In one of our previous blogs, we talked about accounting software and tips for a cleaning service. With your accounting taken care of, how do you get new invoices from new customers? One of the most challenging problems for any business is acquiring new customers. So how do you reach and gain new customers for your cleaning service? Customers are looking for a cleaning service to clean their office or their home, what can you do to market to them? We’ll highlight the five best tips for getting new customers.
Getting your company out there
There are many marketing tools that a cleaning service can utilize to essentially spread the word about your company to gain new customers. You may already be using some of these marketing tools mentioned below, while other tools you may not have thought about using. There are two main types of marketing tools; digital marketing and traditional marketing. Digital marketing revolves around the internet. This form of marketing involves the use of social media, email, website, and anything internet-related. In comparison, traditional marketing is older marketing tools like posters, newspapers, radios, and TV, which are still effective forms of marketing.
Creating a marketing master plan
Success in any strategy is in your planning, which will be the center of all your marketing activities. At the center of your marketing plan is your company mission statement. This mission statement should answer the question, What is the problem you want to solve for which group of customers? This is the main reason why you started your cleaning service. The more detailed the mission statement, the better it is to help guide your marketing decisions. Most mission statements consist of three parts:
- Target audience; who is your main customer for your business?
- Company product; what are you selling to your customer?
- Unique proposition; what makes your service or product distinct and stand out to your customers?
The mission statement tells the customer “why you should choose us” instead of your competitors. This statement is the start of your marketing plan. All your marketing activity should center around sharing this message with the consumers. If you need ideas and more information about the mission statement, check out this blog by HubSpot on mission statements.
Identify your customers
One of the most important parts of marketing is identifying your potential target market. This will help to determine the way and the method to obtain new customers. One of the four-way to identify your target market segments are:
- Geographic: where are they located?
- Demographic: age, gender, income level, family structure, and others.
- Psychographic: what are their lifestyle, value, interests, likes, or dislikes?
- Behavioral: are they online, offline. What do they do before they purchase?
The easiest way to know who target marketing is to look at your current customers and see a pattern among them. Maybe they are located in a similar location in an office or residential area(Geographic). They could be around the same age or are single business professionals(Demographic). Perhaps an outdoor type of person who doesn’t have time to clean(Psychographic). Or they like to look on Facebook or even Instagram(behavioral). These are all great information you can get from your customer just by asking them. This will help you understand where to aim your marketing weapons and capture your customers.
By knowing who your customer is can help you better target your marketing plan towards them. If they are business professionals, then LinkedIn might be an option for social media marketing. But, if they are younger, then they could use Instagram and even TikTok. Your tone and message will be different if you target business professionals. Your message will be more formal and business-oriented. Whereas, if you were targeting residents, your messages would be more casual and more conversation-like.
Understanding your customer needs
With your customer identified, it’s time to understand what problems they have regarding cleaning. Your cleaning service should have to solve a problem that they have. For example, does your customer live in an apartment and have no time to clean due to work, or are they business owners who want to have their office cleaned? They both want their spaces clean, but the two different types of customers will have different needs regards to cleaning. For example, one will wish to have their bathroom, kitchen, and marble table cleaned, while the other wants their desk and carpet cleaned.
Once you understand the need, you can customize your cleaning service for that targeted group of people. You are targeting your message towards that group of people helping you better attract them to your cleaning service. You may want to target your cleaning service towards a niche market. The more general your cleaning offering is, the harder it will be to acquire new customers. Whereas if you do targeting and niche market, there are fewer competitors to contend out.
Start marketing to your customer
With your marketing plan in place, it’s now time to get into the different tools you can use to get new customers. There are many digital and traditional tools for marketing that a cleaning service can employ to gain new customers. So which tools should you use for your cleaning service? While there are no defined answers, there is always an advantage to using a mix of these tools.
Set your goals
Everything in your cleaning service has a goal, and it is the same for your marketing. You want to have a specific goal for each of your marketing tools. One way is to set SMART goals, which stands for Specific, Measureable, Achievable, Realistic, and Time-bound. For example, you might have a SMART goal for your social media to gain ‘X’ number of customers by the end of the year on Facebook by posting weekly content. You will help visualize and track the process of your goal.
Website – Landing page of information
Having a website is vital during the current digital age. This is the first point of contact between you and your customer. Think about this when you want to purchase something. The first thing you do is to ‘Google’ it. Then when you see the product or service your want, you go to their brand website to check it out. This is also true for many of your customers. It is essential to have a good website for your customer to get information from. This is the primary source of information for your customer, it must look nice and show a point.
The look of your website will send the first message to your customer, showing to the client if your company is neat and clean or if your company is messy and dirty. Put yourself in their shoes if you were looking at a website of a cleaning company. You would expect the website to look clean and organized. A messy website will send a negative message to the customer. They will think, “if their website is messy like this, how will they even clean my house or office.” They will relate your website’s design and look to your cleaning service, even if they are not connected.
