Running a successful heating and cooling business is all about knowing how to get HVAC leads. Check out CraftJack's tips for HVAC lead generation.
Careers in the HVAC field are rising in demand, with the global market projected to reach a size of almost $370 billion by the end of this decade. As part of that fast-growing sector, it's important for individual HVAC contractors to know how to stand out and generate leads.
You don't need to be a marketing expert to be successful in growing your HVAC business. It will help, however, to familiarize yourself with tips on how to get HVAC leads like those in this post.
One of the first steps to success is joining a proven lead generation website. CraftJack can provide support for growing your business and finding new customers.
What to Consider When Trying to Attract HVAC Leads
We'll consider several major areas of marketing below in terms of attracting high-quality HVAC leads.
Know Your Goals & Plan for Them
There are a wide variety of marketing ideas that can be useful for HVAC professionals. They range from visibility-boosting tactics to the kind of content marketing strategies that can shape perception of your brand. But the first step before implementing marketing ideas is having a plan.
That plan should be based on a realistic picture of:
- The volume of calls your business can handle while still delivering the best possible service for each client
- The number of staff you’ll need (technicians, installers and sales agents included) to fulfill that business
- The number of clients you need to hit your revenue goals
- Which seasons you can expect to be busy or slow
- How you’ll set (and adjust) pricing based on the above
Having a clear picture of where your business is, where you want to take it, and in what span of time will make it possible to base your lead generation strategy on bottom-line cost estimates. Pricing is especially important to have a handle on, and it's worth consulting specific guides on that topic as part of your overall planning.
Understand the Importance of Online Visibility
One of the best ways to get in touch with new business is to be present and visible online where your prospects are looking for HVAC professionals. Many of the tips in this article will discuss strategies for online visibility. You don't need to implement all of them, but you do need to decide which ones to focus on that are the best fit with the goals you've set and your overall growth plan.
Realize the Power of Interpersonal Relationships
The online world is important, but it isn't everything. It's important to network with other professionals and keep on top of what your current clients say about you to potential clients. It's just as crucial as online marketing and can, in fact, feed back positively into your online reviews, referrals, and testimonials. More than 90% of customers strongly trust recommendations from their friends and family as a basis for deciding what to purchase or what service to engage with.
Keep Track of What Yields Results
When you're considering how to get HVAC leads, make sure to track where those leads came from. The best way to assess your growth plan is to have a handle on which parts of it are generating the most actionable leads. You don't need to spend heavily on in-house technology to do this. A high-quality lead generation site can provide tools to track your leads.
10 Tips for How to Get HVAC Leads
Once you have a growth plan in place and an idea of how you'll go about tracking your leads, it's time to think about the specifics of your approach. The 10 tips below provide a strong starting point.
1. Use Pay-Per-Click (PPC) Advertising
Showing up in online searches for HVAC professionals is an important way of getting access to the many prospective clients searching on the internet. Pay-per-click advertising on Google or social media platforms like Facebook is crucial. It's cost-efficient and can offer quick results. When you think of PPC, it's important to think beyond just the biggest and most familiar names in the public eye. Companies like AdRoll, RevContent, and Bing Ads are less familiar to the average consumer but can still be significant pay-per-click venues.
2. Leverage Search Engine Optimized (SEO) Content
Search engine optimized content is content you generate — on your website, blog, or buying guide, for example — that's optimized to show up in the search engine results by the organic use of relevant keywords. These are words that customers are likely to type into the search engines when looking for information. The field of SEO content has evolved considerably over the years, and an early emphasis on stuffing in as many keywords as possible has given way to a priority for relevant, quality content where keywords appear organically. With current best practices in mind, effective SEO content can combine with pay-per-click advertising to create a strong push for your overall visibility online.
3. Update & Optimize Your Website
Prospects who find you online are likely to land first on your company's website. It's important to make that first impression a good one. Your website should provide:
- A clean and attractive design. If website design isn't in your skill set or that of your immediate team, it's well worth contracting a web designer to make sure your site looks attractive and current.
- Ease of navigation. It should be easy to find your services and financing options on your website. Above all, it should be easy to contact your business to arrange a consultation or a service appointment.
- A personal connection to your brand story. This is where you tell the story of your company and your team, why you do what you do, and why a prospect should give you their business.
- Resources for HVAC customers. If you have helpful HVAC tips to offer your customers, they should appear on your website or blog. If you're able to run a podcast or put up some informative YouTube videos, this is the place to advertise them and make your expertise (and your willingness to share it) clear.
- Reviews and testimonials. A selection of your best customer reviews and testimonials should appear here to make clear what your satisfied clients like most about your services and your team.
