13 Digital Marketing Tips for HVAC Contractors

To survive in today’s marketing landscape, HVAC contractors fully understand that an online presence is required. Resistance to digital marketing techniques was rampant in the heating and cooling industry, until failure to implement such techniques started to directly impact the livelihoods of contractors and their families. What was once considered a forward-thinking outlook, is now one that is non-negotiable. Any small to medium sized business owner can relate to the concept of adapt or die. So yes, internet marketing can be time consuming, frustrating, and downright painful, but it is also a path to earning revenue, and supporting your employees and their families. Here are 15 digital marketing tips to get you started on the right track:

1) Follow The Data

There’s lots of old habits in the internet marketing industry, and many of them are no longer effective. Just because something worked 10 years ago, doesn’t mean it will today. So how can contractors determine what will work? Follow the data. Using tools like Google Analytics, the performance of websites, pages, and advertisements can be tracked and analyzed. Here’s what data might lead an HVAC contractor to:

  • Audience: Who your audience is and what they value
  • Engagement: Which types of content engage consumers mores effectively
  • Process: The consumer’s journey proceeds through several checkpoints, all of which must be optimized

2) Track Everything

It’s not possible to follow data that doesn’t exist, which brings us to our next tip: track everything. The aforementioned Google Analytics is a great tracking tool, and it’s free. Other paid options like Moz and SEMRush allow companies to track their online campaigns, and services like SpyFu even empower companies to track the campaigns of their main competitors. Here’s what to look for:

  • Clicks: How many users are clicking on your site after seeing it on search results
  • Links: What kinds of links are coming to your website
  • Rankings: How are your Google rankings fluctuating over time

3) Be Social

You don’t have have to go to fundraisers to connect with other businesses in 2018. All of it can be done online through social media. Whether its B2B networks like LinkedIn or more customer-centric platforms like Facebook and Instagram, there’s no shortage of options for HVAC companies looking to expand their brand awareness. Some of the best content to publish on social media includes:

  • Blog Posts: Written posts from your website’s blog
  • Curation: Endorsements of 3rd party content that your audience might find helpful
  • Promotions: Discounts or other promotional materials

4) Content Quality Over Quantity

Flooding the net with 300 word blog posts won’t draw any meaningful attention to your brand. Instead focus on crafting higher quality, longer-form blog posts of 800 words or higher. These pots have a greater chance of being shared via social media, as well as linked to from 3rd party websites. There’s no shortcuts to creating great content, it takes time and consistent efforts to reach its full potential. Quality content is:

  • Engaging: Holds the average reader’s attention
  • Unique: Cannot be found elsewhere on the web
  • Valuable: Offers important or noteworthy info to the reader

5) Brand Your Company

To establish a favorable online presence, consumers should associate each instance of your company with its overall ethos. To do so, a web-ready logo must be included with every representation of your company. That means business listings, social media, and perhaps most importantly, your company website. An effective digital brand is:

  • Appealing: Provides distinguishable value to the consumer
  • Consistent: Remains uniform in image and description
  • Visible: Is regularly apparent on all corners of the web

6) Stay Flexible

In a realm as uncertain as internet marketing, it is important for HVAC companies to refrain from becoming attached to a single idea or methodology. Because Google regularly evaluates its algorithm, change is the only constant. Contractors should be ready to adapt to new information, and to implement processes that might not align with initial theories. To be a digital success in 2018, the status quo must be relinquished. Changes come in the form of:

  • Behavioral Tendencies: Changes in the behavior of your target consumer (i.e. increased use of voice search)
  • Data Shifts: Prompt and considerable changes in tracking data
  • New Information: Recently released info regarding algorithms or new technology

7) Out With The Old

Manipulative tactics used to rule the SEO industry, but Google has gotten much better at detecting and penalizing such behavior. Tactics that fall under this category are known as black-hat SEO tactics. Link schemes, sneaky redirects, and the aforementioned keyword stuffing. Just because these methods worked 15 years ago, doesn’t make them worthwhile today. In fact, the opposite is true. Steer clear from:

