It doesn’t matter what city or town you operate in—the plumbing industry is super competitive. There are nearly 130,000 plumbing companies (and growing) across the US, making it hard to stand out. This is true even if your plumbing services are top-notch.
But successful companies don’t just rest on their quality service and reputation alone. They use plumbing advertising and marketing strategies to:
- get the word out about their services.
- attract new customers.
- strengthen relationships with existing clients.
You might have grand plans to dial up your marketing and increase profits at some point. But you’re a business owner with a company to run. Finding time to research marketing ideas and figure out what platforms to use to advertise your business isn’t easy.
The good news? You don’t have to spend hours learning how to advertise your plumbing business. We’ve put together a complete list of plumber marketing and advertising ideas that will help you create more profit.
We’ll cover the best platforms to advertise on, marketing ideas to drive growth, and actionable steps you can take today to get started.
Why Is Marketing Important for Your Plumbing Business?
Once you have a steady flow of customers lining up for your plumbing services, your revenues will go up. So how can you build this ideal pipeline? You’ll need to use both plumber marketing ideas and advertising.
Marketing refers to everything you do to connect customers with your plumbing company’s services. Marketing:
- builds brand awareness.
- generates leads.
- engages customers.
- maintains your reputation.
- compels potential customers at every stage of the buyer’s journey to interact with your business rather than competitors.
Advertising is one part of that overall marketing process. While it’s just a slice of the marketing pie, it’s a significant slice.
Digital ads can increase brand awareness by 80%. This will keep your brand top of mind when the water heater stops working or the faucet starts to leak. Pay-per-click (PPC) ads can also double the number of website visitors that organic search brings in.
The bottom line is plumbing ads can help you reach your marketing goals quickly. This enables you to build traction with your target audience and boost profits in the short term.
But you need to keep that momentum going. This is where a complete marketing strategy comes in. Such a strategy turns brand awareness and website traffic into leads and paying customers.
Research shows that content marketing is three times as effective as advertising at generating leads. At the same time, it costs 62% less. You also need marketing to nurture leads and build long-term customer relationships.
Ultimately, with a strong digital marketing strategy and efficient use of advertising ideas, your plumbing business will experience a sustainable increase in engagement and sales. This is what you need to make your profits soar.
What Is the Best Platform to Advertise a Plumbing Business?
Before pouring money into ads, you must decide which platforms will give you the most bang for your buck. If you buy ads everywhere you can think of, you could blow through your marketing budget without generating a high return on your investment.
Even worse, if you advertise on platforms your target audience isn’t exposed to, you could be throwing your ad spend down the toilet.
When choosing where to advertise, consider how to get the most visibility for your plumbing company. Also, where can you reach people likely interested in using your services?
Here are some of the most effective plumbing advertising platforms you can use:
Today, around 72% of the public uses social media. Sites like Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, and other social media platforms are good options for getting your ads in front of your potential customers’ eyes.
Even better, social media platforms let businesses run targeted ad campaigns. You can put social ads in front of specific audiences, making your ads more effective. Facebook, for example, enables you to target location, age, gender, education level, and relationship status.
You can also post engaging video ads to promote your plumbing company on social media sites like YouTube. Check out these funny plumbing ads by A+ Plumbing and Roto-Rooter for some inspiration. They’re creative and memorable, which can be just what you need to connect with your target audience.
RELATED ARTICLE: Social Media Marketing for Plumbers
Another can’t-miss platform for digital advertising is Google. Google has two types of ads for local businesses: Local Service Ads and Search ads.
As a local business owner, you’ll definitely want to consider Google’s Local Service Ads. These ads appear above organic search results. This puts your brand front and center when potential customers look online for plumbing services in your area. Web searchers will see your Google rating, service hours, city, and a link to your website. You pay per lead for Local Service Ads on Google.
Google Search ads are another option. In this case, your ad appears at the top of the search results for the keywords you’re targeting. Search ads are pay-per-click (PPC) ads, which means you pay when someone clicks on the ad.
It is the digital age, but that doesn’t mean all your advertising needs to be online. People still do resonate with physical mediums like direct mailers.
With this type of ad, you mail an advertisement to everyone in a target location. This can be expensive, so you want to use this plumbing advertising idea at the right time.
For example, you may want to reach potential customers in a neighborhood you’re expanding to. Or you want to appeal to people who’ve recently moved to the area. You can send out a special promotional mailer with a discount for your services. This can be a great way to get the phone ringing.
While newspaper readership has been on the decline since the mid-2000s, there are still worthwhile advertising opportunities if you go local. Local newspapers, city papers, and neighborhood papers are great places to post ads about your plumbing services.
If you have the budget, you can pay for television time on your local television stations. You’ll have to invest in the video itself—it can cost anywhere from $1,000 to $10,000 to create a professional-looking 30-second commercial. You’ll also pay for airtime. Local TV commercials cost about $5 to $10 per 1,000 views.
While expensive, airtime can help to build awareness about your plumbing company. And if you’re operating in a competitive location, this type of big-impact advertising can give your business an edge.
