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Justin Laju
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BigBill, post: 243418, member: 55027 wrote:
Hi,
I was wondering if anybody out there had any experience in marketing to tradesmen (specifically electricians).

There is plenty of information out there about marketing to the general public, but what about when your business needs to be marketed to very specific customer bases?

I have run an electrical wholesaling business for 7 years now, and our lack of success in marketing is the biggest factor in our lackluster sales.

Everything else in the business we have down to a fine art – efficient systems, happy customers, great pricing, great service. It really is a great business.

The majority of our customer base should be electricians – but it isn’t because I just can’t convince anybody to buy from me. The few electricians that are regular customers are 100% loyal – I save them time and money and they don’t go anywhere else now.

But getting new customers is downright impossible. Basically they are stuck in their habits of buying from their existing wholesaler no matter what – even if they are paying more, get poorer service and are supporting a multi-national company.

Most of my potential customers will not even acknowledge that I exist. They won’t respond to my emails (or even open them), they won’t answer my phone calls and they won’t even buy something from me if it is the same brand at a better price than what they are currently paying.

I guess what I am asking is am I missing something?

My gut feeling is that you’re facing a relationship barrier there…for many tradies its doesn’t just come down to cost but serviceability – and they use who they trust – who the industry trusts. They may be perceiving you as a smaller operator…can you seem bigger?

I agree that a doorway to that trust is through leveraging your existing client feedback.

Beyond that I’d turn this on its head and reach out to find those that are willing, only do it with more efficiency. People are not mad on the cold call or the cold anything – especially if they have existing warm relationships. Inbound lead generation reaches out to the right people at the right time with the right offer – and that way you are looking for “any issue that is bounding around in their head” any pain they have – is there a weakness in the offer they have with their current supplier – beyond just cost – look for them – which has the most emotion around it – reach out and leverage that with an offer directed to them, and get those that are willing to come to you.

Love media like Facebook, LinkedIn, and even Adwords can be a good way to get in front of the people looking…if you’re not up to speed on generating demand that way talk to someone who does that – and preferable on a cost per lead basis…but you need to have the emotional offer point of difference hook right – then only expect the motivated to come forward.