Marketing Your Service Business: The Hammer Or The Hand?
Are you more likely to buy a hammer, or hire a builder?
When you stop and think about purchasing a product online, versus seeking a service, some obvious differences come to mind.
When you’re in a service business, your customers are paying for your expertise and the trust they place in you.
The process of establishing this, as opposed to comparing simple product and shipping specs, offers distinct challenges – which can also mean significant opportunities in your digital marketing.
Sales take longer to convert
Sales in service businesses take longer to complete from the first engagement than a simple e-commerce purchase.
Measuring tools are a logical way to get some quick wins: knowing where your leads are coming from, which of your ads are actually getting traction, and where your dollar is best spent.
In our May blog post Closing the loop, we tackled the tricky task of finding out which of your online ads are leading to face-to-face sales. This is a common fact of service businesses, where your customer will often like to have a conversation with you before committing.
Luckily, if you have a digital marketing partner like Ark Advance on board, tracking these conversions through through their unique analytics tools is a hands-off process outside your normal CRM record keeping.
Not all leads are created equal
Following on from this is also the fact that inevitably, some leads will fall by the wayside. Now, with minimal effort, you can measure and track the quality of your sales leads… even when they come through as phone calls.
This allows you to tell the tyre kickers from the real deal customers, and where they are finding out about you. Read more about that in our article Zero to Hero: Rate your leads for better performance.
Customer service is not a “nice to have”
When your service is your product, your reputation for customer service is (within reason) worth everything you can invest.
More and more industries, even some unexpected ones, are finding out that their customers are online, they have opinions and they are ready to share them. Why not use it to your advantage?
Many of our clients have done so, embracing the task of building their own base of online customer reviews. As discussed in our Trustpilot case study and the more recent post Are you as good as your last review?, a proactive approach can really help you stand out.
Your differences are your strengths
Speaking of standing out, this is critical in the online marketplace where all your competitors are jostling for position.
Knowing your points of difference, and making sure they are front and centre for your customers, are at the core of your digital marketing proposition. Whether it’s expertise, flexibility or the reviews of all your happy customers, find your edge and hone it well.
For more advice on this, you can check out our article The Importance of Differentiation.
All these aspects of service marketing are closely intertwined, and will be well served by a unified approach to your digital systems. At Ark Advance, we consider this a specialty… so if you’re ready to build a stronger online presence, we have the power tools and we know how to use them.