Homeowners are investing in small property upgrades now more than ever. In fact, there’s been an annual 58% increase in leads for renovation professionals. As a handyman, you can take this unprecedented time to your advantage. But how do you get the word out about your services?
Moving into 2021, you’ll need a comprehensive marketing plan to target homebound customers in your community. If you offer a handyman service and you're looking to revamp your marketing efforts to grow your client list, this blog post can help. Here are a few handyman advertising tips to expand your business in this new year.
Begin With a COVID-Safe Working Plan
To continue any business in 2021, small business owners have had to adjust their services to meet the needs of COVID safety guidelines. For handymen especially, the risk of COVID exposure is higher than usual. OSHA recommends strict precautions for all handyman service jobs that involve entering a customer’s home.
The strict rules might seem like a hindrance. But a safety plan will actually build customer trust and protect your community—plus, you can use these safety guidelines as an angle to market your business and attract prospective customers.
When creating an anti-COVID plan, consider a few of these key areas:
- Screening & Testing – Leading a team of employees? Enforce routine temperature checks and symptom screenings before they punch in. Regular COVID tests will also keep your crew and customers safe. On the flip side, make sure all customers have been tested or are symptom free for two weeks.
- Physical Barriers – Facial masks are just one way to physically block COVID’s spread. Give all workers personal protective equipment (gloves, face shields, etc) to reduce contamination. Plastic sheeting is another excellent barrier to protect customers from project areas during your work.
- Remote Interaction – Most handyman projects will eventually lead to in-person work. But until that moment, keep all consultations and interactions remote. Video calls are a safe, effective way to learn more about a client’s home improvement needs.
- Contracts – Unfortunately, some people see COVID precautions as soft guidelines, not necessary rules. Keep all parties accountable with a contract that includes every expected safety action. By requiring COVID protection agreements, customers will see your business as safe and reliable.
Showcase Your Work Online
Do you find yourself staring at screens a bit more than usual? If so, you’re not alone. Since the pandemic, a majority of Americans admitted to increased screen time on their computers, phones, and TVs.
Luckily, bottomless phone scrolling can help boost your handyman advertising. Grab customers’ attention this year by creating a strong online business presence.
Start with Nextdoor
The most important factor in advertising your handyman services is meeting prospective customers where they are. Your customers aren’t people in other parts of the country—they’re people right in your local community.
That’s why starting with Nextdoor is key.
Nextdoor is where local businesses like yours can connect and communicate with other nearby customers. When locals are searching for a special hair salon, a new restaurant to try, or finding the best handyman for the job—they ask the people who know the area best - their neighbors.
To join in on this word-of-mouth advertising, you need to claim your free Business Page. From there, you can customize it with your business story, showcase your work with before and after photos, promote local deals, gather recommendations, and communicate with prospective clients in ZIP codes you want to target through a Neighborhood Sponsorship.
On top of this, locals can then start recommending your services to others, all at no cost to you. This is some of the easiest handyman marketing you can do to attract a larger following within your community.
Support Advertising Efforts with Social Media
As a local business, documenting your work and placing it on social media is an effective advertising tool. The greatest benefits of social media are its reach and cost-effectiveness. With a few photos and some key hashtags, you can build a following that will attract new locals to your business.
If your handyman business isn’t already on social media, it’s time to get on. This is an effective advertising idea for a small business because it doesn’t require a lot of background knowledge to start. Here are some essential elements to creating a strong and attractive professional presence online:
- Picking Useful Platforms – Choose platforms that will display your handyman services or boost your networking. Facebook, Instagram, Youtube, and LinkedIn are excellent for posting attractive visual content or creating industry connections.
- High-Quality Media – A good phone camera will take your business a long way. For handyman services, customers will be drawn to visual evidence of your expertise. Start by collecting as much business-related media as possible—photographs, videos, etc. By keeping a backlog of content, you’ll always have something to post.
- Engaging with Customers – One of the fastest ways to grow a social media following is user engagement. Invite followers to comment on a post about an appliance they’d want fixed up. And don’t forget to follow customers and related local vendors. A duet post with another community business will boost both of your sales.
- Running Social Media Ads – Want to take your social media presence to a higher level? Consider budgeting for a social media handyman ad. Facebook has significantly cheap marketing plans, allowing you to target users in specific zip codes.
Supplement Your Customer Base Using Online Listings
In the gig economy, it can be hard to build a stable customer base. And with people socially distancing in their homes, physical word of mouth is probably a less common way to find service providers.
Luckily, online listing platforms can direct at-home customers from their screen to your handyman business.
