those numbers. Software tools, such as My Review Concierge, a service of The Reputation Lab, enable business owners to drive more reviews through text messaging or email customer requests.
3. Pay-Per-Click Advertising
When it comes to placing HVAC ads, pay-per-click (PPC) advertising is an affordable and effective tactic for creating brand awareness. The most common example of a PPC ad is Google Ads, the purchased listings that appear at the top of a Google search results page. PPC ads allow your website to appear front and center on search result pages, even if your Search Engine Optimization (SEO) tactics haven’t earned your site top billing yet, which can give your business a jump start as you work to build more organic (non-paid) traffic to your site.
PPC ads on high-traffic sites, like Google, typically have detailed targeting and reporting, allowing you to create highly effective HVAC ads marketed towards your ideal client as well as quickly evaluate the performance of each ad. If you have a limited budget or are new to PPC ads, consider starting with the top two sites that consumers use to find local businesses - Google (60.9%) and Yelp (11.4%).
4. Content Marketing
Content marketing is just a fancy name for blog posts, videos, and other online material created to engage consumers and generate interest in your services. This can be a great way to educate potential and previous clients on preventative maintenance options that you provide or how to identify issues they may be having with their HVAC system. Content marketing is a tactic that allows you to showcase your expertise, so that customers will feel comfortable calling you, over your competitors, when they need your service, knowing that they are in good hands.
While content marketing may not always result in a flurry of immediate sales, this is a marketing tactic that can produce long-lasting results. In fact, small businesses whose websites featured regularly maintained blogs bring 126% more lead growth than those without. You can increase your leads by using SEO strategies to create what essentially become evergreen “HVAC ads” that will continue to show up in search results and drive new leads for years to come.
5. Social Media
While your Facebook, Instagram, and other social media posts may not be generating as many likes as they did back in 2010, social media is still a vital component of your HVAC marketing strategy. Existing clients will use your social media to stay up to date on specials and need-to-know information, and potential clients will visit your social media pages when researching your company.
If you haven’t posted in several months (or years), shoppers may question the viability and professionalism of your business. However, if you frequently share content such as blog posts, maintenance tips, and pictures of your projects, you can create a sense of trust with potential clients. So, while they may not “like” your post, seeing an active social media account and expert information will give them the confidence to pick up the phone and call you rather than continue to shop your competitors.
Social media sites also offer affordable options for HVAC advertising, which can be targeted toward your local market to build awareness or promote specials.
6. Online Reviews
Online reviews and ratings are one of the most influential forms of HVAC marketing. In a study conducted by Podium, 82% of people surveyed stated that reading the content of a review has convinced them to move forward with a purchase, and 89% shared that they read review responses provided by the company to help them make purchasing decisions.
In addition to influencing buying behavior, reviews and ratings also impact your bottom line. The Harvard Business Review found that a one-star increase in your Yelp rating can enable your business to boost revenue by 5-9%. 68% of consumers surveyed in the Podium survey said they were willing to pay up to 15% more for the same service if the reviews they read led them to believe that they would have an elevated experience.
Keep in mind, a company with no online reviews or with low scores can lose business due to a poor online reputation. Only 53% of consumers said they would consider working with a company that was rated under four stars, and just 13% would consider using a business that had a one or two-star rating. To boost your company’s online reputation, ask your customers to share their feedback on sites like Yelp, Google, and Facebook, and always provide thoughtful, timely responses to all reviews, both good and bad. Our My Review Concierge service is an excellent means of maximizing the value online reviews can bring to your business.
7. Email Marketing
It costs five times more to bring in revenue through a new client than it does through an existing one, which means that HVAC advertising devoted to maintaining existing client relationships is a must for a profitable business. A highly effective and lucrative HVAC marketing idea for keeping in touch with your customer base is email marketing. Studies have shown that for every $1 spent on email marketing, a business can expect to receive a $38 return on investment.
The goal of email marketing is to continue your relationship with customers after the work is done. Sending emails monthly or quarterly is ideal for remaining at the forefront of their minds, without overwhelming them. To create a campaign that drives leads, make sure to have a clear objective for each email that you send. For example, if your company offers a furnace inspection service, you can highlight this in your fall newsletter and boost sales by sharing the benefits of this inspection for the homeowner. Always include a strong call-to-action prompting the reader to take the next step and letting them know how to contact you.
Grow Your Business by Putting Your HVAC Marketing Plan in Place Today
While every company’s advertising plan will vary, you can use these 7 HVAC marketing ideas as the backbone for your strategy. To ensure success, write down your HVAC marketing plan and map out the actions you are going to take to achieve your goals. Set aside time each day to implement these tactics and make sure to evaluate the success of your program on a weekly or monthly basis. This will help you stay on track with your marketing plan and create a positive return on investment for your company.
If you need assistance in building a truly effective HVAC marketing strategy for your business, schedule your free, no-pressure introductory call to learn more about our signature Review Concierge service and additional options. You can also contact us directly if you have any questions that you would like to ask prior to arranging a call!