For most homeowners, plumbing services are considered an unsought product, meaning customers don’t typically think about buying it until they have a broken sink or clogged toilet. For plumbers, this means that marketing their business requires extra consideration since most consumers aren’t actively searching for their services. If you’re building a plumbing business, where your potential clients will all be local, should you be investing your time and money into digital marketing?
The answer—which holds for all home services companies—is that digital marketing is a critical investment. Maybe you’ve gotten your hands dirty building your business from the ground up—or you’ve spent years mastering traditional marketing techniques like direct mail and print advertising. In today’s digital age, potential clients must be able to vet your business online, read customer testimonials, and review your work.
If you’re looking to spend less time attracting new customers and be found when you’re needed, you’ll need to take a different approach. Enter content marketing: a simple, cost-effective digital marketing technique that can help you grow your business and reach new leads.
By increasing your search engine ranking and online visibility with content marketing, you’ll set your business up for success with increased job leads, word-of-mouth referrals, and new customers. From informative blog posts to engaging social media users, here’s everything you need to gain an edge over the competition with strategic content creation.
Why Is Content Marketing Important for Plumbers?
For plumbers, effective content marketing can make all the difference in online visibility. Prospective clients searching for professional services like plumbing typically use Google to research and hire a local service provider. Unfortunately, if your website isn’t on the front page of Google, your chances of being seen decrease significantly—only about 6% of search engine users click past to the second page, according to Forbes. Let’s face it: if potential leads don’t see your company first, you’ll lose business to local competitors.
Both search engines and prospective customers prefer useful, high-quality content, and posting engaging content on your website significantly increases the probability that your website will end up on the first page of Google’s search results. By linking to other helpful blog posts, social media accounts, and landing pages for your plumbing services, you can encourage further interaction between your business and potential customers.
Content marketing also helps boost your online visibility and credibility, which helps your business build a relationship with potential customers. Even if you’ve been serving your community for years, engaging content sets your business apart from the competitors so you’ll get noticed. Visitors to your website are more likely to hire your company after discovering an informative piece of content you published online—and adding a compelling call to action can promote even higher conversion rates.
By strategically incorporating keywords into your blog posts, “how-to” guides, and listicles, you’ll help ensure that your website ranks higher in relevant searches and captures the attention of potential customers. Meanwhile, sharing relevant content on social media drives organic traffic to your website while helping you reach leads you wouldn’t have connected with via print ads, TV commercials, or flyers.
Useful Content Converts Leads Into Clients
Content marketing is an essential step in growing your business, but how can you avoid wasting time and money when it comes to content creation? To maximize your ROI, you’ll need a website to establish your Google search engine rankings and get noticed by potential leads.
According to Pardot, 72% of consumers start their buying journey on Google by searching general terms to explore their options. Especially when it comes to home services, buyers are searching for educational materials to answer their questions.
To convert leads into clients, your website should offer answers to common plumbing-related questions. If you make a list of all of your past clients’ frequently asked questions and then write a blog post or record a video answering each question, you’ll be able to offer an endless stream of informative—and useful—content for prospective clients.
Think about it this way: once someone figures out why their basement flooded, they’ll tell their friend that they found out about sump pump repairs on your website, producing more word-of-mouth referrals. In addition, more people searching online are also finding your content, especially if it’s properly optimized. In turn, you’ll convert leads into more appointments, build a loyal base of customers, and spend less time searching for new leads.
Types of Content and How They Perform
Now that you know that useful content is key, how do you translate that into effective content creation? To keep potential customers engaged and interested in your content (which, in turn, keeps them coming back to your website), you’ll need to experiment with different types of content.
Regardless of the topic or format, all good content is relevant, shareable, and informative. From blog posts to instructional videos, every piece of content on your website should educate your visitors.
