Simple promotions can keep customers coming back to your company year after year. Email is a low-cost and easy way to foster loyalty in your HVAC customers. A well done email campaign delivers convenient service, timely information and savings to your customers. How do you plan a successful email campaign?

At a minimum, you should send short semi-annual emails right before the spring and fall seasons. Your objective is to encourage current customers to schedule seasonal service. Even if your office makes phone calls to schedule service, an email can help get your customers in the HVAC mood.

An early email reminder gives your regular customers the opportunity to be first in line, rather than having to wait weeks for an opening in your schedule (or find someone who can respond more quickly). Include a phone number or a link to sign up on your website for an appointment.

Add value to this reminder email by including a second piece of information – something that could save your customers money, help them choose new equipment or answer a maintenance question. Keep the content short and specific. If you don’t want to write content, it’s fine to point customers to something you think is handy – give a link to an article or video on another site you trust. Or, for example, my electric utility has great 5-minute videos on topics such as weather stripping a door and sealing leaky electrical outlets. Including a link to a public utility site like this is easy and free. Alternately, grab your camera and make your won. “Man on the street” videos are a great way to communicate new things, build recognition and show customers who you really are.

Here are a few ideas for additional content:

  • Help them save money – explain your HVAC specials, alert them to rebates from manufacturers, or spell out state and federal tax credits.
  • Help them control energy costs – discuss what they can do to ensure their equipment lives a full life and performs at peak levels.
  • Explain a seasonal maintenance task – for example, coil cleaning, water heater maintenance, sealing leaky ductwork – or give them a link to a good YouTube video on the subject.
  • Lay out their options for a new heating or cooling system. It’s something consumers rarely consider before their existing system wears out. Even if they’re not yet interested, they’ll know who to call when they’re ready.
  • Discuss a new trend or technology in HVAC – or even easier, post a link to an article.
  • Offer a coupon or discount for posting a review on your site or encourage your customers to review your service on Angie’s List.

A simple, well timed email campaign serves your customers by making it easy for them to maintain their heating and cooling equipment. It also educates them and ensures that you’re the one they think of first when they need service. Next month we’ll discuss how to make sure your emails get read.