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Using Social Media For Marketing a Lawn Care Business

So basically social media is, mainly websites and applications where users have a sort of a two way interaction with each other

Right

And their two way communication, they are generally interactive communities but the key point here is that it is two way and people are communicating with each other * groups of people yes

Yup

So in that sense obviously Facebook is the most one example of this, Google plus same thing, Twitter, YouTube, I mean you can even include blogs in that. Blogs with commenting systems that has a interaction where groups of people again are communicating with each other. And that is really would define social media is the interaction with other. So when it comes to services business and in using social media to promote your business or get new clients, really the, the goal the focus of it is to really have a personal relationship to interact with your clients

Right

And really to have a direct conversation, a direct conversation directly with them


There is something easy about social media too and like for example if you are trying to collect a name from someone for your website, they usually have to give you and email address, they have to put in their name, they feel like they are giving a bit of their information, they feel like they are giving up something a little risk involved for them, is it going to annoy them you know, whereas with social media all the times like reading a blog or leaving a comment, they are not going to, I mean they are learning but they are not having to give up anything. same with the like button for Facebook, they could just in the moment read something, it just a simple action of clicking something they, and if they don’t like something down the road, I mean it doesn’t, there is nothing about it to worry or you are going to interfere with their life so there is less friction, less reason why they wouldn’t want to at least follow you and so there is this easiness about social media that you don’t have with some of the other types of media. It is not as intrusive

That is exactly right, they can really tune in, tune out as they see fit. But what is also great about it is, it is really so in that aspect it is sort of a harmless. Your clients are typically going to see it as more of a sort of harmless way to interact with you and they are not afraid to subscribe to your Twitter feed or like your Facebook page because they can really tune in tune out as they feel, they see fit. If they want to comment, they can comment, if they just want to comment, check out your information page or see what you are recommending and see what your feed says and read some of your blog posts whatever, it is really up to them what other than you know, adding another email to the, to their spam folder. It is really something that they can pick and choose their level of interactivity with your brain

Yup

And so as far as the social for services, I will really say obviously your focus would be to really inform your clients, educate them if they need to be educated and definitely there is an opportunity to up sell too, to the existing clients and maintain that, maintain that relationship and grow that relationship and really sort of nurture a long lasting relationship. If you really evolve online and really have a good sort of, SEO, I am sorry, Social strategy and have somebody that is always interacting with your clients that are active on your Facebook page or in your Twitter feed, it really sort of creates a relationship between your brand and the people buying your product or services

That is a good point, social media is generally it is quite conversational.

Yes

Just using the Facebook example, it is very conversational back and forth. I like this, I comment on this or that. so what you just mentioned is a wonderful strategy because if you have somebody that watches the Facebook account, people like it people post or you post something, people comment them and then you comment back to them and it really does sort of develop a relationship.

Yup

And it also can show off your company’s personality. Something else I love about social media is the, it is social proof. So for example, you have seen a lot of websites where at the bottom they will show all the Facebook friends or they will show twelve thousand people like this, that is usually with service company, you do not see anything like that, those numbers but even if it is a hundred faces or forty faces, it gives people a face of who your customers are. They are like, oh they don’t actually think this but there is other people like them, like you, they use you and it adds a whole new element to

Credibility

Credibility yeah exactly, just gives your company effects and so I like that aspect of it as well.

Another great thing that tweet has been taking advantage at our agency for our clients is that, by the very nature, I am speaking specifically about Facebook and LinkedIn, these social, and the Google plus obviously becoming more and more privileged but these social networks have huge amount of data about each and every user

Yes

What they like, what their interests are, if they are married, if they are single, how old they are, just crazy demographics about every user that is on their system and so that opens up an incredible, an incredible opportunity to really drill down in market to avoid very very specific sub set of a Facebook user, of a Google plus user, of a LinkedIn user

Right

And one of the great things is Facebook, pay per click campaigns,

Right

You can really drill down and focus on one really specific type of user and one specific type of location and you have some incredible power to that. the thing is that is really great for products but services, it can be a little bit more tricky. How exactly would you use at some of your companies, say for your lawn company for instance, how would you take advantage of the demographic data on Facebook or *

There is two ways, one, first let me say something before I directly answer that. one is, if you have seventy people that like you , there is no, there is no real formal way to do this, but simply by going through their profiles you can get the feel for who the people are that like you. in that, a little bit telling, just, I mean you are always digging and one of the cool things you can do is reverse profile your client base, info USA or some other companies can kind of get a picture of what your typical best client looks like so it is kind of cool philosophy to take your best twenty percent of your clients reverse profile them through Google or through info USA you kind of get a picture of what your client looks like

