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PR & Communications opinion

Honing PR skills in the construction industry

The marketing of the construction industry varies from other industries in major ways. Where some companies can focus exclusively on inbound marketing and digital strategies, marketing and PR for the construction industry requires a more multi-faceted approach to produce results. Consider employing the following tactics to yield the greatest results.
© Deyan Georgiev - za.Fotolia.com
© Deyan Georgiev - za.Fotolia.com
Create a strategy

An effective PR or marketing campaign cannot be a wild guess. If success and lead generation are target goals, your strategy must reflect this. The following steps are critical for creating your strategy:
  • Know your objective. Are you looking to target a specific market segment? Do you focus on remodels? Bathrooms? Home additions? New home construction? Knowing this up front saves trouble later. How much business can you handle in a year? Make that your target.
  • Identify your strengths, weaknesses and opportunities. Know what sets you apart from the competition, look for areas of improvement and key in on who you're trying to target in your marketing efforts.
  • Know your market. What construction needs are in high demand? How could your company cater to this need? Are there an abundance of bathroom remodelers? Maybe this is an area to stay away from. Knowing your market allows for better placement moving forward.
Focus on existing traffic and engage

Understanding the importance of digital marketing means you probably already have a website and maybe a social media page that you are active on. If not, now is the time to start. By building a social following, you have creating an open opportunity to engage. Sharing photos of work you have completed, customer testimonials and team member profiles allows prospective customers to learn more than what is on the surface. It also sets you apart from competitors who do not put time into online endeavours.

Do you have an email list? This means you have existing traffic - reach out to them. While they may not have an immediate need for your services, they could provide referrals in the future. If you have not built an email list, asking for customer emails is a good base to build upon. Use your existing traffic and followers to increase your marketing reach.

Ask for referrals

SEO is great. Increasing search engine rankings can be nothing but helpful. However, for the construction industry, word of mouth still reigns supreme.

Looking for a contractor or other construction professional is different than searching for a retailer. Customers need to trust their chosen professionals and trust does not happen automatically. This means that to get in the door, word of mouth referrals are the tipping points in managerial decisions. Ask your existing clients for referrals and keep a record of testimonials. Take it further by sharing them online. Focus on this before investing heavily on SEO and more modern digital marketing endeavours.

Provide training

Customers want to see you as a resource. Why not provide training that they cannot find elsewhere? The construction industry offers limitless opportunities in this area.

Safety is critical for the proper operation of certain pieces of equipment and construction techniques; why not highlight the fact that you take this seriously while providing training to go along with your products or services? McCall Handling Company, a forklift dealer, works tirelessly to inform its target market about proper usage, while providing information on training opportunities. This increases traffic and the potential for conversions.

Highlight what sets you apart

Maybe your product line has a feature that none of your competitors can offer. Perhaps you have an installation technique that cuts down on customer headaches and leads to a smoother construction process. Whatever it is, it is critical to highlight what sets your company apart from the competition.

This can be as simple as adding a page to your website that highlights a particular line in your product offering. Cliffside Industries offers a unique line of stainless steel cabinet handles. It uses its website to highlight the advantages of this line and to market it in a way that makes it stand out compared to other offerings. When something sets your company or brand apart, it is important to make it obvious to anyone who encounters your brand in person or online.

Focus on informing

Sometimes it just comes down to providing useful, relevant, authoritative information. For non-construction professionals, the construction world is filled with questions. Put simply, those who are outsiders are clueless; it is why the need for professionals is so great.

You can collaborate with your potential customers in this process by becoming a trusted resource. By providing content that is filled with actionable facts, such as High Concrete Group does by providing detailed information relating to the advantages of precast concrete, it is educating customers and showing that their understanding matters to the company. Putting the customer first is always a positive.

PR and marketing strategies for the construction industries share some of the basic needs of other industries but present unique opportunities as well. Follow the steps above to enhance your strategy today.
    
 

About James White

James White is a content specialist for SEO Company Go and blogs in his free time at InfoBros. His articles have been published by ConverStations, Thought Catalog and IP Watchdog.
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