Most trade companies are seeking an edge in these unpredictable times.
There’s a lot of business available right now, and it’s the perfect time to get into fighting shape to compete for it.
Here are the top four things construction and contracting businesses can do to get a bigger share of the work out there.
Leverage Account-Based Marketing (AMB) to Bring in Appropriate Clients
Is there a type of client you like to do business with? Perhaps they’re more profitable, easier to work with, more likely to do repeat business — or all of these things.
Using account-based marketing may be your first step to attracting the right type of potential clients.
Account-based marketing is a strategic marketing tactic that focuses on developing highly-targeted marketing campaigns directed toward the prospects you want to do business with.
Start by picking out a few prospects that fit your ideal client profile. Then create email and social media campaigns targeted exclusively to them. Invite them to webinars and make an effort to network with their decision-makers at trade shows and industry events. Use messaging that will appeal to each of the prospective clients. Speak to their pain points and focus on your unique capabilities that can help solve them.
Essentially you’re concentrating more of your marketing on fewer, yet more appropriate, clients. Once you get the hang of this, you’ll bring in more revenue while spending less time and money on marketing.
Don’t give up on your current marketing tactics when you move to account-based marketing. You want to ensure that you have a continuous work pipeline while shifting your focus to fewer, better accounts. Account-based marketing can take a while to get up and running, but once it does, it will make your promotional efforts far more efficient and effective.
Update Your Website to Get More Leads
If you haven’t updated your website lately, it’s probably time. Websites — and people’s expectations of them have changed a LOT over the last few years.
Many construction and contracting company websites still act as brochure-ware, presenting information about the company, its services, and the people who work for it.
People today expect a lot more. They must experience your business on a smartphone, tablet, or computer screen. Videos are an excellent option for companies in the trades. They can show workers in action, before-and-after scenarios, and time-lapse views of ongoing projects.
And if you don’t have a blog, add one! It can be a great way to share your perspectives and demonstrate what makes your business unique.
Remember, people are coming to your website to do research. Make sure you give them the information they need, in a form they prefer, so they decide to do business with you.
Modern websites make it easy to connect via chat or phone and to make appointments. If you don’t have these capabilities available online, make it a priority to add them.
As a final step, ensure your website is optimized for search. If your building trade business serves a particular niche or area, this should be reflected in your keywords, page names, and subheads.
Instead of thinking of your website as a brochure about your business, consider it a lead-generation machine. An investment in updating your website could pay off many times over.
Amp Up Your Social Media to Stay Current with Clients
For most businesses in the trades, it’s much less expensive to do repeat business with current clients than to find new ones. Social media is a great and free (or inexpensive) way to stay top of mind with the people you’ve worked with.
Many contractors and construction company owners shy away from social media. It can seem like a stretch from what they do every day. However, this can be a big mistake, especially when it comes to staying current with customers.
Make it a point to ask clients to follow you on social media. Then share information about what you do, whether original content or things you pass on from other sources. It can be as simple as a before-and-after of your latest projects or information about what’s next in your industry. Make sure it provides value to your clients. The more they like, share or click on it, the more free distribution your posts will earn.
If you offer specialized services, incorporate them into different pieces of content and hashtag the posts as appropriate. It will help people who care about these areas of specialization find your posts.
Also, consider boosting or promoting posts to reach a broader audience. For just a few dollars, you can reach more of your clients and the kinds of people you want to do business with.
Finally, get creative about the social media platforms you use. Facebook and LinkedIn seem obvious choices for people in the construction industry because of their solid targeting capabilities. However, a visual platform like Instagram or even TikTok could be a perfect place to show off your work.
Tip: Leverage your social media content in an email newsletter. It isn’t just efficient. It’s smart. The one-two punch of hitting clients with content in social media and email will ensure your material gets seen. It will also enhance your brand presence.
Implement a Growth Marketing Strategy to Increase Business
You can’t grow your business if you don’t know what growth is.
People in your industry are familiar with blueprints. Growth marketing provides a blueprint or plan for increasing the revenue you earn. It gets everyone working for you on the same page, building your business by working toward the same vision for the future.
It all starts with defining what success looks like at your company.
Do you want to increase sales?
Build more relationships?
Expand your business?
Do more business with current customers?
Work with your team on this vision. People are more willing to support a vision of the future they help create.
Once you’ve defined what success looks like for you, write it down. The writing process ensures you can express your vision, which is essential because you will need to be able to share it with others.
Then, set SMART goals that will help you achieve success. SMART goals are:
Once you’ve set your goals, make sure your marketing tactics are aligned with achieving them. For instance, if you want to increase the number of new clients and you’re currently only sending emails to people in your database, it’s time to implement some outbound marketing, such as promoted social media or paid advertising.
Over time, monitor progress toward your goals to ensure that you’re on track to achieving them. If a tactic isn’t working, make adjustments to it. Or eliminate it and replace it with something else.
Growth marketing is systematic. It allows you to figure out if what you’re doing is paying off. It can help avoid randomized marketing efforts that can be a big waste of time and money.
If all of this seems a bit overwhelming, hire someone to support you. They can help you get set up right.
Taking these four steps will help ensure you get your share of business during these uncertain times for the building trades and have a comprehensive handle on potential clients and leads you’ll be attracting.