Here’s the premise: we give people advice about their marketing, but they don’t always have the time to implement the updates. It happens to every business owner. Sometimes your marketing needs more than the quick answers we can cover in a phone call. So print this off, download it, or paste it as your screensaver, and save it for when a winter storm shuts you inside during the off-season. Because as a marketer, I can guarantee answering these seven questions will dramatically improve your effectiveness next season.
This year I asked my team, “If you could ask a client to work on something when they had two days of nothing to do, what would you ask them to complete to make their marketing better?”
Here are the top seven answers I got, in as candid of language as I received.
1. Do I Have Testimonials To Showcase?
Reviews are becoming increasingly important. Scratch that. If you have enough bad ones online, you go out of business. It’s that serious. Every time we see new data out there from consumers, the trust of online reviews just keeps rising. Last I checked, 88% of consumers trust online reviews as much as a recommendation from someone they know. That’s insane.
“A strong review management strategy will pay dividends down the road. When a person researches a product or company, the first thing they look at is reviews to see what others have to say. Having more reviews -especially positive ones- will enhance your marketing.”
– Art Unlimited Account Manager
“Video is the way of the future. Digital video consumption is increasing across all marketing channels and is now a component visitors expect from brands they trust.”
-Art Unlimited Graphic Designer
Customers want to hear from people who can vouch for your character. There are hundreds of uninsured handymen out there: why are you different? Having reviews on your listings in Yelp, Google, Facebook, and Bing is important. Videos of customer stories on your website go farther than having block quotes. People want to know you didn’t just make those up to look good. We know you’re an amazing roofing contractor; you need to make sure people you’ve never met think that too.
2. Is My Website Giving Me Leads?
People might be calling you from your Google Business listing, filling out a form, or sending you an email, but do you actually know where they got your information from? Look into your Google Analytics data to see your traffic volume, find out if you have goals set up, review your website form submissions, review your call tracking, etc!
“Data is your best friend. Take time to know what it means.”
– Art Unlimited SEO Manager
The data should be telling you what is going on with your digital performance. Don’t just leave it to a marketing agency to review what’s good and not good. You need to know what’s going on within your digital channels because it can help you and your marketing agency set better goals together. Plus, there’s more accountability for both of you to put in the effort needed to succeed.
3. Do I Know How Much I Want to Grow By Next Year?
Setting your goals is important. If you don’t have a goal, you aren’t aiming at something to push your company forward. It can be a revenue goal, a number of completed jobs goal, or the number of employees you want to hire next year. Whatever your goals, break them down into quarterly chunks to make sure you are on track to hit your annual goal.
“If you have more leads than you can handle then your customers may leave bad reviews and you’re overpaying for leads. Break down your close rate and find out how many leads you need to grow to the level you want this year.”
– Art Unlimited Pay-Per-Click Marketing Manager
Knowing what your goals are can save you money and improve your customers’ overall experience with your business. We have seen roofing contractors get major backlash in their reviews when they do too much marketing and don’t have the roofing team to support the need. Taking time to know your numbers and break down your efforts ensures you have a fully staffed team when your customers call.
4. Have I Allocated the Correct Marketing Budget To Grow That Much?
We don’t know how many times a growth goal hasn’t matched the marketing budget. The Small Business Administration says you should be allocating 7-8% of your revenue to marketing. If you’re brand new to the roofing scene, you’ll likely be looking at investing around 9-11% for the first few years. Honestly, we’ve seen marketing budgets done for much less but only when you are tracking and spending your money wisely in all your digital and traditional channels.
“Great companies have a budget, define their marketing goals, and track performance. After all, you can’t get caviar if you only have the budget for pizza. We have the tools to help support your metrics.”
– Art Unlimited Business Insights Manager
If you have a large plan to double or triple your business, you are going to have to budget for the growth in your marketing. You can’t simply base it off of what you spent last year and expect to get double or triple the results. Please know if you plan to grow your business quickly your marketing costs will increase dramatically. You can also only get a certain number of leads through referrals. Your marketing can strengthen quickly if you budget for growth in future years.
5. Does My Website Have Strong Content Which Answers People’s Questions?
Customers want to trust you as the expert. Your website content should show your customers you know what you’re talking about. If you offer more than one type of product, you should be explaining not only the differences between them, but the reason you chose to use only those quality products with your service offerings. You know you did a lot of research and found what was best for your customers; tell them the reasons you provide the best options in your website content.
“Look at your content as if you know nothing about your services or products. Does your content explain what you do in an easy to understand way for someone who doesn’t have expert knowledge on the subject? Are you using terms the normal person might not understand?”
– Art Unlimited SEO Manager
As a roofing contractor, your expertise is going to be deeper than any marketing team can go. We can tell you how to rank for Google, and the best strategies to get in front of your customer, but at the end of the day, the spotlight is on your expertise.
Which is why we get so excited when you give us the opportunity to showcase your knowledge by giving us content. It helps us get your content shown as the answer to web searches and attracts more customers!
Just make sure you actually wrote it yourself. Google will de-rank your website if you are pulling information from other websites, including manufacturers! You are the expert. Prove it with your website content.
6. Is All of My Information Up to Date Across The Web?
“Take time to review your company’s business listing on Google, Facebook, Yelp, and Bing. It should match what is on your website. Write down any needed updates to make sure the first impression your customers have has accurate information.”
– Art Unlimited User Experience Manager
Does your information show up correctly on all of your listings? Have you moved your business location, changed your phone number, or hired new team members? Sometimes you haven’t reviewed your website in a long time. I will never forget the mom & pop client who is now covering a multi-state area looking at me in shock to find his cell phone number on the “About Us” page. If your business is growing, it’s likely the preferences and processes you have for people to get in touch with you have changed too.
Making sure you have updated information communicated to your marketing team is going to help you, your marketing team, and your customers. We’re all in this together!
7. Do I Have a Storm Marketing Campaign Ready If Needed?
Most of the time, we think about our processes for emergency response after we’ve had to deal with our very first one.
“Have a storm plan! We don’t want you to have to worry about sending the correct message to customers when you’re busy buying out the local hardware store for every snow shovel they own or waiting for the hurricane winds to die down.”
-Art Unlimited Business Insights Manager
Having a marketing campaign ready to roll with the type of emergency services you are offering will help those in serious need. Some different things to think about for your storm plan:
- How should my customers contact me if the power is out?
- What type of response email should I have prepared for when the emergency requests start piling up?
- What type of campaigns should I have built to help customers find me in their time of need?
- What are the services I will be offering?
- How should customers expect my crew to be communicating with them?
Planning this out in advance is going to give you less time in the office and more time in the field helping those who need it most. You are a hero to many people during a storm, so we want you to have the opportunity to maximize your efforts.
Who Am I Partnering With to Succeed in the Year Ahead?
This isn’t always one of the questions you need to ask when you have loads of time. You will usually find you need to partner with someone when you have no time to spare! We want to make sure you are ready for the year ahead. So, if you have additional questions we might not have answered here, give us a call. We will jump at the chance to help.
Feel free to connect with us to talk through some of these questions. We know marketing and you know roofing, so let’s collaborate on your amazing strategy. Together we can conquer your goals for the upcoming year!