Jen Silver is the owner of Roofing Utah.
One of the things that differentiate Roofing Utah from other roofing companies is that it is female-owned and operated.
She credits her recent success—including interview subject, podcast guest, International Roofing Expo panelist and conference speaker, amongst other things—to branding herself on social media.
Roofing & Exteriors spoke with Silver for her insights.
What’s it like being a female business owner in a male-dominated industry?
I believe like anything in life there are advantages and disadvantages. For example, I am tested on my knowledge more than a man would be, I have to prove myself before I am taken seriously, but once I do, my ability to support, influence, and bring change to the industry is much easier, as men subconsciously accept feedback or change from a woman differently and more openly than I believe they do from a man.
What advice do you have for women who are looking to get into the roofing and exteriors industry?
Gain the knowledge to know how to do things and how things should be done, and surround yourself with experts in the areas that you are not comfortable. Do not let your fears of not being the same or doing the same hold you back. None of us are the same, to expect us to be equal would be naive, but we definitely have equal value and can contribute a lot to an industry that has predominantly been men. Women bring an element of relationship, community, and service to the industry and things seem to start to balance.
When did you realize branding yourself was the way to go in building your business?
I don't know that I did, to be honest. I was merely trying to keep my business from closing and needed to generate some visibility and social media was free. But, knowing now that is what happened, I can tell you that people want to know who they are buying from. They want to be able to trust the business and as an owner, you are the business.
What social media platforms should roofing and exterior pros be using?
I have found that Facebook tends to be the best for selling services. I think Instagram is great for selling products but I have not had as much luck. TikTok is great for brand awareness. Keep in mind the videos need to be short—7-10 seconds.
How important is it to maintain contact with customers?
Maintaining relationships with customers is huge. Referrals are the best leads, they have the highest closing rates and they are free. If you want to differentiate yourself from your competition, send roofing anniversary cards, or holiday cards birthday cards to kids, something that no one else does. Keeps your business fresh in their minds and makes them feel valued after the fact which is what will make them refer you over and over.