EPISODE 23 – The Builder’s Marketing Solution

EPISODE 23 – The Builder’s Marketing Solution

By mick | December 16, 2020

Hi and welcome to another episode of Builders Business Success Podcast!
 
In this episode, I’m speaking to a lady by the name of Stephanie Campanella. 
 
She works in the digital space for trades people in marketing. 
 
Also going to answer a question that’s commonly asked, all sort of ties together with the theme of this show. 
 
If you’ve never been a part of the Builder’s Business Success Podcast, the purpose of this show is to address the challenges, the common problems that cost time, that cost money, cause frustration, and it’s all very, very common in the building business. And there are solutions, and we talk about the solutions in every single show. And if you’ve got questions that you want addressed, if you’ve got issues that you’d like solutions offered to you through this show, all you need to do is reach out to us. 
 
You can send me an email at mick@buildersbusinessblackbelt.com.au and I can address it in one of the shows. 
 
But there’s plenty of ways to reach out to us. You can also jump onto Facebook and join our Builder’s Business Success forum Facebook group, just for builders. 
 
You can jump in there, ask all sorts of questions to other very experienced builders and trades people in there. And it’s a great way to share knowledge and share experiences. 
 
It’s a great way to progress and improve your business because if you’re doing it through learning through mistakes that’s a very slow and painful way of doing it. 
 
If you’re progressing your business by learning from other people’s mistakes by jumping into a group like that and asking questions it’s a much quicker way to progress your business.

*Transcription of the show*

Hear my conversation with Stephanie Campanella!

So let’s listen into our conversation with Stephanie Campanella. Marketing for builders and marketing for trade based businesses always seems to be challenging. I think quite often there must be some sort of luck involved.

I think getting the right person in your corner, getting the right advice but having your own process is really important. And understanding how important marketing is and what an important role it plays in the success of your business.

The level of frustration or lack of, the quality of clients that you end up with, it’s really, really powerful. It needs to be a high priority in your business.

So we’re gonna talk about that with Steph but when we first jumped on the conversation I sort of asked her, what did you do? How did you end up here? What got you started working with tradespeople?
 
– I guess it all started because my dad is a brickie, he’s a builder. And when I was 12, I started working in the business with him and doing some works safe, WI, you know, the Work Safe Method Statements,
 
– Yep.
 
– On Fridays I’d pay all the boys with the cheques,
 
– At 12?
 
– Yep.
 
– How did the guys feel being paid and relying on the mathematics of a 12-year-old right.
 
– They love it, it’s like family, right? Like, you know, the boys will turn up at the place they are covered in cement.

The smell of cement takes him back and yeah, just hand over the cheques ’cause obviously dad wasn’t back yet and you know the boys would all get paid and that was Fridays for us basically at four o’clock.

But yeah, I got started in this because I’m artistic and computery and I did graphic arts as a younger lassie.

Dad was in building and I started a web marketing company and in addition to the trade and builder area ’cause that was already most of my clients, and yeah just started marketing the thing and built a system.

I’ve got the Tradie accelerate system that we now roll out for all that customers, with you know three core pillars and nine core processes and all this kind of stuff. Yeah, that’s a little bit background on me.
 
– Yeah there’s a whole bunch of common mistakes that we find particularly in that marketing space. So, I wanted to ask her what was the most common mistake.

So if we can identify what the common mistakes are we can do something about it. Yeah, I mean so the biggest mistake is the fact that marketing is a secondary pace.
 
– Yeah.
 
– You know, they’ve got, they might have a sales issue. They’re not making enough sales.

And so they’ve really focused on sales but actually if we do better marketing, if we do smarter marketing, marketing will make up 85% of the entire sales negotiation, and then the sales part of doing the business is actually just when you sit down in front of the client and say, “hey would you like us to go ahead?” You know, sign here.

So biggest mistake is that it’s completely avoided or it’s just too hard or it’s, you know something that’s going to be put over there. And I guess the biggest error is that these trade service you know, builders, these customers of ours, they don’t quite know who they’re talking to.

So, you know, an error in judgment is to look at everyone else’s website and kind of put that together. And then, I mean, they got it, right so, I guess let’s just do that and they don’t take that step back knowing on who we working with, where are they located, what kind of jobs do we actually wanna do. Like big error in judgment is actually doing everything.

We really try and make sure that they focus, I mean, like when we’re doing organic SEO, my God if you wanna rank for everything, you know, under the sun, it’s gonna be impossible for us to generate any success in you know three, six months that’s, we’re never going to get there, it’s too wide.

