How defensible is your commercial cleaning marketing plan? A great question to ask yourself before starting a new campaign and when creating your marketing plan is how defensible is it. What this means in practical terms is how easy can a competitor copy it. Now I asked this question in general but let’s look at some specific ideas and marketing campaign’s to see how easy they are to replicate.
One question I always ask when starting a new advertising or marketing campaign is even if this is successful gawd forbid, how long will it take and how easy is it for a competitor or worse multiple competitors to copy it. Let’s be honest, the cleaning industry is a machine of new competitors every year. All you have to do is look at the new business filings in your county to see how many cleaning something businesses are started every month. Last I looked we averaged around one every 3 business days, which is pretty scary when you think about it!
Top 5 Commercial Cleaning Marketing Ideas
- Cold calling businesses– this is extremely hard for most small commercial cleaning businesses to do. This is number one for commercial sales in my book
- SEO– getting ranked at the top of google is pretty hard nowadays. Now some people just flat out get lucky, I know several cleaners that barely have a website and still hold number # 1 spots. I’m thinking about more of a comprehensive SEO strategy where you come up in hundreds or thousands of searches, not just 3 or 4.
- Current customers– sounds crazy I know but cleaning businesses don’t do it very well or often enough. Need to provide great service to begin with and provide valuable content or people will just unsubscribe and tune out. Most cleaners are pretty lazy with this and just send out automated specials through direct mail or email. Not very effective although it works to some degree, something is better than nothing.
- REVIEWS– This can apply to your website, google, facebook AND the lead generation websites like yelp, thumbtack and home advisor. The challenge with reviews is first you have to provide great service and then motivate customers to actually take the 5 minutes to do it. This is one of the most effective marketing campaigns for residential carpet cleaners, maid services. Getting 100 or 200 reviews is just not something a competitor can buy or push a button and magically appear. Takes real work and a commitment by everybody in the business.
- Professional Referral Sources– By this I mean a 3rd party referral source like a retailer, networking groups, realtor, service contractor in other industries. Similar to cold calling you can’t fake this, a person has to physically attend meetings, talk to people and most importantly visit with sources face to face. I would say this marketing campaign is as hard as cold calling businesses maybe even harder in some ways.
Why is it so important to create a defensible marketing plan or specific marketing campaign? Its just human nature, if something is free, easy or cheap then it is easy, free and cheap for that next start up to do too. Rest assured 6 months from now they are coming! Nothing wrong with getting a couple leads from craigslist, thumbtack etc but just remember that anybody can do it. Completely different to build something from scratch, takes more time and money but you are protected from competitors to some degree.