If you’re a building product manufacturer that wants to earn more loyalty from contractors and installers — and strengthen your brand reach in the process — it might be the perfect time to set up a Certified Installer program.
A certification program can do 2 important things for your brand:
- Provide an incentive for local pros to become trusted, preferred experts on installing your products; and
- Give homeowners, commercial landlords, and other consumers even greater confidence in their purchases from your brand, with the assurance of high-quality installations from experienced, trustworthy contractors.
The benefits don’t stop there. A certification program will also boost the profiles of local pros who make the cut, giving them the edge over others who aren’t “Certified” at the highest level to work with your products. By helping out installers in this way, you’ll make them even more effective and enthusiastic promoters of your brand.
When a Certified Installer program is done right, it’s a win for everyone involved.
Lets cover 3 important tips a building materials manufacturer should keep in mind when creating a Certified Installer program:
1. Start Small and Scale Up
Before you launch a big initiative like a professional certification program, it’s important to start small. The best way to do this is with a feasibility study, otherwise called a “pilot program.”
Well-implemented pilot programs, especially for something as high-value as a Certified Installer initiative, can yield great results for a building material manufacturer. According to McKinsey, companies utilizing pilot programs can cut costs by over 30 percent, double their productivity, and enjoy increases in customer satisfaction and employee engagement.
Starting small will enable you to work out the kinks of a new Certified Installer program, and help pinpoint the training methods, instructional materials, and quality assurance checks that will ultimately produce the highest-caliber local installation services. Using that data, you can then gradually scale up your program with confidence.
Start by engaging with your top installers in one or two cities, and set up your initial training program in those locations only. At first, you should use this small-scale experiment to refine your contractor onboarding process and training system. You’ll quickly gain important insights into what works and what doesn’t.
Some other things you’ll learn include:
- What material to cover in training
- How the training is best delivered — whether online, hands-on, or a combination of both
- What kind of tests you’ll require contractors to pass before they’re certified
- How often certifications should be renewed
- What key performance indicators (KPIs) you’ll use to gauge the success of the program, such as the pass/fail rate on quizzes, attendance rate, and training completion rate
Since one of the main attractions for contractors will be a potential increase in local sales, you’ll have to determine and communicate exactly how the certification will help local pros build their businesses. A pilot program lets you explore different ways of promoting Certified Installers to homeowners and other end consumers (more on this below).
In your pilot program, be sure to allow your first few contractor “students” to provide feedback. After all, they’re the ones who stand to directly benefit — and they can offer suggestions that will yield a stronger, more impactful certification process in the long run.
From there, synthesize all your learnings for a replicable Certified Installer program that you can quickly roll out, one location at a time. As you do so, keep a close eye on KPIs to gauge how much installers are enjoying and benefiting from the program.
2. Generate Leads for Installers with Premium Locator Software
One of the most important outcomes for your Certified Installer program? Driving a steady stream of leads to the local pros who graduate from it.
This injects new life into your whole business ecosystem: your program gives contractors new customer opportunities, which translates to more closed deals for them and more sales of your products overall. However, to capitalize on this, you’ll need to add a contractor locator page to your website…and it should be powered by the latest and best technology in order to get the best results.
Long story short, you’ll need a solution like Bullseye Location Software to efficiently capture and manage leads for your certified installers.
Bullseye is a premium platform that lets you build simple, intuitive contractor locator pages for customers looking for the right local pro near them. Bullseye-built locators capture customer info through simple inquiry submissions, which allows you to share that info with your certified contractors on the ground.
According to 2018 Content Marketing Institute statistics quoted by Saleslion, 53% of content marketers used interactive content to generate leads, and 79% of those marketers planned to double down on the strategy in the following year. Bullseye’s fully-featured locator pages are the ultimate “interactive” content for homeowners, encouraging more of them to enter your sales funnel instead of a competitor’s.
What’s more, your Bullseye-built locator can also improve your website’s SEO rankings. Your locator page can be optimized for search keyphrases like “siding contractors Houston tx” or “window installers in Atlanta,” giving it a good chance of showing up at the top of the search results. That only means more exposure for your brand and installers.
Here are more of Bullseye’s key benefits as an all-in-one locator solution:
- Geolocation Detection — Bullseye automatically detects a web visitor’s location and instantly generates search results of installers and contractors in their local area, eliminating the need for them to manually search (a seemingly-small point of friction, but one that can actually cost you sales).
- Responsive and Mobile-Friendly — Bullseye locators work equally well on desktops, laptops, and mobile devices like smartphones and tablets, and can automatically scale to fit any screen size.
- Quick Setup & Integration — Bullseye quickly integrates with your existing CMS or can run as standalone software, letting you get started in minutes.
All in all, once you’ve dialed in a working Certified Installer program, you’ll want to use a Bullseye locator page to quickly drive high-intent leads to local pros who have proven themselves. It simply will mean more sales for your brand and a stronger network of loyal contractors.
3. Use Marketing Asset Management to Enable Installers with Product and Support Info
People are busy, and they want quick access to product information about your products when they need it. If finding it in a timely manner becomes a problem, they’ll move on.
After all, according to a 2021 report by Contentsquare, the average person spends less than a minute (just 54 seconds to be exact) on a web page. If this is true for homeowners needing a professional to help with renovations and installations, it’s even more so for busy professionals.
Once your installers successfully complete your certification program, they’ll need resources — everything from how-to guides and technical specifications, to brochures and blogs they can use when communicating with consumers. It’s your job to make these materials easy for them to download from your site.
The solution? A premier marketing asset management (MAM) system like RevBase.
RevBase is a user-friendly, all-in-one repository that lets your marketing team organize, download, share, track, and measure performance of essential content, both internally and externally. By using it, you’ll help your certified installers quickly locate the digital assets they need on-demand from anywhere, and on any kind of device.
Why focus on making your digital assets easy to find? Assets can be both expensive and time consuming to create, but they won’t help your business grow if your external business partners don’t know how to access them. A report by Demand Metric reveals that more than half of marketers have wasted money creating assets that aren’t being used, simply because they’re impossible to locate.
You don’t want your certified installers to hit that obstacle. After awarding certification, you’ll want to enable your best local pros as “channel partners” who can extend your brand’s reach and loyally recommend your products to consumers. Make it easy for them by using RevBase to share key assets such as product descriptions, videos, infographics, white papers, installation and maintenance guides — as well as sales collateral like sell sheets and brochures.
Whether your certified contractors want to share a product installation video with a customer, or they need to confirm the terms of a product’s warranty, RevBase can make it happen quickly and easily, and at a moment’s notice.
For a Successful Certified Installer Program, Begin Slowly and Utilize the Right Tech
Getting your Certified Installer program right deserves a lot of attention. It can become a crucial part of building your brand’s local influence, edging out the competition, and earning the loyalty of local pros.
A big part of ensuring it goes well is starting small, and only scaling the program after identifying and ironing out any kinks. Once you do this, you’re ready to use the tech tools that will take your program to the next level.
A first-rate contractor locator software like Bullseye will help draw the all-important bridge between eager-to-buy homeowners and the local contractors you’ve certified as the best professionals to install your products. From there, a superior MAM solution like RevBase will allow you to share key content assets with your certified installers, enabling them to sell your products more effectively.
In short, Bullseye and RevBase work hand-in-hand to make your Certified Installer program the best it can possibly be at growing sales and leveraging partnerships.
If you’re ready to build a program that’s powered by best-in-class software (and therefore, a program that’s primed for success), get in touch to schedule a demo today.