But actually if we’ve got a really specific, like we wanna do work in this area and we wanna do this. Then that is brilliant, ’cause we can actually market that, we can package it up.

Because if we look at the reverse and we see someone searching for a builder and they’re looking for quite an architectural style of home, and then they’re looking for builders and they’ve found a few, if you actually look and present like the builder that’s going to do architectural, eco-friendly, wood and polished concrete and all these kinds of stuff, if you actually look like that, you’re going to attract that type of customer.

So, just really making sure that every builder and knows exactly what they’re doing, and I think that’s a good reason for them to be working with you. To basically backtrack that whole you know, let’s just not be a builder, let’s be specific.
 
– So I asked Steph how important it is in this day and age, to really make sure that you’ve got a good web presence and a good social media presence.
 
– Like we’re digital now, right? It’s not just paper and you know, TV commercials all this stuff like we are digital. It is so easy for a brand new builder to build a website, run a Facebook ads campaign and get first to Google.

Like you can do that in 30 days.

So if you are really good at what you do and you are sitting back and waiting for the leads to just magically turn up or waiting for some guy at a barbecue or a football club to talk about you, that is not work, you know, like a tap, you can’t just turn it on and turn it off.

You must get in with the digital tools and start actually activating those new leads.

Like you think about the squeaky wheel. You’re driving around and the squeaky wheel gets the most attention.

So if your brand is that squeaky wheel to your customer showing them polished concrete floors and you know wood paneling and beautiful like staircases and that’s all squeaky wheel material that customer is like, “oh gosh I would love to redo my floors.” This builder’s content’s awesome, maybe we should get in touch with him.
 
– Yeah.
 
– So you, you gotta market.
 
– I know a lot of builders want to give away the activity and the responsibility for marketing. I don’t recommend that.

I really believe that the builder must understand the marketing strategy.

You can certainly give away some of the technical work that needs to be done. If, even if you’re working with Steph.

So I asked Steph, what role does the builder need to play? How much effort does the builder need to put in to provide you with what you need to create a good marketing strategy?
 
– With every client obviously, the more content we get off them, the better the campaign. So, we sort of tap you on the shoulder every month and make sure that you’re sending us photos.

So like, “hey, have you got any photos to send us?” I talk about the iPhone. I mean, it’s a great camera point and shoot.

Obviously, the more often that you’re taking photos and making it part of your process I know there’s some really good builder CRMs that you literally take a photo, you know from a job perspective, a job progress perspective.

We wanna see all those photos ’cause your customers want to see and touch what’s going on in the job. They wanna know all the bits and pieces that are going on behind the scenes. They want to buy from someone that they recognize.
 
– Yeah.
 
– So if you’re afraid to get in front of the camera, that then sort of goes to the customer or what’s, what is he afraid of showing?

Is he one of these builders, that’s you know, gonna take a sale up front and then do the runner?

The more you put yourself out there, the more customers will get to know you and respect you and you know pay, price becomes completely irrelevant ’cause they’re buying the value in you and what you’re doing. And it doesn’t matter what your price is compared to any other builder, they’re buying you.

So really important that photos and content comes through. We do two things.

So we tap you on the shoulder via email every month and make sure, “hey, you know, have got any photos of some jobs, can you get us some photos?” And we also can go through case studies.

We’ve got a little checklist there. You know, what was the last job you did? What’s the progress? What’s the budget? That you know that’s part of our marketing. What’s the ideal budget for this kind of job? What are the core things you did? What was the problem that customer had? What’s your solution? Where you’re at in the job.

And just asking those couple of questions to one of our clients, we can then actually write a 600 – 1000 word case study on that. And that can become a blog article that can embed strip down into a social media post. And if you wanna get on video we can talk about that on YouTube.

So yeah, content is king as I say.
 
– To quote a very commonly quoted quote.
 
– Yes, oh yes.
 
– Content is king. So I asked Steph, what else does a builder need to have in place to make their marketing strategy more effective?
 
– So first things first with the platforms pace, is that you need a website that can actually collect the customer.
 
– Yeah.
 
– Now, we need a website that’s got analytics, it’s got data on it.

So that when we do do our work inside LinkedIn let’s say, we can see the data coming back to the website and we can get a figure on.

Okay, so we did all this work this month on socials and actually LinkedIn provided the most users and they stayed on the website about three or four minutes and most of them went to the conversion page.

