14 HVAC marketing strategies for small businesses to superheat leads

HVAC marketing for growing a small business should be specialized to meet the target audience at the right time. From building and optimizing a website, to getting 5-star ratings on a Google Business Profile and leveraging referral programs, these 14 strategies are designed to help HVAC businesses stand out from the local competition.
photo of HVAC installation

The HVAC industry is booming and is predicted to reach 367.5 billion U.S. dollars by 2030. As competition increases, owners must consider specific HVAC marketing strategies to stand out amongst their local competitors and grow a successful HVAC small business. This starts with creating an HVAC business plan that focuses on reaching your target audience. 

At Teamshares, we’re helping small businesses, including local HVAC companies, do something that’s never been done before: create a network of employee-owned small businesses that thrive together. The ownership culture that this model fosters is reinvigorating small businesses across the country after their owners retire.

In this guide, we will teach HVAC business owners key strategies to boost their businesses and build brand awareness that drives additional revenue. 

1. Build an HVAC website that showcases your brand

Building an HVAC website is essential if you want customers to discover your business online. A website showcases your brand and services to generate leads during and after hours. 

At a basic level, an HVAC website should include:

  • Business name, logo, and tagline
  • Service area
  • The business name, address, and phone number (NAP) in the footer of every page,to optimize for local SEO
  • The types of HVAC services you offer, with a separate page dedicated to each service
  • High-quality photos of your HVAC work
  • A form to submit work requests 
  • (Nice-to-have) A service that allows customers to book appointments directly on the website

Building a website doesn’t need to be complicated. Small business owners can use website building services like Wix or Squarespace to build a simple website themselves or hire a web developer to create a custom website. Consider the cost of ongoing maintenance when scoping the new site. 

Regardless of which option HVAC business owners choose, it’s important to make sure the website has a good management process in place and a dedicated team member to manage incoming contact requests and service bookings.

2. Optimize your website for search

Search engine optimization (SEO) is the process of helping potential customers discover and visit a website. On a basic level, this means making certain improvements to the website content, keywords, and user experience so that your small business shows up higher on Google’s search engine results pages (SERPs) than your competitors when potential customers search for local HVAC services.

Organic SEO

To optimize an HVAC website for SEO, small business owners should take several crucial steps to improve their chances of being discovered organically through a search engine. 

  • Optimize for mobile devices: These days smartphones account for 63% of organic search engine visits in the United States. Ensuring a website is optimized for mobile browsing is not only an SEO best practice but also offers the best user experience for potential customers. 
  • Implement Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) certificates: This is a digital certificate that allows a secure connection from a web server to a browser. A secure website can help reduce a website’s bounce rate, as users are more likely to stay on a website they perceive as secure.
  • Invest in page-level content: Optimized website content can help bring in targeted, long-term organic traffic that converts into customers at a lower ROI than pay-per-click (PPC). The HVAC industry is highly competitive, so it’s imperative that each service page of your website is built out with keywords so Google can crawl and index the content to show up in relevant search results. 

SEO for HVAC companies builds brand awareness by having your company’s name appear in searches related to the industry. It increases leads from potential customers who are searching for information about HVAC systems online, and it’s a great way to improve the overall customer experience by making it easier for potential customers to find and connect with you.

Local SEO

Local SEO, while equally important for small businesses, is different from organic SEO. Local SEO allows small businesses to target local customers within a specific geographic location so a small business can improve its performance in local searches. 

Some basic elements of local SEO for small businesses include:

  • Including name, address, and phone number (NAP) data on every page
  • Listing services on separate pages
  • Including relevant geographic keywords in website content
  • Submitting an updated sitemap after making any changes to a website
  • Submitting citations to directories
  • Building links from other websites to point at your website

3. Set up a Google Business Profile

Setting up a Google Business Profile (GBP) is a vital step for getting discovered on Google, including showing up on the local pack, shown below, and being featured on Google Maps. An optimized GBP helps customers find HVAC businesses within their area. 

Examples of HVAC Google Business Profiles

Your GBP is also an opportunity to provide social proof for potential customers by showcasing customer reviews. Not only are Google reviews important for driving new customers, they’re also an important component of local SEO. 

Reviews allow small business owners to use target keywords in their responses to help boost visibility and rank for specific keywords. If a customer leaves a review that includes a keyword a small business is trying to rank for, the business is more likely to rank for that keyword.

Small business owners can follow a template when reaching out to customers to help generate reviews.

Hi [NAME],

We hope you had an amazing experience with our [SERVICE]. We’re reaching out to see if you’d be willing to share your experience with [SERVICE] on Google Reviews. 

Your feedback is invaluable to us, as it helps us continuously improve and serve you better. If you have a moment, we’d truly appreciate hearing your thoughts.

