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The Sharpest Tool™

How to Build a Home Services Business with a Stellar Reputation

Cheryl McRae
Josh Smith
John Caprine is the Internet Marketing Manager Senior at Scorpion. He is passionate about helping home services clients strategize and communicate in a way that aligns with their identity and cuts through the noise of the competition. By coming alongside his clients as a partner, he identifies what will generate calls for their business, how to improve their website to tell their business story, and ultimately generate revenue.

Josh Smith (00:03):

Hello, everyone. Welcome to the sharpest tool. This is Josh and we are about to take the sting out of marketing for you today, where you got John. Caprino one of our senior VIP marketing managers here at scorpion, and he's joining us on the booth and I'm really amped about what we're about to talk today, John, so

John Caprine (00:22):

Welcome. Well, thank you very much. I appreciate you being here. So why don't

Josh Smith (00:25):

You tell everybody a little bit about what you do day in and day out as a senior marketing manager at scorpion?

John Caprine (00:32):

Yeah. So here day in, day out, I worked directly with our clients in the home services industry. So our plumbers, electricians, HVAC technicians, and really my entire goal is to be coming alongside them as a partner. I love to dive into their overall business to identify what I can pull out to ultimately make their business successful on a marketing aspect, generating calls for them, improving their website to truly tell their business story.

Josh Smith (00:59):

So what would you say is kind of your favorite part about that? Why did you get into the marketing space in general? What drives it out?

John Caprine (01:05):

It's so interesting to me because there's so many different moving parts of it. Everything impacts one another and there's no black and white story to how to truly market a company or truly market yourself. So something that really drives me is getting to know our clients, getting to know what makes them unique, what makes them stand out and how to tell their story and really communicate that to their clients in order to generate more business and revenue for them.

Josh Smith (01:32):

Um, is there some trend that you've seen in, you know, talking with all the clients that you deal with day in and day out that is probably something that they struggle with the most when it comes to their marketing?

John Caprine (01:42):

I would definitely say that one of the biggest struggles is that it's hard for them to directly communicate their message to their clients. And everyone says, I truly believe I'm the best. And I care so much about my clients, but I feel like it's a price market, or I feel like I can't communicate that. And I can't get that across to the clients on the other end, in order to show them that I truly care.

Josh Smith (02:06):

One of the big struggles that businesses have too, is this, how do you really provide value at the end of the day to the consumer? I mean, we all, a lot of them are providing services for problems that these people have, but how do they showcase that value before they even do the service? Is that where you come into the mix is showing them how to make that message happen.

John Caprine (02:24):

Absolutely. And talking to them about different aspects of what they're really up against, what is their competition communicating? How can we better communicate that and truly show their value to their clients through different ad copies, through the different branding on their website in order to really make it aligned with who they are,

Josh Smith (02:45):

How important is reputation in that delivery of the

John Caprine (02:48):

Message reputation plays a large role. Looking at reputation for a consumer is huge. That's one of the biggest aspects that comes into play through going through the entire cycle of a consumer decision decision-making processes, looking at reviews and having an online reputation that is positive, responsive is really important to the end user in the long run.

Josh Smith (03:10):

You mentioned something interesting how as the searching cycle, as people are going through that cycle, how has searching for service professionals changed in your estimation and experience? Well,

John Caprine (03:19):

It's changed a lot, especially as Google has really changed how their platform runs in order to make it more convenient for the consumer, providing them with more and more information, but just overall, who's going to be servicing us the best. Who's going to get me the best price who has the best reviews, who looks the prettiest online essentially. And not just, I'm going to stick with Joe, the plumber who has been servicing me for 20 years. Joe's a great guy, by

Josh Smith (03:43):

The way.

John Caprine (03:45):

Sorry, Joe.

Josh Smith (03:47):

Yeah. Everything you think it boils into that impression, it's almost like perception is reality, right? Absolutely. So if somebody has that five stars everywhere, then all of a sudden they are trusted because the public trusts them

John Caprine (03:59):

In a sense. Absolutely. I mean, if you put yourself in a consumer standpoint and you search for a plumber near me on Google and in the map listings, you see a plumbing company that has 355 star reviews, and then you have, sorry, Joe, Joe, the plumber who has 10 four-star reviews will the amount of reviews, the quality of those reviews really go a long way in the perception of the client and who they're deciding to go with. Definitely.

