How to Create A Content Marketing Strategy for Your HVAC Business

If you’ve heard the phrase, “Content is King,” you might wonder if that’s true—and, if so, why. Well, first, yes. There’s a lot of truth in that statement, because websites today need solid content to:

  • rank well
  • engage readers
  • entice potential leads to turn into patients

This includes HVAC websites, which may cause you to wonder how you can find time to create a content marketing strategy for your website when you’re already busy responding to emergency calls and otherwise keeping people’s air conditioning and heating systems up and running well.

Another concern may be that you don’t consider yourself a writer, so you worry that you aren’t qualified. Fortunately, this HVAC content marketing guide can help you to devise a comprehensive strategy, from creating quality content, to promoting it and measuring results.

Importance of a content marketing strategy for your company

Here’s the beauty of it all. A solid content strategy can position you ahead of your competitors, transforming your website into one that delivers the leads you want. And, although it’s true that much of digital marketing, including SEO, can be pretty technical, content creation allows you to use your creative side. Plus, you can be well rewarded for that creativity.

Additional benefits of focusing on your HVAC company’s content strategy include the following:

  • Your website may not currently demonstrate how experienced your team is in providing top-notch HVAC services. When you publish great content on your website, though, it can establish online authority that can put you ahead of your competitors.
  • As people read—and sometimes share—your content, this can be an excellent “free” way to boost your brand’s recognition in the community, and otherwise spotlight the benefits of choosing your HVAC company. Even if you already run television or radio ads, this can be a key way to bring your business to the attention of prospective customers.
  • Plus, there can be significant online visibility, overall. When Google and other search engines rank websites, a site’s content plays a key role. So, by publishing useful content strategically, your search engine optimization is automatically enhanced, and you also provide fodder for your company’s link building and social media strategies.
  • In fact, you can’t rank well in the search engines without having great content. Short posts just don’t do it anymore, as Google rewards high quality, relevant, in-depth informational content.
    • So, what’s the ideal length? There’s plenty of debate about that question (but, short posts definitely won’t do it, anymore!), with statistics showing how the average word count of top ranking pages is around 1,900 words.
    • Go beyond raw numbers, though. Your content needs to provider readers with the quality and depth of information they want.

Blog posts are important to engage readers, but you’ll need a well-rounded site, overall, one that also contains useful, informative pages.

  • The most important pages are your homepage and your service pages, which could include one about air conditioning maintenance and repair services, another one about furnace-related services, and another one about new HVAC system installation. To boost the value of your content, you can add numerous elements, such as:
    • Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs): People are almost certainly asking questions online about the services you offer. So, by identifying what they are and including answers on your site, you can easily and effectively boost your content quality in a relevant way. So, go to Google and search on relevant keyword terms, perhaps “air conditioning repair.” You may see a box titled “People Also Ask” in the search results. You might see questions like:
      • Why is my AC running but not cooling?
      • Why is the air conditioner not blowing cold air?
      • How much does it cost to fix the air conditioner?
      • Why do air conditioners stop working?
    • More About FAQs: You now have a way to gather together frequently asked questions in areas of your expertise. Now, choose the ones that are relevant to the services you offer, and answer them on your site; in this case, on your air conditioning repair page. Then, click on each of the questions listed in the “People Also Ask” section to see even more queries that you can answer.
  • Checklists: Another pretty straightforward tactic is to create checklists, perhaps about how to identify if your furnace isn’t running at its best. Through this strategy, you can add word count in a useful way as you strategically increase the amount of information available on your site. So, put yourself in your customer’s shoes. Think about commonly-held problems, and then create checklists that can easily be followed.
  • HVAC Library: Using the expertise you already have, create guides that you place in an online library for readers (including potential customers!). When you write in-depth pieces of content about issues that matter, perhaps about new HVAC options for residences or businesses, these guides can provide site visitors with vital information.
  • Case Studies: Here’s one more strategy to consider. You can create case studies about your real-world experience with solving HVAC problems, with this content helping prospects to make the decision to contact you for their heating and cooling needs.

As you create and publish content, you’ll have increasing numbers of opportunities to link between your pages and posts. And, by doing so, you naturally create topical depth on your site, a key step to establishing authority. As a significant bonus, search engine crawlers will be able to find and index deeper pages on your site more easily.

