Industries of all kinds deal with seasonality: snowboard shops, ice cream trucks, and certainly the HVAC and home performance industry. In the heat of summer, customers want air conditioning; in the winter, they want furnace repair and insulation. The response of many business owners is to relax marketing efforts through the busy season and turn them up in the off-season.
Marketing is about attracting customers and explaining to the public the value of your services. So why would you not optimize your marketing during the peak season, since this is the time when the most people are interacting with your brand?
Choose The Jobs You Want To Do
If you’re looking to be more selective about the types of jobs you complete (say you are looking to do more big-ticket whole-home projects and fewer filter replacements), the key is more leads from which to select. Having the option to do a comprehensive project versus a small AC repair will obviously boost your average ticket size, and that might be a central goal of your peak season. Being picky is a beautiful thing: It allows you to specialize in whatever direction you see your company heading in as well as become more profitable with the work you do choose to do.
Continue your marketing during these busy seasons to allow more leads than usual to roll in. If your marketing is working this summer, you can recommend these smaller leads to other companies willing to do the work, while keeping the larger more profitable jobs for yourself.
Alternatively, if you are too busy to do a handle the volume of leads, consider using your website as a filter. For example, add a section “Are we the right contractor for your job?” that makes it clear that your specialty is comprehensive work, not one-offs.
When the leads are pouring in at a rate faster than you can schedule, it might be time to change your marketing objectives. Instead of focusing on getting phone calls and online leads, brand awareness can be the new key performance indicator.
People seek you out during the busy season. This is a rare opportunity to expose people to your message while they are willing to listen. During the peak season, your brand is going to be viewed more than ever, so spending the time and effort to give viewers a good impression will be worth the effort.
Example Brand Awareness Campaigns
Shift your marketing spend to high-impression mediums like Facebook Ads, Google Display network, and even YouTube ads, and use these ads to be informative about your company as a whole. This will not only expand your reach in your service area, it will also get people familiar with what your brand stands for, rather than focusing on driving conversions for a particular service. Strong brand awareness builds trust in your client base, which can lead to you being top-of-mind for customers after the peak season has ended.
Strengthen the Interconnection of Your Services
Expanding your brand to represent more than the seasonal service customers are looking can mean the difference between a one-time repair and a return customer with high lifetime value (LTV).
If all customers see is ads for AC repair during the summer, they may only think you have one service. Mentioning energy audits, air sealing, heating season prep, or solar installs increases the likelihood that you’ll be their go-to for HVAC and home performance needs all year long.
Use Your Busy Season for Discovery, Improvement, & Reviews
During the busy seasons, your entire team from sales to service will be spending more time with customers. With such high volume comes valuable information.
Discovering what your customers are looking for, asking the right questions, and learning what they will need in the coming seasons can help shape the rest of your year. It is also a good opportunity to objectively evaluate current processes in your business and make revisions and changes to increase your team’s productivity and effectiveness.
Referrals & Reviews During the High Season
Another perk of dealing with many customers is gaining referrals. If you market all your services during the summer and show people top-of-the-line service, your customers will talk to their friends and suggest your services to their neighbors.
Marketing efforts like review management are also a great opportunity in the summer. If you are not coming out of your peak season with significantly more Yelp, Google, or onsite reviews than you had previously, it might be time to re-evaluate your process. Soliciting reviews from satisfied customers over the summer will help build your company’s online reputation, so when potential customers are searching for you during the off-season, they’ll be more likely to give you a call.
Dealing with large numbers of customers means you can get large amounts of repeat business. Our team at Energy Circle knows that digital marketing isn’t a hard stop-and-go process, but rather a highly adaptable and flexible set of offerings that can be tailored to specific needs at specific times for maximum impact. By shifting your marketing efforts as necessary and staying consistent through this busy time, you’ll reap the rewards during the off-season!
Don't spend October wondering why your phone isn’t ringing. Take advantage of your marketing even when you are busiest to see results all year long! Get in touch with us to learn how our team can help you.
Join Peter Troast at Contractor Leadership LIVE September 12-14, 2017 at the Huntington Convention Center in Cleveland, Ohio. You can register for the event here.