Here’s a link where you can leave your feedback: [INSERT LINK]

Thank you for choosing [BUSINESS NAME]. Have a wonderful day!

Warm regards,


HVAC companies can optimize their GBP by specifying the services they provide, such as “A/C system maintenance, A/C system repair, Ductless heating & A/C services” and by choosing relevant categories and subcategories, such as “HVAC contractor” and “Air Conditioning Repair Service.” 

4. Leverage geofencing advertising

As a form of local SEO, geofencing advertising helps small businesses target local audiences based on GPS and virtual boundaries. Small business owners can use geofencing marketing software to set up virtual boundaries around their HVAC business location. 

Geofencing works by tracking when someone enters this virtual boundary, based on their mobile device. When someone enters the boundary, it can send mobile ads or push notifications to that person. 

This is a prime way to enhance local sales and provide personalized advertisements that are highly targeted. Businesses can set up geofencing at specific events or locations. For example, an HVAC business can set up a geofencing perimeter near local hardware stores. If potential customers are browsing through social media while in their local hardware store, they may encounter pop-up ads for your HVAC services. 

5. Invest in PPC

Pay-per-click (PPC) advertising allows small businesses to bid on target keywords and compete with other companies for the top advertising space on search engines. 

With PPC, it’s important to target local and HVAC-specific terms so when someone searches these terms your ads appear. For example, HVAC businesses in Boston would want to target specific keywords like “Boston air conditioning repair.” 

Small businesses have a variety of different PPC advertising methods to choose from:

  • Search engine advertising: Small businesses set a budget and bid on ad placements on search engines like Google or Bing. PPC ads are the results that users see right at the top of Google and other search engines before the organic search results. These results specify that they are ads.
  • Display advertising: This is a common form of paid advertising that places a  company’s advertisement at the top, on the side, or in the middle of web content across many websites.
  • Retargeting advertising: AdRoll is a PPC retargeting platform that advertises to people who have visited your website or other sites with similar content. So if someone reads an article on an HVAC site for “air conditioning repair,” they might see your ad on other sites they visit with display ads.

6. Out of home advertising

Out-of-home (OOH) advertising is a more traditional method of advertising that utilizes physical media like billboards, subway ads, bus shelters, or other forms of signage to reach potential customers. 

One practical and common use of OOH in the HVAC industry is wrapping a business van with a company advertisement that lists its HVAC services and contact information. Not only does the van transport employees, HVAC parts, and supplies to and from jobs, it doubles as a moving advertisement. Strategically parking a van in locations like busy shopping centers or neighborhoods can help further boost visibility.

7. Social media advertising

Social media advertising is a way to connect with an existing following and reach new customers. It also allows HVAC businesses to target specific and ideal clients, control campaign budgets and timelines, analyze results, and make quick adjustments.

For HVAC services, Facebook, Instagram, and LinkedIn are the best platforms on which to run social media ads. Here’s a quick guide on how to strategically use each platform for HVAC advertising:

  • Instagram and Facebook ads: Meta’s Ads Manager allows small businesses to create eye-catching HVAC ads for an audience’s Instagram timeline, stories, or Facebook News Feed. Meta also offers insights to help business owners choose the best ads to run based on their goals and to target specific audiences (ex: homeowners) based on their interests and location.
  • LinkedIn ads: LinkedIn is a good place to focus on acquiring commercial HVAC contracts. LinkedIn offers several ad types, including Message Ads that can be sent directly to a LinkedIn member’s inbox.
  • TikTok ads manager: TikTok ads manager is a one-stop shop for creating, running, and managing HVAC ads. Because TikTok has such a large community of homeowners and builders, this can be prime real estate for marketing your HVAC company.

Social media advertising works similarly to PPC. A small business can set a budget and bid on ad placements. Instead of these ads showing up on search engines, they show up directly in a user’s newsfeed or timeline on TikTok, Instagram, or Facebook.

8. Affiliate marketing

Affiliate marketing, an arrangement where an affiliate influencer earns a commission for advertising a company’s product, can be a great way to build brand awareness. 

HVAC businesses might consider working with influencers such as designers, architects, house flippers, real estate agents, or home improvement personalities to get more eyes on their business through affiliate marketing. 

Reaching out to these influencers with affiliate codes or opportunities for profit sharing can help HVAC business owners promote products like air conditioners, heating pump condensers, exhaust fans, and environmentally conscious gas systems.

9. Video content and marketing

HVAC businesses can spread the word about their business by providing immediate value to potential customers through education. By providing value before asking them to perform an action (ex: booking a service), HVAC business owners are building trust. 

In the age of video shorts, HVAC business owners should focus efforts on making quick how-to videos for DIY fixes throughout their homes through video content on Facebook, Instagram, TikTok, and YouTube. For example, creating a 30-second video that shows viewers  “how to replace an HVAC filter.” 

