The realm of modern contracting is rapidly evolving. In 2022, the US construction industry boasted a significant market size, reaching an approximate valuation of USD 1.8 trillion. However, with projections indicating a potential decline in this value in the forthcoming years, it has become more crucial than ever for contractors to differentiate and elevate their services. Digital marketing allows contractors to effectively reach a wider audience, showcase their work, and stay ahead in this dynamic market.
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In today’s digital era, no industry is immune to the transformative powers of online marketing – and the realm of contractors is no exception. Digital marketing, when effectively harnessed, can empower contractors with a broader reach, heightened client engagement, and a notable uptick in conversion rates. Let’s delve deeper into the facets of digital marketing designed specifically to cater to the nuances of the contracting industry.
A digital marketing system tailored for contractors is more than just an online promotional strategy. It’s a holistic approach that intertwines various online marketing techniques meticulously designed to address contractors’ particular requirements, challenges, and aspirations. It’s not just about getting online but thriving there.
Digital marketing has revolutionized the way contractors acquire clients and showcase their projects. Given the nature of contracting businesses, having a targeted digital marketing strategy can make a significant difference.
Paid Marketing, commonly called Pay-Per-Click (PPC) Marketing, is a model of internet marketing in which advertisers pay a fee each time their ad is clicked. For contractors, it means bidding for ad placements in a search engine’s sponsored links, targeting keywords relevant to their business, like “home renovation” or “local plumbing service.” When users search for these keywords, the contractor’s ad might appear above the organic search results, ensuring immediate visibility.
Immediate Results: Unlike organic SEO strategies, PPC brings instant visibility and can generate leads rapidly.
Targeted Advertising: Contractors can target specific demographics, locations, and even times of the day.
Budget Control: Contractors can set a daily or monthly budget and can adjust their spending based on results.
Measurable ROI: With tools like Google Ads, it’s easy to track the number of clicks, conversions, and the cost per conversion, allowing contractors to measure their return on investment accurately.
Brand Exposure: Even if users don’t click on the ad, they still see the brand name, increasing awareness.
Competitive Advantage: PPC can help contractors get ahead of competitors solely relying on organic search visibility.
Costs Can Add Up: Especially in competitive markets, bids for popular keywords can get high, leading to increased costs.
Requires Expertise: To get the best ROI, one needs a good understanding of ad platforms, keyword research, and ad copywriting.
Temporary: Once the advertising budget runs out, the ads disappear, and so does the visibility, unless complemented with a solid organic strategy.
Potential for Invalid Clicks: There’s always a risk of competitors or bots clicking on the ads, which could deplete the budget without genuine leads.
Ad Blindness: Some users tend to ignore sponsored listings and go straight to organic results.
Complexity of Campaign Management: Running a successful PPC campaign for contractors involves keyword research, bid management, quality score optimization, and more, making it complex without proper tools or expertise.
For a contracting business, a blended strategy that combines PPC with organic digital marketing practices can offer a more comprehensive and sustainable approach to online visibility and lead generation.
Content marketing for contractors refers to creating and sharing valuable, relevant, and consistent content to attract and engage a target audience. The primary goal is to establish trust and credibility among potential clients. This content can range from blog posts about home improvement tips, videos showcasing completed projects, and infographics on the latest construction materials to e-books or guides on selecting the right contractor.
Establishes Authority: Regularly publishing insightful content positions a contractor as an expert in their field.
SEO Benefits: Quality content can improve a website’s search engine ranking, increasing organic traffic.
Cost-effective: Unlike paid ads, the returns on content marketing can be long-lasting, offering value over a more extended period.
Builds Trust: Offering valuable advice and insights helps build trust with potential clients.
Supports Other Digital Efforts: Content can be shared on social media sites, emailed in newsletters, and used in PPC campaigns.
Generates Organic Leads: People searching for information may stumble upon a contractor’s content and hire them for services later.
Engages and Educates: Helps potential clients understand the value of a contractor’s services, making them more likely to convert.
Time-consuming: Crafting high-quality content requires time, effort, and consistency.
Longer-to-See Results: Unlike PPC, where results are immediate, content marketing is a long-term strategy, and it might take time to see significant traffic or lead generation.
Requires Expertise: To stand out, content needs to be well-researched, well-written, and relevant to the audience’s needs.
Consistent Effort Needed: It’s not a one-off effort; contractors must regularly update and add new content to remain relevant and keep potential customers engaged.
Distribution Challenges: Merely creating content isn’t enough; contractors need a strategy to distribute and promote it, which can sometimes be a hurdle.
ROI Measurement: While platforms like Google Analytics offer insights, the direct ROI of content marketing can be more challenging than direct advertising.
While content marketing requires a significant investment in time and effort, its potential to establish long-term relationships with clients and position a contractor as an authority in the industry makes it an invaluable tool in a comprehensive digital marketing strategy.
