For most, a relationship with a company is all about trust. If your marketing is solely focused on exposure, returns may not be what you hope for. Establishing your brand as a positive force in the community can build subconscious trust with potential clients, who will then turn to you when they need your services.
1. Get in the Ring - One of the best ways to get involved is, of course, charity. By wearing company T-shirts and going to events as a team, you will create both exposure and trust. One business owner from New York participated in a charity boxing match, filming all of his training sessions and posting them to social media and the company website.
2. Lead the Way - If there are no existing charity events you’re particularly passionate about, host your own. Curtis Lumber in New York hosts a wide range of events, including a PetAPalooza pet adoption day, a car and truck show with Jeep Playground, photos with Santa, and a blood drive. Events like these enthuse the community, make your firm a positive influence, and show clients you’re concerned with more than profits. Be creative—you and your team will work a lot better if you host an event that excites you.
3. Back to School - A great way to connect with a community is hosting informational seminars. David Mikels, president of The Energy Pros in Louisville, Ky., hosts two-hour seminars four times a month for the public. These should not be sales pitches; rather, they are an opportunity to help inform the public, network, and bill your company as an expert. Invite neighbors in an area where you are working to these events.
4. Explain Yourself - Remodeling can be a noisy, disruptive business. If you’re working on an especially cumbersome remodel, go door to door explaining exactly what is going on and how long you expect to be working. Be honest; no one benefits from you trying to sugarcoat the truth to seem less intrusive. By establishing this truthful relationship with neighbors, you will have earned the trust and respect of potential clients.
5. Backstage Tours - Meadowlarks Builders in Ann Arbor, Mich., provides “Behind the Drywall” tours, showcasing remodels mid-construction. These events can be done with neighbors, or any other interested parties. It is a great way to show prospective clients the exact processes that will happen in their homes.
6. Order Up - For kitchen remodels, consider ‘breaking in’ the new kitchen for your customers. David Sturm, owner of Attention to Detail Home Remodeling in Atlanta, is a former chef, and cooks for his clients after every kitchen remodel. If you don’t have any culinary experience, hiring out a chef will do the trick.
7. Bring Back ‘Social’ Marketing - The owners of Morey Remodeling in Signal Hill, Calif., changed the way they approached marketing. They maintained email marketing services, but focused more on what they call “organic” marketing. President Ben Morey now inquires about clients’ hobbies, travels, and involvement with charities and community events, with the intention of participating in those events as well. By focusing on relationships with clients, you reduce the need to rely on web traffic. Be sure to meet clients outside of their home, follow up with phone calls, and regularly review community calendars.
8. Play Ball - An easy way to get involved is sponsoring a local little league team. It’s a simple act that can go a long way with building your reputation in the community.