  • Auto-Generated Content: Low quality content written by AI for SEO purposes only
  • Keyword Stuffing: User intent matters more than verbatim keywords in today’s market
  • Link Schemes: Posting URL’s in blog comments and forums to drive up inbound links

8) Link With a Purpose

Earning quality links from 3rd party sources can be a slow but rewarding process. The best way to earn links is by writing objectively great content, that provides value to your target consumer. While inbound links are rightfully appealing because of their potential influence on SEO, they aren’t the only type of link worth pursuing. Internal links from one website page to another is helpful for navigation, as are external links leading to relevant content. Every link should be:

  • Helpful: Provides value to the user through assistance of some kind
  • Relevant: Relates to the topic of both the linked and destination page
  • Sensible: Applied with anchor text that makes sense to the reader

9) Monitor Business Listings

Some heating and cooling companies wonder how listing directories gather their contact information, if they have never manually submitted it to a given website. The answer is data aggregation. Services like Neustar and Acxiom collect contact info from public records, and disseminate it to directories throughout the web. Because businesses often change some aspect of their contact information during the company’s tenure, misinformation can spread quickly. Make sure listings are:

  • Accurate: Possess accurate name, address, phone number, and website info
  • Branded: Display your company logo and about-us description
  • Claimed: Are controlled by your company, usually through business verification

10) Map Your Location

Modern searches utilize location information to match users with nearby business. To be matched to appropriate consumers, you must map your business location using geo-coordinates. Once your business is marked on Google Maps and other GPS devices, customers will find your information more easily and therefore be more likely to contact you. You’re HVAC company is also more likely to appear on:

  • Google 3 Pack: The map portion of Google search results
  • Knowledge Graph: The boxed profile on the right hand side of search results
  • Mobile Search: Results for nearby mobile users

11) Target Mobile Users

Most website visitors in 2018 access your site via mobile device, most commonly their smartphones. While desktops have not been removed from society completely, their usage rate has lowered significantly, and it is time for businesses to adapt. Design a website with the mobile user in mind, first and foremost, and make it as simple as possible for smartphone users to locate and contact your HVAC company. Aspects of mobile usage includes:

  • Display: How your site presents on a smartphone or tablet
  • Location: The presence of geo-coordinates for mobile matching
  • Navigation: How simple it is to navigate your site on smartphone or tablet

12) Define Your Audience

With more information available than ever before, defining your target audience is critical. To properly market to consumers, you must know their respective needs and preferences, and trends that manifest in the aggregate. This way, you can narrow your focus and appeal to a defined group, with the hope that many convert into leads. For example, your market might be especially interested in energy efficiency tips. Here are some ways to define your audience:

  • Age: The age range
  • Location: The general location
  • Needs: Which services they need most frequently

13) Hire a Professional

As prideful as they are, many heating and cooling professionals believe they can handle every aspect of their business without outside influence. Of course anything is possible, but the question for contractors should always be, what is best for business? In this case, what is best for business is investing in an HVAC internet marketing service to handle your online promotion. Marketing pros help with:

  • Content Quality: With more resources at bay, pros can produce higher quality content
  • Scheduling: A professional doesn’t forget to post on social media because they’re busy, it is their job
  • Time Management: Outsourcing digital marketing services gives contractors the time necessary to devote on their everyday operations

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About The Author

HVAC Webmasters is a digital marketing company for heating and cooling technicians across the country

Follow on Twitter: https://twitter.com/HVACWebmasters

How to Get more Business out of your Current HVAC Customers

As an HVAC industry pro, you know the importance of building a customer base. Tips and tricks and marketing tools abound, and you likely have a good idea what works and what doesn’t in your market. But what if there is an untapped market for your business, one that doesn’t require additional work making contacts and building a base? In other words, what can you do to increase profitability among the customers you already have? Many residential customers may go years without a specific complaint serious enough to warrant a service call. Here are some tips and tactics for you to consider that can help you get more business.

Before we get started, here’s one important caveat: let’s operate under the assumption that dishonest tactics might make money in the short term but are bad business in the long term. The tips you’ll find below do NOT include anything intentionally shady or deceptive. Now that we have that out of the way, let’s get started.