Interested in learning how we implement these strategies for our HVAC clients? Keep reading.

When we create content marketing strategies for HVAC companies, we focus on providing them with the online competitive advantage they deserve:

Tier 1 HVAC Company Content

Tier 1 content can be defined as copy that:

  • directly addresses key needs of your most profitable audience; you can typically do this by answering frequently asked questions, such as those found through “People Also Ask” and by what your leads ask you
  • uses your main keywords about your top HVAC services
  • is pretty in-depth; word count can range between 2,500 to 5,000 as it provides valuable tips about the HVAC service or situation being discussed

Example of a Tier 1 Piece of Content:

When To Be Concerned About Your A/C System and What You Need to Do

Tier 2 HVAC Company Content

Next, turn your focus to tier 2 content that’s specifically designed to support tier 1 topics, as described above. Yes, tier 1 content is fairly in-depth, but you can’t deeply explore everything in just one post.

Tier 2 content typically includes:

  • copy where we’d drill down into the specifics of a subtopic; this would examine a particular part of the broad tier 1 piece
  • This level of content should always be linked to from the parent tier 1 piece of content.
  • Ideal length? At least 2,000 words!
  • Also link out to third party resources to support your information; this is something you do if you’ve cited statistics from a study, for example, or are quoting someone from a news story.

Example of a Tier 2 Piece of Content:

Five Common Air Conditioning Challenges and How to Handle Them

It’s now time to get tactical. In the tier 2 level, you can link to key HVAC resources, both on your site and from third parties. This is also ideal copy to enhance with checklists and FAQs, helpful infographics, how-to videos, and more.

If you’re thinking, “Why should I link out to someone else’s site?”, you’re not alone. Linking to third-party resources could, you might be thinking, cause your prospects to leave your site, or make the prospect with a broken boiler think you aren’t really an authority on the subject. Linking out, though, truly is a time-tested way to provide readers with quality information. Then there’s the SEO factor. From a search engine optimization perspective, you can boost your website’s “trust factor” with Google and other search engines by strategically linking out to relevant, quality resources, and embedding valuable third-party videos.

In most cases, we go to tier 3 when building a content marketing strategy, and it can make sense for you to start with either a two- or three-tier plan, following the pattern described here. If, though, you have a topic that can benefit from an even deep exploration, you could go to tier 4, or even 5.

Why this content structure works.

  1. This is a great way to create a website full of topical depth. This will allow you to provide readers with more than 10,000 words covering each of your core services, with that content linked together in a strategic way.
  2. Take a minute, too, to think about voice search. Statistics show that 58% of people have used voice search for information about local businesses, and voice searches are expected to make up to 50% of all search queries by 2020. And, when people search via voice, they tend to ask“How do I” or “What is the best?”—and, when you include FAQs and checklists, you’re providing evergreen answers. If you need to someday update the information, that’s easily done.
  3. Tier 2 content tends to accrue inbound links over time, which further increases the online visibility of your company. Why? Because people often link to useful checklists and other valuable resources that add value.
  4. Plus, with this type of content, it’s easy to go social. Because it usually contains actionable information, rather than promotional material, it dovetails with what works well on social media sites.
  5. This information can also be repackaged for email marketing campaigns, segmented by audience. This may mean prospects or people who have used your HVAC services in the past.
  6. Finally (and you may be surprised that we’re mentioning this last), tiered content fits in well with just about any SEO strategy. Yes, we’re an SEO agency, so we obviously think that SEO is important; and, we also believe that good content strategies, well implemented, will naturally rank well. So, if you meet all of the criteria listed above, you can relax, confidently writing for users first and search engines second.

