If you own a sandwich shop your competition is pretty clear. But if you sell services it gets a little fuzzy.
Depending on your market area, you may have a few direct competitors: other electronics repair shops like yours, a fair number of auto mechanics offering similar services, a few pet groomers with splashier advertising, etc. Each market may require a different type of advertising to gain new customers and keep your current customers. But what about the unseen competitor all service-based businesses (and some specialty businesses) share – APATHY?
Merriam-Webster defines apathy as “the feeling of not having much emotion or interest : an apathetic state”.
How does that apply to your business? Let me share a personal example. Our house is of the “popcorn ceiling” era. I love our house, I hate popcorn ceilings. Do I want to get rid of them? Yes. Have I researched how to do it myself? Yes. Do I want to do it myself or do I think it’s a task I could do? Maybe, but I’m sure my husband would not appreciate the time it would take me. Do I know of companies that would come in and do it for us? Probably, I might have to call a few people first. Have I called anyone? No.
Why have I not called someone? Because there are too many unknowns. How much will it cost? How long will it take? What will my ceiling look like when it’s done? Will they have to fix a bunch of stuff? Do I have to move all of my big furniture? What about that spot where the joint tape is loose? There are intangibles as well. If they’re going to resurface my ceiling with something more acceptable, should I take that opportunity to move the light fixtures at the same time? That’s on my list too. Can the same company do both jobs?
Let’s imagine I get a mailer from a company called “ABC Popcorn Ceiling Removers”. They targeted areas of town with homes built in the same era as ours. The flyer gives me an estimated cost for an average job with the disclaimer “prices vary, call for a free estimate”; a few pictures showing the process; what they do to the ceiling when they’re done; etc. Now I know who I can get to do it, approximately how much it will cost, their process, and how long it may take.
Will I call them now? Who knows, I’m pretty good at procrastinating. But I might use the information on that flyer to go out to their website and learn more about the company, what they do, read a few testimonials to learn how reputable they are, and while I’m there I might click on that form that says “request a free estimate”. Now it’s no longer on my to-do list, it’s on the callback list for ABC Popcorn Ceiling Removers. Will they call me? I hope so!
We are here to help you fight apathy. Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org or 320-281-0656.