HouseMaster is a nationwide leader in home inspections. Founded in 1979, HouseMaster has hundreds of locations in the United States and Canada and is one of the leading brands in the home inspection industry. Trusted by thousands of home buyers, sellers, and agents, HouseMaster is a thriving franchise system with higher customer loyalty survey scores than most recognized consumer brands.
In 2019, HouseMaster engaged OpenMoves to develop and launch a lead generation strategy for the overall business, including most locations across the whole group of franchises. This was a case where the corporate HouseMaster office was managing and deploying a marketing effort for the whole brand at once, not specific locations one at a time. With over 100 locations involved and complex needs to serve individual locations at scale, this was a unique and challenging media buying project that OpenMoves implemented successfully.
New User growth since PPC program launched
Total Google Ads campaigns developed nationwide
Unique locations managed at scale
Local leads generated since program launch
What impressed me the most at OpenMoves was the depth of knowledge with their team. We’ve been very impressed with the results that we’ve gotten from OpenMoves. I’m proud to say that our business overall is up more than we anticipated - really it’s been one of our best month over month increases ever.
HouseMaster was a complex PPC challenge for many reasons. Firstly, the biggest unique aspect of this project was managing location-specific PPC needs at scale. Because HouseMaster is a local service franchise, we needed the ability to use custom local keywords, local ads, unique geotargeting, unique budgeting, and other controls, all at the per-location level. This meant that structurally within Google Ads we needed a group of campaigns for every location, multiplied out by 100+ target locations for the whole business.
OpenMoves needed to implement this build efficiently and needed to develop systems to manage the account at scale and also optimize it at scale. Critically, we wanted to avoid a scenario where learnings and optimizations from one location were siloed into just that area without being applied to other relevant locations. However we also wanted to be able to treat and optimize locations uniquely as needed.
Beyond all the structure and scale challenges, we of course had the usual challenge of any advertiser, which was to launch a new program and acquire customers profitably. Since HouseMaster launched their Google Ads effort with OpenMoves from scratch, this was an unproven campaign that needed aggressive focus on real performance and ROI.
Manage a unique Google Ads strategy for over 100 locations at scale
Provide location-specific keywords, copy and reporting
Deliver qualified leads from new customers nationwide
Rapidly add and remove locations from the system to meet business conditions
Grow corporate bottom line and meet local office needs simultaneously
As someone who’s been working in the Google Ads business for more than 10 years, HouseMaster was a fun opportunity to push the boundaries of normal Google Ads structure and develop something really big, complicated, and scalable. By developing a templated campaign system that could be copied indefinitely and managed and optimized structurally, we created a real media buying system for HouseMaster that we hope will serve their customer acquisition needs for years to come. It was really rewarding when we started to see it working and the HouseMaster team began reporting to us how their business was growing.
Built to Scale with Google Ads Editor. We started our initial build in Google Ads Editor using an Excel campaign template. Fortunately, this was a project that had client support right away in understanding the need for a carefully constructed initial plan. By focusing our initial setup time on planning for long-term scale, we were able to build a system that enabled bulk location setup and bulk campaign uploads efficiently.
Optimized for Real Outcomes. By using call recording technology and measuring aggregate success at the corporate sales level, OpenMoves and HouseMaster worked together to focus media spend on the most direct outcome: real new customer acquisition. This meant some controversial choices, including foregoing brand keyword bidding and limiting media to sometimes tight dayparting windows. However with real buyer data available, these choices were proven successful.
Location Specific Tracking and Reporting. In addition to our initial focus on campaign scalability, we knew that the ability to track and report success by location would be key for HouseMaster and the local franchise owners. Working with the HouseMaster team, we were able to leverage call tracking technology for each location and unique form tracking per location, which combined with our scaled campaign build, allowed us to effectively report success for each location.
Supporting Effort from Facebook Ads. Although most of our media spend was based on Google Ads, we developed and effective supporting campaign strategy through the Facebook Ads platform to help keep HouseMaster top of mind while the user researched options. We also leveraged Facebook’s Custom Audience targeting to specifically reach HouseMaster’s targeted audiences for individual campaigns.