7 Proven Ways to Market Your Painting Business

March 15th, 2021 | Chandler Zieg | Featured, Painting Business Articles | 87 Comments

If you don’t have effective marketing, you don’t have a business. Every potential customer starts as a lead or prospect. Unfortunately, most marketing doesn’t work. But here are seven proven ways that have worked for our painting businesses, which are now generating $4 million in annual revenue in five states.

1. Door-to-door marketing

When you’re just starting, this is THE best way to start. A lot of people are afraid to do this, or don’t have the hustle to do it. Which means more leads for you! Basically, every hour you go door-to-door, you’ll get 1-2 painting leads. We’ve run hundreds of marketing teams to arrive at this number.

Pick neighborhoods that are higher income, that need paint. Or have HOA’s that require them to paint every 8-10 years. Here’s a simple effective script you can use:

“Hi, my name is Chandler from Painter Choice and I noticed you had a little peeling on your trim. Would you be interested in a free painting estimate?”

Most people will say no, but a few every hour will say yes!

You’ll want to set up a time later to actually do the estimate. Some people will expect you to do the estimate right then and there, but don’t do this unless they insist. You’ll have a much higher closing rate setting up a special time, when all the decision-makers are present for the bid.

2. Referrals

Referrals are the best leads. If you provide excellent service and quality, you’ll get a lot of referrals. A lot of contractors are unreliable, don’t communicate well, or do sloppy work. So if a previous customer recommends you, there’s a 90% chance you’ll win the job just by showing up.

3. Lead Providers

Lead providers are companies that specifically generate leads for your trade: painting, carpentry, etc. It works like this. A potential customer submits a request for an estimate online and you are sent their information with the project details. For example, “Barbara Johnson needs to paint the exterior of her home, her number is 303-xxx-xxxx.”

We use a few different lead providers for our painting companies:

  • Painter Choice
  • CraftJack
  • Thumbtack

HomeAdvisor is one of the larger lead providers but we’ve had mixed results with them.

With lead providers, you usually pay-per-lead, or set up a monthly budget and get a certain amount of leads. If the lead quality is good, you can usually turn about 70-80% of them into estimates. And then typically sell one out of three bids into an actual job.

You’ll want to track the return on investment with each lead-provider individually to see which ones work the best.

4. Lawn Signs

Lawn signs are one of the best investments you can make for your painting company.

As you’re painting a house, ask your client if you can put up a lawn sign with your company info in their front yard.

This is a GREAT way to get referrals because people can see your work in action. And if the customer allows it, you can leave the lawn sign up for months after it’s completed. You’ll get months of free advertising this way.

When designing your lawn sign, keep it simple. Keep in mind that most people cannot see any small details on your sign. Our lawn signs just have our logo and company name, with our phone number and “Get a Free Estimate” (a simple call-to-action).

5. Lead Groups

Some painters have incredible success with lead groups. These are specific business groups that have various professions/trades. People from different industries will get together once a month and exchange leads/referrals. I know one painter that gets 2-3 jobs a month JUST from his leads group. BNI is one example of a lead group, but you can also search online for other networking groups in your area.

6. Flyer Drops

We’ve had some success with flyer drops, but it can get expensive. For example, we dropped 5,000 flyers, got about 15 call-ins, and sold eight jobs, but the flyer drop cost us $2,000. We DID make a profit from the eight jobs we did, even though the advertising cost us a couple thousand.

It’s important to have an attractive flyer if you’re going to do a flyer drop. Too many people try and include everything imaginable about their company on one flyer. But imagine how much junk-mail/flyers you get already. You really only notice a couple of important headlines, so keep your flyers simple and clear, and include a special that encourages people to call in by a certain time. It’s important to create urgency with this kind of marketing.

7. Online Advertising (SEO, Directories)

I bet you get two calls a week asking if you’d like to “be on the first page of Google”. These are SEO companies promising the number one spot on Google for painting.

First off, you should avoid anyone who PROMISES to get you on the first page. SEO is very complicated and can take a while to get to the top. No one truly knows what spot you’ll be in, except Google.

Online directories: We’ve had success buying a banner ad with the BBB. We tried Yellow Pages but got zero results. Just google around and see what directories and sites show up; get on those.

Most online searches still happen through Google, so if you’re not on Google (or a site that shows up on Google) you probably won’t be found online.


It can be expensive to experiment with new marketing, so try the ones that work well first. Be very diligent in tracking your ROI. If you’re not tracking which sources produce the most business for you, your just making blind decisions and throwing money away.

We use all the techniques mentioned in this article. Have you found something that works well for your painting business? Let us know (info@PainterChoice.com)!

Thanks for reading!

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