Tips for Getting More Business from your Current Customers

1. Offer a Service Agreement (Retainer Service)

If you don’t yet, consider setting up a service agreement (i.e., a subscription or retainer service). Some customers will pay monthly or yearly for the peace of mind of knowing that if something goes wrong, they will get priority service. This is also a good way to make money on regular AC unit service and maintenance. Customers are very likely to forget to schedule this manually, and it’s a hassle for your company to have to call customers to remind them to get this done. So if it’s built into your service contract or subscription service, not only will the units be better cared for, you’ll make regular money from these customers. It’s a win-win. The level of service you offer in this may need to scale with the size of your business. If you’re a one man show, you may not be able to promise 12- or 24-hour service in these contracts. But you can still monetize and make consistent your customers’ maintenance needs.

2. Stay Social All Year

If the only time your customers think of you is when their HVAC is broken, you’re doing it wrong! Use technology to your advantage. These days it’s incredibly easy to build an email database and you can also build a following on social media. Whenever you leave a satisfied customer, make sure you’re reaching them electronically. And then email and post regularly! If you live in a region with a definite slow season, use this time to build up a list of short posts and tidbits that you could send to your customer list via email. These electronic touches remind customers about you and can also include calls to action about potentially needed services.

3. Check In with Them

Let me illustrate: I know there’s something off with my home plumbing. It doesn’t seem to affect anything else, so I’ve just been ignoring it and haven’t called my plumber. But if he called me to check in, I would certainly mention it, and he might make some money off me.

The point? When business is slow, pick up the phone and start calling your customers. Ask them how they are and how their system is doing. You might be surprised to hear, “Well, you know, it’s doing this thing…” There you go; you’re in business.

4. Always Be Available (via Virtual Receptionist)

Unless your company is large enough to have an office with multiple people answering phones, it’s likely that at some point a customer will get sent to voicemail. And if you’re a one-man operation you certainly can’t interrupt the customer you’re currently with to answer the phone. But if a customer is having a crisis and you’re unreachable, he or she may reach for the phone book and start calling down the list until they find someone that answers. When this happens, best case, you lost some business; worst case, you lost a customer!

Hiring a virtual receptionist fixes this completely. You can rest assured that your customers will reach a live human, and you can focus on what you do best rather than on answering the phone.

5. Diversify

Consider whether there are any add-on services you don’t currently offer, but with a little extra study or training you could. One popular area is air duct and dryer vent cleaning. Another option is offering an HVAC efficiency check-up, which allows you to identify ways to improve the customer’s home or business. And if you can offer to procure and install efficiency upgrades, that could become another revenue stream. The “free system inspection” is far from a new idea, but it can go a long way. You can find problems before they become crises, and most low- or average-information customers will be grateful to spend the money now to avoid the crisis later.

If you’ve yet to implement one or more of these 5 methods, consider making the change today.

 

Mr. HVAC wants to thank our guest contributor – JC Heating & Cooling.

JC Heating & Cooling, Inc is here to help with the heating and cooling systems in your home or office. Our combination of skills and services make us your best choice. All JC Heating & Cooling, Inc technicians are factory trained and certified, and we offer flat rate pricing that lets you know up front how much your HVAC installation will cost. We serve the North and South West Suburb areas and can provide same-day or next-day service in most cases. We also offer hvac emergency service and free estimates on heating & cooling equipment.

Should HVAC Companies Have a Facebook Business Page in 2017?

Air Conditioning Repair Technician

Should a Contractor Be On Facebook?

Everyone understands that starting up a business is a tough journey, especially an HVAC business where there is high competition. It requires lots of effort and determination to succeed in the business. One of the key challenges that are commonly faced by HVAC contractors are searching for new customers. We are in 2017 now, so should HVAC companies have their own Facebook business page? The answer is yes, as there are so many benefits when you set up a business page for your HVAC business. We will be discussing on how Facebook business page can help your HVAC business.

Increase Potential Customers

Currently, there is a total of 1.19 Billion users on Facebook. I understand that HVAC business does not need to reach out to the whole world, but I am sure that your customers in your country use Facebook too right? By reaching out to Facebook users, you are having huge exposure to potential customers.