So you feed their first or last names, locations into, into their database system

Yes

And get more demographic

Get back salary range, age ranks, house, value things like that and it forms an image of what your ideal client looks like and then what you do is you buy a marketing list and you go get more of just those kind of people

Which salary is actually on the key things that Facebook lacks, that is probably one, really important factor when it comes to certain services that you can be offering to your customers

Yeah but you can still, in service really does coming in to them, to question your, yes it is lacking salary but you come back into it because you can, if you can kind of figure out what other ad, * is a city where one of the service auto pilot where my company is, but Dallas, Campa, Orlando, you kind of, or specially when you get some of the smallest cities, you can kind of get a feel for, in that city you know what the demographic, typical demographic, you actually write their zip code, so you can know they have salary range may be with where they live and their house value can still back in* and generally buy a mailing list that is really, you know that meets you criteria, salary is just one more added benefit. So my point was, the reason I kind of went off on that was you can’t quite view that with Facebook but what is interesting and as you can look at your * via social media and it is formal but you can kind of go through the information and get a feel for that, that client, what they are like. You know if you have sixty with, you can kind of imagine creating this avatar of what these sixty people, if you combine all their unique characteristics, what they look like, you kind of get a feel for what your typical person is that is attracted to you and *Facebook and then you can kind of go after more people like that. it is not as profound, not as good as the first example I gave of reverse profiling your data but it is an interesting possibility and it and so now to answer your original question because there is really two benefits. That is one, the second one is that now with that mind set you have figured out that by, in our lawn care company, we have thousands and thousands of clients and we have identified, we only serve a few cities but we have identified in one city specifically and there is a couple of things with this one. In one city there is this one area that between a set of streets and it has got hundreds and hundreds of people in this one little vicinity, they are more responsive than anybody else. They are better customers or more likely to take up sales when we market an area we get more closes and just, we have just really found something about this area

Interesting

So then, we can look at that so that gives us some information, you know what are those people like, you can easily get that information for you to say, and then further from there, if you look at our client database, what percentage of women, what percentage of men, and then I talked to you in another video about how we survey people and we found out

Yes

You know a little bit more about them, well so you can get a few factors. I mean really in most service businesses with four or five factors, over and above, you can, with four or five factors, house value, where they live, maybe salary, male or female, you can really start to target a list. I mean you can get more advanced but that is pretty darn good and so kind of the same thing Facebook, they have got most of that except salaries. So you can at least figure out that hey, we are, our better clients, the ones that convert, generally the women making decisions, they live in this city and maybe they are married and then that is a powerful group to extract on Facebook and only market with a little ads to just them but what is really valuable is, that is good but what is more valuable is in Facebook you could say only give me women that are married, that live in this city and then you put your image and advertisement, and headline is directly for women that married in that city.

Very good point

And then you can also run a separate campaign that says give me guys in this city that are not married or whatever, you know, whatever the case may be and then you run a different ad for them. That is the real power, that is where it is hard to*

Ad words

No Google ad words is okay they are looking for this thing in geography that is it but then you, it is very difficult to going any further than that *tightly targeting your message.

Very true

So that was a lot of information but it is a really good lesson on looking at the breakdown of your client base, figuring out who your best clients are and then going and getting more of that.

So it is very good talk

Oh yeah

Very good talk and it is definitely valuable for marketing, marketing to it

Yup

You know but I wouldn’t necessarily say it is a replacement for your traditional mailers, your postcards, your door hangers, pay per click

No

Doing social media by itself is not an end of marketing solution. There are a lot of clients who come and ask specifically about social media, hey do I need to be social. I might get a lot of new clients. Is it going to save my business? No

No

It’s not

It’s just another tool

It’s another tool

It is not free either, that is there a perception it is free, so let’s shift, let’s start doing this thing and one it doesn’t return generally as well as the other thing, other types of media, advertising you can do and two, return meaning the same volume of sales, you could get high dollar value of sales but it depends on what you are marketing but in terms of volume you probably are going to have far better success with other methods

Right

And then, yeah were you about to say something about that

No you have, you have just finished my point but it is supplemental. It is not a replacement

Absolutely

Just because you hear about it every day or you read about on the internet in the news, just keep in mind, it is just another tool, just as, just as email marketing came up with the growth of the internet when everybody * on internet. Email marketing was much more effective than it is now.

