After providing an overview of home services marketing tactics in our last article, it’s time to dig a little deeper and talk some specifics regarding some of the best home services SEM and PPC strategies. One of the most cost-effective marketing strategies for a home services business are digital marketing campaigns. Digital campaigns allow you to reach a highly specific targeted audience at a cost point that it much less expensive than traditional marketing channels such as radio, TV, and print. In addition, it’s much easier to track the overall success and performance of digital marketing campaigns versus its traditional counterparts. Digital marketing encompasses a broad range of different marketing channels. Today, we want to hyperfocus on search engines and how a home services business can utilize search engine marketing (SEM) to reach its target customers with highly focused messaging that will convert at a high rate, low-cost ratio.
Is it SEM or PPC?
If you’re a home services business owner, you are likely familiar with one of the following marketing terms: search engine marketing (SEM) or pay-per-click marketing (PPC). Essentially, they refer to the same thing (though, not exactly). SEM implies paid advertising tactics done via a search engine such as Google or Microsoft (Bing). PPC is an SEM tactic where you, quite literally, pay for each click your ad receives. Not all SEM is PPC as there are multiple ad types and different bidding strategies you can choose that don’t charge you for each individual click. When working with a digital marketing professional, they will ultimately make the best decision as far as what bidding strategy to utilize based on the goal of the individual campaign. However, arguably the most effective search engine ad type is a search ad, which happens to follow the pay-per-click model.
What are Search Ads?
If you’re a home services provider and you want to reach potential customers at the exact time they are searching for your service type online, then you need to invest in a search ad marketing strategy. Search ads are highly effective because the customer is actively looking for a specific product or service in the exact moment when the search occurs. In addition, the buyer is typically in the mid to late funnel stages of the buying process and therefore search ads tend to have higher conversion rates for qualified leads. When users search online for a service, search ads will appear on the SERP (search engine results page) as some of the first results (see image).
The main components of a search ad are headlines and a description. Headlines should consist of the main product/service that you are advertising as well as short, supporting phrases that would entice users to click the ad. The description should include verbiage to further support the services provided. Additional components of a search ad are called “extensions”. Different types of extensions can be included with a search ad and provide unique bits of information including, but not limited to, a phone number, sitelinks to different web pages, service types, locations served, deals, short callouts, and more. Since the goal of the search ad is to get the user to perform some sort of measurable action, the ad copy and extensions are quite important and should be optimized over time for best performance. Since search ads tend to target customers at later stages in the marketing funnel, another digital ad type can be utilized to reach more early-stage buyers: display ads.
What are Display Ads?
Display ads provide visually appealing ad content (shown below) to users who have shown online signals of actively researching specific products or services, however, they can also raise brand awareness for users that may have interests in related products or services.
A home service provider can also use display ads to retarget previous customers or website visitors which helps keep them top of mind and consistently in front of previously engaged audiences. Since they can reach buyers in different stages of the buying process, display ads should be designed with specific messaging intended for each specific audience. Depending on the messaging, when users click the ad, the landing page content should closely match to maximize the desired outcome.
Landing Pages and Digital Ads
No matter what type of digital ad you are running, the landing page (the web page where users will land upon clicking an ad) plays a pivotal role as to whether the potential customer will take the desired action towards converting into an actual lead. Like ads, a landing page should entice users into taking a pre-defined action. For home services, these action types are typically customer contact via phone calls or a form fill. The messaging on a landing page should closely align with the messaging of the ad so that when users click the ad, the landing page further supports everything that the ad claims. In addition, the page content should minimize any doubts a potential customer may have, convincing them that they should definitely use your services. Finally, there should be a clear call-to-action on how the customer can contact you to schedule service. Combined with compelling ads, this landing page formula will help drive leads. Landing pages should be optimized over time to find the highest converting content.
If you’re a home services business owner, having a great digital marketing team is going to be crucial for your success. Whether the strategy is PPC only or a more balanced SEM approach, you will want those who are experienced in home services marketing to drive your strategy and execute the plan.
Brand Ranch Media is Houston’s most experienced home services marketing agency. We have helped countless home services providers grow their businesses exponentially, consistently driving record-high revenues for our business partners. Get on the path of exponential growth today. Call us at 713-309-6380 or send us a contact form and let us know how we can help you!