How to Grow Your Painting Business, Part 6: House Painting Leads

March 6th, 2015 | Eric Barstow | Painting Business Articles, Videos | 5 Comments

Hey how is it going? This is Eric; I’m the co-owner of Painter Choice and the founder of Painting Business Pro. And this is the sixth video in a series of six videos teaching you how to grow your painting business and in the first five videos; we’ve covered a whole lot of stuff.

First video we did a basic overview of what we’re going to talk about and the second video, we talked about how important it is to free your time so you can have time to focus on growing your business and the biggest place that we free our time is by making our production system a lot smoother whether we’re using subs or employees. So we talked about that in the second video, the third video we talked about how to slowly grow marketing and sales and the balance of growing marketing and sales at the same time. We talked in the fourth video about the importance of sales, we talked a little bit about how to improve your sales and how to ongoing improve your sales because that such an important skill which we kind of demonstrate in the third video. Once we get to the fifth video, we talked about how we choose what marketing we’re going to do, how we decide whether or not certain marketing source is good or not and how to slowly add and grow your marketing sources to get more and more lead as you need them.

So in this video we just really we wanted to do two things, one, we want to give you an introduction to Painter Choice, tell you a little bit about it, how it works and give you an introduction to Painter Choice. Also wanted to give you an opportunity to see all the different opportunities there are for marketing out there because there’s a lot of them, Painter Choices is one and we’re just one and our company is a ton of different marketing sources besides Painter Choice. We want to let you know what some others are so you can get out there and start testing for yourself. Because a lot of times, marketing sources are different in different parts the country and what might work for us, might not work for you and what works for you, might not work for us. So we want to give you kind of idea of everything that’s out there so you can go and figure out what’s going to be best for you and your business.

So I’m going to talk in this video, I’m not going to write all the different places down, what we’re going to do in this video is just kind of give you an outline of all the different types of marking we can do and there’s a link below this video in the comments and if you click on that link , it will take you to my website and on the website, we’ve actually, we’re going to have every different marketing source listed and we’ll keep adding to that list and I’m only going to put comments on stuff that we’ve actually tested and tried and just say “hey, here is our experience, here’s a few notes about it.” So if you click the link below, it’ll take you to the website that’s just got a list of all the different marking sources that you can try so you can start to pick and choose from there. So that’s where you can find the resources.

So now let’s just kind of get into what are the different types of marketing we can look into and there’s going to be multiple companies you can work with for every different type of marketing that we have. So the first one here is paper lead, we’ve discussed this earlier, that’s where I recommended people start simply because you’re only paying for the leads you get and you can control the volume of leads you’re getting so that you’re not getting overwhelmed with too many leads and you’re not having to fork up a ton of money up front for a lead that will maybe come later. So the first company I’ll talk about here is Painter Choice, so I want to tell you a little bit about Painter Choice. We started three-and-a-half years ago Painter Choice started and I was not part of the company, it was started by Chandler who is my partner now and he started Painter Choice and I was his first customer, so he was advertising online and finding customers who needed painting estimates and referring them to me and I was setting up those estimates and booking a lot of work from Chandler. And he’s doing the same thing for a couple of other friends in Colorado, we were all having a lot of success with it and so I took Chandler out to dinner one night and we had some drinks and I talked him into making me a partner with him in Painter Choice. So we started to grow the business almost three years ago now, so I think it was in 2012 in March is when we started Painter Choice just here in Colorado, we went to like four or five cities that year. Last year we grew to about fifteen cities and now we serve leads in over thirty cities nationwide and how our service works is we advertise online to customers who are searching for a painting company, most of the time that’s on Google. So customers searching on Google, they come to our website and they tell us all about their painting project. So they’ll give us their name, their phone number, their email address, tell us about their project in order to get three free painting estimates from qualified local painters like yourself. So the moment that they submit their project on our website, we text message you and we email you all the customers information, we also email the customer all of your information so that they know we’ve referred you. When we do that, we send you two different types of leads, one lead is if it’s one room or smaller, so if we send you a lead that’s one room or less, we’ll send you that lead for free, so we won’t charge you anything for that. If we send you a lead that’s two bedrooms all the way up to full interior where it’s an exterior lead or it’s a commercial lead, whether it’s an office building or an apartment complex, all of those leads are $35 dollars per lead. So when we send you that lead, we charge you 35 bucks.

If we getting disconnected phone numbers and that kind of thing, we will always refund those types lead but that’s the service, we don’t have a startup fee, we don’t have a contract, we don’t have a cancellation fee, we just want to provide quality leads to painting companies and depending on your area and where you cover and what your service area is, we’ll determine the volume of leads that we can send you. So if you’re interested in using Painter Choice, you can go to our website which is which is also in the comments below and we can talk to you a little bit more about setting up an account for you. We also have an exclusive lead service, so for painting contractors who are located in the area where we don’t work with any other contractors, you would be on our exclusive program where we send the leads just to you and instead of $35 a lead, we send that lead to three painting companies, we send that lead just to you and it’s $60 per lead. We’ve got great feedback from both you know companies who are buying exclusive leading and companies who are working with us, who are getting the $35 leads.

So if you have any question or you’re interested, you can find us on our website or contact us and we’ll talk. So the other services that you can look into for paper lead and this would be probably in order of my recommendations would be, is a good service, I’ll put that again in the website. Craft Jack is a good service, so with Thumbtack, Craft Jack, Home Advisor is the biggest but they’re the most expensive so you’ll just have to test that one out, networks is another one too and again, these will all be on the website.

