Business is a high stakes game where you’re often competing against companies much larger than you, companies with bigger advertising budgets than you, and companies that have a stronger online presence than you. That can seem like a pretty big obstacle.
What’s one to do?
Throwing your hands up in despair and saying “How can I compete against that?” Is certainly an option…
You can put your thinking-cap on and ask “How can I create an unfair advantage that will allow me to compete and become THE market leader?”
At RoofEngine, we believe that the big obstacles are the ones that are worth overcoming the most. Big obstacles tend to have big rewards for those that dare to tackle them head on with strategy, ingenuity, and a bit of courage.
Today, we’re going to discuss 5 different strategies you can implement in your roofing company to gain an unfair advantage over your competition.
It doesn’t matter if you’re a brand new roofing company trying to establish yourself, or if you’re an establish roofing company looking to expand your market dominance or even break into new markets.
These strategies, when implemented, will give you an unfair advantage that will make achieving your growth goals much easier, less stressful, and more within reach.
With that said, let’s dive right in.
Unfair Advantage Strategy #1: Maximize Your Google Reviews
When it comes to improving the strength of your roofing company’s brand presence online, perhaps nothing is more important than the “low hanging fruit” of simply getting more 5 Star Google Reviews.
This day in age, more than ever, 1st impressions matter.. a lot more than you’d think. Google has conditioned people over the last 20 years to immediately start to make judgements about a business based on their Google Review Score.
The reason is simple, with so many options to choose from when searching for anything online, we need a way to filter out the wheat from the chaff. A Google Review Score makes this easy because it provides an average rating for every business based on the experience that previous customers have had.
So if someone is searching for “roofing contractor in my area”, they’re not only looking for a roofing company. They’re looking for a GREAT roofing company. The Google Review Score is usually the first thing they will consider into their decision making. A roofing company with 4.9 rating from 162 reviews warrants a high amount of trust, credibility, and confidence from the customer. It leads them to think “Wow, this roofing company has a long track record of knocking it out of the park with their customers.”
On the other hand…
When someone searches for a roofing company and comes across a roofing company with a 4.1 star rating from 14 reviews… they’re going to be somewhat skeptical of calling that company IF there’s another roofing company within a click of a mouse that has a higher rating and more reviews.
That brings me to my next point, reviews and your Google Review Score are RELATIVE.
If you’re in the middle of nowhere and the top roofing company in your area has a 4.5 Google Rating from 39 reviews… you don’t need a 4.9 Google Rating from 200+ Google reviews. You just need be SLIGHTLY better than them at first glance to make a great first impression.
Remember, the customer is rarely looking and examining your roofing company in isolation. They’re ALWAYS comparing you to your competition to see how you stack up and which company is the LEAST likely to disappoint them or do a poor job.
That’s why it’s crucial to constantly have a pulse on how you’re stacking up to your competitors. It’ll fluctuate month to month, year to year, and you’ll need to adjust your strategy based on those fluctuations.
Doing a Reputation Blitzkrieg and going all out for 6 months to get 5 start Google reviews is better than not doing anything, but be sure that your competitors will catch on to your growing reputation and eventually try to out-do you.
To prevent this from happening, it’s wise to see your reputation as a moving target that’s constantly shifting and your strategy will need to shift accordingly.
If you’re serious about maintaining a strong reputation over time and becoming the #1 roofing company in your area, it may not be a bad idea to create a specific job role in your business - a “Reputation Specialist”.
What does a “Reputation Specialist” do exactly? They’re responsible for ensuring that your online reputation is constantly improving and getting better every month. That includes calling on your previous customers to see how they’re doing, ask for a Google Review, and guide the customer through the process of leaving a review. Their KPI (Key Performance Indicator) is # of 5 star Google Reviews collected every month. If you can add 10-20 Google Reviews every month, you will fortify your online reputation with 120-240 new reviews per year.
This type of “Review Velocity” will surely outpace 90%+ of your competitors. You’ll become a force to be reckoned with, and the quality of your leads will go up significantly once they see you as THE go-to roofing company that they can trust and rely on to get the job done successfully.
If you’re not ready to bring on a Reputation Specialist, you can get the ball rolling by using software like BirdEye to help collect Google Reviews from your customers. I assure you that it’s not as easy as it seems just because you have a software that’ll help you. The magic, just as it is in sales, is in the follow-up.
Having somebody on your team directly responsible for guiding your customers through the Google Review process and following-up with them will go a long ways in boosting your reputation.