Josh Smith (04:24):

And so what's coming new in search, for example, let's talk a little bit about these local service ads. I think this hits home pretty pretty particularly with you and the home services industry, right? What are these local services and why are they so revolutionary on the actual search engine?

John Caprine (04:41):

Yes, well, the local service ads are a new twist that Google has been implementing to now change it from a pay-per-click perspective where you're paying for a position in the search results to now a pay per lead section. And now what happens is the local services actually pull from organic presences. So reviews actually impact you pretty heavily there in your overall organic presence and business reputation plays a large role in where you'll actually be showing up the local service ads. But the great thing about it is that you can target those very specifically based on specific keywords, such as a drain clog or someone looking to replace their toilet, certain aspects like that. And it's really, really revolutionary because Google is actually guaranteeing a specific amount of your work up to $2,000 of your work. They're guaranteeing that it's going to be done, right. And it's really revolutionary for the consumer knowing that, okay, whoever I have come in, they've been vetted by Google. They have had background checks and Google is guaranteeing their work. They have a high reputation in the area, so I know I'm going to get good work performed through them. And having that up at the top of the search results has now eliminated two ad positions on the search results. And it's just making it more prominent in order to need to be up in the top of the search results.

Josh Smith (06:05):

It's really interesting how important reviews and reputation play into that. It's almost like Google's version of Yelp. I've seen some people who have a thousand, this is crazy a thousand reviews on these things versus somebody who literally has 17. I mean, it's the impression changes astronomical in terms of who you would go with, the guy with a lot of reviews or the person with the little, you know, there's a lot of statistics and studies that have been done about online reputation and reviews, a percentage of people that actually look at it. Can you give any insight into those numbers and what the importance really is of those online ratings?

John Caprine (06:42):

Yeah, absolutely. So the importance of the online ratings, I mean, how Google perceives, where you show up in the organic search results and now impacts your local service ads and where you show up in those is significant it's based on over 300 different factors of which reviews your online reputation, how many visits come to your website, how responsive you are to those reviews coming across plays a really large role in their perception of you. And ultimately what Google's looking for is are you providing good service and responsive service to your clients? And I'm not quite positive on the statistics behind it, but I do know that it's a large portion of the search that is coming through that look heavily upon those reviews as part of their purchasing decision.

Josh Smith (07:27):

I was hearing something like 90% or as much as 90% in some cases, yeah,

John Caprine (07:31):

80, 90%. It's a significant amount of people who turn to those. I turned home every single time I make a purchase

Josh Smith (07:37):

About it. It's kind of like the online version of your word of mouth, right? That's a lot of people, their best tools are word of mouth. And it's almost like you need to take that word of mouth that's offline and translate it online. Right? Not all of it's good either. Like what recommendations do you give your clients when they get bad reviews? Like how do you deal with,

John Caprine (07:55):

You know, when you're dealing with people, there's always going to be people who can be difficult to please, or there's going to be a negative review that comes across your plate, even if you've tried to handle it in the best situation possible. And in order to make the best of a negative situation, it's always best to respond as quickly as possible and in as professional and positive light as possible. So I would always recommend responding to a negative review and making it known that you are trying to resolve the situation with that person. And then also reach out to them personally, if you have their direct information, reach out to them and try to resolve it behind scenes. And if you can have a resolution between the two of you to where they can actually remove that negative post, that is going to be the most effective way to resolve any negative situation and negative review. Yeah,

Josh Smith (08:42):

I think too, it's almost like it's for everybody else looking on to the absolutely good about, you know, that particular person, but have you encountered that as well? Like people who are like, oh, you know, this it's a good impression that people have when there

John Caprine (08:55):

Were absolutely. And that's exactly why I recommend it to all my clients. You know, if you do get a negative review, always respond to it because it's not just that person you're trying to resolve it with, but it's going to be everyone who sees that negative review coming across your review directories. So having any potential new clients see that they're putting in effort to resolve it and they can see the whole picture because there's three sides to every story. As you know, we've come to learn through dealing with many different reviews that have come across, that they can now see the fuller picture and see you as a business, really trying to make it right. That goes a long way versus seeing just a negative review with no response.