Increase Leads

By having people to like your Facebook page is not sufficient for a long-term HVAC business. You can make a short-term living from your Facebook page, but not long-term. We can’t remove the possibility that Facebook may disappear one day, which is why making a connection with your Facebook followers is very crucial. You can gather leads such as getting their email addresses, so that you are able to connect with them without using Facebook. You can gather their email addresses through contests, promotions, giveaways and many more. It is important that you do not use their email addresses for unlawful or unethical practices such as not spamming their email address or sell it to third parties. Instead, you can email them once a month on your HVAC promotions such as discounts on aircon servicing, installation or useful tips which they could turn into your customers.

Cheaper Marketing Campaign

Creating a Facebook business page is completely free and won’t cost you a single cent. We understand that it needs money to find a graphic designer to design your business logo or cover photo, but actually you can do it yourself too. You can just use photos that you capture during your aircon servicing or repair work which sometimes works better than a creative image from a graphic designer.

My main point is that by creating posts and page literally cost you nothing unless you start paying for ads to increase your exposure, Facebook likes, and running sponsored ads. All these should be done when you create your Facebook business page.  When compared to newspaper, radio or TV ads, Facebook ads are inexpensive and have greater exposure.

Exposure to Your Targeted Audience

This is a further elaboration of the above point which is very crucial. There are more than 1 billion of Facebook users, but not all of them are interested in your HVAC business and want to like your page. I am sure you also do not want users that have absolutely no interests in HVAC to like your page as they will not engage in your posts.

Hence, for example, for local HVAC business, you can specifically target your ads to Facebook users that are within your region or country. These ads may cost you more, but the engagement and conversion rates will be higher.

Facebook Insights

Do not have to worry if you are unfamiliar with statistics or numbers because Facebook insights are simple and easy to understand. From the Facebook insights, you are able to know how many page likes you have, the reach of your posts, how well is your posts are performing such as number of likes, etc. Compared to placing an ad in your local newspaper, you are completely unaware of such results.

Build Brand Loyalty

Other than being an advertisement platform, Facebook business page can help you to build your brand loyalty. This means that in the event that you are running a promotional event, your customers will support you, provided that you are constantly updating your Facebook page. Nowadays, consumers no longer flip at Yellow Pages to search for an aircon servicing contractor, they will just go online and search for it instead. Within seconds, there will be many results of HVAC contractors in their region. Hence, if your Facebook followers constantly seeing you are updating your Facebook pages, they will most likely engage you for aircon maintenance or repair as compared to HVAC business with no Facebook page.

There are many great benefits of setting up a Facebook page for your HVAC business in 2017. Thus, if you want to increase your sales and customer base in 2017, be sure to set up your Facebook page and start engaging the Facebook users with your posts. I am sure that you will see an increase in sales after you have created your Facebook page. If you want to have greater exposure in Facebook, you can try running sponsored ads on your posts where it will reach potential customers in your region.

About our guest author: Winnie Leong is the web marketing director of Aircon Servicing Singapore, a leading air-conditioning servicing and repair contractor in Singapore.

6 Steps to Successful Internet Marketing for Your HVAC Business

6 Steps to Successful Internet Marketing for Your HVAC Business

For heating and air conditioning companies, 2017 should be the year to stop relying solely on traditional advertising methods. Dependence on Yellow Pages, TV, radio and print advertising is netting companies a smaller and smaller portion of the market each year. To stay competitive, HVAC contractors need to implement an effective online marketing strategy.

The best way to tackle this is step by step. There’s a ton of information out there and it’s easy to get overwhelmed or confused by the endless flow of marketing advice. What really matters is taking care of the fundamentals first and setting your next priorities accordingly.

In this article, we’ll look at a few ways to get your company’s online marketing on the right track. Set the foundation right and create plenty of room to grow. This is not by any means a comprehensive or unattainable list. Rather, we’ll provide an overview of the basic building blocks needed to set you up for future success and make it easier to scale and grow your digital marketing.

