Marketing For Plumbers

August 24, 2021
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We get it, the last thing you want to do is to sit behind a computer all day — especially when you have a plumbing business to run. We’re here to tell you that luckily, that’s not necessary. It’s possible to execute great plumber marketing that yields results, without wasting your time or money. Keep reading to learn some of our tips and tricks for marketing your plumbing business.

Plumber Marketing: Where to Start?

Whether you’re starting a plumbing business or looking to grow your plumbing leads, online marketing is the best place to start. 

It’s likely that “advice” from a “digital marketing professional” has made you want to roll your eyes before, but don’t let that experience deter you from pursuing online marketing to grow your business. It doesn’t have to be expensive or complicated — at least, not as complicated as rerouting 15-year-old pipes. 

There are two main benefits to online marketing for plumbers: 

  • You can do it yourself; you don’t have to hire an expensive agency or a marketing contractor
  • You can be successful even starting off with zero digital marketing knowledge 

Here are six plumber marketing musts to make sure you have implemented before moving on to any other strategy: 

  1. Add or claim your Google My Business listing
  2. Create a website for your plumbing business
  3. Set up a Facebook page
  4. Collect and manage online reviews
  5. Set up Google Ads
  6. Implement a reliable plumbing CRM software

Without these building blocks, you will have the strong foundation you need to make any online marketing strategy you try successful. While the basics are a good first step, a little bit more is needed to maximize your efforts and start winning more jobs than your competitors. It doesn’t make a difference having a facebook page and a google ad account if you don’t put effort into them. The golden rule to live by in marketing is “content is king” which means that despite how marketing has evolved, quality content will always get you further than pouring all your money into ads. 

Remember, your audience doesn’t want you to sell them on a product, they see advertisements all the time. Instead, audiences want to feel understood, so put in the extra effort to understand their needs and pain points. 

If your schedule allows, either take the time to create quality content yourself that relates to your audience, or hire a professional to do it for you.

Strategy #1: Add Local SEO + Clear Messaging to Your Website

It’s important to not get bogged down on trying to make your website perfect or pretty. While it obviously shouldn’t look poorly done, it doesn’t need to be the most beautiful website ever created to bring in more jobs. What it does need, however, are these main elements: 

  • A professional name
  • A logo
  • Your selling point (see below)
  • Your phone number
  • The area you serve
  • The services you provide
  • A way to request work
  • Photos of your work and/or team
  • Testimonials

Once you know that your website has all the basics, it’s time to take it to the next level. 

You have two types of customers that you need to market to year-round: panicked customers in need of emergency service and calm customers who perform research before choosing a provider to fulfill their routine maintenance needs. 

Marketing Emergency Plumber Services

To win new business from the panicked customer, you need to be easy to find and easy to get in contact with. This is because stressed customers won’t always rely on recommendations from their social circle, they just want someone who they can find and get in touch with quickly. 

To be the easiest to find in your area, or more specifically, appear on the first page of a Google search results list when a customer types in “plumbers near me” or “plumbers in [nearby location],” you need to use local SEO.

Tip: Local SEO is the process of adding location keywords relevant to your target market to the text on your website that tells Google where you are and allows people searching for plumbers in your area to find your website quickly.

For the highlights, here are some local SEO keywords to add to your website: 

  • Plumbers in [insert city of operation]
  • Best plumbing company [insert city of operation]
  • Plumbing company in [insert city of operation]
  • Local plumbers [insert city of operation]
  • [Insert city of operation] plumber

With terms like these written on your website, Google will know that you are a prominent business, as well as what locations you serve. This way, when a potential customer in need of a plumbing service goes to Google and types in “best plumbing company near me,” your website will more likely show up for local searches, increasing the chance of someone visiting it. 

Need a little more convincing that local SEO for plumbers is worth your time? 

Here are some strong statistics we’ve pulled to help make our case: 

  • 28% of local searches end in a transaction
  • 51% of consumers have discovered a new business through mobile searches
  • 48% of consumers conduct their mobile research via a search engine
  • 30% of mobile searches are related to location

Marketing to Routine Maintenance Customers

One of the fundamentals of plumber marketing is messaging. Don’t worry though, you don’t need to be any kind of writer to improve your messaging. 

For the customers that perform research and take their time choosing a plumbing business, having clear messaging is the key to winning their business. When this customer visits your website, they need to be able to immediately see and understand your selling point and competitive difference. While the overall look and feel of your website may invoke a certain emotional response in the customer, the only way to show them your value is communicating it  through your messaging. 