Unfair Advantage Strategy #2: Capture Video Testimonials
Capturing video testimonials for your roofing company is the next way you can gain an unfair advantage over your competition.
Video testimonials carry an inherent level of trust and credibility because they’re much harder to fake than written testimonials. Customers who are presented with multiple positive video testimonials are able to place themselves in the shoes of those you’ve previously worked with and get an idea of what it’s like to do business with your company.
Unlike Google Reviews, video testimonials isn’t a moving target that you constantly have to keep up with. Collecting a decent sized portfolio of video testimonials, anywhere from 10-15 videos will be enough to convince even the most hesitant customer that you’re a roofing company that does what it says.
The main thing to remember when it comes to video testimonials is that the organic & natural ones tend to work better than professionally filmed and edited testimonials.
That’s great news for you! You don’t need to spend thousands of dollars on a videographer and video editor to create TV ready testimonials.
Instead… I recommend equipping your sales team with a Video Testimonial Kit.
It’s cheap, effective, and relatively straightforward.
A Video Testimonial Kit has 2 parts. A way to capture video, and a way to capture great quality audio.
Even though you could get the job done with an IPhone, the audio won’t be that clear. That’s why I recommend using a Bluetooth microphone that can be paired with either a smartphone or any Bluetooth equipped camera. This simple setup will allow you to capture beautiful high-quality video testimonials for less than $300. Here’s a Bluetooth microphone you can get from Amazon: [Insert Link]
If your sales reps have modern smartphones the video quality should be good enough.
To further motivate your sales reps to collect these valuable video testimonials, you may want to consider implementing a Bonus for every video testimonial collected. Remember, each quality video testimonial is an asset that can be used time and time again to generate more leads for years to come. It makes sense to compensate your sales reps a little extra for the time and effort in collecting them with a bonus of $250-$1,000. Whatever you think is fair and motivating.
Implement a Video Testimonial System in your roofing company that looks something like this. This is just an example of what you could do, so feel free to modify it as needed.
Step 1: Capture video testimonial from your customer
Step 2: Send video testimonial to a Dropbox/Google Drive folder titled “Video Testimonials”
Step 3: Notify your webmaster that you have a new video testimonial that needs to be added to your website.
Step 4: Notify your marketing manager/marketing company that you have a new video testimonial that needs to be promoted on your social media pages.
Step 5: Integrate your new video testimonial into your sales presentation and into your proposal package that gets sent to any sales qualified lead.
Step 6: Create a new Facebook/Instagram/YouTube Ad with your video testimonial to generate new leads.
Perhaps the most powerful way to use video testimonials is in your online marketing. They’re a great point of differentiation that allow your marketing to stand out from the rest of the roofing companies essentially saying the same thing. Individual customer experiences captured on video make for amazing unique content that your competitor’s simply can not rip-off.
Put them to work inside of your business and watch the lead quality increase and speed to purchase decrease!
Unfair Advantage Strategy #3: Retarget Your Website Visitors With Credibility Building Ads
One of my favorite ways of making a roofing website more effective at generating quality leads is to run a simple retargeting campaign with credibility building ads.
Sound like gibberish? It’s pretty simple actually.
Here’s the idea in a nutshell: For every 1 person who visits your website and contacts you, there’s likely 20 who visit your website and leave without taking any action. Instead of letting them go and hoping they come back or call you eventually, we can gently nudge them back to you with a Retargeting Campaign. In the process, they’re shown multiple video testimonials or before/after photos throughout the internet to keep you top of mind 6 months after they initially visited your website.
The majority of people have a very short attention span these days. For this reason, it’s important to create an online marketing strategy that ensures you’re not being forgotten any time soon.
The way we do this is by creating a Credibility Building Retargeting Campaign that will automatically follow your website visitors around the internet and deliver your Credibility Building Ads to them.
What’s a Credibility Building Ad?
Well it’s anything that you can show your website visitors to help them trust you and like you more.
1. Written testimonials
2. Video Testimonials
3. Before/After Photos
4. Awards You’ve Won
5. Any Guarantees You Have
You just need 2 to 3 different Credibility Building Ads to have an effective Credibility Building Retargeting Campaign.
Come up with 2 to 3 different ads, and have whoever is in charge of running your marketing campaigns create a simple Retargeting campaign in Google Ads and Facebook Ads with a small budget of $10-20/day. You won’t need to spend thousands right away unless your website has significant monthly traffic.
