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Housing : June 2009
Building Your Business marketing on a Members’ Edge is all about supporting you in your business in tough times. Housing takes a closer look at what you can do. shoestring P romoting your brand need not involve spending thousands. There are some simple and cost-effective methods which can help, such as: • using business stationery • making your quote stand out from the others • making the most of signage • recognising that old customers can generate new customers • working your area • using direct mail-outs • using your HIA membership to advertise online. Here, we look at just a few. Making the most of signage If you have to put up a sign, make sure it is eye-catching and placed in a prominent position. Check with your local council to see what you need to do to be able to put up a sign on your front fence at home. Look into putting signage on your ute – and don’t forget the back of the tray as well as the door. Word of mouth Word of mouth is probably the most effective form of advertising.Where possible: • Ask existing clients – if: – you can take photos of the work you have done for them Remember your legal requirements No matter how you advertise your business, by law, you always must include: • your licence or registration number • your business (or trading) name • your ACN number (if you operate as a company). 34 – they would mind being contacted if a potential client was interested in talking to previous customers – they would provide written testimonials (which you can then use in advertising material at some time in the future). They may even volunteer to refer your business to others. • Keep in touch – make sure you’re not ‘out-of-sight, out-of-mind’ by keeping in touch with your previous customers. Invite them along to a networking or social event, send them information flyers giving details of your latest offers, or send regular newsletters. (Check out Members’ Edge Autumn 2009 at hia.com.au for a newsletter template which you can personalise.) What HIA can do for you HIA can help you with your advertising efforts at no extra cost to your business, because it’s included as a service in your membership fee. For instance: • Use the logo – Give your business a professional edge by displaying the HIA logo on your signage, vehicles, office or shopfront windows, your business card, invoices, plans and general stationery. The logo is available for downloading from hia.com.au and extra stickers are always available from your local HIA office. • Advertise online – tradebuild is a fantastic online marketing opportunity brought to you by HIA.Your business name, contact details, and the type of work you do are included and you can attach images and your website link as well. Tradebuild searches include Google maps so consumers can see exactly where you are located. • Provide an online quote to potential customers – HIA’s equote is an easyto-use online quoting system and is now also featured on realestate.com.au – allowing consumers easy access to building professionals they can trust. • Volunteer to spend time on an HIA ‘Ask an expert’ Stand – Next time there is an HIA Home Show near you, remember that HIA is always on the lookout for members to volunteer to spend time at the stand to assist consumers with their queries. It is a fantastic (and cheap) way to market your business to a large volume of people. H HOUSING JUNE 2009