1: Website Design

Quality web design should be a top priority when you start looking into overhauling your online marketing efforts. Your website needs to look great, load fast and function well across desktop and mobile devices. Get in touch with some website design services in your area to get a good idea of what’s involved with a redesign and how much it will cost.

2: Claim Your Local Listings

Your company’s Google My Business page is an invaluable asset when it comes to local search rankings. If you don’t have a page set up, make this a priority. If you already have a page, make sure it is updated with accurate contact information and photos. This will give you a better shot at showing up in the map results.

Don’t forget to set up your local profile on Bing and Yahoo as well. Bing is gaining a larger portion of the search engine market every day, so don’t miss out on your opportunity to connect with Bing, Yahoo and Google users.

3: Get Those Online Reviews

Encourage your happy customers to leave reviews online. Five-star Google reviews will show potential customers that your company has a solid track record of providing great customer service and quality work. It will also show Google that your business is valued and trusted.

4: Optimize On-Site for Local SEO Results

While accurate search listings and good reviews are essential off-site components, on-site optimization will send the right signals to search engines and help you attract more relevant traffic. Some fast and relatively easy changes include the creation of location-specific, keyword optimized landing pages and optimized urls.

Take a close look at the content on your pages to ensure it is informative and relevant to the search phrases that drive traffic to that page.

5: Optimize for Conversions

Better SEO rankings will help bring more traffic to your website, but it’s up to you to turn those visitors into leads and customers. Make it easy for potential customers to contact your business. That means using strong calls to action, displaying your phone number prominently and using a form fill on every landing page – one in the header and one in the footer.

6: Invest in PPC Advertising

These days, ranking high organically is just one piece of the digital marketing puzzle. If you want your company to appear above the fold, you need to invest in pay-per-click advertising. The best place to start is with Google AdWords. This is Google’s advertising platform. It allows users to create ads and bid on keywords.

The process of setting up an account, creating ads and bidding on keywords is pretty straightforward. However, professional copywriting, optimized landing pages and knowledge of AdWords advanced functionality will result in a far better ROI. That’s why so many HVAC contractors hire a marketing firm to set up and manage their PPC efforts.

Conclusion

It’s important to remember that good digital marketing is an ongoing effort. While this article highlights a few of the basic building blocks, implementing the changes will take some technical proficiency. If you do not have an in-house team of developers, designers, writers and SEO strategists, it might be a good idea to talk with some online marketing agencies in your area.

Find a good agency that can work with and make the most out of your budget. It’s 2017, the perfect time to start improving your online visibility.

By Guest Author Stephanie Gordon
https://www.mybizniche.com/

how to market hvac business online

How To Market Your HVAC Business Online

Nowadays people are getting more technologically advanced from the web to smartphones. If they have any questions, they just search the web and resolve their issues. But why are HVAC businesses falling behind online? Many times, potential customers have issues finding HVAC service companies quickly and efficiently. Sometimes they will contact the nearest one and sometimes they go to a directory, but they forget that they are living in the smart time and they have strong weapon i.e. smartphones and the web where they can easily get the details according to your demands. To make it online is not as difficult as its sound. Make your HAVC business contact information readily available online and learn how to market your business.

Here are some tips to help market your HVAC business online:

List of business directories

how to market hvac business onlineIt’s quite simple getting started, you just need to list your HVAC business in local business directories. This is the easiest way to connect your business with potential customers. People generally don’t have much time to explore details about each and every business so make sure your website is short and to the point. It should also be inviting and very user-friendly. Listing your company is a great way to connect with people who are in need of heating and cooling services. Usually, your details are per demand and make it area specified so that people can contact you in a straightforward manner.

It is also very important to have a business profile on “Google My Business”, “Bring places For Business”, and “Yahoo Small Business” as these three have great potential to increase your ranking in search engines and bring more traffic to your site.

How to market hvac business onlineSocial Media Platforms

Facebook and YouTube are the most viral social media in which you can link with your customers. It is important that your website is accessible to your potential customers, and having it on social media platforms is a simple way for users to access it. You can create a Facebook page of your business and upload all the necessary things regarding your websites and services. Facebook is also a great way to easily interact with your customers. For a YouTube profile it is important to make videos of your services and put out updates and new videos regularly. This makes it easier for potential customers to see your work and call you at their service.

