Earlier this year, Modernize surveyed over 200 contractors to gather data and learn more about the State of the Contractor in 2022. Here, we explore the pros and cons of four popular lead sources: word of mouth, social media, PPC, and field marketing. 

Contractors use many different lead sources to help generate leads. Each one is unique and requires different strategies. Over time, you can see what is working and then adjust your campaigns to focus on the most effective strategy for your company.  

Table of Contents

Word of Mouth 

Word of mouth is, not surprisingly, the most popular way contractors are generating leads in 2022. Connecting with new leads through your current and past customers is invaluable. In addition, when your customers are satisfied with your services, they are more likely to refer your business to their friends and family.  


  • Cost: Word of mouth will always be the cheapest way to generate leads. There are no direct out-of-pocket costs. Investing heavily in the customer experience will create the most referrals. 
  • Trust: You are not what you say you are; you are what your customers say you are. People trust friends and family. Give every single customer an experience worth talking about.  


  • Expectations: Depending on what your referral knows, they might have unrealistic expectations. Every job is different. Communication is key to handling these expectations. 
  • Limited: Word of mouth is inefficient. Your outreach is limited to the friends and family of your customers. This takes time and is inadequate if you are trying to scale. Owning a quality website and leveraging social media helps to fill this gap.  

Social Media(organic and paid)

Many people use social media daily, making it the perfect place to go when you want to tap into the local market. You can run paid ads through social media marketing and share helpful information on your pages for free. 


  • Build a Reputation: Social media is a great way to prove your expertise. Posting customer testimonials and pictures of finished projects builds credibility in the eyes of homeowners.  
  • Big audience: You can target specific demographics and geographical locations. 


  • Time and Money: Sharing quality content on social media can be time-consuming. Not only do you need to come up with the messages, but you also need quality images and visuals to go with the text. 
  • Long Term Strategy: Social media usually does not result in immediate revenue for your business. This marketing strategy is about building long-term relationships that can lead to sales in the future. 

Pay Per Click

Pay Per Click means that you are running digital ads, and you pay a fee every time someone clicks on one of the ads. It allows you to manage the lead generation system on demand, with the option to ramp up spending or turn off ads at any point. 


  • Trackable Results: PPC gives you in-depth data about the performance of the campaigns, so you can see how much money you are spending and what is working(and what is not). 
  • Cost Management: You only pay when someone clicks on the ad. Therefore, the customer must take action on the ad before you pay.  


  • Time Consuming: Creating an ad that pays off takes a lot of analysis and iteration. There are many variables to watch to ensure your ads are successful. 
  • Budgeting: If you are not careful, a PPC campaign can quickly eat away at your marketing budget without producing the ROI needed. 

Field Marketing

Field marketing includes anything you are doing to connect with customers face-to-face. Typical examples are setting up booths at tradeshows, handing out flyers, and doorknocking.  


  • Personal Interaction: Face-to-face conversations are more memorable to the customer. As a result, these methods are very effective in setting appointments. 
  • Brand recall: Even if you don’t close the sale, a one-on-one interaction increases the chances of the homeowner thinking of your company when they, or someone they know, needs your services. It takes time, but if you get good at field marketing in a certain location, your business will be top of mind for all homeowners in the area. 
  • Inexpensive: While it’s not free like word of mouth, it is one of the more cost-efficient strategies as the only overhead cost is the salary of the doorknockers. 


  • Time Investment: This is not an efficient way of reaching people. Field marketing is face-to-face, limiting the number of people you can reach each day. 
  • Location: You have a small geographic area you can reach through face-to-face interactions. So, this method could be missing out on other leads in nearby zip codes. 

Customizing Your Lead Generation Strategies 

Word of mouth, Pay Per Click, social media, and field marketing can all be effective strategies for bringing in new leads. For more information and personalized services, reach out to our team at Modernize to learn more about the most effective lead generation methods online. 

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