Yeah

But is became a new tool, rather than just doing print, that before the web exploded when the web did explode, people start to do email as well but they didn’t stop doing print

No they did *

Yes it is a combination of a number of different ways to reach different clients, different types of clients but the point is that be there when they want your service

I agree and if you are involved in social media and you don’t have the budget for it now or the time, it is still worth just spending a couple of hours and sticking your toe in the water and getting your Facebook account. I know you will probably talk about this but there is real value in at least getting your feet wet and kind of getting into it because this where things are going. It is not, I don’t believe it is ever going to eliminate print, I don’t believe it is ever going to eliminate email, I don’t believe they are going to eliminate blogs but it is where Facebook and stuff is where things are moving. It is going to, I think it is going to become a bigger piece of the whole, you know what is important. So there is real value of being involved now.

I always remind clients, what I always tell clients is a diverse marketing strategy is a really good idea.

Yes

So long as it comes with a really focused message and you really know who you are speaking you

Yeah

And that is the great thing about this

Exactly right

Just you know pay attention to your return on investment, you can, if you are trying to do social media yourself, remember that your time has a dollar amount associated with it so if you think you are going to go and do social and update every single day and really fully interact with all your clients, every time that you are spending time on the computer and away from your business there is a dollar amount associated with it so just keep that in mind

Yeah

And you know that is important thing to think about

There is a real danger in getting distractive from doing the marketing that already works and moving to the next cool thing

Exactly

It is a great way to slowly destroy your business and not realize what you are doing so you have got to be really careful about that

It is a good point

Yeah

So any recommendations, I mean I know we are going to talk about some other stuff but is there any recommendations about you know as an agency, any recommendations on what maybe the best tools are

Yeah

I can kind of give you an example of what our typical social media strategy is. we are kind of different than a lot of other agencies in regards to social because a lot of agencies play the buzz word card and they know that that clients are coming to them who need online marketing and they have all heard social * the social media buzz word

Yeah

And so they are coming to, to online marketing agencies, kind of pro sold on this is what they need to do and that is, that is all fine good but we really pay attention to

Results

Results, are you actually to make money by spending a lot of time and resources and money on marketing to social, on spending time on Facebook, on updating you blogs, on writing a unique original content, all of these things take time, all these things take money so we are very, we are very careful about it and we monitor exactly how much we are spending and what we are giving back, how many new leads were giving, and really the true value of it for any particular client and every client is different, every service is different and if it is a product, your strategy is going to be quite different than if you are marketing and service

Yeah

And so we pay attention to this factor and so we are a little bit different in that way, we don’t market, we don’t market buzz words just because they are buzz words. We want our clients to really get a value out of what we are doing. So if social still new and if they, our clients aren’t really getting their money’s worth out of it, we are not going to push them in that direction just because they are coming to us already pre sold.

Yeah I think that is awesome

I look at it as they are coming to us for our expertise and our expertise at the moment is yes, you want to have a social presence but it is not your, it is not going to be your biggest influx with new customers. There is better ways to getting your customers than just social by itself and you want to have a presence but you also want to other things. so some of the things that we do, do for every single client, obviously we recommend every client reserve a Facebook page, go ahead and setup Twitter

Just get your company name

Yeah

Twitter account

Yeah and also

You can name it to your Facebook account too

Yes, yes, go ahead and reserve that

Yeah

Your Facebook place page

Right

And Google plus for businesses is going to be realized sometimes soon, we don’t know exactly when but you, but it probably going to be integrated with your existing Google local page, your Google place page that is probably going to be one the same with your Google plus for businesses page. Google hasn’t officially announced it yet but they have said they are working on it. So there is going to be, there is going to be emerging of the two, would be the only way that would make sense to do it.

I would guess yeah

And so we are expecting that is the way, not become the real work, it will be worth setting one of those up too but you should already have a Google local page so that should be seem less. So those three things, we always do and then depending on the client, depending on what they are, what their business is, if it is service. If it is a product, we will do some Facebook pay per click, we will do some LinkedIn pay per click, we still do a lot of Google ad words obviously but it really depends on the client and what their budget is and where we can, where we can spread their budget for the biggest return on that investment.

