If you’re marketing a cleaning business this year (& you should be), your success depends on developing a new strategy
There’s no need to tell you how different the world is now. Whatever you thought about meeting new clients or scheduling your team or the cleaning products you use is necessarily different than it was not too long ago. These changes mean that marketing a cleaning business has to change, as well.
Your business meetings are different. The way people recommend you is different. And even your approach to commercial cleaning is not the same as it was. Because of these changes, you need a new approach to marketing. Fortunately, many of the basics of marketing remain the same. You still need to build relationships, offer high-quality work, and treat customer service like the most valuable business asset you have. So what’s different?
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7 Steps to marketing a cleaning business in our new reality
Let’s start by reviewing the basics, because no matter what’s going on in the world, some things won’t change when you’re marketing a cleaning business.
1. High-quality work. Good work is always the best marketing strategy. If you offer stellar work at a good value, word gets out. To be clear, a good value does not mean you’re the least expensive cleaning business around. It means you do your job exceptionally well, and you charge reasonable prices – or if you charge a premium, there’s a good reason for that.
2. Excellent customer service. The only thing to say about this is that when your customers feel like you value them, they’ll refer you to their friends, they’ll overlook the inevitable mistakes, and they’ll want to help your business succeed.
3. Stay organized. Good organization prevents a lot of mistakes. Even though this isn’t directly a marketing strategy, it impacts the quality of your work. And it’s an integral part of the first two marketing basics.
4. Hire carefully. Your employees are the face of your business. They’re the ones talking to your customers, doing the work, and generating the image and reputation of your business. Make sure you take time in hiring and onboarding new people.
5. Treat your employees well. This might sound like a strange approach to marketing a cleaning business, but the truth is that happy employees create happy customers. This is true for any business. How you treat your employees is a direct reflection of your business ethics. As far as your customers go, the benefits to them include continuity of service, an experienced team that knows their business, and the security of knowing who will show up to work at their facility. Again, this is an indirect type of marketing, but it’s important nonetheless.
Those are some of the basics of marketing a cleaning business. You can always use them. But let’s talk about how to update a marketing strategy to meet the times.
6. Virtual meetings. You might not be able to meet clients in the same ways that you could before. Local business association meetings may be online rather than in person. And events are happening online all the time. Chances are you’ve already had a share of these virtual meetings. However, there are many ways to attend or host virtual meetings, and some of them can present your business in a professional manner. Here are a few tips for marketing a cleaning business when you aren’t meeting in person:
- Be aware of your background. Believe it or not, the occasional kid running through or the barking dog won’t hurt you. But since you run a cleaning business, make sure that whatever ends up on camera is clean and tidy. If, for some reason, you aren’t at home or at the office, find a quiet spot without a lot of distracting activity around you.
- Remember that your camera is on. We’ve all seen those videos of people in business meetings who forgot this very essential detail. Don’t let that be you.
- Dress professionally, whatever that means for you. This could be a company shirt that your team wears or a button-up shirt with a tie. You aren’t meeting in person, but you can still dress to impress.
7. Address infectious diseases, like COVID-19. There’s no way around this. COVID-19 has changed how the world operates, especially in the janitorial industry. People want to know that you’re able to keep them safe. Whether it’s the common cold or the seasonal flu, or a global pandemic, be upfront and transparent about how you operate.
Update your website and marketing material to describe what you do as a business to prevent the spread of contagious viruses. List any specific cleaning products you use, and explain why you use it. The same is true for cleaning equipment, like electrostatic sprayers. Share how your teams wear masks at all times and explain why you keep your teams in stable groups, so you don’t increase the risk of infections. This might not sound like marketing, but because it’s information people are looking for, they’ll be happy that you’re providing it. The less work someone has to do to get the information they want, the more likely they are to call you.
These might not be your usual tips for marketing a cleaning business, although we do have plenty of those here, here, and here. The fact is, marketing is a lot more than just putting out promotional material and buying ads in your local paper.
Even though how you hire people or your background in virtual meetings seems pretty far away from marketing, it all impacts your business. That’s how you’re presenting your commercial cleaning business to customers and potential clients, and other companies. To a large degree, that’s exactly what marketing a cleaning business is.
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