Looking to expand your client base? LinkedIn is a great resource to find businesses that need cleaning services.
LinkedIn is home to some 128 million users in the U.S. and over four million company pages worldwide. That’s a lot of users looking to expand their professional networks. If you’re in the cleaning industry, that’s great news. It means there are likely thousands of nearby businesses that need cleaning services, and social media has brought them all directly to your computer screen. All you have to do is get in touch with them.
Okay, maybe that’s not all you have to do. There are, after all, a lot of businesses to sift through. But connecting is a great start, even if it’s with companies that already have cleaning services. You never know when a client opportunity will open up, and you want to be at the ready when it does.
But how do you decide which companies to solicit? And more importantly, how do you get them to choose your cleaning business over all of the others out there?
What not to do
Before diving into best practices for finding businesses that need cleaning services, there are a few no-nos to keep in mind.
First, don’t solicit random businesses without a purpose. The internet is full of unwanted marketing ploys that more often than not make people remember those companies as annoying at best and intrusive at worst. That’s not the kind of impression you want to make if you’re looking to build bridges with businesses that need cleaning services.
Second, make sure you check the location of any company you want to target. You may find a business that looks like a great potential client, but they won’t do you much good if their company is in Seattle and you’re in Ann Arbor.
Finally, don’t assume you’re the only cleaning service that’s ever reached out to them. As you know, the competition is fierce out there, and you probably aren’t the first cleaning service to come knocking. Keep that in mind as you prepare and present your sales pitch.
Now, for what you should be doing:
1. Publish LinkedIn Pulse articles
The internet is first and foremost a place to obtain information. Yes, social networking has become a significant function of cyberspace, but it remains a secondary function. People surf the web to learn things, and they enjoy reading informative, thoughtful, and interesting articles about the topics that appeal to them.
Publishing Linkedin Pulse articles is a terrific way to make your company visible to businesses that need cleaning services, regardless whether or not they’re actively looking.
Pulse is LinkedIn’s native posting function that allows you to write long-form pieces for sharing with your followers and anyone who may come across your company page. The idea is to write something relevant to what you do, perhaps tips on how to clean an office, the most practical way to remove rug stains or other commercial-specific issues. This puts your company on the map as an industry expert, and that builds credibility before you’ve even established contact with the would-be client.
InMails are LinkedIns version of e-mails or internal messaging. They’re only available to paying customers, but the minimal cost is well worth the reward if it results in new business (which it frequently does).
With InMails, you can directly message LinkedIn members you don’t otherwise have a connection to. If you go this route, remember the “don’t” from above: Don’t solicit random businesses without a purpose.
If you think you’ve found a potential client, create a pitch before you reach out to them. The pitch should be company-specific and succinct, and you should use discretion when selecting companies to call on. As an extra incentive, you lose InMail credits if you send one that the recipient doesn’t respond to. Target wisely!
3. Take out a local ad
Yes, this is the most costly way to connect with businesses that need cleaning services, but it’s also the most tried and true. By taking out a location-specific ad, you know that you’re targeting businesses in your area with the widest net possible. Some companies may be unhappy with their current services, or they may have just expanded to a size where the need new cleaning services. Whatever the case, you won’t be able to decipher most of this by browsing LinkedIn profiles. A targeted ad puts the ball in their court, which takes some of the pressure off your business.
Of course, just sharing a status update about your company’s availability doesn’t hurt, and more than anything, make sure to network with as many people as you can. You never know where the next business opportunity might present itself.