Gone are the days of flipping through the phonebook to find a local plumber. With billions of people using social media, if you want a customer’s business, you need to be online. Not only do social media platforms offer powerful tools to promote your business, but they also don't require a whole lot of time, energy, or money to set up and manage.
Looking for something? Skip ahead:
1. Think like a customer
Before you jump straight into making social media posts, you need to know who you’re talking to and what kind of personality you want your business to have — both of which should be linked.
Figure out who your audience is
Try putting yourself in the shoes of your customers. Understand who they are, what they’re interested in, and what they want out of a plumber. Think of them every time you post on social media, and let that be your guide to staying true to your audience.
Ask yourself these questions to pinpoint your ideal customers:
- Are your dream customers individuals or businesses?
- What age bracket do they fit within?
- Do they have a budget? If so, what is it?
- What are their hobbies and interests?
Develop your brand personality
Once you know who you’re talking to, a consistent brand personality that fits with your audience will make your social media activity connect. For example, do you want to come across as an easy-going, funny character to a younger crowd? Would you prefer to be seen as an authority that’s geared towards a more commercial audience?
A brand personality doesn’t mean that everything you post has to be the same, but it does give you direction and keeps things consistent for your audience.
2. Choosing a platform
Owning an inactive page that hasn’t been used in weeks or months can be a bad look. It’s best to start by committing to one social channel and doing it well before diversifying, that way you won’t bite off any more than you can chew.
Let’s break down the top three platforms to see what’s right for you:
The biggest social media platform of all (with just shy of 3 billion active users), Facebook is a great place to start. It allows you to share a variety of content (videos, photos, or simple text) and is a great place to build a community.
Facebook appeals to a broad age range but skews slightly older than other social media platforms, with the majority of users aged 30-49. So if you’re after homeowners and businesses, this is a good option.
Take a look at our Facebook page for some ideas. We’ve amassed quite the following, so it appears that we’re onto something! 😏
YouTube is another huge platform. It’s perfect for generating a sense of trust between you and your customers. You can share helpful tips and behind-the-scenes insights that will help to showcase your work and prove to your audience that you know what you’re doing.
Take a look at our YouTube channel if you want to get an idea of what some good trade-specific content looks like.
With one billion monthly active users, the simple visual nature of Instagram is clearly something that appeals to the masses.
In addition to photo-focused, timeline-style posts, the Instagram ‘Stories’ feature has taken off, with over 500 million active daily users.
Instagram does attract a slightly younger audience (67% of its users fall in the 18-29 age bracket), so if you’re looking to gain popularity with a younger crowd, then this platform is perfect.
Have a scroll through our Instagram page and take a note of what we do to keep our followers engaged. Think about how you could do something similar with a page of your own.
For simple how-to guides on getting started with social media platforms, check out these resources:
3. Creating content
When it comes to content, visuals are vital. Visually-driven posts are 40 times more likely to be shared than those that are all-text. While the nature of plumbing is visual, it’ll take a bit more than shots of copper pipes or a new hot water cylinder to maximise your social media presence, so mix it up!
While getting the right shot is important, there is more to consider. When you make social media posts, try to do these two things:
Providing value is the best way to ensure that you hold onto all your new followers. Here are a few easy ways you can give your followers the value they need to stick around:
- Plumbing-related tips - sharing some simple insider knowledge won’t put you out of the job. Tips like how much water a flow restrictor on a kitchen tap can save, or which foods to avoid putting down a waste disposal, are perfect.
- DIY videos – keep these centred on plumbing basics that you think people would like to know, like how to turn off your water if you have a leak.
- Share industry articles – stay in the loop with plumbing’s current affairs and pass these on to your followers.
- Exclusive deals or incentives – reward your followers for their loyalty with things like competitions, incentives, or special deals.
Social media platforms are all about connection, so creating conversations and having an engaged following is crucial to success. Here are a few practical ways to do this:
- Show off your work – posting your current or completed projects gives your customers a visual insight into the quality of your work.
- Plumbing-related facts – Keep your audience interested with some facts. For example, did you know Einstein said if he had his time over, he would have been a plumber? These can be humorous or to-the-point, depending on what you think your audience will like.
- Introduce your team – create a personal link between your business and its customers with a brief bio of each team member. Once again, think about what fits with the brand and post accordingly. These could be focused on your employees' experience and backgrounds, or who they are as people.
- Encourage reviews – good reviews are a valuable currency on social media, and offer you another opportunity to interact with customers. Whether it’s by thanking them for their review or responding to issues they’ve had, it’s important to acknowledge them.
4. Have fun
Social media should be fun — that’s what it’s designed for. Remember that it’s not the be-all and end-all of your business, so don’t let it take up too much of your time. If you make sure that your social media content is enjoyable for you to create, it will likely be enjoyable for your audience to consume.
Social media makes business management easier and so does Tradify. Start your free 14-day trial today.