- Clear calls to action (CTAs). Pages on your website should be specifically dedicated to one of your services and provide a clear CTA for customers to reach out and contact you.
Along with the above, your site's content should be generated to boost the keywords you need and be generally in line with up-to-date SEO best practices.
4. Make Use of Online Business Listings & Reviews
Another important outlet is online business listings like those provided by Google Business, Bing Places, or Yelp for Business. Each of these provides a business directory where you can list your business's basic information and prospects can find you. Perhaps even more importantly, they provide places for interested consumers to leave reviews. You can solicit positive reviews for these venues by doing a customer survey after each completed job.
5. Establish a Social Media Presence
It's no secret that the world of social media is always in flux, but it remains a powerful outreach tool. Having a consistent presence on sites like Facebook or Instagram offers a great way to advertise content generated for your website, to showcase video and photo testimonials from satisfied customers, or just generally to establish a sense of your personality and brand for people to identify with.
It's important to remember that social media is all about putting people in touch with the human side of your business. The practices of the major platforms are always changing to reflect current realities. For example, Facebook is currently escalating its efforts to reduce "clickbait" on the site, so make sure you know what the current state of play is before you start.
6. Utilize E-Mail Newsletters & Marketing Campaigns
Staying in touch with your customers by email can be a great source of leads, since satisfied clients are some of your best marketers. Regular email newsletters and follow-up marketing campaigns can be important methods of raising awareness. Any chance to remind customers of your past services is an opportunity to place your company and brand top of mind for the next time someone asks them who they trust for the kinds of work you do.
Email doesn't just have to be a long-range marketing tool. In the short term — such as just after completing a job — you can use a follow-up email to provide customers with incentives for a referral or positive review. Examples of good incentives include a discount on maintenance services or a gift card.
7. Make Use of Networking
Local networking is one of the most powerful tools for professionals in any part of the home service industry. Your fellow local business owners and contractors are visible to property owners in your area. You can use trade shows and organizations as a chance to build relationships, connecting with people whose practices and overall profiles are trustworthy.
There's nothing like face-to-face interactions for creating those kinds of relationships, and friendly pros can alert you to opportunities to work with homeowners and landlords. Building those relationships can also lead to further opportunities for collaboration.
8. Try Guest Blogging
If providing expertise online through a blog or podcast is a strong part of your brand, you can make an impression on audiences you might not otherwise reach by guest blogging. Guest blogs offer a chance to build the credibility of your content — a key element in SEO rankings — with link building. This important part of SEO is when highly credible, relevant existing sites link back to your website or blog. Trade associations or your local chamber of commerce can provide useful starting points for pitching guest blogging ideas.
9. Implement Consistent Branding Through Equipment & Printed Materials
The equipment you use and the vehicles you drive can all be part of providing a consistent reinforcement of your brand identity. Meanwhile, printed materials like pamphlets can provide people with a fast, easy way to find you online. One useful way to accelerate this process is to use QR codes on your printed sales materials. Just scanning the code with their phone can take a prospect straight to your website and potentially add them to your pipeline of leads.
10. Offer Free Estimates
It may seem basic, but an opportunity that plenty of HVAC companies miss out on is the free estimate as a marketing tool. This assumes you have a scheduling tool and a simple contact portal for customers on your website. Prospects who book a free estimate are some of the highest-quality leads you can get, since the mere act of reaching out indicates interest that can be converted to action.
How to Handle HVAC Leads Once You Get Them
Getting the leads is one thing. Executing so they become active business and the kind of business that will generate further referrals for your company is something else again.
Following up promptly with leads is a must. Even if you can't schedule an estimate or a job right away, that initial contact provides the basis for an ongoing conversation. Ideally, that conversation will lead to an estimate and the scheduling and completion of that work to the client's satisfaction.
However, even if the ultimate outcome of the lead doesn't wind up turning into a paying job, you can still make a positive impression on the prospect with friendly interactions, transparency, and a willingness to accommodate their needs. This very well might lead them to seek you out at some future time or refer you to people they know. Nurturing a lead is always time well-spent that can contribute to community goodwill and future growth.
Keep Your Goals in View & Work for Growth
As you keep your original goals and plan in mind, you'll be able to try out a wide range of different approaches while working out the methods for how to get HVAC leads that are best for you. With a vigorous online presence focused on visibility and high-quality content, and by cultivating close relationships with your customer base and fellow professionals, your pipeline of leads should get steadily more robust over time. Of course, it's always a great idea to join CraftJack for access to more lead-generation tools and tips for your HVAC company.
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