49 Home Remodeling Contractor Marketing Ideas
As you know, remodeling contractors need some form of marketing to grow brand awareness and bring in leads. You may prefer a small and simple to manage marketing plan or a more intentional strategy that keeps your pipeline full.
Regardless, here are 49 solid marketing ideas!
49 Home Remodeling Contractor
1. Standout Brand Image
Your brand image is how people see and think of you. A professional brand attracts customers and helps clients feel confident referring you to their friends and family. This includes everything from a high-quality logo to nice looking images etc.
Your brand needs to be consistent across all marketing mediums. To help our clients, we maintain a brand standards file; this includes their approved logos, colors, fonts, and any other elements. It’s easy to set-up and makes life easy when you need to provide info to a clothing company, graphic designer, or local partner.
Creating a professional brand or updating an existing one is much easier than you can imagine! Consider an upgrade if your logo or other elements are starting to feel dated. We always suggest timeless brand elements, that way they won’t go out of style in a few years.
2. Responsive Website
A quality website is a must in today’s market! We like to think of your site as your virtual storefront. All other marketing you do drives potential customers back to your website.
The two website platforms we like the best are Wordpress and Squarespace. Once the site is built, you can then manage content and photos yourself if you choose.
Invest in a professional looking, yet functional, site that has room to grow with your business. However, it shouldn’t break the bank! To keep expenses down, find a small company or freelancer to work with. (A big agency usually means a big price tag.)
The key pages all remodeling contractor websites should have: Responsive homepage, about page, services or process page, portfolio, and contact page.
3. Consistent Website Content
Consistent content is great for SEO (i.e., search engine optimization), which is how people find you on the web. The best way to improve your SEO rankings is through regular blogs. We’d suggest weekly, bi-weekly or monthly quality blog posts.
Search engines also reward fresh photos with titles.
4. Completed Project Photos
This industry is visual; excellent professional photos are a necessity! If you or someone you know takes nice photos, then great. If not, hire someone.
We suggest using a company or freelancer for a couple hundred dollars.
These photos should be on your website, blog (write a story about the project), in marketing materials, and of course, featured on your social media.
5. Take Before and After Photos
Who doesn’t love a design transformation? Showcasing before and after photos is a great way to help potential customers visualize how a project (maybe one like theirs) progresses from start to finish!
6. Client Stories
The perfect marketing mix is a happy client and professional photos. We suggest creating client stories for your blog and then sharing them in social media and e-newsletters.
Ask customers to share information about their remodel or provide details yourself – a mix of both perspectives is best!
Any professional photos you invest in should be featured with a new client story. Remember: potential clients like reading stories; it helps them get to know your process.
Your blog is the best way to keep your website content current (good for SEO!), share what’s going on with your business, and demonstrate industry authority. We recommend blogging regularly. Set a calendar for once a week, bi-weekly, or monthly posts.
We like thinking of a quarter’s worth of blog ideas for clients and then save them in a calendar; then everyone knows what’s coming. As time sensitive things pop up, we adjust plans as needed. Another idea is to create a different series of blogs, such as project features, design trends, Q&A’s, etc.
Once you are done writing a blog, it’s time to share it. Get the most bang for your marketing buck by sharing blogs on social media platforms and e-newsletters. Here’s a blog we wrote on how to think of ideas: 8 Blog Writing Ideas.
8. Host an Event
Invite clients to an event at your office or help them explore your latest finished project or remodel.
Seeing potential clients or past clients face-to-face is incredibly beneficial. They get to like, know, and trust you - you get to foster personal connections.
If people like you, they’ll often refer to you to their family and friends.
Keep it local if possible – you want people to find you!
Sponsor community teams or the homecoming dance, anything your clients’ kids participate in. Sponsor local family events, for example, walks, 10K’s, festivals, etc.
Help at events with your team – make it a group activity. Volunteering provides face-to-face interaction with all sorts of people.
Choose 3-4 volunteer events per year, things that are personal to your team, community or clients.
Don’t forget to document the time with photos and video to share on your website and social media feeds!
11. Participate in a Home Tour Event
These events happen regularly in almost every market. They’re a chance for new clients to meet you and see your work and style.
We recommend participating in 1-2 per year if it makes sense for your business.
Market the event both before and after with photos, mailings, etc. You should leverage home tours to get the most for your money, since they usually require entry fees.
