The windows and doors sector is an industry like no other. As well as being skilled joiners, owners of smaller businesses in the industry find themselves having to be sales people, office administrators and logistic coordinators too. Even with a bigger team, it’s rare a company has one dedicated person in the office for each area of the business – many are multi-taskers; tackling enquiries, orders, stock management and installation calendars all in one day. So it’s easy to see how one crucial part of the business often gets overlooked – and that’s marketing.
Yet with longer lead in times when it comes to timber windows and doors, marketing is crucial in ensuring a steady flow of enquiries throughout the year and with less footfall into showrooms at the moment it’s more important than ever.
We have put together five key marketing areas to focus on to ensure you are actively marketing your business and increasing enquiries. First we look at working on your social media and collaborating with other companies.
Get active on social media
There are 3.8 billion people on social media and the average adult in the UK spends over three hours a day online (Ofcom). Much of that time is spent browsing platforms such as Facebook and Instagram. Previously, small businesses who couldn’t afford TV adverts were at a disadvantage compared to larger competitors, but with people spending more time on social media than they do watching TV this is no longer the case. So, are you taking advantage of this? Social media is about more than simply having a presence, it’s a place to actively engage with potential customers. Here’s some simple ways to make the most of social media for your business:
Facebook, Instagram and Pinterest are the most visual of the social media platforms and as windows and doors are a visual product these are the best platforms to use.
Therefore, get into the habit of asking customers for photos of your products in their homes when the job is completed. With our automated follow up email templates you could build this into the final email to your customers so you don’t have to rely on someone in the office remembering to ask. As our software stores photos you take on your first site visit in the customer file too you could easily create some great “before images”. Even better with our installer interface your fitters can take the “after images” which are again stored automatically with the order details. So you can easily build your image library and keep it up to date.
Make use of community groups on Facebook – every town you cover probably has one. Join them so that when people ask for recommendations you can tag in your business page. Some groups even allow free advertising so you can occasionally share posts directly to a group in the region you are targeting.
Try to post at least twice a week. This is so the “algorithms” (software used to run the platforms) can see you are posting consistently and therefore staying relevant, this means the platforms will show your posts to more people. It also means your accounts aren’t lying dormant for weeks – something which could lead customers to believe you’ve gone out of business.
By collaborating with other businesses in your area that work in the home sector you’ll build your network and your reputation and reach new customers that otherwise may not have even considered you. For example, is there a local curtain or blind shop who would welcome the opportunity to display one of your windows and dress it with their products? Do the builders you work with have a supply of your business cards, brochures or leaflets to give to their customers? Consumers always trust a recommendation from a third party more than a cold-call or an advert so the time you invest in collaborations could really pay off.
As our software allows you to work form anywhere the time you spend travelling to meet other businesses doesn’t mean you have to feel completely out of the loop with your own business.
In the current climate many business networking events are taking place online. Why not see what your local Chamber of Commerce are offering? The Federation of Small Business also offer a number of regional, virtual networking events. Events like these are a great way to encourage more recommendations from builders, architects and landlords.
To see how working on your messaging, banding and with your happy customers see our latest blog.