Ask For Feedback

Feedback from your customers is extremely important. Many times, users view services on your website and then look at reviews or comments to decide whether or not to call your business. Do not worry too much about the unhappy customers. If you provide great service, the happy customers will provide feedback too which can really help in expanding your business.


 

About The Author

gassco heating and coolingGASSCO Heating and Cooling has been providing the best service for more than 20 years. We are a team of expertise who give our customers 100% satisfaction with our services.

Embracing Social Media for Your HVAC Business

Social Media is an Important Part of Marketing your HVAC Business

You provide a service business that relies heavily on advertising and word of mouth. But what about finding other streams of income for your business? Has your company started embracing social media? Below are some suggestions to help you get started.

Referrals

When dealing with water heaters and air units, your company likely also encounters water damage and mold at times. Many water mitigation companies pay a referral fee to contractors that refer new business to them, even repeat business. In this scenario, the contractor goes out to do a duct job and finds mold. He calls XYZ company to handle the mold and gets a referral fee for the job. Or perhaps the water heater needs fixing and a flood is present, again the water mitigators would be called to dry the area. I have witnessed this scenario more times than I can count. Call around to a few of the local companies and ask what they’re going rate is for referrals.

Blogging

I’m often surprised by the amount of companies that haven’t yet joined the social media age, starting with a blog. While the purpose is to market your services, you can expand your reach to an audience around the world by providing information; not to mention it’s good for your brand. You can write posts that offers how to articles and videos and photos. Also, on these posts you can use programs such as Adsense to make money and also affiliate marketing. Blogs are fairly easy to install these days with WordPress and Fantastico that is available with most hosting programs. The more content you provide, the more helpful your site is, the more worth that the search engines give it. Be a resource of help to visitors in your areas and ones that are also not in your area.

Twitter

If your company is not yet tweeting you really need to jump on the bandwagon. Start by tweeting helpful tips and finding people of interest to follow. While the intended purpose is to get more people to your site, don’t just blatantly sell your business. You need to have a tone to share as well as information. Twitter is about communicating and sharing information and can be hugely successful in drumming up more traffic and interaction for your site. If you don’t have the time to do this for yourself, consider hiring someone to do it for you with the understanding that the twitter account is yours and you will retain it. They are being hired to tweet on your behalf. Once you build up your Twitter account and have a good number of interactive followers you can get paid to tweet.

Facebook

Most companies do have a Facebook page for their customers. Many of those pages lay dormant. Interact with the people that like your page and business it encourages referrals and future business. A small personal touch goes a long way.

Pinterest

One of the hottest social media sites nowadays is Pinterest! You can share, find and bookmark information on anything from making a bow to making beef jerky and cleaning tips – literally anything and everything can be found. You can just as easily share your own work photos.

Tying it all together

Start by signing up for all the social media sites using your business profile and most importantly, after you have signed up and you are using your profiles make sure they are linked too on your website so it is easy for people to follow you and interact. It may seem like a daunting task at first but once you get started you will see that it’s not as bad as you thought. Takes only a few minutes a day and can equal a greater deal of business and/or traffic for your site no matter your industry.

Gabrielle Greene is a co-blogger for TipsOnHowToSaveMoney.com

Social Media is an Essential Part of Marketing Your HVAC Business

Creating Physical Marketing Collateral for Your Business

As a service contractor, very often when you work on a job you’ll be asked to provide some physical collateral to provide more information about your business. Outside of cheap business cards and quote/invoice forms, very few contractors actually consider this as important starting out in the business. However, customers like having access to printed collateral so they can refer their family and friends to your service a benefit that can help your business grow rapidly.

Here are some guidelines for the kinds of business marketing collateral you’ll need as well as printing advice, for the smart service contractor.

