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I notice the marketing room on this forum is not too busy.  What are you guys doing to make the phone ring? 

I have tried EDDM mailing...total bust.  Door to door sales calls on commercial, newspaper ads, fliers left at the local vets, mailers to churches. Having a problem staying busy.  Everyone who has used me loves the quality of the job but even then referrals are not producing much new business. 

What has worked for you guys?  How did you get off the ground?
Looks like you've listed everything except Google and Facebook. 

Have you tried those? Also, how did your commercial cold calling go?
(04-21-2016, 02:13 AM)thecleaningdude Wrote: [ -> ]Looks like you've listed everything except Google and Facebook. 

Have you tried those? Also, how did your commercial cold calling go?

Yeh, paying an SEO firm.  Still on page  2 in google search, which means no one finds me.  Almost no one searches that deep.  But a new company, will take a few months I guess. Bang Head 

Commercial cold call is the only thing that has worked but it is time intensive.  About 100 calls per job.  
Maybe I'm in too small a market, about 75K in my town, I've been to every doctor, lawyer, dentist, bank, over the last 3 months.  Tried hotels and apartment complexes.  I've got pretty good sales literature I leave.

Reminds me of the line in a country n western song years back...."since my phone still ain't ringing, I assume it still ain't you."
You have to remember that nothing with marketing happens instantaneously.  Your building your name and brand recognition so when the need arises they will call you.  How is marketing addressed in your business plan?  How much a month do you have budgeted for marketing?     When calling on businesses offer to do a free demo on a 100-200 sf so they can see how good their carpets can look. 

You said EDDM was a bust.  How many cards did you send out?  What size were they?  How many times did you hit the same neighborhoods and in what time frame.  Did you hit them once in a year, twice in a year, 3 times in a year?  You have to consistently hit neighborhoods to get a return.  Just doing it once will get you nothing.

You need to meet people and let everyone you meet know that you clean carpets.  If you haven't done so already join your local Chamber of Commerce and get involved.  Go to their networking events, join committees and meet more people.  If you join and don't get involved it won't do you any good.  Look for a good leads referral group but don't join one just to join.  Visit a couple of times and make sure they have enough quality members that you can help out and in return they can help you out.

You mention that you have some nice literature so make up a nice door hangar package and spend sometime getting those out.  Do it on nice days so hopefully you can catch some people outside and get to talk with them.  Make sure you track everything so you know what is working and what isn't.  Sometimes you need to change some wording or your message on your advertising until you find what works.

One last thing, how are you dressing on your cold calls?  Are you presenting a professional image?  Are your clothes neatly pressed?  Are you neatly groomed?  Do you smell like bad B.O. or an ashtray?  Do you have a bunch of visible tattoos or piercings?  All of these things can make a big difference.  What have you been told on your cold calls?  After you have stopped in make sure you keep marketing to them.

Hopefully you can find one or two items of value in my ramblings.
(04-21-2016, 05:10 PM)saabtrash Wrote: [ -> ]You have to remember that nothing with marketing happens instantaneously.  Your building your name and brand recognition so when the need arises they will call you.  How is marketing addressed in your business plan?  How much a month do you have budgeted for marketing?     When calling on businesses offer to do a free demo on a 100-200 sf so they can see how good their carpets can look. 

You said EDDM was a bust.  How many cards did you send out?  What size were they?  How many times did you hit the same neighborhoods and in what time frame.  Did you hit them once in a year, twice in a year, 3 times in a year?  You have to consistently hit neighborhoods to get a return.  Just doing it once will get you nothing.

You need to meet people and let everyone you meet know that you clean carpets.  If you haven't done so already join your local Chamber of Commerce and get involved.  Go to their networking events, join committees and meet more people.  If you join and don't get involved it won't do you any good.  Look for a good leads referral group but don't join one just to join.  Visit a couple of times and make sure they have enough quality members that you can help out and in return they can help you out.