So let’s spend some more time in LinkedIn. I mean, I love Instagram, because for builders and tradespeople, it’s a great platform that you can get to know your other trades, ’cause it is one of the biggest trade specific social media platforms, everybody’s on there.

You know, even taking, you know, shots of framework going up or slabs going down or driveways going in this kind of thing.

I love LinkedIn for prospecting, because there are people in there that are your corporate, you know they’re not expecting to get tapped on the shoulder so to speak from every single builder.

So you’re gonna be one of, you know very little people prospecting inside LinkedIn. So very good to, you know to jump in and start having conversations there. I mean it really all comes back to the website needs to have a place where we can capture people’s information.

Because we can spend all this time on social media and we might be able to get, you know get into, messaging people, so direct messaging and then get them to get their phone number and get their email, and they finally get their name and all this sort of stuff.

But actually if we can set up a system so that LinkedIn looks really good and you’re prospecting and pushing people back to a section on your website, if your Instagram looks really good and we’re sending them to your core offer and they can see it on your website.

If your Facebook ads, you know, if everyone that comes to website, Facebook ads are turning, are turned on so that everyone then gets reminded that you exist and they’re getting stalked, and they’re coming back to your website, back to that conversion page or your core offer page. That’s then a system that can, all you need to do is just produce content every month, and then the system will take care of making sure that those clients get closed down and the offer is in front of them.

So, yeah my big, like I love LinkedIn ’cause I think it’s so underused.

And I love, love, love, love Instagram.

It’s so easy to, you know if you look at, like on a Di Lorenzo Tiles for example, if you go and follow that page on Instagram, the people that are following Di Lorenzo Tiles are probably looking at doing their kitchen or bathroom renovation. You might be able to slide into those people’s view.

And then if your content is rich and it can connect with them, then all of a sudden they’re gonna start following you and following your story. And then the sales prices actually start at that point. It’s the marketing that sells them.
 
– If you put in the effort into a marketing strategy. I was curious to find out what else a builder must do to capitalize on the time, the money and the effort going into their marketing strategy.
 
– I guess the first point is that there’s nothing better than champagne on a beer budget. So, I mean, we’ve gotta be realistic. If we are gonna sit down and we’re gonna plan out the content and the whole program for you, then from a time perspective, I don’t like to give too much homework,
 
– Yeah.
 
– But from a time perspective we wanna check in at least once a month, and make sure that you’re, you know, you’re answering your phone calls.

So we’ve got call tracking that comes on, we check all the calls and make sure that you’re actually answering the calls and they are all legitimate. We might send you an email and say, hey, look we’re writing some content on this, this and this is that cool with you?

All good. There’s no need to proofread or write the content or any of that. I’ve got structural, processes in place so that like again with the case studies, what was the job? Where was the job? What’s the budget? What was the problem? And what was the solution?

That’s enough for us to put a 600 to a 1000 word case study together on your behalf. If you take five minutes every single job and just take a photo in the morning and a photo in the afternoon, that’s enough for us to build momentum if you do that a couple of times a week.

That’s plenty for us to build momentum and get some more photos on your website, get some more photos on your Google my business page, all branded up.

So I don’t like to give too much homework because really the idea is that, you know we take a big strategy session every 90 days and make sure right, where are we pointing to? What’s lacking? What’s the gap right now?

Okay, we’re gonna go away and do all this stuff for the next 90 days, this is our 90-day plan. At the end of that 90 days we’re gonna have another 90 day plan.

And that way we just make sure we’re always checking in and making sure that, you know, if something’s come up in the business or you’re working with a coach and you finally decided that this is your niche now.

I mean, if you and I don’t have a meeting on that then I don’t know about it, so then I can’t write about that sort of content.

So yeah, I try and keep the work on your end to a minimum.
 
– If someone’s listening to this podcast and they go, “well I wouldn’t mind at least figuring out whether this is for me, whether the, you know, I’m confident that I’m gonna get a return on my investment,” get to talk to you and get into the nitty gritty of what they need to do, what they can expect back, all of that sort of stuff. What’s the first step, so like what’s the process to engage?
 
– So really the first step to work with us is to get on a game plan call and go through the strategy. Like I wanna know what’s going on in your business.

You know, who you are working with, what location, what have you done before, what assets have you got right now, what are the missing gaps inside your marketing system that we need to fix.

And in that call, we come up with a strategy, and I can literally, I give you my notes, like and you can basically take that strategy and start putting all those pieces together.

Or you can come work with us and we’ll start filling those gaps. Basically we’ll work on a 90-day retention so that every 90 days we’re really clear on exactly what we need to do.
 