Social Media – Sea of customers
Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Snapchat, and LinkedIn are all social media tools used by millions of people daily. This may be a marketing tool that you are already using for your cleaning service. But are you using social media marketing effectively? For example, you could be posting on a random schedule and just about your cleaning service. Is there a goal you are trying to achieve with these posts?
To improve your social media, it’s essential to have a goal for all your post. Your goals could be to increase customer reach, generate leads, or redirect them to your website. Then with your goal set, set up a schedule to post around once or twice a week. The content of your post matters; you want to have information that your customer wants to see. Like, customer stories, cleaning tips, or charity events, these are information customers may want to read that will grab their attention. Social media have the lowest ROI and are free compared to other methods of marketing. When used effectively, it will help you gain new customers and maintain current customers for your cleaning service.
Email Marketing – Keep current customers
Many small businesses overlook email marketing and think that nobody reads their email anymore. However, this is not true. A great deal of communication is still done through emails today. Moreover, many people, especially businesses profession, have a habit of checking their email first thing in the morning or during the afternoon. This makes email marketing an excellent and low-cost way to maintain relationships with existing customers.
There is a correct way to doing email marketing that makes them effective. To do it correctly, you don’t want to spam emails. Think about all the spam emails you have gotten from a brand you know; you don’t want to be that company. Instead, you want to send an email periodically once a month or during the holiday season. Use it to remind your customer about your cleaning service and not to spam their mailbox. Use it to offer incentives for current customers to refer you to new customers as well. There is a lot of email marketing software that offers free subscriptions for users. For example, Mailchimp offers email marketing services for up to 2000 contacts.
Traditional marketing – Old and functional
The traditional form of media like pamphlets, posters, and newspapers are old. However, they are still a great way to gain new customers. They cost a bit more to use compared to digital marketing. People would read posters and pamphlets for information or read news people in the morning. It’s important to know where your customers are when using the more traditional form of marketing. If you target the older group, you may want to advertise in the local newspapers because many older generations tend to read the Sunday paper. Maybe you would like to put a poster up in an area where most of your customers are. Traditional marketing doesn’t have to cost much; you could print it out on your own and posted it on the community bulletin board.
Word of mouth marketing, aka WOMM, is ‘the’ strong form of marketing. This is because people tend to trust other people’s words more, rather than the businesses themselves. But how do you get people to advocate for your business? Are there tricks to get people talking about your business? Here are some ways.
Utilize your current network
Your current customers and employees are your business network and the best advocates for your cleaning service. So you want to keep your customers and your employees happy because a frustrated employee will criticize your business to other people. Similar to how customers will bad-mouth your company to others if they are unsatisfied. So it’s essential to keep your customers happy and your employees happy. Not to mention a happy employee is way more productive, but also more loyal to your company.
To get your customer and employees to recommend your cleaning service. You want to make them feel satisfied and happy about using your service first. Unhappy customers are more likely to talk negatively about your company than happy ones. Then you want to offer them an incentive for them to help you. Maybe a 25% off their next cleaning or a $50 credit for each new referral they give. The customer lifetime value or the money you will earn from a customer over their lifetime will always be higher than a $50 incentive. Not only will this small incentive make your current customers happy, but it will also help you gain a new customer.
Attend a local event
Look around in your community and attend some of the local events. Events like meetups, job fairs, farmer markets, and other events are all great and free ways to look for potential customers. Try going to an event where your targeted customer would go. For example, you may want to attend a job fair where the businesses are for an office cleaning service. If you do residential cleaning, a local farmer’s market would be a great place to look around. When you attend these events, try to learn more about the people and the businesses that attend the events.
Start conversations with them by purchasing their product or grab one of their pamphlets. Make small talks with them and start building that relationship with them; you don’t want to try advertising your service right at the beginning. Exchange contact information if possible, so you can connect with them later. If not, ask if they will attend other events so that you can connect with them again. They are more likely to trust you when you build that relationship and open up to your business. Then when the time comes to talk about your cleaning service with them. Even if they don’t need your cleaning service, they will be more likely to connect you with a friend or partner.
Understand your customer and market
Overall, there are many ways to gain new customers for your cleaning service through marketing. The first step to setting up your marketing strategy is to have a marketing plan. Understand who your customers are and their needs. With your customers identified, you can set goals for your marketing tools like social media, email, and print media to gain these customers. It’s essential to utilize your current network of customers, employees, and local events to advocate for your cleaning service. With these combined, you will be able to gain new customers in no time. Go out, plan your marketing and building your network, grow and market your cleaning service.
Check out our blogs for more resources to helping boost your cleaning business. Taskbird is a great tool that can make managing your cleaning team easier that organizes, schedules, and communicates with your cleaning team.