Recently in one of the HVAC groups – a contractor asked:
“How do HVAC companies that are just starting out, get customers”
And someone responded –
“That’s the Million dollar question that anyone that wants to go into business needs to figure out. If you can’t figure out how to get customers you shouldn’t go into business.”
Damn – ok.
Well, we’ll just go home then.
No – several other folks chimed in with real actionable strategy they’ve used to grow their HVAC company, and we were blown away by some of them.
1. Leveraging Personal Referrals and Networking
Quote by Michael Nowotniak
“I went out on my own in June 2024, mainly doing residential service installation. The majority of my work has come from: 1. Person to person referrals. […] 2. Get some branding on your vehicle. […] 3. I use my personal Facebook account and get into as many of the neighborhood groups, and offer my services or DM people when they are looking for an HVAC contractor.”
- Build a Referral Network: Encourage satisfied customers to refer your services to others. Offer incentives for referrals that lead to new business.
- Vehicle Branding: Invest in eye-catching branding for your service vehicles. This acts as a mobile billboard, increasing brand visibility.
- Engage on Social Media: Actively participate in local community groups on Facebook. Offer advice, share your services, and directly message potential clients.
- Continual Learning: Listen to podcasts like ‘HVAC Success Secrets: Revealed’ and ‘Service Business Mastery’ for industry insights and inspiration.
2. Joining Exclusive Leads Groups
Quote by Jim Hinshaw
“Join a leads group, such as BNI. Go in with the idea you will help the other members improve their biz, and they will help build yours.”
- Network in Leads Groups: Join groups like BNI where only one member per industry is allowed. Collaborate and exchange leads with non-competing businesses.
- Focus on Mutual Benefit: Approach these groups with a mindset of helping others. This often leads to reciprocal support for your own business.
3. Understanding Customer Purchase Behavior
Quote by Anthony Mound
“Think about how you purchase and how would you wanna get sold. If you can break that down you can make it easy for future customers to buy.”
- Customer Mindset Analysis: Reflect on your own purchasing habits and preferences. Apply these insights to make your sales process more customer-friendly.
- Simplify the Buying Process: Ensure that your services are easy to understand and purchase. Clear pricing, straightforward service options, and easy scheduling are key.
4. Aggressive Marketing and Networking
Quote by Jonathan Eck
“Slam FB with your business, join contractor groups in your local area and do your advertising there. Run a FB ad, walk into local property management companies and hand out your card and flyer about what you offer. Cold emails. Cold calls. Gotta hustle.”
- Active Social Media Marketing: Regularly post on Facebook, especially in local groups. Consider paid ads for wider reach.
- Direct Outreach: Visit local businesses, especially property management companies, to offer your services. Bring business cards and flyers.
- Cold Outreach: Send cold emails and make cold calls to potential clients. Persistence is key.
5. Excelling in Service and Online Reviews
Quote by Heather Cooper
“Facebook ads work great for us, mom groups are a heavy hitter, and other local groups where people are looking for contractors are great. Do good work, show up and do what you say you will every single time and your reputation will go far. Also make sure you’re getting Google and Facebook reviews”
- Targeted Facebook Advertising: Focus on groups like local mom groups where your target market is active.
- Consistent Quality Service: Always deliver on your promises. High-quality work leads to a strong reputation.
- Encourage Online Reviews: Ask satisfied customers to leave reviews on Google and Facebook. Positive online reviews can significantly boost business.
“How do HVAC Companies Get Customers” According to top software companies in the HVAC Industry:
From Jobber’s Blog:
- Improve Online Listings: Enhance your presence on platforms like Google Business, Bing Places, and Yelp for Business. These listings can directly lead to more customer interactions and are essential for local search visibility.
- Google Advertising: Utilize Google Search ads and Local Services Ads. These pay-per-click ads appear at the top of Google results, capturing attention when people search for HVAC-related keywords.
- Search Engine Optimization (SEO): Optimize your website to appear organically in Google search results. Include region-specific keywords in your website content and ensure your site design is simple and mobile-friendly.
- Collect Positive Customer Reviews: Encourage satisfied customers to leave positive reviews on your website and social media profiles. Responding to reviews shows attentiveness and enhances customer trust.
- Utilize Customer Referrals: Establish a customer referral program to incentivize your existing customers to refer your services to others.
- Social Media Marketing: Create an active social media profile to showcase your work, give advice, and share before-and-after images of HVAC installs.
- Email Marketing: Target specific groups of customers with email campaigns that provide valuable information and occasional sales pitches.
- Use QR Codes: Incorporate QR codes in your marketing materials to direct potential customers to your website for easy service booking.
- Lead Gen Platforms: Utilize platforms like Home Advisor, Yelp, and Thumbtack for lead generation. These platforms can provide a good return on investment, especially if used judiciously.
- Boost Online Presence: Enhance your digital footprint by becoming an online resource. Incorporate a blog section on your website to provide valuable information and establish your expertise.
- Social Media Presence: Build your social media platforms to humanize your company and build trust. Include links to your profiles in appointment emails and share content that showcases your team and values.
- SEO Strategy: Focus on creating specific service pages on your website and partner with local businesses for backlinks to improve your local search rankings.
- Run Paid Advertisements: Utilize negative keywords in your pay-per-click (PPC) advertising to optimize your ad spend on Google.
- Online Review Portfolio: Actively manage online reviews on platforms like Google, Facebook, and Yelp to build trust and credibility with potential customers.
- Referral Incentivization: Offer discounted services to clients who refer new customers to your business.
- Networking: Leverage industry meetups, cold contacting, and virtual events to expand your commercial HVAC services network.
- Google Search Visibility: Appear prominently in Google searches through paid online advertising and optimizing your online content with popular keywords.
- Optimize Your Website: Ensure your website is professional, easy to navigate, and SEO-optimized to attract potential customers who find you online.
- Targeted Email Marketing: Regularly send emails to your customer list promoting your services and reminding them of necessary maintenance or checkups.
- Manage Online Reviews: Keep a strong portfolio of positive online reviews as most customers rely on these reviews before choosing a service.
- Automation with HVAC Software: Utilize HVAC software and mobile apps to streamline operations and improve the customer service experience.
- HVAC Lead Generation Companies: Connect with referral programs like Google Local Services, Angie’s List, and stay active on community platforms like Nextdoor.com and Alignable.com for local referrals.
Don’t be afraid to ‘extrovert yourself out in the community’
Relationships and community are at the core of every good marketing strategy.
Three under-rated, things that don’t require a ton of money.
- To be involved.
- To care.
- To be approachable, humble and friendly.
Do all of the things above, and in ever-increasing quantities, and ever-increasing quality.
But don’t forget what got you here, to care about other human beings and how to make them comfortable. That, at the core of it all – is what attracts new customers.