How Do You Sell Pothole Repair on Social Media?

Some organizations do an impressive job of using social media to support what they are trying to achieve. Other organizations do such a poor job on social media that people are often left wondering why they have these accounts in the first place.

In this blog, I will look at two small Ottawa-based companies that differ dramatically in how they use social media – MAVEN PM and Ottawa Asphalt Kings. Both companies are in the business of asphalt sealing and pothole repair. The industry might seem too technical or even too boring to provide social media case studies. Yet an analysis of the two companies’ different social media strategies provides valuable insights.

What can be more boring on social media than asphalt and potholes? Image source: MaxPixel (Creative Commons CC0 1.0)

My driveway

About a month ago I realized that unless I fixed all the potholes and cracks on my driveway, the approaching winter will destroy it. I googled local companies that could do the work for me.

During the next several days, my social media feeds displayed several targeted ads from asphalt companies. Ads by two local companies got my attention, and I began exploring their social media presence.

MAVEN PM

This company’s social media accounts were so good that I found myself scrolling down to see even their old posts and reading comments. In addition to a clean and straightforward website, MAVEN PM has vibrant accounts on Facebook and Instagram.

The company is using the channels to demonstrate how exactly it fixes both common and more unique asphalt driveway problems. It uses video and image content to tell the stories of individual driveways that the company has fixed. Most of the stories follow a standard “before and after” structure.

A “before and after” post from MAVEN PM’s Instagram account.

What I found particularly impressive was how good the company was at responding to comments and resolving customer complaints on social media. Lots of people used comments under posts to ask questions, both general and related to specific driveways. These questions were all answered, including the recent ones. The company also responded to complaints, albeit not numerous, ensuring customers that it will act promptly to resolve situations that had made them unhappy.

I sent a message to the company through Facebook and they responded within a couple of hours, providing basic details and offering a free estimate.

So, this company uses visual content effectively to promote its services on social media. It also uses its social media accounts really well to engage with customers and address customer inquiries and complaints.

There is not much you can do to make pothole fixing interesting on social media. Yet, MAVEN PM’s social media left me with an impression that the company was really passionate about their work and offered great customer service.

Ottawa Asphalt Kings

This company left me wondering about why it had decided to be on social media. Overall, I think it is a good company that does its job really well. It has a lot of great reviews on Google.

Yet, there is too little information about Ottawa Asphalt Kings online. The company does not have even a basic website, and its Facebook page is virtually useless. Yes, you read it right – the Facebook page that the company’s ads lead to is useless.

This not particularly creative or imaginative post from May 2020 is the most recent piece of content on Ottawa Asphalt Kings’ Facebook page.

A lot of information on the page is outdated, and the latest post is from May 2020. What is worse, many comments, questions and customer complaints remain ignored.

I sent a message to the company through their Facebook page, and it took them six days to respond to the message. Even then, the response was of little value to me as they simply asked me to call their landline.

So, although the company seems to have many customers, its social media presence is effectively useless. Ottawa Asphalt Kings would definitely benefit from a social media strategy. It should use Facebook, Instagram and possibly even TikTok to share visual content promoting its services. It should also use social media to engage with customers, listen to them, and address their complaints. This will help the company to not merely survive but to grow its business.

Their first step should be to decide who will be responsible for managing their social media, how often they will post new content and respond to comments or questions, and how they will create content. To do so, Ottawa Asphalt Kings needs to dedicate resources to social media. While this change may put a strain on the company’s resources in the short term, it will doubtless pay off in the long term.

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