Marketing your cleaning company
Your hunger to be not only self-employed, but also to be the employer of others has led you to this. Any day now, your phone will be ringing off the hook with clients.
Luckily for you, you have a hungry crew ready to get to work. The best equipment you could find is at the ready. Supplies are stacked to the ceiling.
It’s only a matter of time before your cleaning company becomes a household name in your city, state, or even nationwide. The only thing that’s missing now are the customers.
Allow me to bestow some marketing tips will have your telephone asking for vacation time.
Find Out Who Your Target Market Is
If you plan on marketing your cleaning company, you have to know where to aim your sights.
Are you a commercial/industrial or residential service? If you are going after the commercial/industrial market, consider the decision makers you would have to contact to pitch your promotions to. If you are a residential cleaner, find out where you can speak to the bulk of your potential clients about your services.
I would definitely suggest doing some market research. In particular, you want to find potential competition in your geographical area, and how much they quote their customers. Determine what services your competitors offer. Use this information to develop your promotions. You need promotions starting out. One thing that customers within the residential and commercial/industrial target market share is a fear of investing in something new. Make them feel like they are getting more than they are giving.
Be a specialist
Most of you reading this article will be operating in an area with tons of competition. I hate to break it to you. Fortunately, there are ways to stand out from the competition other than adding more value to your services. Be a specialist. Find out if your competition is neglecting certain needs in your target market, then develop your business and advertising around that specialty. Your cleaning company can specialize in graffiti removal, or animal waste pickup. Some companies in my city make darn good money cleaning windows on high-rises. One business that is booming currently is home and business “clean-outs”, which is similar to a moving company, except the company disposes of the things moved move at a dump site. You can also get involved in disaster remediation services, and *GASP* crime scene cleanup.
Consider your advertising platforms
Everyone is online nowadays. Including your potential clients. Having a website you can corral interested consumers to is a no brainer. If you’re really tech savvy, you can have a mailing list that potential clients can join on the website. Emailing your opt-in mailing list keeps you relevant, and is a free means of advertising. Now, do you want a tactic to embarrass your competition? Make sure your opt-in list collects mobile numbers. Use an email to SMS (text) service to text seasonal or monthly promotions directly to your next client’s cell phone. The Web can be just as effective for marketing to commercial/industrial clients. Make sure that your Web address is in all of your advertising. Front and center.
I can go on and on about places to advertise. Consider these other platforms:
- Billboards and bus shelters
- Auto (car) vinyl wraps
- Social media
- Coupon publications (ie. Penny Saver)
- Screen printed shirts
- Radio and TV
Mark(et) your territory
This strategy falls in line with branding. Unfortunately, this strategy is difficult to pull off if you focus solely on residential cleaning. As the owner of a commercial/industrial cleaning company, you should always be broadcasting to the world that you run your job sites. “Sure. And how should I go about doing that?”
Make sure almost all of your equipment on the job-site has your name on it.
You’ve seen those signs that extend across the threshold of the doorway to bathrooms when they are closed for cleaning? Does it have your company name and website on it? It should. Wet floor signs? Cones? Mop buckets and trash cans? Even your employees’ uniforms should have some trace of your brand, be it a color scheme or your name and website.
Request permission from the client to place ads or literature in the lobby or around bathrooms that let’s people know that you exist and you are ready to serve.
Have a gimmick
I know, I know. No one wants to look gimmicky. However, do consider the big companies that operate with a gimmick. Think Tom’s shoes. Some people will call it a cause. I’m a business man. I call it a gimmick. And let me tell you, people will remember your gimmick faster than they remember your company’s name.
How can a Gimmick benefit your cleaning company?
Be environmentally conscious. Only use products that won’t harm the environment. When marketing your cleaning company, make sure the public knows your supplies are made with recycled materials, including your toilet paper and paper towels. Operate almost 100% on a computer to reduce the use of paper on an administrative level. Hey, even your contracts can be digitized. Use tablets when “papers” need to be signed.
Once you find a gimmick that hasn’t been done to death, you have one more task to complete…. TELL PEOPLE!!!