If you use social media as a plumber, the chances are you have heard of P B Plumber. With over 12,000 Twitter followers and half a million YouTube views, his video diaries, product reviews and how-tos have proven extremely popular.
We have teamed up with PB for a new monthly feature, #AskPB, where we put your questions to him. Send your questions to us on Twitter (@HIPMagazine) with the hashtag to get tips, advice and answers!
HIP Magazine: How can you improve your social media?
PB: Content is king. You’ve got to create content to get anywhere. If you’re now thinking, ‘nobody wants to see what I do at work’, then you’re wrong. Think of it this way: as an apprentice we learn from the plumber we are working with, and we take on practices and methods and even tools they use. But if the apprentice works on site with another plumber or even an electrician or carpenter, he may pick up other methods, other ways of working and other tools to use from those trades. And it’s the same with social media: something you do every day may seem boring to you, and nobody wants to see boring, right? But if what you do every day is completely new or different to someone else, it’s not boring to them and you should get a lot of engagement from it. My number one tip for posting content on social media is stop thinking about doing it and just do it.
HIP: What clip do you use on your Regin pump to keep the hose nice and neat?
PB: It’s a Nerrad Tools Versa Clamp.
HIP: Do you stay focused and expend as little energy as possible figuring out what to wear every day, by having seven identical outfits in your wardrobe? Or do you only have one T-shirt?
PB: I have three navy blue t-shirts and three grey t-shirts that were on offer as a three for £20 deal. I have to wear something I feel comfortable in at work, I get too hot very fast so a thin t-shirt is best for me.
HIP: Why don’t you wear company branded shirts and drive an un-sign written van? What are the benefits?
PB: I am very fussy with clothes and have to feel comfortable in what I’m wearing. I’ve never found a company that supplies branded workwear that I feel comfortable wearing. I will accept recommendations from the community if anyone knows any good ones. The only reason my new van isn’t sign written is because I’m too busy working to sit and choose a design I like – I will get round to it eventually!
HIP: What’s better to use for cooker hose, micropoint or bayonet?
PB: I keep micropoint in the van, so that answers that one.
HIP: What do you most like to see from manufacturers posting on social media?
PB: I like to see manufacturers engaging with the people using their products, not just trying to sell stuff all the time. It’s a nice feeling for the installer to get a ‘good job’ from the manufacturer, but some genuine engagement that goes a bit further is what counts.
HIP: Why did you become a plumber?
PB: My grandad and dad were both plumbers. I originally wanted to be a firefighter but had to get a job while I was waiting to get a place so started my apprenticeship and decided I loved the trade so stuck with it.
HIP: What advice do you have for growing your business?
PB: If you’re trying to do everything yourself, stop and focus on what you do best and employ people who are better than you at the other bits. Get an apprentice and train them to your standards, then you can take on more work and grow from there.
You can follow P B Plumber on Twitter here.