So my take on it is, I still like Google pay per click best and then from there, for the consumer side of the business, the consumer side I guess you would say, I guess if you think in terms of service companies residential or commercial, specially getting to the residential market, there is some value in Facebook having the page

Yes

One just like you said, two trying to run some ads like pay per click, image ads, value there, because it is cheap right now. That is going to get more * but it relatively cheap compared to Google ad words. The other one is, if you are serving the commercial market, there is an opportunity for LinkedIn which is what you are saying to run again similar ads based on profiles we collected about LinkedIn members and then URLs * is really important so I wanted to interject a few thoughts here. You were talking about the importance of it if you are going to do social media tracking the return on investment to justify how much you have spend, how much more, not only how much you spend but how much more additional time you allocate

Right

Or even if they hire a company like yours or another company similar to yours, they need to be able to make a decision on, everybody has a finite budget in a day so they need this * if they want to spend the money you or another company who do they allocate more money to pay per click versus SEO with you or more social with you or another company so they need to and also know return on investments

Yes

To make those decisions

Yes

So some ideas on how to track this stuff, if you run a Facebook ad, or  a pay per click ad or pay, it doesn’t matter, LinkedIn or whatever, if they click on it, you can drive them to a form that collect that information and then tracks where they came from so you can drive them to different website forms depending on what you, where the lead originated

That is great

So that would be one way to track where they are coming from so you can measure that client’s ultimate spending with you and tie it back to the source to where they came from. Another one is, if you are, and this most of these examples are applied to print or social or email or whatever you are doing. Another one is, if you run a phone number and a Facebook ad or a phone number and pay per click ad you can use, there is a lot of different ways where you can get phone numbers that are different and you can either mainly do this or you have software to track how many times somebody calls that phone number so even if your team doesn’t ask how did you hear about us, simply because they called that phone number you know it came from a Facebook ad

Exactly right

So lots of ways to be creative about this and almost automate the tracking of where these come from

Yeah and Google has the same feature they let you, they will sign you a unique * number, Google voice, they will put it on your ad words

Oh yes

And if somebody calls on a eight hundred number that data goes into your analytics and you know you have got a phone call from that one specific ad words

Yes

Which is really cool feature, it is kind of expensive but it is a great feature. Another thing we need to mention though is the benefits, the sort of the referral potential that social has, Facebook, four square, a lot of people like to check in when they are somewhere on the Facebook. Four square was built around the idea of check ins and that is a great way to advertise your business and it is also another reason why you should reserve your Facebook page. when you reserve your Facebook and enter in your address or business info and people are at your location or near your location and they go to check in, you are going to show up in that list of businesses in that area because you have already registered with Facebook. Same with four square, so and then obviously when somebody checks in, it is going to go on their Facebook page, it is going to go on their four square page, depending on how they have their system configured. It might even also show up on their twitter feed they have checked into your business, great advertisement, top free advertisement, tells people about you. so that is

Yeah, something else too since you mentioned it, you know everybody, a lot of people are walking around with these say their iPhone, they have got the Facebook app now in their iPhone and you see a lot of snapping the picture and it is instantly in Facebook or right there from their mobile phone. It is on the Facebook and even * advertisement * a car coming where you hit button that mirror and post to your Facebook account, it is like it is the feature that advertising on the car commercial, just think about where the things are going here. Well, we were talking, we have talked in other videos about creating experience and you know before the sell experience, after the sell experience and those experiences get people talk so imagine if you know, imagine if you are a plumber and as soon as you fix the plumbing and leave the next morning or that night they get a bouquet of flowers at their house

Yeah

Thanking them where everybody is walking around with a cell phone an iPad, those moments when you are like wow somebody there is so much more likely these days to go to Facebook and say you wouldn’t believe what just happened, my lawn company sent me flowers. Those kinds of things are, that is another place where social is powerful very fast way to get in the heat of the moment, the emotion of somebody will go post something and then broadcast it out to their entire friend base

Very true

So there is real power in that too, you don’t get that in email, you don’t get that in print

Another thing that we have done for some of our clients is really monitoring the twitter feed. Whenever your company is mentioned in Twitter, send a message to user thanking for mentioning your company depending on what your service is, thank them in another way you know

That is a good

So that you can think about that as well.  I mean the Twitter feed is open to everybody so you can really monitor that to see how your brain is doing in the public eye and take advantage of that as well

