The hard part is over; you took the risk to start your own roofing business, now what? You need customers. Without a massive marketing budget, where should you begin? The top 5 advertising tips – roofing business is a good starting point. This is also a good list for a seasoned roofing business that might be looking for additional ideas.
- Directory Listings (Free – $) – these are online directories like Yellowbook, SuperPages, com and Hometown Roofing, plus many others. You can “claim your free listing” or create a new one. Claiming or creating these listings can take hours and/or days, depending on the amount of time you are willing to invest. Search engines like Google, Yahoo, and Bing routinely display these listings, so they are important. Complete as many of these listings as possible. Tip – you can hire a business listing service to populate these listings at a reasonable cost and they maintain the listing.
- Search Engines ($) – add your roofing business listing to the search engine database. If you want any chance to show up under the local maps section, you must complete a search engine profile to be added to their local database. The “big 3” consist of Google My Business, Yahoo Localworks (monthly fee), Bing Places.
- Organic Search ($$$) – this is the place where the search engines display your website under their “organic search” listings or SERPs. Competition among the top ten listings is extremely high. A good mobile friendly website gives you a fighting chance to compete in the SERPs. It also shows your potential customers that you are a professional roofing business. Tip – building your own website is like building your own furniture or making your own clothes, the end result may not look too well. Hire a professional digital marketing company, it might cost you a little today, but it will pay off over time.
- Review Websites (Free – $) – review websites like Yelp, Google+ and HometownRep, all generate new customers. Create these listings with accurate roofing business location information. Tip – make sure you proactively get satisfied customers to leave reviews, and make sure you monitor and address poor reviews. Poor reviews can torpedo your roofing business quickly.
- Consumer Websites ($$) – consumer websites are dedicated to solving consumer requests for services. Examples include Thumbtack, HomeAdvisor, Angies List, and Hometown Roofing. These consumer websites often send leads to you right away. You still have to compete for the opportunity to quote, but at least you have a chance to land the job. Consumer websites typically charge a set amount per lead. Tip – consider using a consumer website that is dedicated to your industry, these type of leads can be of a higher quality.
- Bonus Tip ($) – create social media business pages for your roofing business. The three to consider are Facebook, Twitter, and Google+. This allows you to communicate to your past, present, and future customers. Plus Facebook accepts reviews and as you know, virtually everyone has a Facebook account. Tip – follow the 80/20 rule, post 80% of interesting content related to your industry and only 20% promotional. Post status updates at least once a week or find someone who can on your behalf.
Other advertising options are available, such as paid search (AdWords), social media advertising, and older methods such as the printed phone book, newspapers, and circulars. The 5 tips listed above are great starting points, however as your marketing budget grows consider adding other marketing channels to your strategy.