Top 5 Ways HVAC Companies Can Use Social Media to Gain New Leads
Navigating the online marketing waters is difficult in itself, but now businesses have to figure out how to use social media to stay in touch with customers and gain new leads. According to a survey conducted by Pew Research Center in September of 2014, social media use is on the rise in all age demographics, even those over 65.
According to Marketing Tech Blog, the average American spends 37 minutes per day browsing social networks and 46% of people online consider social media before making a purchase. If you want to reach new customers online, you quite simply must have a social media presence.
Turn to Facebook First
Pew Internet estimates that 71% of online adults use Facebook. Your first step to reaching new customers should be to get a Facebook page for your business. Setting up a page is fairly simple; keeping it updated is not as easy.
Your office staff is likely pretty busy already. In fact, it might be a good idea to hire someone, even part-time or on a contract basis, to handle your social media needs for you. Start with Facebook and grow from there. You should post a balance of:
- Informative posts (educational that link to articles about your industry)
- Direct links to your site (link to sales, blog posts, etc.)
- Funny or interesting posts (pictures, jokes, famous quotes)
- Call to action specials (Have you had your ducts cleaned lately? Call us today!)
Create Something Worth Sharing
Having a presence on Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest is a good idea, but if you don’t have something worth sharing with your followers, then it is a waste of time. You should:
- Start a blog on your website
• Add interesting content to that blog
• Share that content with your readers
• Start a conversation about the content
Again, in a thriving business, it can be difficult to find the time to create unique content for a website. Either hire someone to serve this role or hire out the work. You can also create content by interviewing some of your satisfied customers or sharing reprints of local news stories that apply to homeowners, such as the heat wave headed your way this summer.
Use Automated Software
You’re busy running your business. Adding all this social media stuff seems counterintuitive. However, there are some ways you can streamline the process.
For example, you can spend a few spare hours on the weekends setting up social media posts and scheduling them to run the next week. Use HootSuite or IFTTT to set up automatic postings.
Ask for Referrals
Do your loyal customers already follow you on social media? Use their influence to reach potential new customers.
• Invite current followers to share your latest sale with their online contacts.
• Offer a referral bonus. If they refer a new customer, they get a $25 credit and the new customer gets a $25 credit.
• Tell current customers you’re looking for new customers and ask them to refer you online and off.
Reach Out to New “Friends”
When someone follows you on Facebook, Twitter or Google+, throw a shout out their way. Here are some examples:
• Facebook: Thanks to Jane Doe for liking our Facebook page! We’re happy to have you here.
• Twitter: Shout out to @JaneDoe for her retweet about our new #furnace sale. You rock, Jane!
• Google+: It isn’t square to join our circle! Welcome +JaneDoe.
Keep in mind that Twitter limits you to 140 characters. Sometimes it is easier to come up with a quick slug that is under 140 characters and reuse it across social media platforms. Even though Facebook and +Google allow for more characters, keeping it under 140 will save you time.
Case Study of What Other HVAC Companies Are Doing Right for SMM
Some HVAC companies are doing a good job with social media marketing (SMM). Below are some examples you can study while creating your own SMM campaign.
Four Seasons HVAC: Educating customers about latest innovations in the industry on Twitter.
• Access Heating & Air: Reaching out to tweeters who need repairs.
• Wahl Family Heating, Cooling & Plumbing: Reminding Facebook followers that it’s time for spring maintenance.
• Scottsdale Air Heating & Cooling: Just having a little fun with their Facebook followers.
• Bushwood HVAC: Saving customers a little money with a Google+ post.
• American Integrity HVAC: Using Google+ to share reviews from happy customers.
Your best bet is to study these examples and then rotate through the various styles. If you only post about sales or only ask for new customers, your followers will grow tired of your marketing.
You have to keep it fun, show them you care about what is best for them but still balance a bit of sales in the mix. With a little practice, you’ll start to generate online leads through social media.
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