According to InternetWorldStats.com, Australia has an overall population of approximately 35,903,569 people with about 24,287,919 of them being Internet users. This means nearly 67.6% of Aussies are connected online. This figure tells you just why tradies need to be online. They’re losing out on a huge and ever increasing customer base if they choose not to have an online identity in the form a tradies website.
But having such websites is no guarantee that your online presence will deliver returns for your business. You need to empower it with a social media strategy to make sure your online brand is seen, heard and engaged with.
It’s important to remember that a large proportion of your prospective customers are active on the various social media platforms. You therefore need to connect with them through these channels to increase customer loyalty and gain competitive advantage.
So, let’s see how you can leverage social media for your tradies website:
- Review Websites:
Facebook is the most popular social network with over a billion users worldwide. This means you must put the massive branding potential of this social network to good use.
Setting up a business page on Facebook is pretty straightforward, is totally free and something you must do if you want to use this platform for business benefit. Once you have created a Facebook page, ask your customers to like your page and review your work. This will help you appear in the newsfeed of their friends and followers thus creating and spreading a positive word of mouth about your service in the local area.
Also use your Facebook page to improve your website’s reputation, by sharing links to some great content that’s posted on its blog (for this to happen, you need a blog, and must consistently publish useful articles on it). The idea is to ensure you are seen as a solutions provider. This reputation rubs off on your website, which ultimately can lead to increased business.
Tradies should also not miss the opportunity of using Facebook to share special offers with customers. For e.g. “Be thrifty. Save 15% when you schedule service for today.” This improves your chances of potential customers making a beeline for your website to check out your services.
You can use Twitter to promote your service to potential customers in your local area. Create a Twitter profile and ask your existing customers to follow you. This will help you start building a list of Twitter followers. You can make use of this follower list to reach out to potential customers. All you need to do is share interesting information with your followers, which you believe will help them in some form or another and they will take from there.
For e.g., if you tweet a link to a DIY service video on your site and your followers believe this video is worth sharing with their network, they will retweet the link. This way your brand by way of the video will go viral.
Tweet on a regular basis. Your core focus should be on giving expert tips/useful help related to your service, which ensures your followers not only keep following you, but also keep favoriting your tweets.
You should also use Twitter’s search functionality to find topics relevant to the trady service you are offering and the conversations taking place around it. Focus on topics that are being discussed by people living in and around your neighborhood and contribute to them.
Also make use of hashtags in your tweets so that more people can find you.
For example, say you’ve come up with the following tweet:
“Renovating your #kitchen? Install your dishwasher next to the sink. #Plumbing #Tip”
So, if somebody is searching for tips related to Plumbing or kitchen renovation, the person will come across this tweet, and clicking on #kitchen or #Plumbing or #Tip, will help them land up on your Twitter profile, where they can get more information about your site and the services it’s offering.
Pinterest is a visually driven social network. Users share visual content, which can represent their brand, products, services or their individual interests and preferences.
So how can tradies leverage Pinterest?
You can create a Pinterest business page and build boards that represent your business and share pictures about your services that can interest your customers. You can link every image to your site or a specific services page. As can be imagined, this will improve targeted website traffic. It also helps potential customers recognize your brand and the people behind the brand. This can enhance brand credibility.
One idea for Pinterest images is taking ‘before and after’ pictures. Take pictures before you start the job and also of the finished work; combine these images with compelling content that describes the picture.
By making sure your Pinterest followers are attracted to your pins, you improve your chances of them repinning these images to their boards, thus improving the virality of your brand.
YouTube is the 2nd largest search engine in the world. One of the most searched terms on YouTube is “How to”. This signifies that people are mostly using YouTube to learn how to solve a problem, how to do their jobs better, how to make something, etc.
For a trady there can be no better way of showing expertise in what they do, than through a YouTube video. For example if you are an electrician, videos like ‘how you saved a customer $XX in time or dollars’, ‘how and why you used material xyz instead of abc for safety’, etc. are a good idea.
Showcasing expertise on YouTube will persuade more potential customer to visit your site.
People are using social media to give their opinions and feedback about different products or services. Apart from giving reviews on the popular social platforms, customers are also using websites dedicated for reviewing tradies (Trade Critic, Rate My Tradie).
Remember, all reviews are not necessarily positive.
As a service provider you can keep an eye on reviews about your services and if there is a complaint, you can respond immediately to correct the mistake. This leads to better customer service, which in turn improves your reputation on the market. So sign up on such review websites to protect, manage and build your online reputation.
Social media platforms are a great way of promoting your tradies website, because every interaction that you have with existing and potential customers on social media can lead to your site. If you’re able to leverage the immense potential of social media, this also gives your business the competitive edge. On the other hand, if you don’t use social media, you will be losing out on a great opportunity for achieving business growth.