You mention that you have some nice literature so make up a nice door hangar package and spend sometime getting those out.  Do it on nice days so hopefully you can catch some people outside and get to talk with them.  Make sure you track everything so you know what is working and what isn't.  Sometimes you need to change some wording or your message on your advertising until you find what works.

One last thing, how are you dressing on your cold calls?  Are you presenting a professional image?  Are your clothes neatly pressed?  Are you neatly groomed?  Do you smell like bad B.O. or an ashtray?  Do you have a bunch of visible tattoos or piercings?  All of these things can make a big difference.  What have you been told on your cold calls?  After you have stopped in make sure you keep marketing to them.

Hopefully you can find one or two items of value in my ramblings.
Thanks for the detailed answer.  I guess I'm frustrated BECAUSE I have covered most of the things your mention.  I realize all of these things are important.

EDDM, I had a very attractive flier.  Sent out over 2600 in two mailings.  Got a total of 5 phone calls.  Total cost of printing and postage right at $1000.  I've spent as much on marketing as I have actually made in jobs lined up the last 4 months.  My marketing plan was certainly to be at least in the black after two months.

Every business I call on I offer to do a demo.  If they are interested enough to ask for a demo, I get the business.  I don't think anyone in town cleans better than I do and even the dog worst carpets are dry hours quicker than HWE.  When I call on commercial accounts I wear dress shirt with company logo, tie, and dress slacks.  I'm always better dressed than the customers I'm calling on.

I have not done door hangers precisely because the EDDM was so poor.  I think door hangers can annoy some people.  I have never liked someone putting one on my door, neither do I want something put on my windshield in a parking lot.  Regardless,  If a very nice flier in the mailbox does not get a response why would a door hanger?

I brought up the issue looking to find out what others do, or did, to get their company's off the ground and going.
It looks like you're doing a lot of the right things but being in the black in two months is not a marketing plan. 

One postcard in the mailbox is not going to get someone to call you unless they have an immediate need when they get it. You need to hit your target neighborhoods a minimum 3-4 times a year. 

The one thing that helped me the most in the beginning was the Chamber of Commerce.   I got really involved and met a lot of people. I've gotten some large jobs because of my involvement with the chamber. Just remover that nothing is going to happen instantly. 

If you don't have a written business plan that includes a detailed marketing plan I highly suggest you find someone with experience who can help you do this. It will really be bennificial for your business. Keep pounding the pavement and don't give up. Just because someone said no today doesn't mean they won't say yes tomorrow but you have to stay in front of them.
You might want to look at joining a BNI (or similar) marketing group. These can be great sources for leads. 

Have you followed-up with any of the commercial offices you visited? You might also want to consider adding janitorial to your list of services. This can be a great way to get steady income while you build the floor cleaning business.  

I'd keep a close eye on the SEO service that you're paying for.
(04-23-2016, 07:51 AM)alanS Wrote: [ -> ]Thanks for the detailed answer.  I guess I'm frustrated BECAUSE I have covered most of the things your mention.  I realize all of these things are important.

EDDM, I had a very attractive flier.  Sent out over 2600 in two mailings.  Got a total of 5 phone calls.  Total cost of printing and postage right at $1000.  I've spent as much on marketing as I have actually made in jobs lined up the last 4 months.  My marketing plan was certainly to be at least in the black after two months.
You did a lot of the things that were mentioned but did you do them well and did you keep doing it?

Consistency is the key.

2 mailings is not a complete campaign. An average prospect needs to see your marketing about 15-20 times before they pull the trigger. Your flyer might have been attractive but did it say the right things and hit the right emotional buttons? Attractiveness will mean nothing if you don't do those things.

You might be spending a fair amount of money but are you spending it in the right places?

IMO, marketing is the most important part of any business but it is usually the most misunderstood and neglected part. It doesn't matter how well you can clean a carpet if no one knows about you.

Are you using Facebook for residential marketing?