Air Conditioning Business: Staying Competitive Part 2
Have Fun & Get it Done!
In “Air Conditioning Business: Staying Competitive Part 1“, we covered learning from past mistakes, weeding out bad employees, and hiring veterans as well as hungry young HVAC talent, among other things
This part deals with the fun stuff like web content, social media, standing out and enjoying what you do! As we mentioned in Part 1, air conditioning businesses seem to pop up out of nowhere every day in Florida. One of the things we’ve learned at Super Heat & Air on our road to success is to differentiate ourselves from the hundreds of competitors we have here in the Greater Tampa Bay area. To not get lost in the shuffle, sometimes we have to get creative. From the colorful look of our fleet of vehicles to our logo to our offbeat web content, we get noticed!:
A Sense of Humor
The guy writing this blog post is here for several reasons, and one of those reasons is to help maintain a web presence for Super Heat & Air. I’ll just communicate in first person for a bit and tell you that when I was hired to provide content for Super Heat & Air, the first thing I asked myself is “how can we stand out”? I researched our competitors’ websites and read their blog posts, and while they’re all very informative, reading them was a chore. Until I started working here, I had little to no knowledge about the air conditioning business, and reading our competitors’ content made me think, “If this is bland to me, how can I create compelling content about air conditioning for others like me?” The answer: A sense of humor!
Creating content for an air conditioning business and making it interesting to the general public is no easy task. Most people who aren’t in the air conditioning business probably don’t care about what we do. Most people just want their air conditioners to work, but how many people actually want to read about how a condenser coil … well, works?
One of the key factors that has helped us stand out among our cookie-cutter competitors is creative content. For example, when Halloween season was closing in on us, we tied air conditioning specials to horror-themed content and crafted articles like “Scary Stuff: Why AC Maintenance Matters” to make them more compelling to the casual viewer. By employing humor into our content, we do our best to keep people informed but also entertained.
Social Media & Web Presence
Unless you’ve been living in a black hole of an alternate universe in some abyss in the Antarctic for the last decade, you know how important social media is to your brand and to your business. You also know it’s pretty much free advertising! When Super Heat & Air started out in 2015, we had a website and a pretty dormant Facebook page and … not much else!
If you did a Google search on “Super Heat & Air” or “Super Heat & Air Tampa” back in the first few months after we started out, the website you’re on right now would not even show up in the first 5 pages of the results! Considering that most people don’t look past the first two pages of an online SERP (Search Engine Results Page), that really sucked for business!
Today when you Google “Super Heat & Air”, you are likely to come across on the SERP: this website, our Home Advisor profile, our Facebook page, our BBB profile, our Yelp! listing, our LinkedIn page, our Twitter pageand maybe one of our YouTube videos. Those pages don’t create themselves, and to stay competitive in the air conditioning business, you have to hire social media and web professionals and expand your web presence as much as possible using the tools available that are essential to building it. You don’t want to stretch yourself (or your social media manager) too thin or have your hands dipped in every social media and business profile/review site out there. But dedicating time and resources to creating a robust web presence is something any company (air conditioning or otherwise) should do.
If you read that last paragraph and thought to yourself, “well everybody knows that,” you may be right. But not everybody hires social media managers, web content writers, graphic designers and video editors. And the segue to that is these creative professionals exist for a reason: to help make your business stand out!
If you’ve read our blog posts and seen our videos, you know we’ve put some crazy, goofy, offbeat content out there. Does it always work? Not always, but “thinking outside the AC box” and going offbeat or off-topic at times rather than providing dry technical air conditioner information that a layman won’t understand will not keep your audience engaged — or put eyes on your product.
Attention spans are shorter these days, and capturing attention is no easy task. So if we were to only produce content that is technical or strictly HVAC-focused like “Portable Air Conditioners: Things to Know” — which NOBODY but the guy who wrote it (me) read — we wouldn’t stand out among our peers.
But when we put out fun blog posts like “Gasparilla Parade 2017 Tips” or “Thanksgiving Day Fun Facts“, we get a decent amount of traffic to our site! It doesn’t have to be all air conditioning business all the time. Veering off-topic is OK to do once in a while as long as it is relevant to your business.
What does that have to do with air conditioning?
You might be asking yourself, “how is Gasparilla relevant to air conditioning or to Super Heat & Air?” … Well, we live in Tampa, right? Super Heat & Air is in Tampa, right? Gasparilla is Tampa, Florida’s biggest annual celebration/parade, right? Gasparilla is relevant to the community we serve. And by adding searchable and shareable content that is not necessarily about your business but is a hot topic to your potential and existing customers (that would be Greater Tampa Bay for us), you bring traffic to your website. Which means you bring eyes to your product. Which also means that somebody who came to your website to read about Gasparilla may stick around and find out more about your company and your services! And even if they don’t, they might share that article with people who will!
Blogging about upcoming holidays like Thanksgiving and celebrations like Gasparilla in a fun way not only puts eyes on your business, but helps you stand out as well. Go to another air conditioning company’s website in Greater Tampa Bay and read their blogs: they’re all the same! (Only the names have chaaaaanged!)
One of the key components to Super Heat & Air’s success is that we stand out with our web content. And it’s not just blogging. Videos are an essential part of any company’s web presence, and crucial to your Search Engine Optimization or SEO results. Your video content, whether it gets 20 views or 20,000, is still essential to your SEO results, as videos (particularly those uploaded to YouTube) are favored by the search engines (especially to Google, who owns YouTube). Yes, we could do educational and “how-to” type videos like everybody else does, but where’s the fun in that? Speaking of fun …
What good is being involved in an industry you don’t enjoy or have a passion for? The Super Heat & Air family (aka staff) loves all things air conditioning. But if you love your industry but don’t love the company you work for, then what’s the point of working there other than a paycheck?
We posted an article last year that Super Heat & Air is “Not Your Typical AC Company“. As we mentioned in the past, our success has a lot to do with our employees who love working here. Walk into our offices at 3654 W. Cypress Ave Tampa, Florida 33607 one day and you will see why! Happy employees, smiling faces, casual dress and a laid back office environment are a big part of why people love to work here! We’re all about business, but we can’t be successful if we’re not having fun! This is why we have so many longtime employees who have been here from the beginning or close to it and have stuck around. We mean business and we get the job done all while having fun!
As mentioned in Part 1, staying competitive in the air conditioning business means retaining a staff of professionals who love what they do and want to make the company they work for a success. We’ve had technicians and other staffers leave for “greener pastures” and then a short time later practically beg us to come back! This happens because the companies who may have offered them more money didn’t know how to treat their employees with respect … and because they weren’t having fun!
We’re not a conventional, cookie-cutter clone of every other AC company out there. Success in an industry as cutthroat, competitive and oversaturated as the air conditioning business is no easy feat! There’s no magic formula for it, but to stay competitive we look at what everybody else is doing … and we do it better!
You have to stand out or step down!
We invite you to come visit us and see for yourself how we’re different. And if you don’t want to stop by but still want superb air conditioning service from a company that gets it done while having fun, call us at (813) 355-0288, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. And thank you Greater Tampa Bay for being Greater Tampa Bay!
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