Some impactful, engaging types of content that attract readers include:
- Informational graphics — As one of the most popular types of content, infographics present a significant amount of information (such as statistics or data) in a visual format that is engaging and shareable. For plumbing businesses, infographics might show visitors the types of tools needed for plumbing repairs, key considerations when hiring a plumber, or the different services your business offers. If you’ve spent years in the industry, consider hiring a graphic designer to create an infographic about the history of your business to teach potential customers what you’re all about.
- Locally focused blog posts — Your business serves certain areas, so why not boost your local SEO with locally-focused content? With locally-focused posts, you can attract local consumers in need of plumbing services with minimal effort. To optimize your blog post, incorporate your city’s name into your blog post title and throughout the article, i.e., 5 Common Plumbing Issues in Denver.
- Instructional videos — Some plumbers avoid posting guides because they don’t want to forfeit leads to DIY hacks, but using “how-to” videos to your advantage can actually give you a significant edge over the competition. Videos can increase your conversions—and DIYers are going to attempt to fix their problems whether they find useful information from your website or a competitor’s. When you provide plumbing expertise, you earn trust from viewers. Then, when plumbing problems require the help of a professional, you’ll be there when they need you.
- Client testimonials — Client testimonials boost your company’s reputation. By highlighting your ability to fix common pain points and challenges your audience may experience, testimonials help foster strong relationships and build loyalty.
Effective content marketing not only educates potential clients on what plumbers do but what your business specifically offers. When the pipes start making noises or the sink won’t drain, the credibility you’ve built through content creation will put your business at the top of local consumers’ minds so you can be there when they need you. According to a HubSpot survey of 2,300 small businesses, those with active blogs experienced 126% more leads per month without a blog.
Remember: taking a different approach can help you step out in front of your competitors, even if it’s a more challenging road. Although content creation requires investing some time and money up front, a cohesive digital marketing strategy can make all the difference in the growth and success of your plumbing business, producing incredible results that maximize your ROI.
Even taking small steps—like posting content across multiple platforms—helps raise awareness of your business, putting your services in front of more potential leads. If you post content on your website first and follow with social media posts, you’re further driving organic traffic to your website, where prospective clients will have the opportunity to learn more about your business. Ultimately, posting and sharing various types of content helps your business earn trust and authority—which translates to new customers.
The Importance of Search Engine Optimization
If your website already houses blog posts, “how-to” videos, DIY plumbing tips, or landing pages for your plumbing services, you’re off to a good start. But if you want to soar in front of your clients in Google rankings, you’ll need to repurpose old content and optimize new content to stay relevant.
For instance, if you have a “how-to” video that’s over a year old, consider repurposing the content into a blog post on the same subject. Different people take in information in different ways—and reformatting your content helps increase your multimedia approach.
If your competitors only offer long-form blog posts on how to fix common plumbing problems, then posting an instructional “how-to” video on your website will provide an easily digestible, shareable piece of content for those in your community looking for simple solutions. In turn, offering various types of content will help your website land at the top of Google’s search results.
In addition to repurposing old content, posting new, unique content across multiple channels can help you grow your business by reaching as many potential leads as possible.
To start optimizing your content, be sure to incorporate the following components into your website’s blog posts, landing pages, and FAQ page:
- The cities you serve and their surrounding areas
- A list of the plumbing services you offer
- Engaging headlines with searchable terms (i.e., 5 Budget-Friendly Ways to Fix a Clogged Drain)
- Multimedia elements (e.g., a slideshow with descriptions of each image)
- High-resolution, optimized images for smartphones, tablets, and laptops
With SEO-optimized content, you’ll ensure that people searching for answers will be able to find them on your website. At the end of the day, your goal is to land at the top of Google’s search engine rankings, draw in leads with irresistible content, and encourage them to invest in your plumbing services.
Increasing Online Visibility With Social Media
The more ways you can reach potential leads, the better. According to Hootsuite, social media usage is continuing to expand, with an annual growth rate exceeding 13%. Currently, more than half of the world’s population uses social media—and developing an effective content marketing plan for your company’s social media channels can help you connect with potential clients you might not have otherwise.
