Archive for the ‘Plumber Marketing’ Category

PostHeaderIcon Internet Marketing for Plumbers

When it comes to the internet the usage has exploded. Facebook to Skype, Bing to Google 80% of people in the US use the internet on a monthly (if not daily basis).

With so many people online a business owner definitely needs to take advantage of the opportunities internet marketing offers. With internet marketing you can sell your product Nationwide and people are buying! Gone are the days of being fearful to shop online. Black Monday (the internet version of Black Friday) sees a growth in purchases online every year.

No longer does someone have to guess if a company is good at what they do or wonder what products they offer. Gone are the days of print products dominating the homes and businesses of the consumer. With smart phone the internet game has changed the marketing forever.

Did you know there are 91.4 million smartphones in the United States alone and 89% of the smart phone owners use their phone on a daily basis Source? What that means to a business owner is with internet marketing you can be in the pocket or purse of a prospective client whenever they are looking for your product or service. That is an amazing asset to any business owner. Imaging being in a place every time someone does research for your product or service!

Local internet marketing seems to be the main focus for most brick and mortar stores to drive traffic to their business and offer services from their company. 8 out of 10 people search online for products and services in their local area. Hence, Google places being listed on top of their search results.

With a cost usually less than that of a ¼ page ad in the phone book that covers a small area you can be online targeting not only your city but those around you.

In my opinion, the internet is the most cost effective option when it comes to ROI for a business.

As a plumber you need to be where people are going to find you. While branding and keeping your name in front of your potential clients is important, the majority of your advertising dollars should be spent on getting calls for those customers when they are looking for your product or service.
We have a plumber here in the Southern Oregon market (a franchise plumber) that was spending tons of money on full page ads, newspaper ads, tv advertising etc. When we set them up with an internet marketing program they saw an increase of 36% within the first year! Imagine growing your business over 1/3 in less than a year for less than a yellow page ad. Yes the internet can be that powerful!

There are several options when it comes to your internet marketing campaign.
SEO (search engine optimization) to get you listed on the first page of the major search engines usually at a monthly cost to maintain the position and making the necessary changes when the search engines change their algorithms.

PPC (pay per click) is used in several options from search engine sponsored results to banner advertising where you opt to pay per click instead of impression.

CPA (cost per acquisition) advertising is where you only pay when you get a lead. This type of advertising is now used by most yellow page companies in order to save their print dollars. It is also used on a lot of internet options. Google’s adwords express allows you to choose the option of paying per call instead of paying per click.

Email Marketing is something you have to be very cautious about doing. While it can be a good way to mention your products or services to clients or perspective clients if it is not done right or ethically it can have an adverse effect on your company (in the worst cases you could be fined for spam and those fines aren’t cheap). Make sure if you are doing this type of marketing that you or the company you are using is not using spam tactics to generate a list.

Banner Marketing is where you place banner ads on sites that have your target client as part of their user base. While this is a great branding aspect, click through rates on banners are lower than 1% on average.

Social Media is a form of marketing that targets users based on the trends and searches of the user. Building and maintaining your business social is an important part of your marketing now and in the future it will become even more important.

Using internet marketing as a plumber is simply a great choice for a great ROI. Generate business from cell phones, computers, laptops and more. Users are looking for you, the question is are you being found or are they finding your competitor?

A recommendation we would make to our plumbers? I recommend a plumber spends 25%-50% of their marketing budget online. I feel it is the biggest bang for your buck and the best opportunity to generate new clients for your company.

If I were to open a plumbing company today and someone said you can only advertise in one place the internet would be my choice. The internet has more engaged users than any other form of advertising and it is expected to grow. Usage gets larger every year and when you throw smart phones into the mix I would want to be in the pocket of all my potential customers, how about you?

Some of the plumbers we work with include: Plumbers in San Diego CA, Plumbers in Sacramento CA, Plumbers in Cleveland & Plumbers in Medford OR

Please let me know what your thoughts or own experiences (if you are a plumber) are when it comes to internet marketing for plumbers. All opinions usual differ and I think it is good for plumbing companies to hear what the broad range of people think. As long as your comment isn’t spam it will be posted. If you state facts, please state the sources so those reading can review those facts themselves.

note: while most of this information is based on the opinion & marketing experience of the writer there are facts based on actual statistics. If something is based on an actual statistic or source will be indented. Thank you for taking the time to read this information regarding Internet
Marketing for Plumbers.