– Yeah.
 
– So that we can actually move the needle and get that net profit up.
 
– And how do we, what’s the first step to do that? Where do they go?
 
– So if you head to tradiesgo.com.au so the website, there’s a game plan call button there that you can take. And then you and I will get on a strategy call basically.

What’d I Say?

The reason that A’s don’t show up on your list is because you don’t have goals that get you here, powerfully enough to move the shit that you’re doing every day out of the way to make space for the actions that are connected to your goal right? 
 
The reason that we don’t have goals that impact us emotionally as adults is because we have so many limitations in our thinking, adults won’t allow themselves to have a thought that inspires themselves if that makes sense. 
 
They go, Oh, that’s stupid you know. People think I’m a wanker if I said that, if I thought that, if I wanted that. All that is is your limitations talking. I found a whole bunch of comments the other day that had been made on some of our Facebook ads and all of that sort of stuff. 
 
There was like about 50 or 60 comments that I hadn’t seen. They’d somehow it went missing and I found them. 
 
Some of them were, you know, a week or two old. And some of them were like really abusive. Like you wanker, why don’t you piss off and shut up, what would you know and all of this sort of stuff. 
 
And that’s cool because what I understand is the builders who are saying that what I’m talking about is a load of shit. 
 
All that’s happening is that the limitations in their thinking are so powerful that they think what I’m talking about is impossible. 
 
So I’m taking them into this place that’s outside of their comfort zone. And remember what are we wired to do? Move towards what? And move away from what? We’re designed to move towards pleasure and away from pain. 
 
If I was right about charging for quotes and they didn’t charge for quotes, what would that make them? It would make them wrong. If they were wrong, that would be pain. 
 
So they’ve gotta move away from that pain. So what do they do? 
 
They come out and they attack the messenger. I’ve even been told I was dangerous spreading this information. Which is quite interesting. I take a bit of a hit to the ego initially I read the comment, you know, and wanna get into a fight. I mean, that’s just the natural response it’s like, come on then. 
 
You step back away from it, and you go, all that’s happening, is I have challenged their comfort zone.
 
And if they were to agree with me, they would have to accept that they were wrong. 
 
That’s painful, it’s not gonna happen. What’s happening with us is if we haven’t got big goals, so we’ve got A’s in our list, it just means that we’ve got limits in our thinking. We’ve got to go to town to start to smash those limits.

Q & A

So one of the most common questions I get asked, particularly when a builder is starting to get some content, video content for their Facebook page, for their Instagram, for whatever social media platform that they are creating content for, you can’t get hung up on the equipment. 
 
You’ve just got to kind of look around this room and see what we’ve got for this podcast. 
 
You don’t need anything like what we’ve got here to create really good quality video. 
 
An interesting thing that I’ve learned over the years ’cause I’ve been involved in this for a long, long time. 
 
And in a previous life before I was even doing building business coaching, I actually ran a recording studio for bands and did TV advertisements and all that sort of stuff. 
 
So I was right into the audio and video production. And one interesting thing that we found through that process when you learn from the experts, when you’re creating video, the audio is the most important component of a video believe that or not. 
 
So you could be watching your video on a phone and if the audio isn’t very good, it’s really difficult to listen to. But you can be really engaged in a movie, even on a phone, if you’ve got good audio. 
 
So what equipment do you really need? Well, you’ve probably already got it. A phone is probably all you need really to get started. You’ve already got a really great technique from a guy, a mate of mine from Japan, his name’s Ken Okazaki. 
 
And he is absolutely brilliant at making video. And he coaches a lot of people all around the world, how to make great video. And one tip that he gave me was using your phone, is obviously for most platforms you use the phone this way, which is called a landscape. 
 
A lot of people use it up this way, which is portrait, which there are certain platforms like Instagram for instance, where you do need to put it up that way. 
 
But Facebook and others, you can have it this way. And this is a really cool tip. It’s the grip, the grip of the phone. And you’ve just got a couple of fingers back there and you’re holding it this way. 
 
So your lenses over here, but the reason he holds it this way is because this cup in your hand, the microphone in most phones is down the bottom of the phone. When you’re holding it out like that protects the microphone from any wind and even any background and sound. 
 
And your voice is kind of bouncing from the palm of your hand into the phone. 
 
So that will give you a really good sound, which as I said before, is really important for your videos. In this day and age, the cameras on mobile phones are just amazing. 
 
