How Do Professional Contractors Market their Services?
The days of taking out an ad in the yellow pages are ancient history and radio and television will only reach a certain select audience. Not to mention, some of those “traditional marketing methods can be cost prohibitive (especially for fledgling contractors operating on a shoestring budget). If you’re looking for real, sustainable lead generation that hits the target audience you’re looking for and one which allows you to control the budget, Internet marketing is really the only option for you. But if you think that means endless hours of fiddling with Google or Facebook ads you might be surprised to learn there are other far more useful marketing services out there for you.
“Professional network” websites like Angie’s List and Home Advisor let you pay to put your business name in front of potential customers and position you as an expert in your field through associating with a known marketing system which masquerades as a “free” resource for clients looking for contractors.
Thumbtack and other “Gig” websites let you bid or compete for jobs that customers already have posted.
SendWork is a bit of a combination of the two methods—the best of both worlds, you might say. When you join the SendWork network of professional Contractors, potential clients looking for your services in your local area will be able to see your “availability” In addition, you’ll be able to submit proposals and contact clients who have posted jobs on the network.
So how do you choose which marketing method will work best for you? It really comes down to how much time and money you want to spend perfecting your marketing game.
Weighing the Cost of these Various Marketing Methods
Facebook and Google let you create ads that are then shown to very specific audiences who may potentially be interested in your services. These advertising services generate revenue by charging you every time a potential customer is exposed to that ad (pay-per-impression) or every time a potential customer clicks on that ad (pay-per-click).
In order to get these pay-per-click marketing services to work for you, your ads have to be spot on and/or you have to be willing to “cast a wide net.” That means multiple experiments involving variations on your ad, targeting various audiences to see who clicks and what they do after, and/or spending more money than you had originally planned to expand your target radius.
Angie’s List is free . . . for the people searching for contractors but contractors have to pay to advertise on the site. So how much does it cost? The cost associated with advertising on Angie’s List is variable. It can range from $20 per month to several thousand dollars per month depending on how far you want your marketing message to spread. According to industry insiders, the typical monthly expense contractors on Angie’s list pay for exposure is roughly $200. And what do you get for that? Preferred ad placement when potential clients search Angie’s List. That’s it.
Home Advisor is another great site on which contractors can advertise but be prepared for the cost associated with this “premium” listing. The base rate for Home Advisor’s advertising service is $200 per year. There are plans that go much higher than that. However, it’s important to keep in mind that Home Advisor also charges a fee on top of that annual package pricing which can range between $15 and $60 per lead generated. Keep in mind, that’s just for leads—not for guaranteed work!
Thumbtack is a more typical “gig economy” website on which contractors compete for jobs that have been listed by clients. As such, the pricing structure follows the style adopted by most of these types of websites and is usually based on a percentage of the total value of the job. That means a Thumbtack lead could cost you $1.50 but then again it could cost you a whole lot more.
SendWork is an App (Android) that you can download and use to manage multiple jobs, employees, or automate your scheduling and billing procedures. But SendWork’s newest feature is an On-Demand Lead Generator. As a SendWork Provider, your business name and work history will be on display (and searchable) so clients within a local area (8-15 miles depending on which part of the country you’re in) can find you when they need you.
And, unlike the pay-per-click and paid advertising options available to you, SendWork doesn’t charge any extra for this service. It’s essential free online and mobile advertising that puts your company name front and center. All providers that join the network are required to complete background checks.
Plus, with SendWork, you get so much more than potential clients. You can use our entire host of management features to streamline how you run your entire business from time tracking and scheduling to communication and billing.