Here are the three questions you want to make sure your homepage answers: 

  • What unique service does your business bring? 
  • What do you specialize in or do differently than your competitors?
  • What statements, values, and beliefs does your business reflect? 

When you make it quick and easy for a customer to identify these things when visiting your website, it will make you stand out against your competitors, and make your business more likely to be chosen as their service provider.  

It’s more than just showing the list of plumbing problems you fix.

Strategy #2: Post Regular Social Content

Marketers will go blue in the face trying to tell you that one of the top tactics you need to implement is blog writing. While blogs are a powerful strategy, we know that you’re a tradesman, not a writer, and you don’t have time to be typing at a computer all day. That being said, you may be able to churn out high quality blog content in no time, but as a business owner, there are far more important things to be putting your time towards. 

You should be focused on answering customer calls, managing your field techs, keeping your inventory stocked and up-to-date, and making sure the job is done properly. If you’ve got extra cash on hand, consider hiring a marketer on contract to create blog content for you. 

Because blogs are so time consuming to create, we suggest incorporating social posts into your daily tasks as a small marketing push. 

By posting plumber content on your social media, you are helping to establish your business as an expert in the community as well as reliable and trustworthy. 

A regular posting schedule can also regularly remind your followers of your existence and increase the likelihood that when they’re in need of a plumbing service, they’ll contact you. 

Here are some great post ideas: 

  • Plumbing industry news
  • New service you offer
  • Plumbing jokes
  • Quick plumbing tips
  • Pictures of completed work
  • Photos of staff
  • Reviews left by customers
  • New testimonials
  • Any award or accolade your business received

Don’t get bogged down in posting to too many social networking sites, however. Instead, focus on the ones that bring the best ROI and you’re most comfortable with, then boost popular posts to get them on potential new customers’ radar. 

Once you've decided on what type of content you want to post, you'll need to define your posting cadence. The best way to do this is by creating a content calendar, but we're willing to bet that you probably don't want to start from scratch. Luckily, we've created this Content Calendar Template that you can download and adjust to your business' needs, or just use as is!

Strategy #3: Newsletters

This strategy is effective for these three purposes:

  • Maintaining a relationship with your past customers
  • Turning past customers into repeat customers
  • Increasing your chances of referrals

While the other two strategy options focus on helping you win new business, this one is all about maximizing business with current customers. This balance between targeting both ends is important for a well-rounded plumber marketing approach. 

It can be fairly simple and not a high demand on your time — put together a monthly or bi-weekly newsletter and each time you complete a job for a customer, add their email address to the list of recipients. 

In these newsletters include any updates to your business or updates for the industry as well as special deals or coupons you may be offering. Feel free to also include company culture content such as funny stories, personal analogues, or team photos. 

The more you can increase the feeling of familiarity and connection with your current and past customers, the more likely they will call you whenever the need for your services arises. 

These newsletters can be sent out either via email or direct mail depending on your audience. Direct mail can be especially effective with older and rural audiences, and there’s a higher likelihood of someone actually reading your messaging instead of it being deleted as soon as it hits someone’s inbox.

Additional Marketing Suggestions

With marketing, there’s always more you can do. Here are some additional strategies you might’ve written off in the past that we recommend you implement: 

  • Yellow pages: Make sure your business is listed in the Yellow Pages - both online and physical. This is particularly popular among older populations. Many 55+ homeowners are still referencing this book.
  • Online directory advertising like Yelp or Angi, which provide lead purchasing services.
  • Vehicle signage.  Your vehicles are billboards on wheels, make sure each is branded with your business’s primary services and contact information. You don't even need an expensive full vehicle wrap - you can get a custom magnetic sign for your door for just $30.

Marketing for plumbers is about easy to apply actions that don’t waste time or money. If you stay away from these strategies and instead drive out online marketing, you will have a formula for success. 

FieldPulse, headquartered in Dallas, Texas, enables trade service professionals to run their businesses from anywhere. Using our intuitive integrations and features, FieldPulse helps simplify your day-to-day operations like scheduling, customer management, estimates and invoicing, dispatching, and more. We’re focused on giving our customers the tools they need to save time, money, and headaches, all while growing their businesses utilizing our powerful cross-platform app. With FieldPulse, you can spend more time focusing on your craftsmanship, and less time worrying about paperwork.

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