Here is a shortlist of ideas, strategies, and tips that Precision Digital Media employs to market other HVAC companies. Over the years, HVAC Marketing Services have evolved with the explosive growth of the internet, while also the decline of traditional advertising methods like direct mailing, billboards, television, and radio. Many HVAC companies are still in limbo, not fully utilizing the advent of the digital age.
Furthermore, there is a deluge of disinformation out there about when, how, and where to spend advertising dollars. Again and again, Precision Digital Media’s staff hears horror stories of HVAC companies that employ an agency to do it’s digital marketing, only to invest tens of thousands of dollars with no tangible Return-On-Investment (ROI). A marketing approach that doesn’t effectively measure it’s results–or lack thereof–is perhaps the largest reason why HVAC Marketing services fall short of successful delivery.
HVAC owners are hands-on people.
When the technician goes to the house, it’s pretty cut-and-dry as to whether the job is successful, either the unit is working and the customer is happy or the opposite. Unfortunately, there is a whole bunch of scoundrels in the digital marketing industry who still collect monthly retainers even though their marketing services are not performing for the businesses using them.
What’s A Good HVAC Website?
A good HVAC website should have at least these 8 things:
1) Content Development Strategy
This is the backbone of ranking a website on Google. If the content is not rich, and added consistently, then the website will never rank. And if it doesn’t rank, It’s not worth a damn. Furthermore, a content strategy is the most important aspect of the website because it’s the only way an HVAC company can get leads without having to pay-per-click (PPC). Essentially, all this new content can be reshared on social media which gives additional SEO benefits.
When looking for HVAC Marketing Services, this is the most critical aspect to look for: Is the agency going to be consistently uploading content to my HVAC website?
2) Scheduling Application With Automatic Payment Processing
To see an example of this, go to the Sunstate Mechanical website and look at the maintenance tab. Scroll down and there’s a scheduling portal for Sunstate’s maintenance plans… It’s the 21st century where Amazon Fresh dominates many metropolitan areas–customers ordering their groceries to their door with a click of a button.
It’s so important that when looking at different HVAC Marketing Services, this get-with-the-age strategy is there. Consumers want quick, easy ways to pay for their products. What’s easier than to go on a website, schedule, click and pay all within minutes.
There are HVAC companies that say, ‘We are a small company… We like to do our own scheduling.” Well, it’s not for the seller to decide what the buyer wants. This app is for the customer’s ease-of-use. Use it!
3) Video On Homepage
Videos on the homepage of a website are proven to increase conversions by as much as 140%. It’s a quick and easy way right now to increase conversions from traffic already hitting the website. There are sites out there such as Fiverr where it only costs about 10 bucks to get a custom 30 second video created for your site. Not only should videos be part of an overall content development strategy, but consumers are viewing videos over other content on social media now more than ever. This is a quick way to stand apart from competitors.
4) Live Chat Tool
Like on this website, a live chat tool is a little blimp in the bottom corner of the website–or off to the side–where the future customer can quickly contact the HVAC company. There are ways to program the chat tool for automatic replies, or just have it plugged into the cell phone or the office computer so that the HVAC company can reply in real time.
It’s advisable that the live chat tool is integrated into the CRM, so that there is a record of the conversation under the customer’s unique file.
This is a great way to stand apart in the marketplace: When a homeowner’s unit goes down, they have a problem and are looking to solve it now. Be that company that replies faster as it’s proven by a MIT study that a response in the first minute increase the chance of conversions by over 500%.
5) Social Media Connection
Essential in today’s digital marketing is your interaction with social media platforms. Sharing new posts on your website consistently with your social media followers is critical to your success to attract new customers. By sharing new posts and encouraging people to click back to your website creates a circle of traffic that Google lights up to. In addition, obtaining comments on your site is like word-of-mouth advertising. It shows people are interacting with your content, and that relevance, in turn, helps you move up in Google rankings.
6) Financing Portal
Another quick way to instantly improve the consumer experience is to have a financing portal on the website. This is a link to the financing company’s credit application page. In this example, Sunstate has a picture that goes straight to Wells Fargo’s credit application page.
7) Testimonial Page
This is a page with customer reviews. Some companies just manually type in the reviews from other review sites like Yelp. But these reviews can often look contrived. The best way is to have a review-streaming function on the website. Basically its an app that streams the reviews from Google, Yelp, and Facebook back to the website. These reviews are more believable because the future customer sees that they are authentic.
8) Mobile adaptability
This is a no-brainer but there are tons of HVAC companies that still have websites that don’t adapt to mobile devices. Most future customers are viewing on a mobile device. Websites that don’t have mobile adaptability are hard to view and frustrate the future customer. This is a quick way to lose that customer.