As an intermediary between customer and worker, online listing apps facilitate contracting agreements. Just provide your location, services, prices, and availability, and users with matching needs will be able to find you.
Consider joining these top platforms to find local customers:
- Handy (Pro)
Another benefit of online listing apps? The review sections. The more customers you acquire, the more chances you have to build a high rating and appear in more searches. Ask your online listing customers to post a review and watch your requests soar.
Use Credibility to Advertise For You
When hiring a contractor, most customers are looking for the highest quality that fits their budget. To convince potential clients that you can deliver excellent services, you have to build an ethos for your handyman business.
Whether through a bonafide certification or five-star reviews, start laying the foundation for a solid reputation among clientele this upcoming year.
Earn & Display Certifications
Regardless of the profession, official pedigrees stoke a level of customer trust and confidence. And with your handyman business, certifications advertise your service quality and expertise.
Start by researching your home state’s handyman license requirements, as well as your municipalities licensing rules. If the government requires a license, the state’s labor, construction, or labor department will usually issue it.
Beyond state requirements, additional certifications are still excellent marketing tools. Display all degrees clearly on your website, social media, and online listing profiles. Customers will be drawn to your higher qualifications.
Not sure where to find a certification program? Here are a few options to check out:
- Association of Certified Handyman Professionals (ACHP)
- United Handyman Association (UHA)
- IAP Career College Handyman Business Owner Certificate Course
- Local vocational schools or community colleges
As a handyman, reviews work as advertisements for your business. And with today’s crowded online handyman market, you need all possible help to make your services stand out.
To boost your business, start collecting and sharing as many good reviews as possible. Read on for some methods to reach five-star glory:
- Email Surveys – Like all businesses, you should have a contact list for all customers. Create a follow up email template for customers with a survey option. Make sure to save all glowing reviews and quotes to share on your website or social media platforms.
- Social Media Promotions – Have a satisfied customer? Ask them if they’d like to post your handyman work on social media. Give them your business profile handle, so they can tag you in their shoutout.
- Online Business Review Sites – Yes, online review sites can be scary many companies. But with careful monitoring, you can create review content that strengthens your business. Also, use Nextdoor to gather recommendations from verified neighbors.
Partner with Other Local Businesses
The brunt of the pandemic has landed on local businesses. According to a poll from CBIZ, 84% of small businesses report some level of negative impact from COVID over the last year. However, quarantine presents a new opportunity for local vendors to support each other. By teaming up, your handyman operation can thrive alongside fellow businesses.
In the spirit of community, use one of these partnering ideas with another local business:
- Package Your Services – As a handyman, there are countless industries that pair with your services. Try creating a package deal with a fellow local business. For example, team up with a hardware store to offer discounted painting services with their paint. It’s a win-win for both parties.
- Enter a Raffle or Charity Auction – Giving back to your community fosters good will and markets your services to potential customers. If there are any upcoming local charity auctions or raffles, offer your services as a prize. You’ll support your community and possibly earn new customers.
- Reach Out to Local News – Community newspapers have a far reach, with 51.8% of readers claiming it as their main local news source. To get your business noticed, you’ll need to do something special. One idea? Try partnering with other local businesses to arrange community services to be done for free. Maybe you can work with a local electrician to upgrade a community event space while it’s closed down due to COVID-19. Or you could offer quick neighborhood repairs on broken toys (if you’re an expert at fixing anything!). Using this as your pitch, you can reach out to the various local news organizations to try and land a spot. Who knows they might highlight your business!
Spreading the Word About Your Handyman Services, Safely
Even with a new year, a lot of fear remains around the continual spread of COVID. And as a business owner, you’re right to wonder how your handyman services will fare.
However, with these advertising practices, you can ensure your handyman business has the best chance to grow. Once you’re ready to get started, connect with fellow neighbors by creating a Business Page on Nextdoor. In this new normal, it’s important to remember that your business is still part of a community, no matter how socially distanced you may be.
Business Wire. Small Businesses Feel Biggest Impact of Coronavirus Pandemic.
United States Department of Labor, OSHA. In-Home Repair Services.
Ipsos. Screen time across several devices has increased for many Americans during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Next Insurance. Handyman license requirements by state: a comprehensive guide.
National Newspaper Association. Community Newspaper Facts & Figures. https://www.nna.org/article?articleCategory=community-facts-figures
Claim your free Business Page to get started on Nextdoor. For resources on how to use Nextdoor to stay connected with your local customers, pertinent news affecting businesses, and more, follow us at @nextdoorbusiness on Facebook.