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hey everyone I just moved to a new state and teying to get my business going. I need to advertise the most effective ways possible. Any care to share effective strategies?
Thanks so much!
 

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What worked before you moved?

First start I would try as many options as you can afford and then focus on what's working.

Website would be my first priority. Then get it listed. From there I would go either flyer/mailer or radio ads depending on your local.
 

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Yeah, like BigJLittleC said, a website should be your main priority. Followed by getting your Google My Business and Bing Places claimed.

You can start your own website pretty easily with SquareSpace (don't get your domain through them though. Get it through a company like hover.com).

Then optimize your website's SEO from there. You can save a lot of money doing it yourself. But that doesn't mean you'll do it right or save a lot of time.

The biggest thing would be understanding what your advertising budget is. If it's nothing, then I would attempt to start building your own website.

If you have a few hundred bucks, you may want to get a nice door hanger designed or put out a saturation/EDDM mailer.
 

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The best advertising is "word of mouth" and "social media" hands down. Both free by the way.

People talk and when happy about your service, pricing, reliability, and honesty, they tell others. On the other hand, when they're not happy, they will tell even more others.

When first starting off, concentrate on an area, hit it with some flyers. Price jobs a little lower than average (But not too much,
because you step on other company's toes and keep prices at 1994 level, like they still are today in 2020, LOL).

Then absolutely do the best job you possibly can. Show up like clock work, follow up with customers. DO WHAT YOU SAY YOUR GONNA DO! Communicate, tell all your frinds and family, sell other services, offer neighbor discounts. I promise you, before you know it, you will be growing. Doesn't happen over night. Keep grinding and busting your arse!

My budget for advertising nowadays is purchasing company t-shirts and hoodies. $0 for any other advertising as has been for 15 plus years. Do it right, grow slowly, but steadily. Your success is up to you!!!
 

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Nothing says here today gone tomorrow like a door magnet (no offence, I was a door magnet guy too)

trailer decals (paid off huge for me!)

election size signs, put on your customers lawns in high profile locations. Any put on boulevards, public land and parks just go missing

door hangers paid off well too

a website is good (I will do one some day)

and all the other good habits mentioned pay off too

don’t be a low baller though, just attracts the wrong clients and pissed off competition

I like to break bread and be friends with my competition, we draw soft borders and refer business to each other and keep in our own areas.

I had a pos low baller enter my area. He put “his” signs right “in front of mine where I put up some of my old disposable signs on public property. Such a ****** bag!!
 

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I meant showcase was joking, haha. Truck magnets are obviously fly by night
 

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It's pretty hard to compete online with the big boys if you live in an urban area. I wouldn't spend a bunch of money on marketing if you're just starting out. Dealing with Google is more of a hassle than it's worth at your stage in the game, and it's going to lead to about 3-4 telemarketing calls a day and a ton of other scams.

These are the marketing tools I would use if I were just starting out

Business cards & website - don't put too much thought into it. Have your name, business name, logo and phone number on your business cards. Wix is a good website to do this for super cheap, and you can also design a free website. It might take a bit of time, but it's worth it, and since you will be doing it yourself, you can change it as you go along without having to deal with some marketing business. If you're terrible with that type of stuff, hire a college kid off of Facebook to do it for cheap. Put an add in a private group for $50. Have some kid come over and design you a free website. It generally takes a couple hours if your good with that type of stuff. You can always fine tune it yourself once you see how easy it is.

Truck magnets & trailer gate sign - Business name, logo, and phone number. Make sure the number is big, so people can see it from a distance.

Flyers - pin them up at the dog park, over 55 parks, and any other pin up boards at places like convenient stores or hardware stores.

Next door app - it's a phone app that you can advertise to your neighbors. You can also pick jobs up that are being advertised.

Facebook private groups for your area. An example would be "Denver buy sell trade" or "Seattle and surrounding area classifieds." DO NOT PAY TO ADVERTISE ON FACEBOOK. You will be offered advertising services if you make a business page. JUST SAY NO. Advertise in the groups with either a business Facebook page or your own that links to your website. I use my personal page because a lot of groups don't allow businesses to join the group.

Yelp - it's free, and you can get some decent jobs off of it. Just make sure you do quality work and you get back to people ASAP because Yelp is loaded to the gills with Karen's, and they will slander you at the drop of the hat. It's really hard to get negative reviews removed once they're on there too. Also, do not pay for any services from Yelp. It's not worth it unless you're a large business.