Article By:
Busy Bee Media Group, LLC a Plumber Marketing Company

About the Author: Michael Parente has been working in the marketing world since 1995. Michael has ran several successful online sites from free lotto to marketing for online casinos. He has worked at some of the nations leading advertising organizations including (Gannett & RH Donnelly). Michael also founded Busy Bee Media Group, LLC in 2007 with the basis of making internet marketing affordable to all businesses small & large.

Contact Michael Parente: Michael.Parente@busybeemedia.com
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PostHeaderIcon Direct Mail Marketing for Plumbers

Direct Mail Marketing can be a good way to generate leads offline. Not only does it help brand your company but it also enables you to be placed right in the homes and businesses of your potential customers and in a target area.
We have heard great success stories as well as horror stories when it comes to direct mail. While direct mail can be beneficial for some companies it is not for every company or business model.

Here are some facts from Direct Marketing Association (DMA) and Pitney Bowes:
79% of households either read or skim junk mail advertising sent to their home.
73% of consumers prefer mail for receiving new product announcements or offers from companies they do business with.
43% found direct mail less intrusive than e-mail or unsolicited telemarketing.

Those numbers alone I found to be very interesting. I started talking with clients, friends and other business owners who have used direct mail to see what their results were. The reason for this is because anyone can make stats swing in their favor. You can call it a trick of marketing. To get the true facts and real results you need to know what questions were ask, what areas were surveyed etc.

Amazingly enough over 55% of people we asked had success with a direct mail campaign. While less than 25% found it to be a waste of advertising dollars and the remaining 21% said they didn’t track good enough to tell if it worked or not. When asked if they would do it again the majority said yes, if the price was right.

A tree service company said they got an amazing return. They placed a simple free estimate with $50 off and said they received a good response and continue to do the direct marketing to this day.

An auto repair company offered $29.95 oil change and free tire rotation. They said they did not feel they got the response that warranted the cost.

A plumbing company offered a $49.95 drain cleaning or $25 off a service call. They said they didn’t track good enough but after discussing this with them they looked at the numbers for the months they ran the campaign and said they did have a 2% increase in revenue those months.

Direct mail can be an expensive way to advertise if you pay someone to do it, however if you spent the time creating the ads, generating lists (which can be found online), and mailing it out yourself you could do your own test for a lot less. You can usually get a list for your target city, county, state or nationwide for either residential, business or both.

I would recommend our clients to spend 15% or so of their marketing budget on direct mail and track the results. Create several ads and target different areas with the different ads. Once you run your 3 month test, if it worked for you choose the highest return ads and send them to all of your service area.

If you have a smaller budget set up a campaign yourself. See what your competitors are offering, what is in high demand in your area and make sure you track. The biggest loss in advertising is not tracking or knowing where your customers come from. While it can be time consuming and you feel you can manage it in your head, get a notebook and write down every call and job you get, where you got it from and the total value of that client. This will help ensure you have your dollars working for you.

Please let me know what your thoughts or own experiences (if you are a plumber) are when it comes to direct mail marketing for plumbers. All opinions usual differ and I think it is good for plumbing companies to hear what the broad range of people think. As long as your comment isn’t spam it will be posted. If you state facts, please state the sources so those reading can review those facts themselves.

note: while most of this information is based on the opinion & marketing experience of the writer there are facts based on actual statistics. If something is based on an actual statistic or source will be indented. Thank you for taking the time to read this information regarding Direct Mail Marketing for Plumbers.

Article By: Michael Parente
Busy Bee Media Group, LLC a Plumber Marketing Company

About the Author: Michael Parente has been working in the marketing world since 1995. Michael has ran several successful online sites from free lotto to marketing for online casinos. He has worked at some of the nations leading advertising organizations including (Gannett & RH Donnelly). Michael also founded Busy Bee Media Group, LLC in 2007 with the basis of making internet marketing affordable to all businesses small & large.

PostHeaderIcon Radio Advertising for Plumbers

When it comes to radio advertising my thought is your risking a lot with little to gain.

