Digital Marketing Tips for Construction Business Owners
By Michael A. Monahan, president, Moxē Integrated Marketing
Digital marketing has become one of the best ways to grow construction businesses. The industry, itself, is evolving and so are the ways you can reach potential customers.
However, digital marketing can be confusing, especially if construction business owners have little experience with the intricacies of each strategy. With that in mind, here are some tips for how builders and contractors can use digital marketing to help build their brand and their business.
Whether you want to focus on SEO or on developing a unique social media presence, digital marketing has several benefits compared to traditional modes, including advanced targeting, tracking and analytics related to each customer’s unique journey toward a buying decision.
Define Your Targets
The first step in digital marketing is defining a target market. I recently heard someone say, if your audience is “everyone,” then you really do not have a target audience at all.
To define your audience, you will need to understand the businesses and personas you are trying to reach.
Start by answer the following questions:
- What are the 50-to-200 businesses I really want to target?
- What are the job roles of the people I am trying to influence?
- What are the demographics, psychographics and geographics (people, profile place) of those groups?
If you know these answers already or if you have a good sense of them already then great! You can now focus on finding out how big that group is.
Create a Dedicated (and Professional) Website
You would be surprised at the number of businesses who still do not have a functioning web site. You may be even more surprised at the number of those who have a site developed by a friend, relative or other non-marketer who may not understand the latest trends in understanding customer journeys, gated content, retargeting/cookie tracking and marketing automation. Remember the old analogy of “if a tree falls in a forest and no one is there to hear it, does it make a sound.” The same applies to your web site. Just because you have a web site doesn’t mean it’s actively working for you. In fact, if you’re not maintaining it, caring and feeding it with fresh content, constantly optimized for search, it may be doing your business more harm than good.
Identify SEO Keywords to Use for Your Construction Company
SEO, short for Search Engine Optimization, should be the foundation of your digital marketing strategy. They are what help people find you on search engines like Google, Bing, and Yahoo!
To get started, identify a few keywords or phrases that best describe your company and its services. For instance: “construction management software” is a great keyword to use if you specialize in this type of software or offer it as a service for general contractors. You could also include separate attributes such as location (the city where you are located), industry (construction), and audience (homebuyers).
Make PPC Advertising Work to Your Advantage
Consider giving your SEO a little juice by implementing a pay-per-click digital advertising campaign.
Businesses can typically start with as little as a $500 monthly investment for targeted ads that appear to people searching for specific terms related to your business. You will notice the small “ad” notice on the first few search results when you look up something online. Those are paid ads. You can even bid on competitors’ keywords or even their name so that you pull traffic that would have ordinarily landed on a competitors’ site to your own.
Monitor Your Analytics and Data
Analytics is a powerful tool that can help you better understand your business and guide its evolution. The first step in using data to improve your business is to monitor it. We’ve always been a fan of the saying “if you can measure it, you can improve upon it,” and this is true of digital marketing. At Moxē, we monitor for traffic sources, conversion rates, site performance and more. We then provide our clients analytics and insights to help them make informed decisions about how best to improve both traffic and conversions on your website or app.
As a construction company, it is important to be on social media because it is a great way to connect with customers and get feedback. You can also use social media as a platform for your business, or even just to promote recent projects or employee highlights.
You will want to have a content calendar, planned out well in advance, so that you have visibility into timing important posts, understand any graphic needs associated with the content you are sharing and clearly articulate the frequency of posts you want to share.
If you do not have any experience with social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter, consider an agency partner who can either teach you how they work or take over the entire function for a fraction of the cost of a full-time marketing resource.
Use Email Marketing to Grow Your Construction Business
Consider email marketing to reach your audience. E-mail marketing is one of the most effective ways to reach your target audience and share your news and information. It is a “push” technique that can take content you would normally post to your website and share it out versus waiting for your audience to find it online.
Email marketing can help grow your construction business, because you’ll be able to reach out directly to people who have already expressed interest in what you do. Since many people are constantly on their phones or computers, they will likely be checking their inboxes when they see an email from you come through—making it much more likely that they will open up and read what it says!
Investing in a CRM, or customer relationship management tool, is even better. Today, many of these tools allow for better insights and even have marketing automation features so you can speed up your marketing funnel. If you distributed a recent case study, the fact that someone on your distribution list clicked on it to learn more can create a trigger event that will allow your sales or marketing team to follow up with them with additional, relevant information.
Marketing your construction business through digital mediums is the best way to grow your customer base. Digital marketing campaigns can help you get more leads and reach a wider audience, as well as increase customer retention. With these tips in mind, you will be able to create an effective digital marketing campaign for your construction company.