Implementing Your HVAC Company’s Tiered Content Marketing Strategy

  • What are your services? List them, alongside the main keywords associated with each of them. You can find keywords for your site using tools, such as these that we recommend: Ubersuggest (free) or KWFinder (paid).
  • You can now create a content map of tier 1 and tier 2 content (or you can go further, if you so choose). (link to google doc that is formatted like our content map)
  • Take each of your main keyword topics and find relevant FAQ questions for each one by entering them into Google and mining the “People Also Ask” section. This really is a quick and convenient way to get the job done.
  • When you’re ready to publish a piece of content, use the year (and sometimes the month) in the title of the page and update it regularly to keep it current (and change the month/year in the title tag when updated). Note: do not put the date in the URL. We want the URL to stay the same no matter how many edits/updates we make to it. If you use a day/month/year structure in your URL, it can change, which will affect links and social signals you’ve possibly acquired over time.
  • Now, go above and beyond the notion of “Content is King” by adding images, videos, screenshots, downloads, and more in your published content.

How to Market Your Company’s Tiered Content Properly

  • Catchy headlines can encourage people to read and share your information, In fact, if content is King, then catchy headlines may well be Queen. Because there is so much content out there, you need to make yours more valuable to readers—including a headline that’s worth sharing. In fact, one study determined that 59% of Twitter shares are likely based on a headline alone, while a UCLA study shows how our brains are actually wired to share information.
  • Promote yourself and your content on social media, including on your personal and professional social media platforms. In fact, because social-media sharing is not a “one and done” activity, you should share your content multiple times annually on each of your accounts, and can also consider using sponsored Facebook posts to create awareness and brand recognition.
  • To give yourself an edge, early on, you can also jumpstart sharing and content clicks by using a social media promotion site such as Quuu Promote. Avoid overkill with this strategy, as a little bit of it goes a long way.
  • When you link to a third-party resource, contact that site, perhaps by emailing the webmaster or tagging the site’s account on Twitter. It’s okay to also ask them to share your content with their audiences.
  • What online HVAC publications do you read? You can contact them to publish a guest post of yours; this can be a summary of a piece of content you’re written for your blog. Within that guest post’s text, link to your own content within the post to provide resources for further reading. This will provide your site with a valuable, relevant inbound link that can help it to rank in search engines.
  • This content strategy makes it easy to use portions of your information in your email marketing strategy. This can go a long way in improving brand recognition with your email subscribers and may cause some of them to ask about your HVAC services. Or, some of them may share the email with someone who will, for example, need a furnace or A/C upgrade.

Measuring the Performance of Your HVAC Company Content Strategy

It’s now time to move onto the next phase, that of monitoring and measuring the performance of the content that you’ve created and promoted. For example:

Google Analytics: This powerful free tool allows you to measure numerous website metrics, so it make sense to take advantage of this opportunity on a site you own to do before-and-after comparisons of your content and its performance. You can set a note or otherwise keep track of publishing dates for each piece of content you plan to analyze to give you a target date for your comparisons. More specifically, you can monitor and measure:

  • Pageviews: By looking at the note you set that shares when you published or updated a piece of content, you can see how many views a specific page or post has gotten since then.
Sign in to Analytics > Behavior > Site Content > All Pages — you can then sort by pageviews or unique pageviews and see which pages are performing best

  • Sessions/Users: Although this isn’t a straightforward metric, it still has value because because it can give you a good sense of how many users visit your content. As you continue to monitor this metric, you can use it to determine if your traffic numbers are improving.
Sign in to Analytics > Acquisition > All Traffic > Channels — you can then choose the channel you want to research — (Organic Search is usually our first stop)

  • Time on page metrics: The longer site visitors stay on a particular page, the more likely it is that they’re reading through that content; you can monitor your staying power with this metric.
Sign in to Analytics > Site Content > All Pages > then look at the average time on each page, you can then see what pages/content visitors are spending the most time on (or where they’re hardly staying at all)

  • Goals: As you track goals, you can see if a specific page is converting according to what you’ve chosen to track; this can be, for example, calls or contact form submissions. This will help you to determine if your content is serving as a lead source.
Sign in to Analytics > Conversions > Goals > Overview — you’ll be able to review all the different goals that are setup and see the results you’re getting

Search Console: This is another free Google tool, one that works well in tandem with Analytics. Search Console can provide valuable insights into the keywords leading to site clicks, something that Google Analytics doesn’t do much of. You can use this tool to monitor and measure the following:

  • Clicks: You can review a page’s click numbers, as well as its click through rate (CTR). The CTR is a ratio of clicks to impressions (impressions = number of times your URL shows up in a search). The higher the CTR, the better.
  • Queries: We can (and do!) make the argument that this is the most valuable aspect of the Console because it allows you to see which queries lead to impressions and clicks on a page. Plus you can see keyword variations, which you can then decide to add to your content. This is a great time to see how and where you can strengthen a page of post.
    • You could, for example, harness the power of the console by choosing Search Analytics, and then toggling Impressions, CTR, and Positions. Sort by Impressions and see which queries have plenty of impressions that are showing in positions three through ten in the Google search engine results pages. Add the best phrases to your title tag and/or in H1/H2 tags on your page.