Yeah that is good

Something that you also mentioned, I mean we are going to talk briefly about where social media is going and something that you spoke about in, and also in regards to check ins and stuff like that, you are seeing Facebook just become more and more, people are becoming more and more, people are becoming more and more comfortable living in a public eye, sharing every little aspect of their life. I really don’t think it is going to be a stretch that people are going to let themselves be automatically checked in that there life where ever they go it is going to be recorded, it is going to be recorded, show up on Facebook. If you are with your phone, has Facebook on it or whatever other social network and you go and your GPS shows that you have been in a place for thirty minutes, why isn’t it automatically seeing you feed, hey Joe is at the Olive garden or where ever he is at. That is going to happen at some time

We have seen it already so many technology * my kids growing up now have no concept of a life before this kind of technology, a life before online video games where they are playing with all their buddies, no life before Facebook, they have no idea what any of that was

And that will

So this is going to be normal for that

It won’t be weird in the slightest and we have already seen the twenty something * and some of the thirty something crowd that already doesn’t care

Yeah

It is the and so you think about keeping your company and growing your company over five ten twenty year time period. You can only imagine where this stuff is going

I agree with you completely

So social is going to become more and more important

But it won’t look like it is today, I don’t believe

No, no

It is way over so at the beginning but being involved and staying on top of it and thinking about it

Yes there is no reason not to have a presence there now

It isn’t going away

And so it is something that we work on simply monitoring is well in seeing how we can take advantage of it, how people are still continuing to use it and we are still watching.

I mean it is, it is still at its infancy

Right

So it is going to be exciting but some other things that we should talk about that where it is ultimately going, it

Yeah this one is a big deal, the searching, and you even talked about this.

Yeah

The search combination with social

It is going to be huge. We have barely in scratches on service on this but some of you might have seen in the news, last year Google and, I am sorry, Microsoft, Bing, same thing, they made a partnership with Facebook. That basically gives them full access to Facebook data, what people are liking on Facebook, what people are sharing on Facebook, what your friends like on Facebook and Bing is using this information to modify their search results based on what you search for. so for instance if you are searching for pizza in Miami and a bunch of your friends like Joe’s pizza’s parlor in Miami beach on Facebook then it is going to move that way up in the rankings.

Yeah

And this is, that is huge

Yeah

It is huge

As implications like massive for SEO

Yes

That is huge and it is so huge that Google recognize that fact and it is really the entire reason behind them writing their own social network in Google plus. Google plus, the whole reason that they are doing *

Because I mean they are so desperate

It proves how big of a deal this is

They recognize the fact that Facebook has so much unique data about every user and what it is it, five hundred plus, five hundred plus million users on Facebook

On Facebook, no that is already a million now * five hundred million in one day

In one day, Facebook has so much information about its users that any search engine who has access to that, and because of what the way everybody is linked on Facebook you can really take advantage of that with smart programming and really deliver search results that people want in a way that Google currently can’t and right now they are at the very * o that, then Bing is taking advantage of some of it but it  is not extraordinary.

Yeah

And Google obviously recognize it, recognizes this which is why they create Google plus. So they have their own social network so you can click the little plus one button which is their version of like and you can show this information with your friends and that in turn helps them build a gigantic demographic database about you, your friend, your likes, what you like and the end result of that is to actually modify the search results and give you even more of what they think

Yeah their whole entire goal is to give you the most relevant search results, results possible that you also keep coming back because every time you search you get what you want

Exactly

This whole entire plan of this thing so now it is good

Exactly

Did you have anything else to say about that or got another comment

Yeah well, one of the points I want to kind of make again is don’t get caught up in buzz words *

That is what I was about to say

That is your point, don’t get caught up in the buzz words, something that you might have been hearing a lot lately is all of the cloud is the next thing, the cloud, the cloud

Yeah

And the cloud is a buzz word, the cloud has been around

Marketing

The cloud has been around before most people have been on the internet. The cloud is, a server on the internet, that is what it is but people have rebranded it as the cloud and so it is so new word, it is some new thing but it is still just the server on internet so we get caught up in buzz words, focus on what gives you result, focus on what gets new clients, focus on what brings more money to your business. That is it

Yeah I have done that, that was what I was going to say

Okay so

Yeah very good.

Andrew Pototschnik is the founder of Lawn Care Marketing Expert, the largest online marketing agency in North America specializing in marketing strategies for the lawn care and landscaping industries.

Google Partner
Facebook Marketing Partner
Service Autopilot
Official Consultant of PLANET Conference

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