12. Submit to Magazines and Newspapers for Press Coverage
This may be an older marketing tactic, but it’s still worthwhile! Choose your best projects and submit them to local magazines and newspapers.
Publications are always looking for good people and projects to feature.
13. Print Ads
Ads are an excellent way to establish your brand and get your name out there. We only suggest print ads if they’re in local publications and you’ve got your other marketing bases covered. Think of ads as a great add-on to spread brand awareness.
P.S. Ads MUST be done well; a poorly designed ad can actually hurt your overall image
14. Marketing Materials
When you first meet potential clients, it’s nice to have something to give them. You don’t need a large overwhelming packet, just some simple information about you, your company, and your process.
However, whatever you hand out should be polished and on-brand!
Signage is another important marketing element that often goes forgotten.
Putting out a sign at your job site is excellent marketing for neighborhood traffic. Your sign should be on-brand and easy to read when passing by in a car.
16. Neighborhood Project Start Letters
If you’re working in an ideal neighborhood for your target market, send neighborhood introduction letters at the beginning of a project. Send a brief letter to 10-50 surrounding houses, the addresses you’ll want can easily be found on Google maps.
We like to target addresses that will already see your signage. The letter should say you’re working nearby and introduce you and your company, and include your contact info.
P.S. Do not make this a sales letter – leave your sales pitch for another day.
17. Video Home Tours
Photos are amazing, but sometimes you need something special to showcase a project.
You might shoot a video of you or someone on your team giving a tour of the new space, being sure to point out all the great details and features.
You can either do this on your own with a nice camera (that has good audio) or hire a professional.
18. Video of Events or Programs
Video is perfect for showcasing or explaining company programs and events.
Create short teasers for social media to promote events. Be sure to upload all videos on your own YouTube channel, and then embed into your website, blog, or social feed.
A video library on YouTube ensures your content lives on.
19. Client Experience Videos
Otherwise called client testimonials, ask your favorite clients to talk about their remodeling experience.
Questions to include could be, what was it like, how did they feel, what was the outcome? These are often more powerful than written testimonials.
Remember, keep things short – no one likes watching long videos, think 1 to 1.5 minutes.
Keep in touch with past and potential clients with a monthly or bi-monthly e-newsletter.
E-newsletters should provide valuable information, think of them as a medium to showcase your projects, answer common questions, share your blog and social media, or just be helpful.
21. Personal Emails or Phone Calls
These touch points are so simple, yet they’re often forgotten. Schedule a few hours each month to make phone calls or send emails to past clients.
Check-in and show them you care, and stay on the top of their mind. You spend so much time with these clients, the last thing you want them to feel is forgotten upon project completion.
22. Social Media
Social media is the game changer of the 2000’s. It’s a great way to create brand awareness and get your name out there.
Platforms include Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, Twitter, Snapchat, Pinterest, etc. Social media is also ideal for keeping in touch with former clients.
We suggest actively engaging on the top 1-3 sites where your target market spends the most time. Unless you have the resources, it’s tough to do all social media well.
Post company updates, project photos, and other helpful information for your followers. Try to be consistent – create a calendar of how many times to post each month.
Lastly, inform, don’t sell! Social media should be fun and informal, not a sales pitch.
23. Partner with an Influencer
To grow your social media following quickly, partner with a well-known blogger or influencer in your industry.
You will most likely need to pay them to mention your brand in a positive manner. You benefit from your brand being seen by their large following.
These partnerships should be vetted carefully, not all are worth it.
You have a website, now what?
Your web designer should have helped you input the basic SEO. Beyond that, it’s your job to make sure you get found online. Input keywords you’d like to be found throughout your website – images – blogs, etc.
Location is important – keep your Google My Business page up-to-date. It needs to have your address, photos, and keywords.
25. Mailings and Gift Cards
Standout by sending past or potential clients a small gift in the mail.
There’s much less competition these days, which ensures your brand is seen. However, if you send something, make sure it’s worthwhile!
A few of our clients send mailings once or twice a year with a small gift card to a select list of clients. Create a theme for the card and gift card to make it more memorable.
Love it or hate it, remodeling contractors need to network.
Try finding places to meet new people beyond industry events (those are great too). Get involved with your kids’ school, athletics, volunteer at church, your favorite charity, a local country club – wherever your target market spends time. (Of course, take into consideration if it’s something you’d enjoy doing on a consistent basis too.)
