Stockport-based The Tile Master is using social media to bring cleaning into the 21st century, says commercial director Alex Rimmer.

The company has adapted the technology behind electric toothbrushes for its hardware, and also uses social media for demonstrations of how to clean different floors.

As requests come in for help and support the company is able to use Snapchat, WhatsApp or Facebook Live to walk customers through problem solving issues, with over 1,500 posts, comments and reactions on its private Facebook group in the last 28 days alone.

“Potential customers should know what they can expect from our products and our service offering,” says Rimmer.

“It’s also very important for us to keep evolving and innovate. We listen to what is required and needed.

“Why be the best-kept secret when the world can hear about it?

“The customer judges by any mistakes and we deal with those should they arise and ensure they don’t happen again, so social media has been fantastic for us.”

It also has a section on the group for instructions, guides and video help and its website has a password-protected resources and video tutorial page for those that aren’t Facebook users.

“Facebook Live has been fantastic for us,” says Rimmer.

“It’s enabled us to see the problem, deal with it and then the guys on site can effectively clean it.”

Using social media has allowed the company to stand out from its competitors and offer customers something above and beyond what they’ve been getting previously.

“The key thing for us is that we deliver a package to customers,” says Rimmer.

“Every time any of our guys go out there it’s very much about delivering a demo and test patch on the floor to meet customer expectations.

“Once we’ve got that we know exactly where we’re at and we can replicate it across the floor."

For any companies that also want to embrace social media but are unsure of how to tackle such a complex arena, the best thing is just to give it a go says Rimmer.

“Managing expectations is also key,” he says.

“Give the correct advice on your products or service and the feedback should be great. Giving incorrect advice to sell a product or win service work may leave you open to negative feedback.

“Understand your client’s requirements, and demonstrating your service or product can help.

“Bad feedback shouldn’t happen if you agree service levels with your clients and constructive feedback can be a good thing as it allows you to version and make changes.

“As for the trolls, don’t waste your time, focus on the positives. Potential customers will see past them.” 

The company’s customers range from home owners and small businesses to, more typically, a business owner carpet cleaner or tiler.

Rimmer, whose work history includes Hewlett-Packard, says that the company is one of very few disrupting the traditional industry with technology.

“The way that social media has gone with the boom is that everyone has a mobile phone in their hands so they’ve got access to all these different platforms,” says Rimmer.

“The cleaning industry is not sexy. Polishing or cleaning is usually left to cleaners or individuals so we’ve tried to make it easy for them by bringing apps in and bringing them the support they need live on site.”

Up next the company is planning on offering an app to go alongside the existing support, if it can source the funding.

“We are looking to offer an app guide,” says Rimmer.

“It will ID a floor, then show which correct products to use, have guides on how to clean and seal, and then show customer expectation and coverage rates.

“At the push of a couple of buttons our customer will be able to spec a floor and order the products.”