Times Have Changed: From Flyer Handouts to Internet Marketing

It may be easier to start a business these days with online tools, but it's more important than ever to back it up with solid work for word-of-mouth referrals

Times Have Changed: From Flyer Handouts to Internet Marketing

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When brothers Bruce and Michael Bopst started in the septic business 30 years ago in Eldersburg, Maryland, marketing consisted of printing flyers and driving around to put them in people’s paper boxes. Today, marketing is done virtually, sitting at a desk.

“These days your website and internet is the biggest marketing there ever was,” Bruce says. “We didn’t have that when I first started. It’s so easy to go into business today, you just put up a website and make it look like a really nice company.”

The brothers bought Freedom Septic Service from their father’s neighbor and found they had their work cut out for them to build a reputation and grow the client list.

But some aspects of marketing are as crucial and powerful today as they were 30 years ago — namely, what happens after a homeowner sees your flyer or reads your website and decides to use your service.

“If you do a good job for someone, they’re going to tell their neighbor,” Bruce says. Word-of-mouth is marketing gold and that only comes with following through on commitments and providing good service.

Michael talks about another sometimes overlooked marketing tool that’s always been around. “We keep all our trucks clean and we keep newer equipment,” he says. “I think people see that and realize you’re not a fly-by-night outfit. And it goes a long way in customer service, which has been key to our growth. We have a lot of good competition in the area, too, so you’ve really got to be on your game.”

While it’s easier these days to get the word out about your business, companies still have to work just as hard today as they used to in order to keep the business they get. “We’ve worked hard for everything we’ve got,” Bruce says. “We’re reliable and we’ve got a pretty high star rating where people rate you on the internet.”

Read more about Freedom Septic Service in this month’s issue of Pumper.


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