When Will My New Content Start Working?

Short answer: not as fast as you’d like.

Longer answer: You want to see results from your content right away (and so do we), but it usually isn’t as fast as you’d prefer. SEO is a marathon, not a sprint, and requires some patience. In general, though, when you create content that connects with readers and satisfies a deep need, your content will tend to really start working within three to six months—and that’s when you may feel like a kid who is finally able to open a Christmas present.

Within that time frame, you’ll probably begin to consistently see traffic/visits increasing. Sometimes, this can mean that, for some search terms, your content may begin to show up on the first search engine results page (page one, not number one).

Here are ways that you can speed up good results from your content:

  • Be especially effective in your content creation and outreach.
  • Facilitate the ability of authoritative sites to see and hopefully link to your page.
  • Have the content go viral (pretty much out of your control, but it’s really cool when it happens).

How to Maintain Your New Content Over Time

The internet is a hectic, noisy place, as millions of pages of new content are published online every single day, Not all is related to HVAC, thank goodness, but there will be some content overlap with what you do and write about.

Maintenance is crucial to keep HVAC systems in optimal shape, and the same is true with your content. To keep your content’s quality working well, and your online visibility strong, review it regularly for accuracy, timeliness, and usefulness.

Here’s how we maintain our content, and our clients’ content:

  • Check your Search Console regularly to see what keyword phrases your content now ranks for, and then see if it’s used in your content in any depth. If not, find ways to increase your copy’s relevancy for those new terms by working them into your content.
  • Update your content whenever it makes sense. Perhaps you’re carrying a new brand of HVAC equipment to install, or you have a new maintenance plan to offer. So, add that information to relevant pages and posts. When you write a case study about how the maintenance plan saves people $$$, as another example, find places to slip that information into current pages and strategically link to this new case study.
  • So, you might wonder, what if nothing newsworthy has happened lately? Update your content annually, anyhow. This includes adding the year to the headlines and title tags to show the content is current. This can help to boost CTRs.
  • Remember to promote your content on social media, and then promote it again. And again. After you’ve reviewed and/or updated a piece of content for freshness, then you’ll know that it’s still current and applicable to your readers.

Some Additional HVAC Content Tips

  • Your work can be seasonal, so it can make sense to make sure you’ve got content that speaks to each of the four seasons. What HVAC maintenance work should be done in spring, say, and then summer, fall, and winter? These would make ideal checklists.
  • Also, avoid using HVAC jargon. Instead, speak in the language of your customers and prospects, describing situations they might encounter.
  • You want your content to work quickly for you—our customers want content to load as fast as possible on their mobile devices. So, consider how to easily your content can be read on a smartphone or tablet.
  • Add call-to-actions throughout, especially the long-form pieces. If a reader is shivering in the cold or roasting in the heat, he’ll want to contact you, ASAP—not after reading the rest of a 5,000-word post. You can fix that easily by adding a “contact us” button or some other call to action device in strategic places.

Content marketing for your HVAC company must be a focal point of your marketing plan, not something you do if and when you get all your service calls done early one day. Compelling content is what can:

  • attract new leads
  • spotlight your website
  • highlight your company brand

To boost the overall user experience and engage readers more deeply, it’s important to regularly review your content, including FAQs and checklists, and continue to measure its success. Your content must work well for you and for the people in need of your HVAC services.

If you need assistance crafting your HVAC company’s content marketing strategy, contact us to schedule a consultation. DAGMAR has a lot of experience working with companies like yours, and creating the best content strategy for their businesses.

Check out our other HVAC Company Marketing Guides