The 4 Elements of a Carpet Cleaning Marketing Plan
Whether your carpet cleaning business is new or established, you will benefit from a strategic marketing plan to help keep a steady stream of business coming through your door. It’s the difference between getting caught working ‘in’ your business, going from booking to booking, and working ‘on’ your business, ensuring that it stays profitable over time.
When creating a marketing plan outline for your carpet cleaning business, it’s important to consider each element in a sequential way. A typical carpet cleaning marketing plan outline will include these elements:
- Market analysis (including segmentation and competitors)
- Marketing strategy (including web and mobile plans and implementation)
- Marketing calendar/roadmap (defines exactly what you will do and when)
- Financial plan
We’ll be taking you through these elements by outlining a plan for a fictional carpet cleaning company. Some of the following tactics might be perfect for your business, and you may choose to leave others off, but either way you’ll get a good sense of the marketing opportunities available to your carpet cleaning business.
1. Market analysis
For the purposes of this sample outline, we’ll be creating a startup offering truckmount delivery of commercial carpet cleaning services in downtown Ann Arbor, Michigan, a city of about 113,000 with about 1,300 businesses occupying 1.7 million square feet of downtown office space, and 212 downtown residential buildings housing about 18,000 people.
Customers are broken into two segments:
- Commercial office buildings in the downtown core – buildings of less than 50,000 square feet, with 20 tenants or fewer
- Residential buildings in the downtown core – buildings of 10 floors or fewer with no more than 100 units or 350 residents
We are targeting small and medium-sized commercial accounts (landlords, property managers, business, and building owners) because they have ongoing, predictable needs for service and require comparatively less customer support than the residential market.
There are three well-established competitors in the area: Best Way, Wolverine and, Hagopian. Best Way covers a broader geographic area but focuses primarily on residential services. Wolverine is a second generation company providing service throughout SE Michigan but again focuses on the residential marketplace. Hagopian provides both residential and commercial services, but has transitioned their commercial market address more towards carpet and flooring sales, with cleaning as longtail value item to support the sale.
Customers select vendors based on brand name, references, equipment capabilities, and price.
By comparison to the competition, our carpet cleaning company will be 100% focused on downtown Ann Arbor office and residential buildings. We will differentiate ourselves by the quality and power of our equipment, our professional quotation, job management, and invoicing, and our positioning/responsiveness to emergency callouts in support of unplanned service calls.
2. Marketing strategy
We will focus on a digital marketing strategy with an emphasis on customer discovery and lead generation. We will use a combination of web, mobile, social, as well as traditional tactics, and allocate budget based on channel performance.
Web and mobile
We will acquire an email list from a reputable vendor to target all property managers, commercial real estate agents, and business owners/managers in our target area, and cycle email them with informative content and calls to action, using email tracking metrics.
We will also run both free and paid campaigns on Facebook, and paid campaigns on Google Ads, A/B testing all ads and content to assure optimal performance.
Direct mail and community
Working with a third party consultant, we will design and a direct mail package targeted each owner of downtown Ann Arbor’s 1,300 registered businesses, to be delivered quarterly. We will also join and attend regular meetings and functions of the Ann Arbor Chamber of Commerce (COC) and the Ann Arbor Business Improvement Association (BIA). Finally, we will sponsor a youth sports team based in downtown Ann Arbor.
Seasonal promotions and referral incentives
Realizing that, for many businesses, the winter holiday season is a particularly high-traffic time of year (weather, shoppers, office functions, etc.), we will offer seasonal promotions for frequency of service (e.g., pre-booking to weekly carpet cleaning, vs normal bi-weekly frequency, during the months of December and January will earn the customer a complimentary office furniture cleaning).
Likewise, we will incent happy commercial customers to refer us to their peers by offering to waive chemical charges on one regularly scheduled visit for each successfully closed referral.
3. Marketing calendar/roadmap
To leverage the commercial world’s tendency to negotiate and award contracts based on their annual year end, typically occurring at end of December and end of June each year, we will focus marketing efforts on Q2 and Q4 of a typical calendar year (i.e., April/May/June and July/August/September). Key dates for our first 12 months of operation include:
March 17: Van rigged and ready
March 20: Website and social presence built
April 2: Open for business
April 15: Spring Cleaning mailer and Facebook campaign
May 7: Lead generation campaign on LinkedIn
June 18: Referral incentive email reminder to existing customers
July 23: Ann Arbor CoC Summer Fest event sponsorship
August 29: Kickoff promotion offering opening day football tickets to any customer that books for Fall
September 26: Lead generation email campaign to target prospects
4. Financial plan
In total, we have allocated $16,400 marketing budget for our first year of business. Those dollars will be allocated as follows:
- COC and BIA annual memberships – $750
(COC = $450, BIA = $300)
- Email list acquisition – $650
(1,300 names @ $.50 per)
- Facebook ads – $6,000
($500 per month, 12 months)
- LinkedIn ads – $3,000
($250 per month, 12 months)
- Mailers (x4, including postage) – $3000
- Van painting – $1,000
- Web tools – $750
(to manage and track email performance)
- Youth team sponsorship – $500
- Kickoff promotion tickets – $250
This brief marketing plan outline for a carpet cleaning business will help you get started. Be sure to provide the next level of detail for each line item (e.g., Facebook ads will target male and female business owners with fewer than 50 employees with office locations within 3 miles of downtown, etc.) You’ll also need to include an Appendix that supplies research and references for your plan.
Looking for more marketing inspiration? We examined 6 great carpet cleaning websites and compiled tips to make your site stand out.