Your contractor website has been updated to attract your target audience, the content is working its magic and the prospects are submitting contact us forms inquiring about your service. Each and every lead is important to you – they have proven several things: they are homeowners in your area, they have a need, they cannot do the work themselves, and they have made some type of effort to reach out about their need.
These homeowners who reach out have their own timeframe, and it could be anywhere from just starting out in their research, to deciding who to choose to buy from. You may or may not know exactly where a homeowner is along the customer journey on the initial email inquiry.
A follow up phone call gives you a few seconds to answer their questions and build some trust. However with email, you aren’t so fortunate with building that trust. Email is quick, easy, unemotional, and to a point, anonymous.
Following up is an art in its own right. According to Hubspot, 44% of salespeople give up after their first follow-up, resulting in a loss of potential business. To land the job, you have to let the prospective customer know you are interested and seek out their business. Don’t just stop with one follow-up email. Follow up on your follow-ups! Persistence is a virtue in sales, and it can pay off.
Sending targeted and personalized emails can jumpstart the follow up process and relieve you from wasting time and annoying the prospect.
Automate Follow to Increase Success Rate and Save Time
There are several automated email follow up software available, some being easier than others to set up. The first thing to look for is an email program that offers scheduled auto-responder emails sent at timed intervals. These programs connect your website forms to a list segment, thus every prospect that completes a form is automatically entered into your database.
Mailchimp began as a simple email platform, along with Constant Contact, however, it has evolved to offer scheduled email follow ups, with plans starting at $20+/month. Once someone submits a form on your site, you can start the follow up email series.
Get Response is another program that I recommend because of the calendar feature for planning out the follow up email series. Each form can be connected to a list segment, and from there an email series will automatically start. The cost for Get Response starts at $15/month.
While persistence is a key component, messaging is even more critical.
Continual repetitive contact will brand your company name into their psyche and allow you to be the business that the competitor must be compared to. However, prospects are bombarded with emails competing for their attention. The question then becomes, how can your business stand out enough to garner a response?
Identify Prospect’s Passion or Pain
Buyers buy for one of two reasons – to feel good (passion) or to remove pain. In your contractor business, what passion/pain does your product or service solve? Identifying these points expose the homeowner’s emotions and feelings, which allow you to craft compelling sales copy designed to entice them to move through the customer journey – from lead to paying customer. For example, a homeowner is selling their home and needs a few windows replaced. This would be a pain point. They are feeling stressed trying to sell their home and need a professional to quickly and efficiently handle the window replacement.
Let’s say a homeowner wants to remodel their bathroom to get rid of the garden tub and replace the small shower stall with a large, walk-in shower. This is a “passion” for the homeowner who envisions a new and improved, larger shower stall. They’ve probably pinned several shower stalls on their Pinterest board as they are doing their research.
The Follow Up Email Series.
Create an email series designed to turn prospects into a qualified lead, then into a paying customer. During each stage of the sales funnel, prospects are searching online, viewing before and after galleries, and asking their friends for referrals of who to use.
Once they stumble upon your website and inquire about your business, it becomes your opportunity to “touch” them via email and provide more information to help them make a decision to use your service or not.
Email One is simply a “Thank you for inquiring about us” type email. The objective is to provide your contact information. The call to action can simply be a request to schedule a consultation. Every email needs to provide a call for action – what’s the next step on their customer journey to hiring your company. What do you want them to do?
Each email should be personalized to the prospect, branded to your business, and touch on one pain/passion point that a prospect may have. Using a Problem/Solution format allows you to mention a pain point, thus invoking emotions, as well as providing a solution – your product or service.
Additional emails can be educational, helpful, Special Announcements about your company, or even offering your latest “Limited Time” promotion – “If you act NOW” to help create a sense of urgency.
For helpful, educational advice, create a blog and send the prospect a link to the blog article to learn more.
There are homeowners who submit leads because they are looking for cost information. While they may not be interested in building a home or remodeling their bathroom today, that doesn’t mean they won’t be ready in 3 to 6 months from now. Nurturing that lead until they unsubscribe keeps you in front of them and not many of your competitors will “touch” the lead after 1 or 2 times.
If you need help with setting up this simple lead follow up system or writing the follow up email series, please contact us today.