So there isn’t an issue with the video quality. Think about lighting and that sort of stuff. If you do wanna go to the next step, you can just get a microphone.
 
I’m sure that sounded pretty good opening Velcro on a microphone never sounds that good. But you can get a microphone. 
 
This is a Deity you can, this one senses what it’s actually plugged into. And it’s only like 70 or 80 bucks and it sounds really good. You can also get a microphone called a Rhode smartLav. But what you’ve got to understand is the plug on an external microphone has to be the right plug for a telephone. 
 
So normal microphones don’t work. 
 
You’ve got to get the correct plug that will work on a telephone. And if you wanna step up to a slightly better quality you can get little gadgets like this which you can also plug your microphone into. 
 
And this one is it’s called the DJI Osmo Pocket. And the camera actually moves in three different ways. 
 
So it’s a three axis gimbal, so you can walk along and it takes all of the movement out of, if you’re doing a walk and talk or you can just pop it on a shelf and you can be walking back and forth and the thing follows you. It locks onto your face and follows. 
 
You say, you can, you can step up the quality. They are about five, six something like that, hundred dollars. Very very cool, very very small, you can just chuck it in your pocket. 
 
So you don’t need a lot of equipment. Honestly, you can just, you know with the Ken Okazaki grip, we’ll call it that now. If you learn how to hold the the phone with the Ken Okazaki grip you’ll be golden. As long as you’re in a quiet room, a quiet area, it will work really well. So I hope that’s helpful.

Takeaway & Summary

So what is the takeaway from this episode of Builder’s Business Success podcast? 
 
I think the most important thing that we’ve talked about and Steph talked about was that marketing for a building business or any tradespace business should not be an afterthought, it should not be something that bolts onto the side of your business. 
 
So your business exists, then you’ve gotta try and figure out how to market it. 
 
My philosophy is figure out what are you passionate about? What type of projects are you passionate about? 
 
Then you can figure out what type of people that have those projects you love working with. Not for, with. And then your marketing strategy, is all about how do we attract those people. You figure out what are their fears, frustrations, wants and aspirations. 
 
The content that you create should really be attractive to those sort of people and should not be attractive, in fact, if it’s smart, it repels the people that waste your time and the type of people that you don’t want in your business. 
 
So you don’t have to go through a qualification process if your marketing content does that job for you to a certain degree. 
 
When you understand who the people are you wanna attract, the type of projects that you would prefer to do and your content is wrapped around that, the next part of that is that all of your procedures, your systems, your communications, in the delivery part of your business should be focused on that type of person as well. 
 
That way, your whole business, everything about your business is focused on the type of person that you prefer to work with on the projects that you prefer to work on. 
 
All of a sudden your business becomes very very attractive to people in that space. And that’s what you’ll tend to attract. And I hope that answers the question that I quite often get asked where builders, you know how do I attract these? Or why do I keep getting people who waste my time and all that sort of stuff? 
 
And that is because the messaging, the positioning, the processes that you deliver, your building activities through, unfortunately attract the wrong type of people. 
 
And that’s why the marketing process needs to be the foundation on which you build your business. Don’t build your business first and then try and bolt a marketing strategy onto the side of it. 
 
So if you want help with anything at all that we have talked about in this show, I’d love to jump on a call. 
 
So here is how you do it. 
 
You can go to our website, buildersbusinessblackbelt.com.au as you can see, there’s a schedule, a call button there that’s if you’re just listening to the audio only version of the podcast. 
 
If you’re watching it on video, on our blog page, underneath the video here is a button you just hit that, it’ll take you to a short form that tells us a little bit about your organization so we can be best prepared for the call. And then it’ll take you to a calendar that you can book in the call.
 
 It’s a real short call, five, seven, 10 minutes, something like that, just so we can get a feel for where you are. If where I would have helped like we’re not suitable for everyone. 
 
So this first conversation is just figuring out if we can, if we can, we can talk about how that might work on a future call. But it’s absolutely worthwhile exploring if there are some things that we can help you with your business. That’s what we do. 
 
Your job is to run your business, operate your business, our job is to help you do that better and give you the outcomes, the life, the financial outcomes that you want for your business. 
 
That’s our job to help find things, put it in a format to help you and then deliver it to you so it can be implemented in your business. 
 
So I hope that makes sense. I hope you’ve enjoyed this episode of Builder’s Business Success podcast, and we’ll be looking forward to talking to you again in the next episode. 
 
I’m Mick Hawes from Builder’s Business Black Belt, That is it, bye for now.

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