I frequently participate in forums on Alignable, asking and answering marketing questions. I occasionally bring bits of the forum here to the blog. Today, I’ll be expanding on an answer I gave to a landscape design business about generating leads.
Can anyone recommend good lead generating tools/techniques for a custom home building and landscape design business?
My boss got her backyard completely remodeled a few years ago. Just a few months later, the next door neighbors also redid the backyard. About a year later, the neighbors across the street revamped their front yard. Typically, when one neighbor does something to upgrade their home, it inspires others in the neighborhood to do the same. Therefore, if you work with homes, either as a contractor, landscaper, real estate agent, house cleaner, etc, your BEST place to find leads is in the neighborhoods where you are already working. So, here are some ideas for generating leads from the neighborhood in which you are working.
Numero uno is signage! Stick a sign in the homeowners lawn to let ALL the neighbors know who you and what you’re doing. If they want similar work, they know who to call. You can do a simple coraplast sign, or you can do a large sign with an attached box for flyers or business cards.
Do a direct mail or walk and drop campaign. I recommend doing one at the beginning of the job and one at the end. I once received a mailed card from a solar panel company. They told me they were going to be in the neighborhood installing and that they’d love to stop by and give me an estimate. This was an incredibly effective message, especially since I had been under the impression my neighborhood didn’t allow solar panels. Another effective mailing would have been if they had gathered a testimonial from that client and sent it out once the job was done.
Introduce yourself. You may not have time to walk the entire neighborhood, but you can take an hour and just walk the street. Even if you don’t consider yourself a sales person, you’ll be surprised how far a casual introduction and a business card can go. You don’t have to make hard sell, just introduce yourself, chat with people about their needs, and leave them with a card or brochure so they know how to contact you.
Give your client a referral discount. Your customers are your best sales people. Do a great job on their house, and they’ll naturally recommend you when asked. But if you offer some sort of incentive, they’ll talk about you even when they aren’t asked! And their personal testimonial will go a long way in convincing neighbors to pick up the phone.
Do you have any other tried and true lead generation strategies for people working on homes? Let us know in the comments below. And if you need signs, postcards, business cards, brochures, flyers or ANY other print marketing to promote your real estate business, landscape business, or home contractor business, talk to us! We offer free consultations, competitive pricing and high quality custom design products that cannot be beat.
Every Tuesday, I share some quick marketing tips through our social media platforms with the hashtag #TipTuesday. In case you’re looking for a little more information about each of these tips, I’ve expanded my thoughts below. Remember, One Step Services can help you implement any and all of these ideas. Just call us at 949-587-5301 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Generate leads by holding a contest and gathering entries through social media, direct mail, online and in store.
There are hundreds of different contests. Some of the most popular ones we’ve seen are coloring contests through direct mail; business cards submitted for a drawing; social media contests where an entry is a share, follow or comment.
Generate leads by asking past clients for referrals. Give them a discount or other reward if possible.
Satisfied clients make the best sales people, so make it a point to regularly ask for testimonials and referrals. Send a postcard with two coupons, one for the recipient and one for them to give to a friend. Hold an event for your clients and offer an incentive if they bring a friend who has never done business with you before. Or, make it a long term company policy that anyone who refers a friend gets a discount on their next order (assuming that friend actually places an order).
Generate leads by offering a free downloadable gift on your website in return for contact information.
This strategy is pretty straightforward and effective. Create something that is of value to your clients. It could be an ebook. a how to guide. a motivational video, a playlist. Then offer it to them for free in exchange for their name and email address (or other contact information.)
Generate leads by sending personalized direct mail to a targeted audience offering products and services they need.
The more personalized a direct mail piece is, the more effective it is. If you have a client relations management system, you can gather data about past clients and use that create mailing pieces that will generate more business from old or existing clients. If you’re looking for brand new leads, data mining companies can provide lists of people that meet certain demographic, economic, geographic and social criteria. At One Step, we can use variable data to incorporate that data into mailing pieces, making each one unique.
Generate leads by through Facebook Ads and landing pages
Facebook ads are cost effective and easy to create. There are quite a lot of rules, however, so make sure you familiarize yourself with them before creating the ad. The ad should send people to a landing page, preferably on your website, where they can leave their contact information. Remember our tip a couple weeks ago where we suggested offering a free downloadable gift in exchange for contact info? Your landing page would be the perfect place to do that.