Basic Marketing Collateral Needs

Your marketing package should include the following basic elements: business cards and flyers printed on high quality materials. These are the most frequently requested materials by customers so be sure to have multiples on hand for each job. Use the best quality printing service your business budget can afford, and be sure to brand your materials with your company name, a logo, and contact information. The key is to develop a strong brand so you will stand out amongst other contractors in your industry.

Vehicle Promotional Advertisement

To enhance your marketing efforts, it’s important to also develop a vehicle advertisement program that includes high quality vehicle decals or wraps that prominently display your company logo, business name and phone numbers. This is especially important as you will be marketing yourself as you drive around town picking up equipment and to each job site. If you drive your work vehicle for personal errands, your marketing efforts will be increased with every mile.

Brochures and Service Illustration Books

Include detailed information about your services with full-color brochures and contractor service illustration books. These are handy to have whenever you are working up a quote or service plan for a new customer to be able to explain with visuals what you are going to be doing for the customer. Instead of abstract ideas, you will have illustrations and pictures that include detailed figures and information that will help you prove you are the expert in your industry.

Website Marketing

Another key element in developing your marketing collateral is the inclusion of a website address to give your customers a chance to view more information about your company. You’ll also have the opportunity to provide helpful examples of your work, as well as the testimonials from past customers which can be very powerful marketing tools. Work with an experienced marketing company to develop your print collateral as well as your online marketing resources for a streamlined, well branded approach to business promotions.

Select the Best Printing Service

As you start working on your print collateral, be sure to choose a service that offers low shipping costs and the best quality materials. Remember to order ahead of time and order in bulk quantities for savings. This will help you make a good impression with clients, and you can have pride in sharing your company with others.

About the Author: Jake Downs spends most of his time covering different printing companies. When he’s not doing that, he enjoys spending time with his three dogs.

 

Please contact Mr. HVAC if you would like to be a guest writer.

 

The Time to Close the Sale is Before the Sales Process Begins

The most important part of the sales process is the close. You can think of the close as the point in your presentation where you state to them the most compelling reasons to accept your proposal, answer questions, and overcome objections. In this article, I want to challenge you to rethink this sales model and turn it upside down.

If you’ve been selling for a while you know that the key to getting the job is often a matter of overcoming your clients’ objections. Certainly you hear many of the same objections over and over again. You should be able to anticipate these and deal with them before they are raised, and not after. Objections can include any number of things.

Think about the most common objections you encounter in your sales process. For me there are three biggies. They are credibility (can I really do what I claim I can), trust (do they believe what I am telling them), and value (is my price too high). Yours may be different, but let’ use these in order to narrow it down and offer specific advice.

Creating a Sense of Trust
Very few people are going to come out and tell you they don’t trust you. Instead they may say, “I need to think about it for a while.” Once you’re out of their house, you won’t be coming back. Trust can be built up by positive polite actions. The best time to overcome concerns is when you pull up to the customer’ home.

1. Don’t park in their driveway unless invited to. The best place to park is on the street where the vehicle can be seen from the front door. Be sure your vehicle is professionally lettered.

2. For most service industries, the salesperson should arrive wearing a clean uniform. Your client will be impressed with a clean uniform because it suggests you are not simply a salesperson, but that you are also middle class and came ready to work if needed.

3. Make sure your hands are clean. No smoking or smelling of smoke, and absolutely no ball caps. Don’t ever face a client wearing a pair of sunglasses.

4. Be sure to knock on the door rather than ringing the doorbell (there may be children sleeping). Always stand back at least three feet after knocking, so you can be seen clearly through the peephole.

5. When greeting your client, hand them a business card with your left hand, keeping your right hand free to shake a man’ hand. If you are dealing with the lady of the house, wait on her to offer to shake your hand. You never offer to shake a woman’ hand first.

6. Carry a piece of scrap carpet to set your tools on. Never set any type of equipment or tool directly on your client’s floor or carpet. Take your shoes off when entering their home, or wear booties over your shoes. You should respect your client and their home at all times.

7. Offer genuine compliments. Notice their pictures or pets and relate to them. It’ okay to share that you have a cat or dog too!

