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-   -   Top 5 Marketing Ideas that DO NOT WORK. (https://www.contractortalk.com/f12/top-5-marketing-ideas-do-not-work-56806/)

Darwin 04-07-2009 07:25 PM

Top 5 Marketing Ideas that DO NOT WORK.
 
Here is my own personal top 5 ideas that do not work (in no particular order):

1. Craig's list. unless you work for peanuts.
2. Yellowpages. subscription to the free online version is good though. There are dozens of free sites to list your biz.
3. Door-to-door canvassing. Down right scary for the HO. Not to mention how it feels to be infringing on people's private homes.
4. Passing out flyers. Similar to door to door canvassing. Got 1 lead for 500 flyers I passed out.
5. Service magic/lead services. A bunch of telemarketing harassers. Never used any, just did my research.

Here is 6 things that DO work:

1. Word of mouth. The best advertisement around.
2. Execution. From start to clean-up, you gotta shine.
3. People skills. Got to do what you say, when you say you will do it.
4. Website. Create traffic to it-like posting on Contractor Talk.
5. You-the professional. You want to make the big bucks-prospect must believe in you and decide that no one else will be right for their project.
6. Clean vehicle and uniforms. First and continuing impressions will get you your price.

Just wondering, what are your experiences?

RidgeWalker 04-07-2009 08:09 PM

On your list of things that don't work I do not agree with 3,4, and 5.

3. If your polite and professional most people do not see you as an intrusion.
4. A numbers game and if you pass out enough the numbers work in your favor. Passing out 500 is not enough.
5. To lengthy to explain why I do not agree.

nlgutters 04-07-2009 08:18 PM

I dont agree with

2-5

Darwin 04-07-2009 08:36 PM

Well, number three, politeness has nothing to with it. I hate it when someone knocks on my door without me even contacting the company. Its kinda like the j. witnesses. Have you ever had a bible study as a result of them canvassing. I think not. When I want service for something I just go online for a company or call them.

As with the flyers, I think you have a valid point. I just tested the waters so I'll have to get back with you on that one.

As far as lead services, if I had a huge company, I think they might help. But for the small operator, I think it's more hassle than not.

BattleRidge 04-08-2009 12:29 AM

I think these are terrible points. I BANKROLLED off my yellowbook ads last year.

Flyers, it cost 45 bucks to make 500 flyers. So you spend 45 bucks you make what? Most my jobs I make more then 5k. That works for me.

Canvassing, I think its best to look in problematic areas like roofs and know on doors. Some people just dont notice those things, or are procrastinating things and are just waiting for opportunity to knock.

I just remodelled a small kitchen for 37k off craigslist, and I framed, sided and roofed a house for premium prices as well. Plus it cost me nothing.

Honestly I have only done a few of referall projects, but tons of repeat customers. You just cant make yourself look neato and be nice and expect the phone to ring. I wear a collared shirt when Im out and about and drive a clean truck. I think the biggest plus to my business is how well we get along with out customers.

Darwin 04-08-2009 06:03 AM

Exactly. Its really about how you treat and deal with existing clients and word of mouth advertisement. For example, I was in Autozone the other day. As I was paying for my items, some guy blurted out," Man, xx shop down the street is the best!, they take care of you and quick".

I was ready to go down the street and visit this shop just because this guy is so inthusiastic and excited about them. Complete stranger.

To get professional prices, you must present a professional appearance. Imagine pullin' up to someones home in a rust -bucket with no uniform lookin' like you just rolled out of bed asking for $85 an hour. It won't happen. My thing is, present the franchise look without the franchise price.

I have found out in peoples minds-you look like a million bucks, you can ask for premium prices.

Mike Finley 04-08-2009 06:12 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Darwin (Post 653099)
Here is my own personal top 5 ideas that do not work (in no particular order):
Here is 6 things that DO work:

1. Word of mouth. The best advertisement around.
2. Execution. From start to clean-up, you gotta shine.
3. People skills. Got to do what you say, when you say you will do it.
4. Website. Create traffic to it-like posting on Contractor Talk.
5. You-the professional. You want to make the big bucks-prospect must believe in you and decide that no one else will be right for their project.
6. Clean vehicle and uniforms. First and continuing impressions will get you your price.

Just wondering, what are your experiences?

Non of those are marketing except a Website.

Quote:

Originally Posted by Darwin (Post 653400)
To get professional prices, you must present a professional appearance. Imagine pullin' up to someones home in a rust -bucket with no uniform lookin' like you just rolled out of bed asking for $85 an hour. It won't happen. My thing is, present the franchise look without the franchise price.

I have found out in peoples minds-you look like a million bucks, you can ask for premium prices.

Well, which one do you do? Do you get premium prices or don't you?

silvertree 04-08-2009 07:09 AM

At the risk of getting fried by Mike, who is a professional marketing person, I just wrote 3 articles on marketing and they are on my blog (link at bottom).
Not being a pro marketer but having hired them I formed opinions.
Right now I give out a 1/2 lb of WoW coffee on every visit. In my opinion that's marketing. Along with branding, and branding for me is simple, something to be remembered with. Read my articles, and Mike, if you read them and you think I'm wrong, fire away, I know I'm no marketer, but I will be.

Darwin 04-08-2009 08:10 AM

Of course, I get my price. My point is that whether you are a small independent or the large franchise, in order to get the most bang out of your business, you most present the professional appearance and back it up with performance + warranty.

However, I am not a franchisee but a small independent biz that I started in my basement. My overhead is low--on purpose. Must keep an eye on the numbers at all times, with documentation. Of course, I am still learning how to place myself in front of prospects that I want to work for (not need to work for).