For contractors, search Engine Optimization (SEO) revolves around enhancing their online presence to rank higher on search engine results pages, particularly Google. This organic method aims to improve the visibility of contractor websites or profiles when potential clients search for relevant services or advice. The strategy involves keyword optimization, link building, local SEO (like Google My Business listings), and enhancing site structure and speed, among other tactics.
Cost-effective: Unlike paid advertising, where you pay for each click, organic clicks from SEO are “free.”
Long-lasting Results: Once established, a high ranking can provide visibility for months or even years.
Credibility and Trust: Users often trust organic results more than paid advertisements. A higher ranking can signal authority in the field.
Increased Web Traffic: A higher ranking on search engine results pages (SERPs) naturally attracts more clicks and website visits.
High ROI: Although it might take time, the ROI of SEO can be significant due to sustained visibility and traffic.
Targeted Traffic: With proper keyword research and targeting, the traffic drawn to the site is more likely to convert since it’s actively seeking the contractor’s services.
Time-intensive: Achieving high rankings, especially in competitive markets, takes time.
Constantly Evolving: Search engine algorithms change regularly, requiring ongoing effort and adaptation.
No Guaranteed Results: Search engines don’t guarantee high rankings despite best efforts.
Initial Costs: While SEO can be cost-effective in the long run, the initial investment in professional services or tools might be high for some contractors.
Complexity: Effective SEO involves various factors, from on-page optimization and link-building to technical SEO. It can be overwhelming without proper knowledge.
Potential for Penalties: Misguided tactics or “black hat” strategies can lead to penalties from search engines, severely affecting visibility.
For contractors, a well-executed SEO strategy can be the cornerstone of their digital presence, ensuring they are the first port of call for potential clients searching for services in their domain. However, it requires patience, continuous effort, and, often, expertise.
Social Media Marketing uses social media platforms to promote services, products, and engage with an audience. For contractors, this can mean using platforms such as Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest, and LinkedIn to showcase their projects, share testimonials, offer insights, and interact with both existing and potential clients. In a world where visuals speak volumes, platforms emphasizing imagery provide an ideal space for contractors to display their craftsmanship and skill.
Broad Reach: Access to billions of users worldwide, enhancing visibility and brand awareness.
Direct Engagement: Enables contractors to interact directly with their audience, answering questions, gathering feedback, and building relationships.
Cost-Effective: While paid promotions are available, organic reach is possible with engaging content. Even sponsored content can be more affordable than traditional marketing avenues.
Showcase Work: Platforms, especially Instagram and Pinterest, are ideal for visually representing completed projects.
Targeted Advertising: Advanced targeting options ensure promotions reach the most relevant demographic, location, and interest groups.
Real-time Feedback: Quick feedback on services or projects through comments, shares, and likes.
Builds Trust: Sharing client testimonials, behind-the-scenes looks, and progress shots can foster trust and credibility.
Requires Consistency: Regular posting and interaction are essential to maintain engagement and reach.
Time Investment: Managing profiles, creating content, and engaging with followers can be time-consuming.
Negative Exposure: Public platforms mean any dissatisfaction or negative feedback is also public and can impact reputation.
Algorithm Challenges: Platforms adjust their algorithms, which can affect the visibility of posts, requiring marketers to adapt.
Potential for Missteps: A misguided post or comment can lead to public relations issues.
ROI Uncertainty: Measuring the direct return on investment for social media efforts can be challenging.
Platform Saturation: With many businesses competing for attention, standing out can be challenging.
While Social Media Marketing offers a plethora of opportunities for contractors to engage and attract clients, it’s crucial to approach it strategically. With a well-defined target audience and a consistent posting schedule, contractors can harness the power of social media to boost their business.
Video marketing involves using video content to promote, educate, or engage your audience. For contractors, this can include completed project walkthroughs, time-lapse videos of ongoing works, client testimonials, how-to guides, or insights into the industry. Given that today’s audience prefers dynamic, visually engaging content, videos can play a pivotal role in a contractor’s marketing strategy. With platforms like YouTube, Facebook, and Instagram offering extensive video capabilities, there’s a broad audience waiting to be tapped.
High Engagement: Videos engage viewers more effectively than text or images alone.
Builds Trust: Showing actual projects, happy clients, or the process in action can help build credibility and trust among potential clients.
Versatile Medium: Can be used for a variety of purposes – from branding and promotion to education and engagement.
SEO Benefits: Videos can improve website SEO, especially if hosted on platforms like YouTube (owned by Google).
Easily Shareable: Video content is easily shareable across social media, increasing reach.
Appeals to Mobile Users: Videos are more consumable on mobile devices, catering to the growing number of mobile internet users.
Clear Message Delivery: Complex ideas or concepts can be more easily explained and visualized through videos.
Requires Investment: Quality video production can be expensive, involving equipment, software, and sometimes professional assistance.
Time-Consuming: From conceptualization to production to editing, video creation can be time-intensive.
Platform Dependency: The success of a video can sometimes depend on the platform it’s published on and its algorithms.
