1. Make my website my largest marketing investment in 2011. It’s easily the area that most contractors spend the least time and resources on.
2. Treat my website like it was my storefront. First impressions count.
3. Remove the stock image of the warm, cozy house and invest a few dollars on an original image from your regional area. That also includes the stock images of the family that isn’t mine that five other dealers have on their site.
4. Remove all moving text, scrolling text or counters from my website.
5. Develop consistent “how-to” information in the form of a blog or article series to both deliver to my customers and attract new customers through search engines.
6. Send out an enewsletter to my customers, and include those helpful blog or article posts, linking customers back to my site for more information.
7. Spiff my technicians a couple dollars for every email address they can get on a home visit, so I have people to send my enewsletter to.
9. Develop an “Air Conditioning and Heating Playbook” as a trusted guide for my customers. I would make it available for download on my site, but also make some printouts to take on home visits or to pass out at shows.
10. Start experimenting with some “how-to” video and integrate those with my blog posts.
11. Take pictures of customer problems and post to Facebook with their permission.
12. Install Google Analytics on my site and have a report sent to me every week. Notice where my traffic is coming from and figure out why it’s coming from there.
13. Keep a list of the top 20 keyword variations that drive people to my site and consistently know where I am on Google at all times.
14. Figure out how to use FourSquare for my business.
15. Make sure to ask my customers for positive reviews on Yelp.
16. Do a press release every month on something going on in my company or my involvement in the local community. In that release I would link to specific keywords, which would help my search engine optimization (SEO) rankings.
17. Make sure I have a solid Google Maps listing.
18. Create Google Alerts for my brand name, my competitors and anything related to my products or services in my area.
19. Set up a Twitter alert for anyone that mentions heating or air conditioning 50 miles around main zip code.
20. Take my advertising budget, cut it in half, and invest the rest in assets (content) that I can use to attract customers to my website for a long, long time.
Joe Pulizzi is CEO of SocialTract , a blogging/social media service for HVACR contractors. Joe is also co-author of Get Content Get Customers, which details how companies can publish content to drive revenues. SocialTract is a division of Z Squared Media, LLC . Joe can be reached at [email protected] . For speaking needs - http://joepulizzi.com.