Is PPC Advertising Worth It?
Yes, it’s true that an HVAC click (not even a lead) can cost as much as $50 dollars a pop, if not more. The cost also depends upon how many other HVAC companies are advertising in the area. Furthermore, without proper tracking of several very important KPI’s (Key Performance Indicators), it’s almost impossible to answer that question, ‘Is PPC Worth It?’
In some cases, the answer is no. For some industries, PPC is just not feasible. For example, is it logical to spend $10 dollars per click for to t-shirt industry? The shirts only sell for $20. And if only .07% are converting from the clicks, it would be illogical.
Now in the HVAC industry, the ROI can be anyway from $100 to several thousands. Because of that reason, PPC advertising is essential to successful HVAC marketing services. In many cases, the PPC campaigns can serve as a sort of money machine if done correctly.
But there is also a big point to be made here… a successful content development strategy is more effective than PPC campaigns because once content ranks organically, then it stays there forever. Unlike PPC, organically ranked pages have an ROI that’s residual. It’s comparable to paying $1,000 per night for a hotel on the beach, or owning a rental property that’s accessible year round. PPC campaigns without a content marketing strategy is just callous.
Does Social Media Work?
What kind of question is that? It’s almost like asking is the sky blue. Social media is like a 24-hour sales funnel. Potential customers are just sitting in that funnel waiting for something to grab their attention.
HVAC marketing services without social media campaigns is a car without tires. Social media serves as a way of social proof, showing others that this is a good, established company to work with. Furthermore, it’s a great place to do seasonal offers or fun games like–post up pictures of your unit and the oldest unit wins $100 off an installation.
Facebook and Instagram advertising is pennies on the dollar compared to Google adwords. This is a huge opportunity that many companies are overlooking!
See this video on the future of advertising on social media:
Why CRM Integration (Measuring Everything) Is So Critical ?
PDM uses Zoho One for its CRM, and also helps set up this for many HVAC companies. Zoho One works so well because it has everything from book-keeping to social media resharing tools to email marketing, and much, much more.
Now it doesn’t really matter so much that a company uses one specific CRM over another, but instead of that they have one. CRM stands for Customer Relationship Management and that’s exactly what the tool does. It keeps and stores critical information on customers in a neat and organized way, and it makes it more easy to fast-track certain repeated actions like automatic invoicing through workflows and automated processes.
These programs save time, money, and improve staff efficiency while simultaneously improving customer satisfaction. There are too many companies that are using nothing, and it’s obvious to tell. It doesn’t matter if it’s a one-man company. Without a CRM, the company will always struggle to raise revenue and increase production.
Many CRM’s measure and track everything from project time vs. quoted price all the way to website and social media metrics. MEASURE! MEASURE! MEASURE! That is perhaps the most critical takeaway for successful HVAC Marketing Services.
Do Traditional Sales Methods (Follow up) Still Work?
The follow-up statistics are alarming, and most HVAC companies have no clue about them: 2% of sales happen on first call. 3% On the second 5% on the 3rd. 10% on the fourth. 80% of sales happen between eighth and twelfth call.
Where is the quickest way to instantly increase revenue? The answer is the existing customer base and low-hanging fruit. These are the customers who had a unit installed but never signed up for the maintenance program. These are the leads who called for a quote but nothing came of it. The key is to CALL THEM BACK. Most sales are not made on the first contact. And getting into this mentality like, “They’ll call me when they need me,” only leads to missed opportunities. Don’t be that company that gives away sales because it has no inside sales follow up.
Traditional sales is very effective. Even cold calling. And it’s imperative that HVAC companies have workable scripts, practice and role play daily. This is the single quickest way to increase sales right now.
The Bottom Line:
The bottom line is that successful HVAC marketing services hit a wide range of categories, measure everything, and stay-up-with-the-times. There’s no one way that is going to ensure a steady flow of leads forever. All bases need to be covered. An HVAC company to be reliant upon digital marketing, but stink at inside sales, are leaving money on the table when leads come in and they never follow up with them. They are paying $50 dollars a lead and then never calling them back, only to spend another $50 to get a new lead. Then there are the companies that have great follow-up, service the hell out of their customers, and their website looks like it’s from the late nineties.
There is no one size fits all equation. Each company is going to have to cater to it’s unique market and different times in the year. A company out of Florida is going to have to have a different strategy than a company from Quebec. The company in Florida is going to have to cater its maintenance program differently. It’s seasonal offers are going to be timed differently. The bottom line is to have a strategy in the first place, and measure and test that strategy daily. If one thing is working better than another, then reallocate funds towards what’s working at the time. Don’t get caught up in just buying leads. That’s a trap that will cost down the road. Cover all the bases and success is guaranteed.