What I meant by operate as a franchise = run my biz without the overhead of a franchise and increase the ol' bank account.;)

Oh yeah, Silver, I will be looking at your blog shortly. I feel marketing is something you never master, because there are always new forms of it to try out.

Just my 2 pennies:surrender:

Darwin 04-08-2009 09:32 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Mike Finley (Post 653403)
Non of those are marketing except a Website.

Marketing: the total of activities involved in the transfer of goods from the producer or seller to the consumer or buyer, including advertising, shipping, storing, or selling.

http://www.dictionary.com/browse/marketing

RidgeWalker 04-08-2009 10:47 AM

Whoever made your web site needs to go back and make it work for alternate browsers like Firefox. In Firefox it looks completely hacked!

cbscreative 04-08-2009 01:56 PM

It's more accurate to focus on how these methods get used instead of whether each one works or not. As BattleRidge quickly pointed out, he was able to do well with yellow pages while others do poorly with it. Some web sites work very well while others do nothing, even when they get good traffic.

The difference between good and bad performance comes down to how effective the message is. Let me use a web site as an example so it provides a short illustration.

Web site #1:
We have been in business since 1965 and do the highest quality work possible at reasonable prices. We are licensed, insured, and our work is guaranteed. We believe in honesty and integrity, and your complete satisfaction is very important to us.

Web site #2:
When you look at your energy bills as they keep climbing higher, you naturally want to do something to be more energy efficient. Replacing your windows, and possibly your doors, is the most effective solution for many homes.

These two examples are just quickly made up, but you will see the difference. #1 is like a lot of web sites out there (probably most) which is a common, but wrong, approach. The response rates will be pretty low because it does not connect with the customer. #2 is customer focused. It identifies with their problem and offers a solution.

If you try to sell your service, you will have less success than you will if you offer solutions to a problem.

naptown CR 04-08-2009 02:31 PM

Quote:

If you try to sell your service, you will have less success than you will if you offer solutions to a problem.
by cbscreative:thumbup:

This is absolutly true. There are basically two reasons people remodel.
1 they are trying to increase their enjoyment or value of their home.
2 this one is most prevalent is that they are trying to releive pain. (The ugly kitchen ,bath, not enough closet space etc. etc. etc. )

The best way to sell to these people is to figure out which type they are and offer several solutions. I agree that marketing solutions is much better. The big danger is giving them great ideas then they have some hack do the job :sad:

jbg44 04-08-2009 07:25 PM

I think I have mentioned this on Contractor Talk before, but I would recommend the oft overlooked press release if you have done, or are about to do, anything news worthy. It is inexpensive and adds credibility.

Also, you may look to partner with industry related companies to cut costs and grab some media air time. I.e. right now my company is running commercials on the HG network, and the last 10 seconds of the commercial, we plug a local contractor. It is a great deal for all parties involved.

Josh

silvertree 04-08-2009 08:28 PM

Let me add to that.
PR can be done for free in many ways.
Being newsworthy means being interesting, being a contractor is not interesting, being a contractor who plays banjo and spits tobacco accurately at a target 10 feet away is interesting, if the target is a rattlesnake that's better yet, if the rattlesnake spits tobacco back at you, well, you just beat out Obama on the 6 o'clock news.
Be different!:thumbsup:

rbsremodeling 04-08-2009 08:32 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by silvertree (Post 653886)
Let me add to that.
PR can be done for free in many ways.
Being newsworthy means being interesting, being a contractor is not interesting, being a contractor who plays banjo and spits tobacco accurately at a target 10 feet away is interesting, if the target is a rattlesnake that's better yet, if the rattlesnake spits tobacco back at you, well, you just beat out Obama on the 6 o'clock news.
Be different!:thumbsup:

What if the rattle snakes name is Obama?

silvertree 04-08-2009 08:36 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by rbsremodeling (Post 653891)
What if the rattle snakes name is Obama?

Rory , don be bitten the han thad feeds ya.
I'm gonna be rich!

Hey Rory we could hijack this thread and just keep this story going---------
If the rattlesnake named Obama spit tobacco at Barney Frank-----------

orson 04-08-2009 08:44 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Darwin (Post 653099)
Here is my own personal top 5 ideas that do not work (in no particular order):

Here is 6 things that DO work:

1. Word of mouth. The best advertisement around.
2. Execution. From start to clean-up, you gotta shine.
3. People skills. Got to do what you say, when you say you will do it.
4. Website. Create traffic to it-like posting on Contractor Talk.
5. You-the professional. You want to make the big bucks-prospect must believe in you and decide that no one else will be right for their project.
6. Clean vehicle and uniforms. First and continuing impressions will get you your price.

Just wondering, what are your experiences?

Au contraire Mike,

These are all marketing, what they are not(all) is advertising.

Marketing is about creating an image in the minds of your customers. It is about a brand, a mystique; it is about getting people to like you (your company).

Here is a definition from Johnm Jantsch's book 'Duct Tape Marketing':

Quote:

Marketing is getting people who hava a specific need or problem to know, like, and trust you.

silvertree 04-08-2009 08:52 PM

Its giving a bag of home roasted coffee on every first visit, without an advertisement (I put a label that simply says WoW!)
That's marketing:thumbsup:

world llc 04-08-2009 10:20 PM

i believe any form of marketing CAN and WILL work when the marketer finds what works for his products
if you believe something will work, you will find a creative way to make it work

damn, these books are wearing off on me......


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