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Southeast HVAC News Guest Column

The Marketing Science of Building Science.

by Rich Carrione - Warm Thoughts Communications
The Home Performance Contracting industry is filled with supremely talented and highly analytical building performance scientists, auditors, and engineers. By and large, we are results-oriented, data-driven and focused on delivering the greatest impact on each home performance job we undertake. It’s in our DNA.

Unfortunately, it’s been proven that many of the challenges in the home performance business have nothing to do with the technical expertise of home performance contractors. The challenges often lie in the contractors’ inability to generate enough leads and close enough work so that his technical expertise can be put to work to save energy and reduce consumers’ energy footprint.

For better or worse (often, it’s for worse), too many home performance contractors rely on their technical skills alone, without focusing their energies and efforts on marketing and acquiring enough customers to stay in business. The unfortunate reality is that most companies simply cannot afford to take a passive approach to generating leads and closing more sales, especially as more and more contractors are being forced to adopt a business model that can sustain itself as federal, state and local funding programs are reduced or eliminated.

What would it look like if we applied the same laser-like focus to marketing our business that we do to executing on a retrofit project? What if we utilized proven Marketing Science to generate leads and help us market our companies? Continue reading for insights into how to use Marketing Science to identify your key metrics.

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Establishing your Metrics through Marketing Science.

Before you can effectively employ a marketing strategy, you need to know what your target metrics are. This is where the “science” of marketing really comes in handy. And just like most things, the “science” is a matter of mathematics. Follow this simple, 4-step process and you’ll know EXACTLY what numbers you’ll need to achieve in order to be successful this year.


1. I need to generate $__________ in retrofit work (separate from energy audit revenue) to be profitable and stay in business.

2. My average job price is $________, so I need to close ___ jobs in 2013.
3. I have a ___% close rate from energy audit to retrofit job, so I need to conduct ___ energy audits in 2013.

4. I have a ___% close rate on energy audit leads to scheduled energy audits, so I need to secure ___ qualified leads in 2013. (an average of __ leads per month)

Now, let’s see how the math might work for a small to medium sized HPC and what the key markers are.

Marketing Science for Sample HPC

1. I need to generate $1,000,000 in retrofit work (separate from energy audit revenue)

2. My average job price is $4,250, so I need to close 235 jobs in 2013.

3. I have a 40% close rate from energy audit to retrofit job, so I need to conduct 588 energy audits in 2013.

4. I have a 75% close rate on energy audit leads to scheduled energy audits, so I need to secure 784 qualified leads in 2013. (an average of 65 leads per month)


This HPC now knows EXACTLY what his key benchmarks are, assuming of course, that his company performs as expected and achieves its targeted closing rates, average job price, etc. Now, you should use your own numbers to calculate your metrics.

This is the first of several steps that HPCs often miss. Once you’ve established your key metrics, you can focus on developing the plan that is most likely to generate the leads you need for the year. In the next article, I’ll discuss the science behind the Cost of Customer Acquisition (CCA) and using your CCA to establish your marketing plan and budget.

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About the author:
Rich Carrione is Director of Operations and Marketing for Warm Thoughts Communications, a leading marketing firm specializing in the HVAC, home performance, residential energy and utility industries.

 

 



 

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