27. Thank You Notes
Notes are simple, yet powerful. We suggest sending a handwritten thank you card after you meet someone or when you complete a project.
You might also send a branded notecard to say “Happy One Year Anniversary” of your new kitchen, addition, bathroom, etc.
Simple gestures are memorable and generate good word of mouth – the best kind of marketing!
28. Small Gift for Clients
Clients like feeling special! One way to make them feel valued is by giving small gifts during the remodeling process. When we say gifts, we mean something they’ll enjoy. Steer clear of logoed company materials; that’s not a gift for them, that’s sales materials.
Keep gifts personal! Bring coffee drinkers fresh beans each Friday you’re working in their home, buy their dog a special toy, drop off donuts on the counter for the family to enjoy together.
Upon project completion, or on the year anniversary of project completion, send clients flowers or a gift card to a fun local restaurant. The goal is to be memorable and show your customers you care. Small gifts are also great for word of mouth – people like sharing about their fantastic contractor!
29. Charity Involvement
Choose a local charity or organization to support with some consistency.
We suggest narrowing it down to a charity that’s important to you or a team member. Help raise money for the organization, donate your time, or attend or sponsor their events.
30. Digital advertising – Ad Words, Banner Ads, etc.
If you have all your basic marketing bases covered and would like to extend your reach online, digital ads are a good next step.
There are lots of options, from upgraded accounts on Houzz to ads on Facebook to detail display ads through Google.
To prepare digital ads, you set the budget, write compelling sales copy, and engage viewers into acting (for example, passing along their info or contacting your team).
31. Google My Business
Correct Google information is essential for small businesses, it’s how customers search online for local services.
Your address is required so searchers can find you on Google maps. If you haven’t checked recently, you should probably sign into your Google My Business account and ensure all your information is accurate.
List your services, upload photos, provide contact information, and utilize ad keywords.
32. Online Social Search Sites – Houzz, Pinterest, etc.
Online social search sites operate differently than social media platforms.
On sites like Houzz and Pinterest, your business has a profile, but things work more like Google where visitors search specific ideas, trends or services.
Houzz and Pinterest are ideal for image-based businesses like designers and remodelers, and for visitors looking to solve problems or gather ideas.
33. Truck and Clothing Logo
Why not put your logo on things you use daily that are seen by countless people?
Think of your clothes and truck as moving billboards for your business! It may sound complicated, but it’s as simple as ordering clothing and truck logos.
34. Killer Website About Page
Did you know one of the most visited pages on your website is your “about” page?
People want to know and trust the person they work with – especially in their homes! Before even meeting you, customers want to feel a connection.
We’d suggest having professional photos of you and your team on your about page. If you’re a small company, we suggest sharing a mix of professional and personal information.
Let potential customers get to know you outside of work too!
35. Professional and Updated Website Portfolio Page
Website visitors and people, in general, are incredibly visual. Potential clients want to see what type of work you do and if it matches their style.
Maintaining a professional looking portfolio with your best photos is a must, but only share your best work.
Think of it this way, share the type of projects you’d like to work on more in the future.
36. Direct Mail
Direct mail isn’t dead!
Our definition of direct mail is your list of contacts/former clients and maybe a few surrounding neighbors (for example, people who live near your latest project). Half of our clients send 2-4 postcards, letters, and branded mailings per year.
Why is direct mail still relevant? Not everyone is online; mailings are another way to reach people who may not check their email or spend time on social media.
What should I send? A few ideas we like are: thank you notes, overviews of your best projects, company news or charity work, etc. Some of our clients also like to send letters around the holidays thanking their clients and giving a brief business update.
37. Referral Program Appreciation
Many of our clients have versions of referral programs – some advertised and some not. We prefer a referral processes over advertised referral programs.
We suggest you have a process in place to recognize people that refer others to you. Our favorite “thank you”? A nice note and gift card. We like pleasantly surprising people who give referrals vs. them knowing what they’ll receive for referring your services.
To get organized, write out your process and what should be said and sent for referrals. This way, if you’re busy and need a team member to take over, they know exactly what to do!
38. Focus on Local and Community-Based Marketing
Does your community have local marketing resources for small businesses you haven’t tapped yet?
