Marketing Strategy for the Painting Industry

Land paint jobs for your business

By
George Leon | Updated August 23, 2022

The painting industry has skyrocketed over the last couple of years. Many new startups have entered the painting trade to take advantage of the boom in demand.

To stand out from the many competitors, you need a well-developed marketing strategy.

A marketing strategy for the painting industry involves having a well-defined brand, selecting your preferred marketing channels, and having a sales process that closes deals efficiently.

Step 1: Develop a Branding Strategy

In its simplest form, a branding strategy involves selecting your brand attributes and using them consistently.

Think of a painting company’s brand attributes like a person’s personality traits. Just like it’s easier to remember people with distinct personality traits, it will be easier for homeowners to remember a painting company with distinct brand attributes. 

How do you select your brand attributes? There are 3 three sources you can pull attributes from.

  1. Your ideal customer profile. What are your ideal customers like? Are they lavish and elegant? Maybe they’re sophisticated and polished. Think about your best customers and write down their traits.
  2. Your customer’s objections. Instead of just copying your customer’s own personality traits, this technique involves finding the attributes that your customers will best respond to. For example, maybe your customers are wary of contractors because they don’t feel safe with strangers in their homes, or maybe they’ve had bad experiences with arrogant contractors. In this case, having a brand that is “friendly”, “approachable”, and “warm” will help tackle their objections. 
  3. Your customer’s motivations. If your customers are motivated by status and keeping up with the Joneses, consider a brand that is “upscale”, “exclusive”, and “elite”. 
  4. Your company culture. There is no point in selecting brand attributes that don’t fit the values and culture of your company’s team. Think about what attributes are naturally displayed by your company’s leadership team. 

Now that you have a group of brand attributes selected, the next step is to ensure they are used consistently in all customer-facing communications or assets.

This is crucial because the moment you neglect your brand attributes, it’s like the mask comes off, and the client realizes it was an act instead of a genuine company culture that everyone in your team takes seriously. 

Here are examples where your brand attributes need to be on full display.

  1. Your painting company website design.
  2. Your digital and print ads.
  3. Your ad campaign’s landing pages.
  4. Your emails
  5. Your documents (painting contract template, estimates, invoices, etc.)
  6. Your team’s painting clothes or uniforms.
  7. Your vehicle wraps or graphics.

How do you use your brand attributes in all of those places? Consider hiring a designer to help you create a brand color palette, typography, and design systems.

You only need it created once; then, you can just reference these brand guidelines whenever you or your vendors create new ads, documents, etc.

Step 2: Select Your Marketing Channels

There are countless marketing channels for getting painting customers. 

But here’s the crazy part: Most marketing channels don’t work for most painting companies. 

How do we know that’s the case? You can test it for yourself by posting a question about the effectiveness of a specific marketing channel in your favorite Facebook group for painting contractors.

If you ask about Yelp, Homeadvisor, Painting Flyers, etc., most will tell you they had a terrible experience with it. 

What’s the reason? It usually involves putting the wrong offer on the wrong channel. 

Example #1: Let’s say you try HomeAdvisor. You’ll find that most customers that post a job on there are flooded with replies from various contractors.

So your offer has to cut through the noise and grab their attention. I suggest doing this by offering them a rough estimate over the phone.

Think about how they are currently dealing with many contractors trying to schedule an appointment and taking up their time. If you can give them an idea of pricing from the start, you just gave them something no one else did. 

Example #2: You’re sending cold emails to property managers to get commercial painting jobs but getting no replies. Why would they be interested in your cold email?

The secret is first to show interest in them. Start with a personalized line about them or their company. Examples include congratulating them on a recent award, mentioning something from a public interview they had, or their hobbies as listed on their Linkedin profile or website’s team page.

Then, offer a quick 15-minute call to determine if they are a good fit for your services.

Example #3: You’re running Facebook ads for painting, but your ad just talks about you. People scroll through Facebook to see something interesting or inspiring.

Show them the most beautiful after shots of your projects. Then include some before shots and tell an interesting story about the project. Don’t make it all about what you do, instead focus on the results your past customers achieved. 

You’ll find that each marketing channel requires a nuanced approach to deliver the right message. Keep experimenting with different messages until you land on something that resonates with your customers.

Now, get your message out there with this list of 22 marketing ideas for painting companies.

Step 3: Optimize Your Sales Process

Here are our favorite tips to increase your closing rate when estimating paint jobs:

  • The money is in the follow-up. Painting is usually not an urgent need. After sending your estimate, your customer will have all of life’s distractions to take away their attention. You can dramatically increase your closing rate by sending a series of follow-up emails or calls to remind the prospect about your painting proposal. But the key is to send a helpful email with something useful in each one. Some useful tips include “how to select the right paint colors” or “best paints for interior or exterior”. You can also include your recent reviews, awards, an explanation of your process, and more information about your company. You can leverage customer relationship management (CRM) apps and other painting contractor apps to assist with automated follow-ups.
  • Offer freebies such as a color consultation, digital color rendering, or a small painted sample.
  • Offer a limited-time discount. Everyone loves getting a little extra value for free. Consider running seasonal discounts.

Continue to Refine Your Brand and Marketing Strategies

Times change, your team changes, and your customer’s wants and needs evolve over time. Continue to experiment with your digital marketing strategies to find what works best for any given service you sell. 

You may find cabinet painting is best sold with an emotional message. While exterior painting is best sold with messaging focusing on avoiding expensive wood rot or other weather-related problems. 

Each year, devote some time to ensure your brand and strategies are relevant and bring you the best return on your investment.

Frequently Asked Questions

How do you stand out as a painting contractor?

You can stand out as a painting contractor by developing a brand with consistent messaging, selecting appropriate marketing channels, and optimizing your sales process.

How do you select brand attributes for painting companies?

A painting company’s brand attributes can match the personality traits of the company’s ideal customer profile. The brand attributes should also reflect the painting company’s team culture.

How do you brand a painting company?

A painting should apply its brand attributes to the design of its website, advertisements, emails, documents, uniforms, and vehicle graphics.

Written by

George Leon is a Managing Partner at Scalebloom (Parent company of BusinessHue). He used to be a partner at a painting company in Charlotte NC. George loves to help business owners scale their business with modern marketing strategies and branding.