Once setup, you can simply set it and forget it and still get great results. From this point on, anyone who visits your website will be followed around the internet with your Credible Building Ads, giving them multiple chances to come back to your website and call you or fill out your contact form.
The ROI on retargeting is typically the highest out of all of our marketing campaigns that we run. Don’t ignore this unfair advantage if you like easy money.
Unfair Advantage Strategy #4: Set-Up A “Phone Tree” To Segment Your Incoming Calls
One of the common issues with marketing is not having any real clarity on what’s actually working and making you money and what’s not working and wasting your money.
I’m sure you’ve had a bad experience with an advertising company before where they only brought in junk leads or telemarketers. Then they presented a “vanity stat” like Total Inbound Phone Calls and tried to get praise for their work.
Or maybe you’ve run a Google Ads campaign to generate leads that rarely brought in a qualified lead in a sea of telemarketing calls. If you used Conversion Tracking, those telemarketing calls were reported back to Google Ads as a lead and helped shape your campaign in the wrong direction.
Rather than manually filtering and qualifying your phone calls, it’s worth considering implementing a phone system with a phone tree. A Phone Tree is an automated message that asks your inbound callers to select one of a few options to be routed to the right place.
Here’s an example of a simple phone tree:
“Thank you for calling ABC Roofing. To best serve you, please tell us what you’re calling about.
If you’re a new customer, please press 1 to contact our sales department.
If you’re an existing customer, please press 2 to be routed to our service department.
If you’re a vendor, please press 3 to be routed to our admin department.
Thank you for calling and we look forward to serving you!”
This Phone Tree set-up can have multiple benefits based on how many inbound phone calls you get. Perhaps the most stress-reducing one is to immediately forward any vendors to a voicemail box that gets reviewed once per week.
But where a Phone Tree really becomes valuable in helping you make more money, is its ability to automatically “tag” any inbound phone calls as a New Lead rather than an existing customer or a telemarketer.
Using a phone system software like Callrail (our favorite for 5 years), you can easily send this valuable data back to your marketing campaigns in Google Ads or Facebook Ads. The LAST thing you want to do is to report all inbound phone calls as a success to your marketing campaigns. These days, all marketing campaigns use Artifical Intelligence based off a simple feedback loop. The feedback your marketing campaign is looking for to auto-adjust itself and get you more leads is a successful outcome, like an inbound phone call. So if 60% to 80% of your inbound phone calls are either existing customers or telemarketers, you’re sending bad feedback to your Google Ads or Facebook Ads campaign.
After your Phone Tree has been setup, you’ll be able to sleep well at night knowing exactly how many qualified leads each of your marketing channels is actually producing. Your marketing manager or company may not be as happy if they’re used to presenting the vanity metric of “total calls” that doesn’t really mean much. But for you as the business owner and main investor in your marketing, clear data will allow you to know EXACTLY what’s working and what’s not working. No more mystery marketing black boxes in your business, means more money going into your pocket and less money being wasted.
Unfair Advantage Strategy #5: Run A TV Commercial That Sends You A Refund For Everyone Who’s Not Interested In A New Roof
Imagine running a TV commercial where you only have to pay for the people who watch it. That means if you show it to 500,000 people in your market, and only 25,000 of them are interested enough to keep watching, then you get an instant refund on the remaining 475,000 who just saw your TV commercial as an unwelcome ad.
Sounds too good to be true, right?
Well… let me introduce you to the marketing innovation of the century that is YouTube Advertising.
Since 2020, YouTube Advertising has been our secret weapon at RoofEngine.
For the first time ever, businesses are able to broadcast their message to a target audience that they choose, get immediate feedback on how relevant and effective their campaign is, and most of all - they don’t have to pay for anyone who finds their ad irrelevant and clicks “Skip Ad”.
This is absolutely massive and a huge unfair advantage when you know how to use it!
It’s how we generate residential roofing leads for $5 when a comparable lead on Google is $100.
It’s how we generate commercial roofing leads for $50 when a comparable lead on Google is $150-200.
YouTube Ads is an incredibly powerful weapon to have in your marketing arsenal because it lets you reach the people in your market on Youtube with ads that only cost you money when someone finds it relevant.
Unlike Google Ads or Facebook Ads where you have to pay for every single click, Youtube Ads only charges you when someone sees your ad and doesn’t skip it. This is a marketing super power that’s only been available to us as of the past few years.
It allows you to advertise like a nationwide roofing company on a new roofing company’s budget.