RELATED ARTICLE: How to Effectively Manage Your Plumbing Company
The Best Platforms for New, Growing, and Established Plumbing Companies
All of these advertising platforms have pros and cons. Some are highly targeted but may not leave a big impression on your audience. Others are out of reach for companies without a large ad budget.
- For a new plumbing company, go for the more affordable advertising platforms like Google ads and social media advertising. There, you can build momentum without a large budget. But you’ll still build brand awareness and generate leads.
- If you’re a growing company with regular business, go for the options to help drive more sales. Send out direct mailers and ensure your business is easy to find online with Google ads.
- You can take a more aggressive approach if you are a larger company with a high budget. This approach will help maintain your market share and bring in new customers. Consider a combination of digital advertising or social media ads, as well as local print or TV ads. If you invest in a TV commercial, you can pay for airtime on local stations and YouTube to get the most out of your investment.
Overall, be sure to track the results of your ad campaign. Compare the money spent with the increase in business to determine the return on your investment (ROI).
You also want to analyze your results to make smart decisions about how to spend your marketing dollars in the future. If something works, use it. If something doesn’t, don’t waste your time. There are plenty of other advertising and marketing ideas you can use to grow your business.
10 Plumbing Marketing Ideas to Grow Your Business
Now you have a good idea of what your options are for advertising. Let’s look at what else you can do to promote your plumbing services, attract new customers, nurture existing customers, and grow your business. Here are 10 marketing ideas any plumbing business owner can implement.
1. Create a Google Business Profile
Google Business Profile, formerly known as Google My Business, is a powerful marketing tool for local businesses. And it’s free.
To get started, head over to Google’s page to set up a profile. You can complete the basics in a few minutes. After your profile is set up, Google will list your business in Google Search and Maps as a local plumbing company.
This means that when someone searches on Google for plumbing repair, installation, or other services in your city or town, your company will appear on Google’s list of Businesses. You’ll see these below the local services ads and above organic results.
When people click on your Business Profile, they can see your address, service updates, reviews, hours of operation, and more. Additionally, you can link to your website so people can click on your plumbing website and make an appointment.
There’s even a call button on the profile that mobile users can use to contact your business on the spot. Now that’s efficient marketing.
98% of consumers use the internet to find information about local businesses. So it’s definitely worth taking the time to set up your Business Profile.
2. Optimize Your Website for Search Results
Search engine optimization (SEO) makes it easier for people searching for help with a leaky faucet, frozen pipes, or a broken water heater to find your website. In fact, without SEO, your website might be buried in the search results pages. And this makes it almost impossible for people to find your site organically.
So, how does SEO work?
There are actually hundreds of ranking factors you can address to optimize your site. Factors like how quickly your website loads to a good user experience make your website more relevant and useful to web searchers. By extension, this increases your company’s chances of ranking higher in search results.
To get started with search engine optimization, include keywords in your website content. Use the search terms people might use to search for your services in the text and headings in a natural way.
There’s certainly more to search engine optimization than keywords. But it’s an excellent place to start to help your website rank.
3. Use Local SEO
You can use local SEO to increase local search traffic. Include local terms in your content to help your pages show up in local search results. For example, localize your headings on your home page and service pages like this: “Plumbing Repair in [Your Town].”
Another local marketing idea is to create location pages. If you operate in multiple cities or counties, create a unique plumbing services page for all of the locations you service. That will make finding your business online even easier for people using specific local search terms.
4. Strengthen Customer Relationships with Email Marketing
Email marketing has one of the highest returns on investment. The average expected ROI is $40 for every $1 spent!
As part of your digital marketing strategy, this channel can help you connect with your existing customers and nurture leads. And with email automation tools, you won’t have to spend a lot of time managing your email campaigns.
The key to email marketing is to not be overly promotional. You should offer helpful content mixed with promotional offers. This will keep people interested without making your customers feel like you’re spamming them.
For example, you might offer a discount on their next plumbing service if a website visitor signs up for your email list. Then, you can send out useful email content, such as tips for preventing frozen pipes in the winter and signs you might need to replace your pipes.
Sprinkle offers for free service calls, clogged drain specials, repair discounts, or discounts for referrals into the mix.
At the end of the day, you want to make your email content worthwhile to keep your open rates up and generate more sales. Email is a powerful way to improve retention rates for your plumbing customers.
5. Build Trust on Your Website
When people land on your website to learn about your services, what makes them choose to schedule an appointment with your business rather than a competitor?
There are a lot of factors, such as accessibility—is it easy for web visitors to call you or schedule an appointment online? How professional your website design is makes a difference too—94% of users will leave a website because of poor design.
But the biggest mover is trust. Research by Gartner found that 81% of customers refuse to do business with a brand they don’t trust. People want to know that your business genuinely cares about the services you provide and is dependable.
How can you validate that on your website? There are a few simple pieces of information you can add to your website that signal to customers your business is trustworthy:
- Reviews from past clients who are happy with your services
- Before and after pictures of services
- Pictures of your team
- Professional certifications
- Years of experience
- Service guarantees
By simply adding a few trust elements to your website, you can increase your website conversions—that is, the number of people who visit your website that go on to contact you or book an appointment.
