Marketing for winter work

Winter is often a slow time for painting contractors. Unfortunately, many contractors wait until it is too late to start marketing for winter work. The time to market for winter work is not in the dead of winter. If you haven’t started marketing for winter work, do so today. Even with a limited budget, there are a number of effective methods that you can use to create leads going into the fall and winter.

Marketing to past customers is one of the most cost-effective forms of advertising. You can do a mailing as simple as a postcard or as elaborate as a four-page newsletter. An email newsletter is even cheaper. Services such as Constant Contact and AWeber offer a variety of templates that make it easy to create professional looking emails. Whichever route you take, the goal is to stay in front of your customers and remind them that you want their business.

Another creative marketing method is what I call the “sign promotion.” This marketing involves placing a sign in the yard of past customers (with their permission, of course). At the end of the promotion, hold a drawing for those who participated and give the winner a gift certificate to a nice restaurant. You have a lot of flexibility in how you do this promotion.

For example, you can do it for a few weeks or an entire month. You can put out all of the signs at one time or stagger them over a period of time. You can give a single prize or multiple prizes.

The more concentrated you can get your signs, the better. Imagine the impact if you have a dozen signs in a single neighborhood—it will appear that your company is painting every house in the neighborhood. The repeated exposures in a short period of time can have a very strong impact on home owners in the market for a painting contractor.

No matter what you do, if you want this winter to be better than last winter, then you must take different actions. And that means marketing early and often.

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