Content marketing on social media not only provides wide-ranging SEO benefits but it’s also an affordable and effective way to generate leads compared to traditional advertising strategies, such as TV commercials and direct mail.
To get started, determine which social media platforms your customers use. If you’re new to social media, try starting on Facebook and expanding to other channels once you’ve mastered your Facebook content marketing strategy.
At the end of the day, direct your energy toward the channels with the most traffic instead of creating and maintaining accounts across every platform. For the best results, you’ll want to ensure that you can execute your strategy well on one platform before prioritizing others—or you’ll risk an ineffective, weak social media marketing campaign that leaves potential leads questioning your credibility.
The best social media platforms for plumbers include:
- Facebook — Facebook is ideal for reaching middle-aged leads with disposable income. Since Facebook users generally feel more comfortable with technology, they’re more likely to use social media to search for a local plumber. Facebook offers a unique opportunity to share local content, boost your local presence, and share various types of content.
- Instagram — Especially if you’re a newer business, Instagram is one of the best ways to showcase your work. Use the Stories feature to share ongoing projects with your followers and then upload the final results to transform your Instagram page into an impressive portfolio.
- Nextdoor — Nextdoor allows local plumbing companies to target specific neighborhoods and communities. Nextdoor involves paid advertising, so you’ll have to set aside some of your marketing budget. However, local deals and sponsorships help your business stay at the top of local consumers’ minds so you generate more leads.
- Twitter — To successfully execute your marketing strategy on Twitter, you’ll need to work within the character limit to get your message across. Follow the right accounts in your industry so you can share (and comment on) relevant content to your audience and boost your credibility.
- LinkedIn — Although LinkedIn is primarily known as a resume-sharing platform, it can be a valuable resource for B2B plumbers. LinkedIn users tend to be wealthier, oriented toward networking, and more likely to recommend trusted businesses.
How to Execute a Successful Content Marketing Strategy
For home services-based businesses, content marketing is critical to bringing in more customers, whether you create content yourself or outsource your business’ marketing needs. Usually, starting a blog is the first step for any content marketing strategy. Consumers not only tend to trust websites with blogs but blog posts also create the perfect opportunity to build your credibility, stand out from the competition, and draw in organic traffic.
By posting relevant, engaging content on a weekly basis, you’ll create fresh content for your blog that helps your website maintain its search engine rankings. Blog posts also encourage current and potential consumers to keep coming back to your blog week after week—as long as you’re consistently producing content that is relevant to them.
Similarly, the more active you are on social media, the more you’ll be able to attract potential leads. Regular posts on Facebook and Instagram, as well as local specials on Nextdoor, are key to boosting your online presence as a local business.
To stay on track, create a content calendar for your website content and social media posts. Search engines prioritize active websites that consistently post different types of content. Plus, a content calendar provides a valuable birds-eye view of the topics and formats you’ve already covered, which can help you avoid repetitive posts and stay engaged with viewers.
When creating content, keep in mind that your posts should clearly explain the plumbing services your business offers. As more plumbing services turn to content marketing for new leads, you’ll need to find creative ways to expand your business and distinguish your offerings from local competitors.
To set yourself apart, tell prospective customers why they should choose your company instead of the competition: How many years of experience does your company have? What special deals do you offer for new clients? What do your previous clients have to say about your services?
Drive Leads With Strategic Content Marketing
Once you expand your content marketing strategy, you’ll have access to countless new, quality leads in your area. For an unsought product like plumbing services, maximizing the shareability and visibility of your online content will help your business stay present in local consumers’ minds so you can be there when they need you.
Although you might think that digital marketing isn’t necessary for plumbers, an effective content marketing strategy is necessary to maximize your market space, gain an advantage over the competition, and—above all else—optimize your time, money, and resources when it comes to finding new leads. Ultimately, content creation is a complex process—and informative, engaging content is integral to forming the right strategy.