Josh Smith (09:36):

People get more of those positive reviews. I know, I know I've heard, I'm sure you probably encounter it as well. I've heard that a lot of businesses have they struggle with that. They struggle with getting a lot of reviews, getting the clients to leave reviews. I feel like they're beating a dead horse with a stick they've reached out five times and nothing has happened. What advice do you give your clients that are in that boat?

John Caprine (09:55):

I always give my clients that advice to have your texts, ask them in-person while they are still on the job. Reason being is while your texts are on the job that's going to be when your client is most likely to be posting a review for you, they have you in their home, they have that personal connection. And they also almost feel an obligation at that same time. If there is that personal interaction where you're coming and saying, Hey, you know what, if you really appreciated our service today, you were satisfied with it. It'd be great. If you posted a review, I'm going to send you a link and it would really go a long way. And I really appreciate it that right there, that sincerity and your technicians voice and coming and asking for their honest opinion really goes a long way. And people are more apt to do it in the moment versus through their day-to-day life. If you were to come back say, oh, I'll send it to you later this week, or I'll send it to you later today. And now they're caught up in many, many different things. So the most impactful and successful way to be doing it is in the moment while your tech is on the job in order to have that success rate of generating those positive reviews,

Josh Smith (11:00):

There anything that businesses can do to really increase the opportunity or the chances that they'll actually commit to leaving the review.

John Caprine (11:08):

Well, I mean, definitely always taking every single precaution when you're in the client's home. You know, if it's part of your process or if it's not part of your process, I would always recommend it, you know, wearing booties. When you go into the home, making sure that you're showing that you care about their property and you're caring about their home. That goes a long way. And just having that friendly tech in the home who is well-maintained clean, shave, and clean uniforms, and really presenting the business the best way possible that way. At the end of the day, when the service is provided and the customer is satisfied with the service, when you're asking them, there's no opportunity for a complaint, you know, so going about it the right way, the first time is going to go a really long way in producing a positive review for you, and then always having the tools accessible for your technicians. Totally knowing that generating a Google review is going to be the most positive aspect and biggest impact on your organic rankings. So asking them to post a Google review, do you have a Gmail account? I'm going to email this to you, or I'm going to text it to you right now. You can do it right here on your cell phone and explaining that process to the client while the technicians in the home will definitely increase that rate of generating positive reviews.

Josh Smith (12:17):

Is there anything that businesses can do to really increase the opportunity or the chances that they'll actually commit to leaving the review?

John Caprine (12:25):

That's a really good question. You know, I would just say being in constant communication with the client from day one. Yeah. You know, when they reach out to you for an appointment, having that initial interaction be extremely positive, energetic, and service oriented is huge. Making them feel like the most important person in the world, you know, and being empathetic to their situation. A lot of people when they're calling for a home service business, whether it's plumbing, HVAC, electrical, garage doors, you know what it be, they're in a situation where they need help and they don't know where else to turn. So being empathetic from step one and being sincere about their issue at hand and putting us significant importance on it is going to go a long way to how they perceive you as a business and then going from there, you know, following up, Hey, our technician is on the way or he's going to be here at this time. And actually arrive on time is really, really big. And then showing up in a clean truck and clean uniforms. And that is the perception going forward of what businesses really need to be doing in order to make a significant impact in a positive impact on their clients.

Josh Smith (13:33):

Absolutely. Well, John, this has been awesome. I think this is really valuable for businesses today. It seems to me that this is one of the Keystone things that people can do to really increase our ROI without investing any additional dollars. All they need to do is invest the time in being authentic and genuine for their customers.

John Caprine (13:50):

Absolutely. It's free. It's free take advantage of it at your best.

Josh Smith (13:53):

Yeah. So John, thank you so much for taking the time out of your busy day. We

John Caprine (13:57):

Really appreciate it. Absolutely. Thanks for having

Josh Smith (13:59):

Me awesome. Well, for anybody who has enjoyed this, found this valuable, definitely hit the subscribe button, wherever you're at, and you can get more of the sauce and content. My name is Josh. We'll catch you guys next time. Thanks.

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