One of the major problems with Radio is the 35 and under demographic now have iTunes and Pandora to satisfy their music needs (and it is right in their pocket for the most part with smart phones). So if you were looking to target that demographic and you are set on advertising on the radio you will want to look at advertising on those sources.

Is the radio good for a plumber to advertise on? The radio stations simply do not generate the needs or base you need for your marketing budget. Radio advertising can be expensive and like most other forms of advertising it counts on reputition in order to produce even minimal results. As a plumber your marketing dollars would be better spent on other forms of advertising. The radio is simply not the way to go.

Today there are so many options in radio broadcasting that a listener doesn’t have to stay on the radio station (which the only thing they are they for is to listen to music) to listen to commercials. Most users just like you and I will change the station when the radio starts playing commercials to one of our other favorite stations, slide in the cd or put on our Pandora. The bond between the listener and the station (that was common all the way up to the 90’s) is no longer there.

Radio stations need you to believe otherwise. While doing research for this article all I came across on the web was propaganda “from radio stations” about how many people listen to the commercials (I believe I even read 94% – ask 10 of your own friends, business associates or kids if they listen to the commercials or change the station, put in a cd or simply turn down the volume to use as background noise. Bet 9 out of 10 tell you they don’t listen to commercials yet the propaganda from those station reverse those numbers).

If you really feel the need to advertise on the radio the only times I would if I had to do it would be during high traffic times “morning & evening commutes”. Even than my personal opinion is you’re wasting your advertising dollars. I would recommend if you have the need advertise on internet radio like Pandora. I think you will find you will reach a larger market and on Pandora people set their own stations up so it only plays music & artists they like. In this case I would say your commercial retention rate would be a lot higher.

While I have never personally worked for a radio station I have worked with several plumbing companies in small & large markets who have said radio advertising did not work for them. I even had a few that said they did exactly what the station recommended even though the cost was up there to give it a shot. No return was the final result. Based on that alone from plumbers like yourself, I would say if a radio consultant calls run. Throw in my own personal usage facts on how I use the radio and information I have gotten from others about how they use the radio and I am actually surprised they still exist out of the online world.

Usually I end my articles with my % of marketing budget I would spend on this type of marketing. In the case of radio I have to place two different percentages because one type of broadcasting has a lot better chance of success than the other.
Local radio stations I would say 0% of a plumbers marketing budget should be spent on this form.

Internet radio stations (Pandora, iTunes etc.) 0%-10% once again this depends on what other types of advertising you’re doing and more importantly what your marketing budget is. If you yearly marketing budget is $50,000 you shouldn’t even spend 10% as $5,000 in radio marketing for the year will produce 0 results. Another words, the larger the budget the more opportunity you have to generate something from a radio marketing campaign.

Please let me know what your thoughts or own experiences (if you are a plumber) are when it comes to radio advertising for plumbers. All opinions usual differ and I think it is good for plumbing companies to hear what the broad range of people think. As long as your comment isn’t spam it will be posted. If you state facts, please state the sources so those reading can review those facts themselves.

note: while most of this information is based on the opinion & marketing experience of the writer there are facts based on actual statistics. If something is based on an actual statistic is will be indented and the source will follow. Thank you for taking the time to read this information regarding Newspaper Advertising for Plumbers.

Article By: Michael Parente
Busy Bee Media Group, LLC a Plumber Marketing Company

About the Author: Michael Parente has been working in the marketing world since 1995. Michael has ran several successful online sites from free lotto to marketing for online casinos. He has worked at some of the nations leading advertising organizations including (Gannett & RH Donnelly). Michael also founded Busy Bee Media Group, LLC in 2007 with the basis of making internet marketing affordable to all businesses small & large.

PostHeaderIcon Newspaper Advertising for Plumbers

Newspaper advertising has been a way a lot of businesses tried to help brand their name. While I think newspaper advertising is good for some businesses it is definitely not something I would recommend a plumber to spend more than 15% of their budget on and even that is the very high end.
 
The majority of a plumbers marketing budget should be spent in places where someone would actually go when they have a plumbing issue. Last time you needed a plumber did you grab your newspaper? Probably not; just like most of us, you probably relied on the yellow pages when your bathroom was flooding or your sinks were clogged even that has changed significantly as people migrate from the old paper products to the more “eco Friendly” online versions or search engines in general.
 