So we have about five you know paper lead services that we can get too, there’s others too and I’ll put those on the website but they’re not ones that I recommend a whole lot. Everything is worth testing but I’ve heard worse things about some other companies, so I’ll put that in the comments. So then we have review sites, so nice thing about review sites is once you have a lot of views, these can be really good opportunities for you because customers who are requesting an estimate from you, they’ve already looked over all their reviews, they’re already pretty comfortable with you as a company so a lot of times those can be really good leads. Downside review sites is it can take a while to get going, you know it might be a little bit more expensive and until you’ve got a decent amount to reviews, you’re not going to get as much traffic. So it takes a little bit longer to start to know how that service is working for you, you can’t really know if a review sites working for you until you have reviews on that site to know if it’s working because no one is going to select you until you have reviews. The big one for review site is Angie’s List and Yelp, are probably the most popular and most traffic sites for reviews sites. We also have listings and directories, there are loads of listings and directors you can do, you can check with your local classified ads, you’ve got the Better Business Bureau, you got Yellow Pages,, Super Pages, Man to a City search, just to name a few.

So there’s a ton of directory listings out there and there’s also a lot of little weird niche opportunities and you’ll start getting contacted about those types of opportunities, once you start getting yourself out there a little bit more. Just for example, was like getting a hash half-page put in a pamphlet that goes out to bunch of golf courses or something like that. You’ll start getting more and more calls from solicitor soliciting you marketing opportunities, a lot of them are either direct mail or some type of listing or some type of flyer or pamphlet that you get listed in. So those ones, again you just got to test them, I don’t love these ones as much just because they really hit or miss, so you just have to kind of try them out. Next one we got here is door-to-door and canvassing, so door-to-door and canvassing is actually really effective. Door-to-door more so than canvassing, so door-to-door without getting into too much detail now, you can check out some of my other videos or actually check out my course and I go into tons of detail about door-to-door marketing. About the first million dollars that our company ever booked was exclusively from door -to -door marketing, the thing that’s really nice about door –to- door marketing is you can control the volume of leads you get, so that’s really nice. So if you need more lead, you can just go knock on more doors. The other thing that’s nice is since we’re approaching the customers, we’re usually beating other contractors to the punch so there’s not as much competition on those leads. They’re also actually a lot less expensive, I can get – I can hire someone to consistently get one lead per hour going door-to-door that I can pay $10 an hour for and that’s $10 per lead. Other lead services are going to range anywhere from $30 up to $75 per lead. So it much cheaper per lead, there’s less competition and I can control the volume of leads I get which is really nice because if I want to do more sales or I want make more money, I can hire more door-to-door marketing reps to go knock on doors. And just really quick what that looks like, is just they walking up to a door, knock on the door and I just hand the customer a flyer to say “hey how is it going? I’m Eric, I’m with Foothills Painting. I notice you had some peeling paint up here, so I wanted to give you a free estimate.” What’s your name? Okay, what’s your number? And we just take down there for there and then call them later and set up the estimate.

So it’s really straightforward, it’s really simple, you want to aim for middle upper-class neighborhoods and door-to-door is a really really effective strategy, especially to get the ball going you know for like review sites, sometimes it’s hard to get leads from these sites but you can get door- to- door leads and then have those customers review you on the review sites. So this is a great option, I love door-to-door, lawn signs and referrals obviously is another really great opportunity if you want to start to get your phone ringing. Then in the summer, just make sure you’ve got a lawn sign that every single job you’re doing, make sure you’re delivering really great production you know and really great service for your customers and ask for referrals. I talk to a gentleman just a few days ago who you know sold a million dollars from April to November himself and one of his best ways of getting business, was finishing a job with a customer and he’d actually asked them to walk him around and introduce him to some of the neighbors that they know and that’s a really powerful way to get work is to actually have your customers introduce you to their friends. So you just got to try it, it works really well and then down here we have website and SEO, so again on the page, the website below I’ll put some links in places that you can find really good company free, they’re getting a website built for cheap. We use a company that builds a website, does all of our SEO, you know post to Facebook, post to Twitter, they really manage a lot of our online presence for us for pretty reasonable monthly fee and subcontracts we get success working with them. I also could refer our designers, our developers or get some advice on how to make your website, so check out the link below for some that. And then SEO is a search engine optimization, there’s some really basic things you can do for that where you can hire a company to do that but that’s basically how to get your company ranked on Google and there’s really not that much mystery to it. A lot of these things will start to work together, the more you do of all of this, the more all these things will work. So for example, the more door-to-door jobs you get or paper leads you get, the more jobs you get, the more review list, the more reviews you get, the more lead you get from there, the more listings and directories the more leads you get, the more reviews you get and the more of all this that’s happening, the more people are visiting your website and using your website which Google likes so then they start boosting your website up the ranks. So all these things starts to really work together, so you’re like pushing a snowball down the hill, so you just start with something and then add, add, add, add, just add one thing at a time and test and test it and do it diligently even if it takes you a year or two you know or three to get all the sources going which it usually does take a couple years or few years to test everything out because you only have so much money to throw around.

So the thing to remember while you’re doing all this, is you have to test it, you have to track it and just be smart with your testing and your marketing. Follow the advice we’ve given, feel free to comment below, I respond to all comments, if you go to my website and you want to contact me, I personally respond to all the emails I get. I’m happy to answer questions and help out, I’m happy to give advice and I really hope that this series has been really valuable for you and you know I’d love to hear what you’ve gotten out of this series in the comments below. So thank you so much and good luck growing your business and we really look forward to working with you, thanks.

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