Yellow pages online - It's free, and you can get a few jobs here and there off of it.

Craigslist - Honestly, this is probably the best online marketing for the little guy in a lot of areas. It does cost $5 an add, but I got about a quarter of my original customers off of craigslist.

If you utilize these marketing tools and do quality work, you will have more work than you can do from word of mouth by year 2 if you're a solo guy. Word of mouth is absolutely the best form of marketing because you get the best customers with it.
 

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I can’t say I agree with everything in your post. Facebook marketing has a place and getting a proper website is important and worth both time and money. It’s more important than any truck or mower you will ever buy.
 

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I can't say I agree with everything in your post. Facebook marketing has a place and getting a proper website is important and worth both time and money. It's more important than any truck or mower you will ever buy.
The return on Facebook marketing is horrendous for a small businesses, particularly a service business. It's basically spamming people no different than a YouTube add as well, which makes people already not like you when they are actually looking to get something done.

As for a website, it's just too easy to have a quality website for free nowadays. Paying somebody to build a website if you're a solo, or even a smaller outfit running 1 crew is for suckers unless you're really not good at that type of stuff at all. It's just too easy to make a carbon copy website of an existing business like your own for free. The same goes for having business cards or logos designed.

It's just a different world these days. I actually come from a marketing background and I will tell you that more and more people are simply doing their own marketing now because of all the options out there that basically make it almost criminally easy to design a quality website or advertise on your own. It's the same reason less and less people are hiring accountants these days. It's just too easy to do it all yourself now.

Marketing is a much bigger deal for large businesses that rely on economies of scale to turn a profit. Unless you're living under a rock and completely computer illiterate, machines that save you time and allow you to take on bigger accounts are going to make you a heck of a lot more money than having a website that's only marginally better than something that's free or close to free.

Just my opinion, but this is what I would tell anyone entering this business. A lot of the older guys on here have a very different opinion about this because they came from an era when the internet, home computers and do it yourself businesses software were just getting started. It was a time when pretty much none of this was true, so I get it.
 

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I got some magnets on the sport truck. Mostly for the neighbors when I'm roaming around someone's property giving a quote.

Good website is all I do for advertising. More calls then I can keep up with.

09FC3292-4AC8-43A5-9CE6-CE92B0CE581A.jpeg
 

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Nothing says here today gone tomorrow like a door magnet (no offence, I was a door magnet guy too)

trailer decals (paid off huge for me!)

election size signs, put on your customers lawns in high profile locations. Any put on boulevards, public land and parks just go missing

door hangers paid off well too

a website is good (I will do one some day)

and all the other good habits mentioned pay off too

don't be a low baller though, just attracts the wrong clients and pissed off competition

I like to break bread and be friends with my competition, we draw soft borders and refer business to each other and keep in our own areas.

I had a pos low baller enter my area. He put "his" signs right "in front of mine where I put up some of my old disposable signs on public property. Such a ****** bag!!
been around since the 80s magnets have really paid off for me
 

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It's pretty hard to compete online with the big boys if you live in an urban area.
It's not too difficult if you know what you're doing. We typically only put $100 towards Google ads and get about a 77% market share on impressions. That's even in markets where we have multi-million dollar competitors as well as companies like TruGreen.

Paying somebody to build a website if you're a solo, or even a smaller outfit running 1 crew is for suckers unless you're really not good at that type of stuff at all.
I'm gonna disagree with you on this one. If you hire a disingenuous "marketer" who builds websites or an amateur, then yeah, the "quality" website you paid for is, in fact, garbage and you were probably better off building on Wix.

Also, not all web builders/developers/designers (whatever you want to call them) are digital marketers. They can build you a pretty website, but if it doesn't perform, you just bought a pretty online business card.

Though, I'm going to agree with you on pretty much everything else for a new business starting out.

If you can't afford a $2,000 (minimum), don't pay for it. Build it yourself.

I would also advise you to NOT get your domain through Wix. I would get it through Hover.com.

Some people will recommend GoDaddy or Google or NameCheap. These are fine too. I just prefer Hover because they're a no BS registrar.

If I were you, I'd actually build your site on Squarespace. Wix' code makes it difficult for 3rd party crawlers to read your website. Which worries me when it comes to Google's crawlers.
 
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