 Newspapers print advertising is down across the board. In 2007 (yes just over 5 years ago) dollars spent in the newspapers print product was an astounding 46 billion dollars. Last year’s ad revenues were about 21 billion. So in less than 5 years the newspaper industry lost 50% of its revenue from the print products and recently Gannett the largest newspaper in the world reported a loss of 25% compared to the same quarter in 2011 for their print product (source – NYtimes & Newspaper Association of America). All hope is not lost however. Newspaper advertising can still be effective and while the readership is down in a lot of the cases so are the prices.
 
Newspaper advertising for a plumber could be good if you are launching a new service, have a special offer you want people to know about and its always a good idea to have a listing in their service directory (as some of the older demographic look their when they need the service in hopes to find a deal).
 
Your local newspaper most likely has online products that can be valuable for your business as well. While I was at Gannett (as the internet specialist) we were developing exciting products for the advertiser which would help bring more value to their newspaper advertising. I am sure if you do some sort of newspaper advertising your rep has discussed some of these options with you.
As I mention in every article there are good and bad places to spend your money the trick of advertising is to find out what works for you and what brings you the best ROI.
 
As far as the newspaper “print”, you don’t want to spend a majority of your advertising there. Depending on your budget I would say 5-15% is a good number to throw into your newspaper advertising if you are a plumber, and even that may be pushing it unless you have an online option included.
 
If you are dead set on doing advertising in the newspaper I would recommend you advertise your company on the days more people would even look at the paper (Wednesday & Sunday), and make sure you have some sort of special offer to help you track the return.
 
As a plumber you should know that the advertising you spend in the newspaper is like the money you spend on TV and is used simply for branding aspects. While you may get a client or two stumbling in from your ad chances are you are not going to see a return on your investment right away. It is simply getting and keeping your name out there and hoping when someone goes online to look for a plumber your name catches their eye because of the branding you have done offline.
 
Please let me know what your thoughts are when it comes to newspaper advertising for plumbers. All opinions usual differ and I think it is good for plumbing companies to hear what the broad range of people think. As long as your comment isn’t spam it will be posted. If you state facts, please state the sources so those reading can review those facts themselves.
 
note: while most of this information is based on the opinion & marketing experience of the writer there are facts based on actual statistics. If something is based on an actual statistic is will be indented and the source will follow. Thank you for taking the time to read this information regarding Newspaper Advertising for Plumbers.
 
Article By: Michael Parente Busy Bee Media Group, LLC a Plumber Marketing Company
 
About the Author: Michael Parente has been working in the marketing world since 1995. Michael has ran several successful online sites from free lotto to marketing for online casinos. He has worked at some of the nations leading advertising organizations including (Gannett & RH Donnelly). Michael also founded Busy Bee Media Group, LLC in 2007 with the basis of making internet marketing affordable to all businesses small & large.

PostHeaderIcon Television Marketing for Plumbers:

With so many TV stations bidding for your business which is the best channel or networks to market with? Is TV marketing a good place for plumbers to advertise their company?

As with yellow pages there was a time where TV advertising was good, put a jingle in a commercial and people will be singing your tune as it became viral. The problem with TV marketing now is there is a thing called DVR.

DVR is a system which allows you to record your programs and watch them on your schedule instead of the broadcaster’s schedule. It also allows you to fast forward through commercials (yes the advertising).

As of Feb. 2007 DVR penetration in households was listed at 13.5% impacting only 15% of total viewers. However, as of Feb. 2011 DVR penetration in households reached 39.7% and impacted 42.2% of total viewers (source: neilsen). That means almost 40% of all households have DVR and your commercials could be missed by over 40% of total viewers. I can only assume the numbers have grown in 2012 yet I haven’t found that data so I have to stick with what we know.

Does that mean TV marketing doesn’t work? No. I still believe TV advertising can still be a great place to brand your product and services, depending on cost, spots (time of day) and channels. You are more likely to get those watching unrecorded TV during news broadcasts and sporting events. If the investment is right by all means you should place yourself in as many places as possible you just need to track your ROI.

To track the ROI (Return on investment) from TV advertising some of our clients offer a “TV Price” or “Special Offer” only listed on TV. This helps them track the people that called them directly related to the TV marketing they did.

