For mold assessors and remediators, beyond being trained, certified, and licensed, a big part of growing your business is your reputation. You might not associate remediation contracting with being reliant on building a strong word-of-mouth approach to marketing, but it’s critical. From the specific standpoint of mold professionals, word-of-mouth marketing relies not just on your customers saying great things about you but it might also include insurance adjusters who are willing to pass your name along.
Understanding Word-of-Mouth Marketing
Word-of-mouth marketing, or WOM marketing, is free advertising, and it’s triggered by the experiences customers and other stakeholders have when they’re working with you. It’s a little more than just receiving business through references. Instead, you’re curating your word-of-mouth marketing and specifically encouraging it.
As a contractor in the competitive mold industry, when embracing this marketing approach, you’re giving your customers a reason to talk about you positively because you’ve exceeded their expectations. Along with going beyond expectations, you should have specific ways to ask customers to share their experiences with your business. For example, maybe when you complete a job, you ask your customers to leave a review on a certain site, like Google or Yelp.
You might also send follow-up emails asking for something similar.
Benefits of WOM marketing include:
- The big one here is that it’ll generate business for you. Just one recommendation from a happy client can grow your business significantly.
- It costs you little to nothing.
- There’s a sense of credibility you build with WOM marketing. When someone hears something positive about your business from a third party, it will feel a lot more credible than if they heard it as part of your regular advertising.
- There’s a sense of long-term value that’s derived from WOM marketing. When people buy services based on referrals, they’re likely to stay with your company longer than if they’d found you in other ways.
- You’re building your brand.
The sense of credibility WOM marketing brings is especially important when you work in the mold assessment or removal industries. People are concerned about their health and the safety of their homes when looking for mold removal services, and they’re also worried about being scammed.
WOM marketing can ease some of the barriers people feel about doing business with you through that added element of credibility and social proof. In the context of marketing, social proof means that there’s evidence available to show that other people have found your services valuable.
Improving Your WOM Marketing
If you want to expand your WOM marketing efforts and make it a more defined part of your business, the following are some approaches to try.
Decide Where to Ask for Reviews and Testimonials
You might think of WOM marketing as a traditional approach to marketing, but in reality, it’s very much driven by the digital platforms available to business owners. With that in mind, you can’t be everywhere, so decide on a few platforms where you will focus your efforts most when you ask for reviews and testimonials.
For example, as a mold assessor or contractor, you should focus on Google, your website, and sites like Angie’s List or Yelp. These are the places where people are most likely to go to learn more about mold businesses.
You can eventually expand your focus, but starting more narrowly is best.
Optimize Your Google Business Profile
Your Google Business Profile can be an important place for people to see and give reviews for your business, so make sure you’re maximizing it.
Google Business Profile was previously known as Google My Business. This free service lets you set up a location-based profile, so it’s ideal for service providers working locally. You can then add your location and contact information, and customers can leave reviews on this profile.
A completed Google Business Profile will legitimize your brand, help potential customers find you, and provide social proof.
Once you’ve set up your profile, when customers start leaving reviews, make sure you respond to all of them, whether good or bad. If they’re negative reviews, try your best to address the customer’s concerns constructively and respectfully.
You can sign in with your existing Google account or create a new one to claim your business. You can still set up your profile even if you don’t have a physical office. You’ll verify all your essential information, like your location, hours, and other relevant contact information. You’ll also want to get verified by Google, which takes just a few minutes.
Create a Referral Program
Another way contractors and mold professionals can improve their WOM marketing is by creating a referral program. Some people voluntarily share their satisfaction with your services without being prompted, but others need an incentive.
If customers will provide you with a review or a referral, decide what you’ll offer them in exchange. It could be a discount on another service or a small token of appreciation like a gift card. You want to make sure that you’re giving something that makes it worth a person’s time to leave a review for you or provide a referral.
Timing Is Important
When creating a WOM marketing program, you want to ensure you’re timing it properly when asking for reviews. Don’t ask for a review until the job is complete and you’re sure the customer is fully happy. Then, you can send them a list of links where they can write a review. You want to make it as easy as possible.
When you’re a mold professional, you might feel like your quality of work and service speak for themselves, which will generate word-of-mouth referrals. In reality, people are busy and don’t always think about it, so you have to ask for these reviews that will help you grow a strong business.
If you want to expand your current contracting business to include mold identification, remediation, damage restoration, or removal, NETI offers training and certification. You can also renew your license through our continuing education programs.