Skill Requirement: Effective video marketing may require scripting, shooting, and editing skills.
Large File Sizes: Videos can be large and might require significant storage or bandwidth, especially if hosted on one’s website.
Short-lived Attention: With the surge in video content, grabbing and retaining viewers’ attention can be challenging.
Potential for Negative Feedback: Like other public content forms, videos are subject to public critique, and negative feedback can sometimes be more impactful.
Despite the challenges, video marketing offers contractors a compelling way to showcase their expertise and engage their audience in a more personal and relatable manner. The right strategy can significantly amplify a contractor’s online presence and influence.
Email marketing for contractors refers to the use of email to promote services, share updates, offer special promotions, and maintain regular touchpoints with both potential and existing clients. Typically, this involves curating a list of interested parties or past clients and sending them newsletters, promotional offers, project showcases, or educational content. It serves as a personalized communication channel that keeps a contractor’s services top-of-mind for recipients.
High ROI: Email marketing often boasts one of the highest returns on investment among digital marketing channels.
Personalization: Emails can be personalized based on the recipient’s behavior, preferences, or past interactions, leading to higher engagement.
Direct Communication: Unlike social media platforms where content can get lost in feeds, emails land directly in the recipient’s inbox.
Segmentation: Email lists can be segmented based on various criteria, allowing for more targeted and relevant messaging.
Cost-Effective: Sending emails, especially with modern platforms, is relatively cheap, even for large lists.
Measurable: Tools like Mailchimp or SendinBlue provide analytics, showing open rates, click-through rates, and other vital metrics.
Flexibility: From design to content, emails offer a lot of creative flexibility, allowing for a wide variety of messaging and visuals.
Spam Filters: Emails, especially promotional ones, can end up in spam folders, reducing their visibility.
Over Saturation: People receive numerous emails daily, making it a challenge for any single email to stand out.
List Maintenance: Maintaining a clean and updated email list requires effort and can sometimes lead to unsubscribes.
Legal Considerations: Regulations like GDPR and CAN-SPAM require strict adherence to data protection and opt-in rules.
Time-Consuming: Creating compelling, high-quality emails that resonate with recipients can be time-intensive.
Platform Limitations: Some email platforms might have a design, list size, or sending frequency limitations.
Delayed Results: Unlike instant PPC results, email marketing is often a slower burn, building relationships and trust over time.
Email marketing can be an essential tool for contractors to nurture leads, stay in touch with past clients for potential repeat business, and establish themselves as thought leaders by sharing industry insights and news. With a well-curated list and compelling content, email can be a robust touchpoint in a contractor’s digital marketing arsenal.
By integrating these tips, contractors can create a comprehensive marketing strategy that covers various touchpoints, enhancing their reach, engagement, and conversion rates.
Regularly update your website and social media profiles with fresh content. Sharing project updates, industry news, and how-to guides can ensure your audience stays engaged and views you as an active industry player.
Ensure your business is listed on Google My Business, optimize for local keywords, and engage in local link-building. Remember, most of your clients will come from your immediate vicinity, so make your presence felt there.
Encourage satisfied clients to leave positive reviews on platforms like Google, Yelp, and other relevant directories. Positive reviews boost your online reputation and help in local SEO rankings.
Regular communication, even during slow periods, keeps your brand top-of-mind. Share newsletters, industry insights, or even seasonal greetings. This continuous touch can lead to repeat business and referrals.
Engage with your audience through regular posts, stories, and even ads. Showcase your projects, share behind-the-scenes moments, and engage with user comments and messages. It humanizes your brand and keeps it relatable.
A visual showcase of your projects, time-lapse videos, or client testimonials can resonate more with viewers than just text. Platforms like YouTube or Instagram can amplify the reach of these videos, providing a dynamic way to market your skills.
Partner with complementary businesses in your area. If you’re a home contractor, consider collaborations with local interior designers or furniture shops. Such partnerships can lead to cross-promotions and expanded client bases.
Marketing isn’t a one-time effort. Trends change, platforms evolve, and strategies need revising. Monitor your results, adjust your digital marketing strategies, and stay updated with industry best practices. Consistent effort will ensure long-term growth and success.
Contractors have a very difficult job. They need to handle new clients and maintain excellent relationships with existing clients while keeping up with the ever-changing rules, regulations, and competition in their field. In addition, they need to do all of this quickly and efficiently. That’s where Anthem’s digital marketing system helps Contractors Find, Sell & Keep more customers. Anthem offers all the contractor marketing services so they can focus on what they do best: selling and serving more clients. Anthem’s system comprises Marketing CRM, Social Media Automation, Email Automation, Text Marketing, Search Engine Marketing, Content Marketing, Responsive Website Design, Training, and more.
Digital marketing is no longer optional for contractors. In a competitive market, it’s vital to differentiate yourself and reach potential clients where they spend their time: online. By integrating these strategies and staying consistent, contractors can ensure growth and success in the digital age.