Building Credibility
Don’t forget, you’ve been called out to solve a problem. You will build credibility (and help with the trust issue) by asking deep probing questions, questions that show you really care about their problem. Whether that problem is temperature, security, bugs or remodeling, your client expects you to recommend a solution. To properly diagnose the problem, you must first perform a thorough analysis.

If you have a technical background, you may be over-relying on your technical skill. Clients don’t buy things, they invest in solutions. Use your technical ability to analyze the situation, but don’t forget to thoroughly question the homeowner. Your discussion with the homeowner is the foundation of your close. You are building trust and credibility.

Using open-ended questions is the key. If you sell air conditioning you might ask, “How do you feel about your current system?” If you are in the kitchen remodeling business you may ask, “How do you feel about your countertops? Are there any materials you are particularly fond of?” Closed-ended questions are also powerful when used correctly. For example, “What is most important to you, the overall price or warranty?”

The Dreaded Price Objection
Our research clearly shows that this is the one objection most salespeople are afraid of. First, let’ make one thing perfectly clear: price and value are not necessarily the same thing. You can pay very little and get a bad deal. You can pay a lot and get a great value.

They key to overcoming the price objection is to build more value into your sales proposal than any other salesperson has. In other words, make your solution such a “great deal” that they would be crazy not to accept it. Let’ elaborate.

Value can be measured using the following formula: Benefit – Price = Value. When you reduce what you are giving the client by what the client must pay, anything left over is called value (or a great deal). To build value you must figure out what is most important to your client and give them a solution. Talk about benefits and not features. How will this appliance save them money, make them more comfortable, or increase the value of their home? Everyone has hot buttons. You must figure out what that hot button is and provide the correct solution. If your solution solves more of their problems than anyone else’s proposal did, then your proposal is the best deal.

Here is some good general advice in dealing with objections.

Treat Objections as Questions
Always treat objections as if your client was saying, “I’m not sold yet on the facts and information you have presented. Could you please give me more information, so that I can make an educated decision?”

Never Disagree With an Objection
Never start a sentence with a “stop word” such as “BUT”. How many times have you heard that “the salesman won the argument but lost the sale”? This doesn’t mean that you have to agree the customer is right and you’re wrong. However, it does mean that you can agree to understand his point of view.

Bring Up Common Objections First
Many times the best way to overcome an objection is to mention it first (before it even crosses the customer’ mind) and overcome it during your presentation.

For example, if you were having difficulty with the price of a super-high efficiency appliance, remind your client several times during the presentation that, “It is the cheapest appliance on the market to own due to its reliability and supreme efficiency.” By the time you get to the close, “The price is too high!” will not be an objection.

Remember this: you help build trust and credibility with your actions from the moment you arrive at the client’s doorstep. Building trust help you to pre-address objections that the client may have, but won’t mention. One thing is certain: People prefer to spend money with those that they like. You must convince your client that you understand their problem and that you have the correct solution. They must believe that you are honest and know what you are talking about. The most important thing you can do is be polite, energetic, and enthusiastic.

The Four Keys To Business Success

There is a lot to running a service construction business successfully. Thousands of books have been written on the subject and many more will be written. However, all of the successful service contracting companies (especially HVAC and plumbing) that I have either been associated with or studies have the following four attributes in common.

  1. Pricing For Profit (through accurate monthly financial statements).
  2. Effective Marketing & REAL Salesmanship (most of us are bidders).
  3. Recruiting & Coaching (have you become the “boss” you quit?).
  4. Organization & Strategic Planning (most make it up as they go along).

 

How To Establish Rapport With The Customer

  • Dress properly. In most cases you should wear a clean uniform.
  • Smile and maintain eye contact.
  • Have a well-prepared opening statement designed to arouse interest and curiosity.
  • Pay them a sincere compliment.
  • Find common interests and get them to talk about them.
  • Do not talk about your own problems.
  • Use the customer’ name and use it often. Do not presume to address them by their first name. Ask for permission.
  • Limit the use of the words “I” and “me”.
  • Be enthusiastic and confident without being pushy or conceded or condescending.
  • Discretely study the home (or office) and look for clues to the customer’ style or interests.
  • Always exercise good manners and never use bad language.
  • Leave your bad habits behind.

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