by Joe Polish, founder
Piranha Marketing Part 1 of 2…Here is Part 2
Carpet cleaners could dramatically increase their number of new customers and referrals if they would avoid these costly marketing mistakes. Here, in the first of a two part article are nine mistakes to avoid.
Mistake 1: Advertising to the wrong market. If you advertise low price, you’ll attract people who want low price. And the problem with price shoppers is that they’re never loyal to you. They’re loyal only to the dollar. As soon as your competitor offers a lower price than you ask, these price shoppers go to your competitor and you’ve lost a customer. If you want to attract low price shoppers, then, by all means advertise low price. But if you want to attract people who are willing to pay for the service they receive, don’t advertise price. Advertise value.
Mistake 2: Advertising percentage off rather than dollars off. Carpet cleaners often advertise a special 20% discount for new customers. Yet many prospects don’t know the carpet cleaners’ regular prices so they can’t tell you how much money they’ll save. Instead, I suggest you advertise in dollars, such as Carpet cleaning just $59. You save $30 off our regular price!
Mistake 3: Failing to advertise your unique selling proposition (USP). The purpose of marketing is to tell your prospective customers how you’re unique. Your USP is the one thing that sets you apart form your competitors. Start by identifying what you do that’s different from everyone else. For example, your USP might be exceptional customer service, the lowest price for the most effective cleaning equipment. Then feature your unique selling proposition in the headline of your ads.
Mistake 4: Failing to point out how you’re different. People hire you because they think you’re different from the other carpet cleaners. So it’s your job to point out to prospective clients how you’re different. In your ads if you say. Two rooms for $29. Licensed, bonded, insured, you’re saying the same thing as every other carpet cleaner. Instead, tell your prospects why customers choose you instead of your competitors. Identify unusual services you perform, such as removing pet odour. Reassure your prospects that you have trained, certified technicians.
Mistake 5: Failing to overcome phone call fear. Consumers are tired of selling sales pressure. In fact, many consumers hate pressure so much that they don’t call because they’re afraid you might try to pressure them into making a decision. The hesitation that keeps them form calling is call phone call fear. It’s the fear of how they think you might treat them over the telephone. To overcome phone call fear, reassure callers that you don’t use sales pressure. Offer free information that you’ll send to anyone who calls. Offer a free consumer awareness message on voice mail to help educate consumers about carpet cleaning. This allows prospects to get information in a non-threatening way, and it allows you to establish a high level of credibility.
Mistake 6: Using dishonest or misleading advertising. This seems obvious but many carpet cleaners continue to use misleading advertising to attract calls from prospects. When you mislead customers, you lower yourself to the same level as bait-and-switch con artists. Over the long term, you won’t benefit because once customers discover they’ve been misled, they’ll never do business with you again. You gain nothing by misleading customers. In marketing, a straightforward, honest approach is the only method that works.
Mistake 7: Failing to explain how your prospect benefits. Your prospective customers want your service for only one reason: What it will do for me? Don’t concentrate on the features of your service; instead, identify each feature and then explain how that feature benefits your prospect in terms of what he needs, wants and feels.
Mistake 8: Failing to promote benefits other than appearance. No question about it, most homeowners want a clean carpet. But they want other things, too. A healthy carpet free from toxic chemicals; a home free from embarrassing pet odours; and a clean carpet that will wear longer than a dirty carpet. Appearance is only one reason homeowners want their carpets cleaned. Make sure you promote other benefits as well.
Mistake 9: Failing to stay in touch with your customer base. Customers are a source of income of your current business and future referrals. The moment they feel you don’t care about their business, they’ll go somewhere else. I urge you to stay in touch with customers by publishing a regular newsletter that provides them with practical, helpful information.
*Joe Polish specializes in teaching carpet cleaners in the United States how to get tons of new customers. For a FREE report call Joe’s free 24 hour recorded message at 1-602-235-2454.