Raise the Profile of Your Business

Are you constantly looking for new clients? Do cold calls make you sweat? Are you tired of spinning of your wheels?

Network

While slow, networking can lead to larger, and bigger clients. Start thinking like your client. Where are they? What do they do? Do they have an association that they belong to? Can you join too? Many big box store managers make their own decisions about which sweepers they use. Make friends with them and talk to them about how they can improve the look of their property and make it safe for their customers.

Become an Expert

If you have been in business for several years, then your experience is valuable. While you may think, “most people know this stuff” they probably don’t. Offer to give talks at meetings that potential customers attend, like the National Association of Realtors, or Property Management Association. Explain what sweeping does for them and keep it general.

Target Marketing

Leave specific, concise, and well-written information on the services that you provide to your clients. Print a professional-looking brochure or direct mail piece and deliver it to
property mangers.

Social Media

Facebook has hit one billion customers. Is it time to start advertising there? This is more about building your brand and reputation management. It is public relations at its core. You provide updated, relevant information to your potential clients and they, in turn, come to you when they need your service. You are raising your profile with the community.

Facebook advertising can cost less than traditional advertising. However, you will need to update your page often. You can determine how often that needs to be. If you develop a Facebook page, then you will want to include it on your website and all print material that you have. Make sure to keep all content on the page industry-related and focused on your business. This is not where you editorialize about the last movie you’ve seen. That said, feel free to put your personality into it. You can still make it fun, while being professional. A good goal for updating your Facebook information is at least once a week.

If you decide to go with Twitter, then you will need to tweet more often than your Facebook updates. A good goal is three times a week. If you have good tips to share, then by all means tweet like a bird. Otherwise, your time might be best focused on other avenues.

Website

Make sure that your site is professional and up to date. It is the face of your company and sometimes a customer’s first impression. If you have outdated information or a phone number that doesn’t work, then you have lost a potential customer. In researching sweepers, I’ve come across numerous sites that have phone numbers that don’t work. This is a big problem. Not only can a customer not get ahold of you to make an appointment, but even if they do find a working number, they may not trust that you are an expert in your field.

If you are too busy to keep your site updated, then consider hiring someone to do it for you. Many website gurus can help you with search engine optimization. Look for someone with experience optimizing the pages with keywords and HTML tags to increase search engine traffic as well as off-page optimization with link building. If you are prepared to do a site rebuild, or launch, then look for someone who is experienced with the technical aspects of building a site (ease of navigation, and how easy it is for search engines to index your site). Take a look at their portfolio and referrals. Get their fees and outline what you are getting upfront.

Build Your Brand

Many of you already have something that sets you apart from your competitors. This uniqueness is part of your brand. There are numerous books and experts out there to help you do this. Once you know what your key points are, then you will want to consistently incorporate them into all of your materials: website, print material, trucks, advertising, invoices, and signage. The graphics of your company will need to incorporate this as well. An investment of a few hundred dollars for a marketing professional or graphic designer can pay big dividends later.

Story by Jennifer Taylor

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