The Challenge

Tyler Kroeker, marketing director at Budget Heating, Cooling & Plumbing, a full-service HVAC company that services the St. Louis area, knew from experience how hard it was to collect customer feedback. Kroeker had tried a number of solutions over the years to collect feedback and build the business’ online presence, but was unable to find one that worked.

“Managing your online reputation has become an absolute cornerstone to any service industry-based business,” said Kroeker. “Getting reviews online is really, really tough. If somebody’s angry, they’re very willing to go online and say whatever they think needs to be said. But it’s very hard to get a happy customer to do the same thing.”

The Solution

Budget Heating, Cooling & Plumbing had tried several different approaches to solving this review problem, from business cards and using the main Budget Heating website to ask for feedback, all the way to software tools and services, but nothing seemed to work. So, he was understandably hesitant when approached by a Podium rep. After hearing that Podium had direct API access to Google, his interest was piqued.

Kroeker knew from trial and error that clicks and seconds matter a lot to a customer trying to leave feedback. All of their previous solutions were too clunky to get good results, but Podium was different.

“Podium streamlined the process and made it simple for customers to leave a review, which made the choice a no-brainer,” said Kroeker. “I wish I would have found this solution a lot earlier. It would have saved me a bunch of time, a bunch of money, and we’d be a whole heck of a lot better off because of it. Managing an online reputation has become so critical that, without Podium, we wouldn’t be anywhere near where we are now. It’s just leaps and bounds beyond what we’ve used before.”

The Result

The huge jump in customer reviews has helped Budget Heating, Cooling & Plumbing become the obvious choice for new customers searching for the right service company, but beyond the search and marketing benefits, this constant flow of customer feedback has helped them improve their business.

The Messaging Platform has become a part of Budget’s daily operations, as well. Kroeker recognized that interacting with customers in the way they prefer is a winning strategy, so he has been a huge advocate for his team using text messaging with their customers. “Everybody has the power of a computer in their hand now, and that’s where the power lies,” explained Kroeker. “I don’t care if it’s a teenager, or my 82-year-old grandmother, everybody is getting to the point where they’d rather text from a phone rather than have these lengthy phone calls or fill out these long forms. Podium allows us to do that now.”