The hard part to track is the branding value. Having your name repeated and seen several times does have a value. Maybe they didn’t need your service when they saw your commercial but when they needed your service your company comes to mind.

TV marketing can be valuable for any company if done right and for the right reasons. You don’t advertise on TV because you need new customers in the door right now. If you create a commercial thinking that is going to happen chances are you will be let down (9 out of 10 times). Use TV marketing for branding. Keeping your company in front of your potential customers , letting customers know of a service or product you are offering for a limited time, drive them to your website to sign up for a special offer right now (to get a call to action) etc.

Make sure if you are doing TV marketing not to spend a chunk of your marketing budget. You want to use about 10%-15% (if at all) of your budget on TV to compliment the advertising that will bring the customers calling and the revenue flowing in to help pay for your advertising, employees and dare we say put money in your company account.
 
Please let me know what your thoughts are when it comes to TV advertising for plumbers. All opinions usual differ and I think it is good for plumbing companies to hear what the broad range of people think. As long as your comment isn’t spam it will be posted. If you state facts, please state the sources so those reading can review those facts themselves.
 
note: while most of this information is based on the opinion & marketing experience of the writer there are facts based on actual statistics. If something is based on an actual statistic is will be indented and the source will follow. Thank you for taking the time to read this information regarding TV Marketing for Plumbers.

Article By: Michael Parente

Busy Bee Media Group, LLC a Plumber Marketing Company

About the Author: Michael Parente has been working in the marketing world since 1995. Michael has ran several successful online sites from free lotto to marketing for online casinos. He has worked at some of the nations leading advertising organizations including (Gannett & RH Donnelly). Michael also founded Busy Bee Media Group, LLC in 2007 with the basis of making internet marketing affordable to all businesses small & large.

PostHeaderIcon Yellow Page Advertising for Plumbers:

When it comes to the way a plumber advertises; the world sure has changed. 10 years ago most marketing experts or agencies would recommend you spend at least 35%-50% of your advertising budget in the yellow pages, times have changed.

Every year the yellow page audience is getting smaller and smaller yet the cost to place an ad in these books seem to keep getting higher and higher.

Yellow page companies know they are losing market share to online search (Google, Yahoo, Bing etc.) that’s the reason every time you speak to your ad consultant they always try to incorporate some sort of online program in hopes to keep your advertising within their book. Some of the larger companies even give you the paper ad for free if you advertise in their online products.

When you try to downgrade your advertising they like to use the fact that “you are on a program or in a package” if you make your ad smaller the cost will be the same or even more expensive……SAY WHAT! That is the response most plumbers have when they are told you keep the same ad size, same spend, or you spend more money and get a smaller ad.

Imagine as a plumber if you told your customers that? How would they feel? What would they say? It is ridiculous. Great for the yellow pages to lock you in, not so good when you are trying to put your advertising into other areas which can help fill the void the yellow page reach has caused to your bottom line.

Now we are not saying to pull your advertising from the yellow pages. As a plumber the yellow pages can still be a good source of leads for you. Problem is you no longer need a full page ad. You need to diversify your advertising to ensure you are reaching as much of the market you serve as possible.

If you are spending 35%+ of your marketing budget in the yellow pages you should contact us immediately. We can show you ways to decrease your spend without hurting the lead generation the yellow pages can supply. You need to diversify your marketing budget to get the biggest ROI (Return On Investment).
 
Please let me know what your thoughts are when it comes to yellow page advertising for plumbers. All opinions usual differ and I think it is good for plumbing companies to hear what the broad range of people think. As long as your comment isn’t spam it will be posted. If you state facts, please state the sources so those reading can review those facts themselves.
 

note: while most of this information is based on the opinion & marketing experience of the writer there are facts based on actual statistics. If something is based on an actual statistic is will be indented and the source will follow. Thank you for taking the time to read this information regarding Yellow Page Advertising for Plumbers.

Article By: Michael Parente
Busy Bee Media Group, LLC a Plumber Marketing Company

About the Author: Michael Parente has been working in the marketing world since 1995. Michael has ran several successful online sites from free lotto to marketing for online casinos. He has worked at some of the nations leading advertising organizations including (Gannett & RH Donnelly). Michael also founded Busy Bee Media Group, LLC in 2007 with the basis of making internet marketing affordable to all businesses small & large.