What Is Service Marketing?
A service business is a business model to help others by performing in an expert manner by an individual or team of expert. Does this sound like you? If so you are probably wondering what is service marketing. Well, you are in the right place.
One of the biggest drawbacks to owning a service based business is marketing. Service marketing is hard because you are not giving your customer a tangible product. As you know, selling an intangible product is more difficult than selling a tangible product. You are selling a product the customer will never own, never touch, never small, and this makes it hard to market.
So how the heck do you market your service based business?
What Is Service Marketing
First, let’s define service marketing. Service marketing is a marketing category that focuses on selling intangible products. Service marketing can include both b2c and b2b companies as both categories have a need for service. If this sounds like you, you are in the right place.
Who Benefits From Service Marketing?
If you provide a service to your end customer, you can benefit from service marketing. All b2c and b2b service providers can and should use service marketing. The trick with service marketing is not to market your service but market the results and emotion of what your business provides. You need to make some connection with your audience.
For example, in my first marketing agency, we relied primarily on organic search as our service. This was hard for many clients because they are not getting a new website, a flyer, or a piece of creative they can print and hold. They received the code that they would never see. Further, it takes 2-3 months to start seeing the results from organic search and just because traffic increases does not mean there is revenue or leads. This is a hard sell.
It was hard to sell these intangible products because unless the client knew they needed organic search, it was hard to sell and prove effectiveness. Many times not getting the chance to prove that the effort was worth it. This is why MKTR decided to focus on paid advertising on Facebook and Google to drive results. As a client, you can see and feel results almost instantly through ad placement and increase website traffic.
Off my soapbox for now. Thanks for listening.
4 Easy Service Marketing Tactics That Your Business Can Implement
Okay, onto what you came here for.
As stated above, service marketing is about selling intangible products. These are products you can’t touch, you can’t feel, you can’t smell, you can’t taste. This provides many challenges in marketing because you can only market based on the benefits of the service.
The marketing campaigns must draw parallels to the end user that help them visualize and experience the service as a tangible product. This could be an experience, an emotion, or your brand. Yes, your brand (more than a logo) is important in service marketing. Maybe even more important than selling tangible products.
So how can you as a service based business market yourself? Great question, let’s explore 4 tactics that your service based business can implement.
Social media provides a platform that your customer is using. Yes, even you accountants can take advantage of social media. Facebook is the largest community of people in the world. There are over 2 billion active users on Facebook every day. Use social media to educate, encourage, empower, and entertain your target audience. Social media will help you find new customers and clients if you put in the work. Dominate social media and you will dominate service marketing.
Note: I know that it is easy to use social media to market a product. Post a picture of a cute baby wearing your tee shirt and your tee shirt will sell like hot cakes. But as a service provider, I closed my first 2 clients from social media. So I know it works. Most businesses will not put in the work and do social media the right way.
Social Media Advertising
Social media advertising is a great way to amplify your social media marketing and take your service marketing to the next level. Marketing needs to have a budget associated with it. The beauty of social media advertising is that you can place as little as $50 a month aside and see results. Social media advertising will amplify your social media efforts and get you to your goal faster.
Note: A side benefit of social media advertising is that you will also increase your brand awareness, helping your brand at the same time.
Blogging For Business
One of the reasons I am glad you are reading this is the fact it supports blogging for business. If you are reading this you are now aware of the MKTR brand. Check.
Blogging for business is a long-term service marketing tactic. It is going to take time to get gain traction, but the long term effects of blogging last forever. (Maybe not forever, but blogging does compound for all your financial advisors out there). According to HubSpot, companies that published 16+ blog posts per month got about 4.5X more leads than companies that published 0-4 monthly posts. Blogging for your service based business will help you increase traffic to your website and generate more leads.
Note: Blogging is the backbone of any organic search strategy. Creating quality content for your audience will help more people find your service based business for free. Sounds good, right?
Pay Per Click
Pay per click is a business model whereby a company that has placed an advertisement on a website pays a sum of money to the host website when a user clicks on to the advertisement. Typically, this is through search engines like Google. Again, this is a marketing tactic that requires a budget but will drive targeted customers back to your business.
In order to get the best bang for your buck and convert more leads, your website must pay off the ad. If you drive a user back to your website and it looks like your cousin Vinnie created it in 1994, you might not convert. In fact, you probably will not convert this traffic into a lead. Further, make sure to include a way for the user to get in touch with you through a website form, phone number, or email address. Pay per click will amplify your search engine marketing and drive targeted traffic to your service based business.
Note: Use pay per click in tandem with organic search to increase your effectiveness.
How To Increase The Effectiveness of Your Service Marketing
We are on the same page. We are going to start dominating on social media, using social media advertising, blogging for our business, and investing in pay per click. Yes, we are going to dominate the service industry. Right? Maybe. Let’s look at 4 ways to increase the effectiveness of your service marketing campaigns.
Use The Right Marketing Tools
I can not stress this enough. Your marketing must start with a marketing platform. This includes marketing automation, email marketing, a CRM, and analytics. There are thousands of marketing tools out there that will help make your life easier, but your marketing must start with the tools for success. This helps you track performance, set up campaigns, and makes life easier. Please get yourself a solid marketing platform.
Develop Your Brand
Do you know why Starbucks is able to sell coffee for $4? Well, it is not because of the over roasted, bitter coffee they serve. It is because they have developed a brand that goes beyond their logo. They have developed a brand that sticks with people, they have developed the reason they are in business and you are willing to spend $4 for coffee.
Your brand is more than just a logo, tagline, website, and color scheme. Your brand is your “why”, the reason you are in business. The reason you get up early. The reason you go to bed late. Your brand is what matters to your customers. Your brand helps set the tone for your business and marketing activities.
Nurture Your Leads
Did you know that is can take up to 16 impressions or touches to convert a lead to a customer? That’s right, 16. So if you are not nurturing new leads and giving up too soon, chances are you are not going to generate new revenue.
This is where your marketing tools come into play. If your marketing automation and email platform are integrated into your CRM or contact database you have a better chance to succeed. According to HubSpot, 67% of B2B marketers say they see at least a 10% increase in sales opportunities through lead nurturing, with 15% seeing opportunities increase by 30% or more. This is nothing to sneeze at.
If you are not nurturing your leads, you are leaving money on the table and stalling the growth of your business. It is really that simple. Get a simple drip email system in place.
Report on Your Campaigns
Marketing Without Data Is Like Driving With Your Eyes Closed – Dan Zarrella
When was the last time you looked at your marketing performance? Never, that sounds about right. Analyzing your service marketing is important because it tells you what is working and more importantly what is not working. Reporting on your marketing campaigns will increase the effectiveness and stretch your marketing dollars. Invest the time to look at your data monthly. Your business will thank you.
Service Marketing Conclusion
Service marketing is a different beast. Trust me, I know from experience. Selling an intangible widget is one of the hardest things to do. All b2c and b2b service based business can benefit from service marketing if done the right way. If you are serious about growing your service business, service marketing will help.
It is time to get a free digital marketing assessment and see how your business compares to the competition. get started below.