Creating video shorts for platforms like TikTok and Instagram, and longer videos for YouTube and Facebook, shows customers that a small business is trustworthy and attentive to their needs.

Creating videos for social media doesn’t require an HVAC marketing or production team. Any small business owner can leverage social media platforms, a cell phone camera, and free video editing tools like CapCut to create affordable and high-quality videos for social media. 

Create content while you’re working in the business. This showcases your expertise and is realistic. It’s also something that can fold into your job process, making it easier from a time perspective.

Reels and video shorts are a great way to boost engagement with existing followers and increase your chances of showing up on Instagram’s “Explorer” feed or TikTok’s “For you” page, which helps you get discovered by new customers. 

To expand your reach, post each video on all social media platforms and use a few relevant hashtags and a location tag. Be mindful of different specs and sizing across different platforms and edit the videos to fit different frames across platforms.

10. Email advertising

Many small business owners already use some form of email marketing. But you can optimize your email marketing to reach different audiences and nurture existing customer relationships. Craft monthly or bimonthly email newsletters to keep your current customer base up-to-date on products, services, and promotions.

Email marketing also gives HVAC businesses a chance to retarget existing customers for seasonal services during high seasons like summer and winter. Build your email list by capturing customer email addresses during inspections, installs, and when providing quotes.

Consider advertising a seasonal tune-up or even advertising HVAC discounts in the off-season for these same services. 

11. Referral programs with local hardware stores

Collaboration can go a long way for any small business, but especially for HVAC businesses. Local hardware stores are often run by people who have been in the community for a long time and know the local residents, their needs, and their lifestyles.

Local hardware stores can help HVAC businesses understand what kinds of problems their local customers are likely to have, which can make it easier for HVAC business owners to anticipate the needs of their customers and focus advertising on those services.

If you build a good relationship with a local hardware store, suggest creating a referral program that could create an influx of customers for your business. To ensure the relationship is beneficial for all, HVAC companies can offer to give the hardware store a commission for referring business to them.

12. Generate reviews

Reviews are critical for small businesses. Satisfied customer reviews on sites like Yelp, Angi, and Google Business Profile are not only proof of great work, but they are also often the first impression customers get of your company when they search for HVAC services. 

Reviews are often a deciding factor for potential customers. Having 4-4.5 star reviews is a proven way to increase revenue. Good reviews that target specific keywords help ensure your business will show up in local search results.

“[A company’s] mission should be around quality service. Our team goes onto each job with the mindset that we’re not satisfied until the customer is. When you consistently provide good work, a lot of inbound leads come from business referrals and relationship referrals.”

Positive reviews don’t often come organically, so business owners need to train their teams on how to collect them. HVAC businesses can collect reviews in several ways:

  • Texting or emailing your customers to thank them for their business and ask them to leave a Google review
  • Leaving customers with business cards that have a QR code that takes them to the review page
  • Including a link to reviews in invoices
  • Offering discounts or other incentives for customers in exchange for a review

Reviews are crucial to the company’s success, so it’s important for small business owners to get employees excited about generating reviews. This can be done by sharing positive reviews during monthly meetings, offering paid lunches or other incentives for employees who generate the most reviews, or creating team KPIs to generate more reviews. 

13. Leverage a customer referral program and HVAC software

Implementing a referral program inspires loyal customers to spread the word and helps bring in new customers. Referral programs are inexpensive to run and easy to maintain once you implement the right referral software. 

HVAC businesses can incentivize referrals from loyal customers by: 

  • Offering referees $50 off their next maintenance visit
  • Offering $100 in cash or credit per closed sale for client referrals
  • Running a contest where referring customers are entered for a grand prize, like a $200 Visa gift card.

If you choose to use referral software to manage referrals, during the vetting process, consider platforms that also offer customer service features for HVAC businesses including sending ETA text messages to customers, the ability for immediate response to emergency calls, tracking client details, and approving estimates.

14. Reach out to HOAs as a preferred HVAC vendor

Being affiliated with a local HOA management company is a reliable way to generate repeat business. To get started building a preferred vendor relationship, HVAC business owners can simply reach out to the HOA of small condo communities, townhomes, and larger communities in their area to see if they’re interested in getting an HVAC services proposal now or in the future.

In exchange for being listed as an HOA’s preferred vendor, HVAC businesses may be asked to offer customers a discount. 

Ultimately, the more of these HVAC marketing strategies a business implements, the more likely it will be to have visibility within a community and build a strong network of customers. 

At Teamshares, we understand the importance of small business survival. Through employee ownership and a model of distributed leadership, we help small businesses with retiring owners continue to operate and create sustainable growth that improves the lives of both employees and communities. 

If you’re a broker or a retiring business owner, find out if Teamshares is the right buyer for your small business.

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