Examples could be, community papers, magazines or periodicals, industry chapters, chambers of commerce, networking groups, or community-based sponsorships. These local resources are often cost-effective, and they reach your target market!
39. Keep in Touch with Past Clients
Create a plan to keep in touch with your past clients.
Use the marketing tools that make the most sense to reach your target audience (such as notes, direct mail, e-newsletters, social media, etc.), then make a calendar and communicate consistently!
40. Write Nice Random Notes
Who doesn’t love getting a note just saying “hi”?
They seem small, but these friendly little gestures go a long way towards cultivating goodwill and creating a memorable business reputation.
41. Be Memorable
Aim to make your brand and company experience better than your competitors. Being memorable is easier than it sounds – we promise!
Think of 3-4 ways you can insert memorable gestures into your client process and stand out from the crowd. It might be as simple as the colors and photos you use, or the company story you tell. Brands that are unique are remembered.
42. Showcase Industry Experience by Being a Guest Expert on Panels
If you’re an extrovert or a practiced public speaker, we highly recommend making a name for you and your business this way!
Show off your expertise in your field by volunteering to be on panels or an expert guest for different media outlets. For example, TV or radio stations use local experts to give advice or share about the market.
Word to the wise: if you do a good job once, they will invite you back!
43. Join an Industry Association
These affiliations give you instant credibility in the eyes of the consumer.
Proudly display the association logo(s) on your website! Since you went to the trouble of joining, you might as well get involved and learn something too, right?
Connect with industry friends, network at events, and get advice from people who understand your business and challenges.
44. Define a Clear Niche for Your Business
A simple, yet effective, marketing tactic is to have a clear niche for your business. You can’t be everything for everyone, after all!
Are you known as an expert in a specific remodeling or design area you could market? For example, your specialty might be kitchen remodeling, additions, exterior renovations, big remodeling jobs, small remodeling jobs, bathroom remodeling, historical renovation, etc.
45. Provide Amazing Service
Hopefully, this goes without saying, but without amazing communication and service, you won’t be in business long.
Providing top-notch service ensures your name is referred more often – remember word of mouth marketing? You could have the best marketing around, but if you don’t do quality work with an excellent attitude people won’t keep working with you.
46. Respond Quickly to New Leads
Whether you think every interaction you have with a potential client is marketing, we can all agree that responding quickly to new leads matters now. Blame technology, but people expect fast service, or they’ll find someone else.
Story: We once called a realtor to inquire about a personal rental property. After hearing nothing for 24 hours, we called a different realtor who answered right away and was helpful. The first realtor called back 10 DAYS later, saying she was on vacation. The problem is, it didn’t matter. If you’re too slow, people will move on.
47. Partnerships – Designer, Arch, Vendors, Real Estate Agents
Cultivating partnerships is a way to extend your marketing net.
In great partnerships, each participant shares the other’s info on social media, blogs, and other marketing outlets. We do this often for our clients by tagging each other on social media, cheering each other on, and giving credit on blogs, home tours, etc.
Potential partnership ideas could be interior designers, architects, vendors, real estate agents, etc. We have a client who gets most of their work (like 80%) from an industry partner!
48. Monitor Your Website and Reputation Online
You have this great online brand – what now? You need to monitor your website and social media reputation. Although we hope for the best, things happen. An unhappy client could post a not-so-positive comment or review about you online.
Finding these reviews sooner rather than later and deciding how to respond is more important than you might think (we like having a plan). It’s also smart to periodically check-in on your website. Things online just break and go wrong sometimes. Fixing issues before a client points them out to you is a good thing.
49. Get More Reviews
It’s no secret that people make big decisions now by reading online reviews.
It’s probably no different when they’re deciding on a contractor, designer, or remodeler. If you don’t have an optimal amount of reviews across all your marketing areas – start asking for them!
Happy clients will gladly give you reviews, but you must ask. Ask for reviews when you finish a project, and the client’s made their satisfaction clear.
Is your head spinning with new marketing ideas after reading this blog? (We don’t blame you, that was a lot of information!) If this list got your mind churning but you want help implementing a new marketing plan, then please, get in touch with our team. Creating easy to follow plans and tackling to-do lists is what we’re good at!
Front Step Marketing, located in Eden Prairie Minnesota, provides marketing services for home builders and remodeling contractors.