The challenge is in the initial hurdle of creating a Youtube ad that can capture your target customer’s attention quickly, within 5 seconds to be exact.
Here’s our formula for winning Youtube Ads that work…
Part 1: The Hook (First 5 Seconds)
This is THE most important part of your ad. You want to view The Hook as your imaginary magnet. It’ll attract those who you want and repel those who you don’t. Since not everyone on Youtube will have a roof that needs some attention, you’ll likely be repelling the vast majority of your viewers away.
Here’s an example of an effective hook: “Have you been thinking about replacing your home’s roof?”
Simple as that. Anyone who doesn’t own a home or who owns a home but isn’t thinking about their roof will immediately think “nope” and skip the ad when the button becomes available at the 5 second mark.
Congratulations, you’ve now saved ~95% of your marketing budget by repelling away uninterested people.
Part 2: The Problem (:05 to :20)
This is where you get to elaborate on the problems they may be experiencing such as roof leaks, missing shingles, or even concern about a previous hail storm that passed through the area.
Here’s an example of an effective problem: “Roof issues are a common and expensive problem that you’ll face as a homeowner. An unaddressed roof problem can lead to further damage to your home and more unwelcome expenses. But this doesn’t have to be the case if you address the roof problem in time.”
Boom, in the first 20 seconds we’ve effectively hooked a home owner with a roofing problem, explained the significance of the problem their facing, and have hinted at a way to minimize their costs and worries.
Part 3: The Solution (:20 to 1:00)
The Solution section of the video ad is where you can start to explain how you can help the homeowner from experiencing more problems and more expenses. This can be where you offer a free roof checkup, a free estimate, or a low-priced roof tune up.
Here’s an example of what you can say during The Solution section: “ABC Roofing has been helping homeowners in [YOUR MARKET] sleep better at night knowing their #1 investment, their home, is safe and protected with a leak free roof. But not every home needs a new roof. It’s important to get to the bottom of your roofing problem as quickly as possible to avoid further damage and costs. That’s never been easier before, with our Free Signature 12 Point Roof Inspection. We’re here to help you with your roofing issues any way we can, but any good solution has to start with a good diagnosis. This is where our Free Signature 12 Point Roof Inspection comes in. One of our roofing experts will carefully inspect your roof and provide you with a report grading your roof on 12 critical points.”
Again, this is just an example I made up on the fly, but you can modify it as needed for whatever type of lead you’d like to generate.
Part 4: The No Brainer (1:00 to 1:30)
The best thing you can aim for in your marketing is to always have your audience see you and your offer as a “No Brainer”. A No Brainer has two parts.
High Upside - They should feel like they’re getting a lot of value
Low Downside - They should feel like they have very little to lose or risk
If you try to sell a full roof replacement in a 1 minute 30 second video you’ll have your work cut out for you. So lower the barrier. Aim to get the customer into your world with a No Brainer offer that simply makes sense for them.
Here’s what that looks like when we add that to the script: “Just like any problem, roof problems only get worse the longer you wait to address them. Rather than putting off and getting around to it later, why not get peace of mind by knowing exactly what your roof needs to be in excellent condition so that it can keep protecting your home. That’s exactly what our Free Signature 12 Point Roof Inspection will do for you. Click the link in this video to schedule yours today. Over [how many customer’s you’ve served] have trusted ABC Roofing to finally put their roofing problems and worries in the past. Request your Free Signature 12 Point Roof Inspection today, what do you have to lose?”
And there it is!
This video ad can now be working for you 24/7, reaching the people in your market who need your help, while not wasting any of your hard earned dollars on those that could care less.
Hopefully this article has given you some ideas on how you can gain an unfair advantage in your roofing company. If you have any questions about these Unfair Advantage Strategies and would like to know how to get them implemented in your business, I invite you to book an Unfair Advantage Discovery Call where we’ll explore exactly where you are at in your roofing business today, where you want to go, and which Unfair Advantages we can deploy to help you get there faster.
In full transparency, if at the end of the call, we believe we can help you reach your goals. We will extend an invite for you to work with RoofEngine. We guarantee that you’ll love the results we generate for you in the first 90 days or we’ll immediately refund any money you’ve spent with us up to that point.
PS: That’s our “No Brainer” for you. Best case scenario: We implement some unfair advantages for you, generate more leads for you, and you get an amazing ROI. Worst case scenario: We fall short of meeting your expectations, we’ll refund your money, and we’ll part ways with no hard feelings.
Click here to book your Unfair Advantage Discovery Call.
To your growth and success,