Is this Your HVAC Business?
How does your HVAC Business work? Are you a specialist Installer only? Or is your focus just on Service and Maintenance – or maybe a bit of both? Initially a strange question you might ask, but not so stupid when you analyse how it will affect your Turnover and Profits and then looking deeper, where you will get vital New Contract opportunities that affect both?
HVAC Businesses frequently rely on their contacts and existing customers to keep them busy, but those contacts in those organisations frequently move jobs, or leave to work elsewhere. What happens to your Business turnover if suddenly those reliable contacts can’t give you work anymore? What happens if you subsequently struggle to meet financial commitments including wages, rent and other bills? Maybe like many other HVAC Businesses you’ve tried newspaper advertising? Radio ads? Leaflets maybe?
Do you actually know how your business is doing vs those monthly, quarterly, six monthly and of course annual Business targets? You have set those up right? Surprisingly there are tons of smaller contractors that haven’t. Sure they might have the standard accounting type packages to do the basics (overheads, turnover, profit etc) but very few have bothered planning how and where the next opportunity will come from.
Is this you?
Maybe you are the Classic busy “Hands On” Business owner contractor “Doing to the Doing?” – In other words you are Installing, Repairing, Servicing, Ordering Materials, Organising Subbies, Invoicing, Getting the money In, Cleaning the bogs! Oh and by the way you also have to know about Business Development – Marketing and Sales – You get the picture. You have to do it all because there isn’t anyone else! Yes you might get some help from the wife, cousin etc. but its hard trying to do it all.
Or maybe you operate in a more organised and better way when handling all those activities, and employ people or contract out some of those tasks to specialists take on some/all of those responsibilities.
The fact is your HVAC Business must have an action plan to stabilise your Business by putting it on a stable footing – a process whereby you can rely on Marketing initiatives to bring in new Sales Opportunities that you can selectively quote and Tender the right projects for your Business without having to rely on the same amount of work from the same customers.
How do you go about doing that?
The choices are simple, – you can employ a Full time Marketing/Sales Specialist, or you can outsource it on a Contracted basis. – There are of course substantial financial differences between the two. Typically for a full time employee you can expect to pay £80K – £100K p.a. (inc Salary, NI, Pension, Car, expenses etc.) whereas you can employ an external Marketing Agency on any one-off type work to give you an immediate impact – such as Online Paid adverts (PPC) results.
Indeed you can outsource any aspect of the latest and employ the most effective Marketing and Sales specialists from just 1-day/week – depending on the size and type of Business and level of activity required. Any outsourced HVAC Sales/Lead Generation specialists must be well seasoned and highly experienced in HVAC Projects and HVAC/FM Service Contract Sales.
HVAC Businesses are Different
No two HVAC Businesses are the same, and the needs of an Installation Business are totally different from the needs of a Service and Maintenance operation – Indeed the Lead Generation time for HVAC Service/Maintenance contracts can be much longer, as often you are relying on existing contract expiry dates or under performance of the incumbent contractor.
Be under no illusion however. No matter which route you go down, lead generation takes time, you cannot expect immediate results – (unless you are paying for online adverts). You must be prepared to wait for any Marketing activity to kick-in and help to establish your Brand and your Voice. Regular Social Media activity in key areas like LinkedIn and Twitter.
Sales activity can have far more immediate impact and generate leads far quicker – especially when pursuing known actual Supply/Installation Contract opportunities, such as a New Commercial/Industrial Building or a Refurbishment/Extension to an existing property.
Your Business may have to change
If you are an HVAC Service/Maintenance Business and have been relying on those contracts to keep you going and have lost contracts through no fault of your own – (like your favourite Facilities Manager from your largest contract has left to work elsewhere) then what contracts have you got to replace that? The chances are you don’t. Therefore you may have to change the work type you have been doing and then need to take on some project/installation work which you may be able to get quicker.
Be Realistic with Objectives
You need to think about what you want your Marketing to achieve. You need a Strategy before implementing any Tactics. This means you a lot less likely to waste money or time. You’re also going to be much more successful in attracting your ideal customer.
If you’re looking for help or advice on what you should do, contact us for a free 15 minute consultation.
If you’re looking for someone to just do it for you, then check out our Done For You Sales/Marketing service. We’ve designed it for small business owners who need someone to manage all their marketing but can’t afford to take on a full time Marketing/Sales person.