6. Retarget Website Visitors to Increase Sales
When people visit your website but don’t take any action, all is not lost. You can bring them back with retargeting ads.
Retargeting campaigns display ads to internet users who visited your website in the past. Retargeting is a way to gently remind them your business exists. Hopefully, this motivates them to reach out and contact your business if they still need plumbing services.
The good news is retargeting is highly effective. On average, a retargeting campaign is 10 times more impactful than regular display ads.
7. Set Up a Facebook Business Page to Connect with Local Customers
There are more than 240 million Facebook users in America. By 2027, that number is expected to reach over 250 million. As a local business, you should have a Facebook Business Page as part of your social media marketing strategy to connect with Facebook users.
With a Business Page, you can share pictures, real-time updates about your business, and promotions. It’s also another place to list essential info a potential customer would need to know, such as your address, phone number, and service hours.
Overall, you can think of a Facebook Page for your plumbing company as an additional storefront and a way to communicate directly with your local customers.
8. Develop a Customer Referral Program
Businesses with referral programs report 71% higher conversion rates. That’s because people trust recommendations from their peers and colleagues far more than advertisements.
Take advantage of this and create a referral program to help promote your plumbing company. It can be something simple, such as 20% off any repair or installation service if you refer a friend or family member.
This can be enough of a nudge to motivate your existing customers to help you get the word out about your high-quality plumbing services.
9. Provide Helpful Blog Posts, Videos, and Other Content on Your Website
One of the challenges plumbing companies have is standing out in a crowded market. Unless you’re the only plumber in the area, you’re going to have to convince your target market to call you when their pipes burst, or they need a plumber to help with a bathroom or kitchen renovation.
Content marketing is one way you can stand head and shoulders above your competitors. With content, you’re giving your audience helpful information. This can include:
- how-to articles.
- instructional videos.
- DIY plumbing tips.
This content, in turn, helps to establish your business as an authority in your area and keeps your brand top of mind.
It can also help with SEO. When you post relevant, useful, and engaging content on your website, you’re signaling to search engines that your site is a good source of information. In turn, this can boost your rankings.
Using blog posts and other content can also help your business rank for more keywords. This will increase your web traffic and help your business generate more leads.
10. Ask for Reviews
One of the easiest ways to help your plumbing business grow and increase profits is to simply ask for reviews.
How many times has your business come in and saved the day for one of your customers, whether it was a clogged toilet or frozen pipes? Or maybe you have a lot of happy clients with flawlessly functioning kitchen and bathroom plumbing.
Either way, there are probably dozens, if not hundreds, of people who would have been happy to write an online review for your business if you asked them to.
Ask for a review after service, either at the end of a service call or with a follow-up email or text message. Everyone won’t act, but imagine if just 10% of your customers took the time to review your business. You could generate a considerable number of reviews online, increase your trust factor, and bring in even more business.
RELATED ARTICLE: How to Get More Reviews for Your Plumbing Business
Quick Ideas to Try Right Now for Plumber Marketing
Now that you have plenty of marketing ideas to work with, you can sit down and start developing a plan for all your advertising and digital marketing. Decide on a budget, determine what techniques to use right now with the resources you have, and set your business on a path to growth.
But what if you are ready to roll your sleeves up and get things going now? Fortunately, there are a few things you can do right now to help market your plumbing business. All you need is about five to ten minutes. And you won’t have to spend a dime for any of them.
Create a Listing in Local Directories
As a local service-based business, you want your company to show up on all the main local listing services. In addition to Google, here are three worth using:
- Manage your listing on Yelp to ensure your business information is up-to-date and respond to reviews.
- Create an Angi profile to list your local services, showcase your work, and build credibility with customer reviews.
- Like Google, Bing has a business profile listing service for local businesses: Bing Places. You can claim your listing for free and then personalize it to make it informative and engaging. Once done, you will have created one more channel that will bring in new customers for your business and help you increase profits!
Respond to Online Reviews
Over half of customers expect businesses to respond to reviews. Responding to reviews shows you care about what your customers think and gives you a chance to resolve customer service issues.
And you can write a few personal messages, express your gratitude, and help to manage your online reputation in just a few minutes a week.
Spruce up Your Google Business Profile
If you’ve already set up your Google Business Profile, you can take a few minutes to make it more engaging.
Add a short FAQ (frequently asked questions) section to answer common questions potential customers might have about your business. You can also post high-quality images of your business, past work, or your employees to show off your professionalism.
Even these small steps can help in a big way. So jump in today, get the word out there about your amazing plumbing services, and watch your profits grow!
FROM ONE OF OUR PARTNERS: Plumbing Marketing Ideas: How to Get More Customers
About the Author
Jim is the Vice President of Content & Training of Service Fusion. He has over 42 years of experience in the HVAC and electrical industries, and regularly speaks at industry events nationwide.