This post, “Contractors: Build Business with Content Marketing,” was written by nDash community member Deborah R. Huso. She was recently featured on the nDash blog. She is an internationally published, award-winning journalist and book author with more than two decades of experience in media. Deborah is also a founding partner of WWM, an elite content marketing and strategic communications firm. Her work has appeared in U.S. News & World Report, USA Today, BBC, and HousingWire. Want to hire Deborah? Head to her profile for more information!
As a building contractor, you spend a large portion of your time managing projects. But how often do you include marketing your business in your daily activities? Keeping new projects in the pipeline isn’t just about gaining referrals from existing clients. If you really want to grow your business, you have to find customers who don’t know anything about you … yet.
Enter content marketing. Become a trusted and regular resource for information your clients and prospects are searching for online. That allows you to assume a position as an expert in the marketplace. When it comes time for a prospect to launch that new road project or apartment complex, your content marketing efforts should bring your company’s name top of mind.
Wondering how to get started with content marketing? We’ve got some insights:
Content Marketing: Create a Company Blog
Did you know that organizations that blog regularly gain 67% more leads per month than companies that don’t? Creating a blog with expert content helps drive traffic to your website.
For example, if you’re a custom home builder, craft a blog post on “How to Choose a Home Builder.” Then, create a checklist of questions for homeowners to ask prospective contractors. In the end, create a call to action for readers to reach out directly to your company for a consultation. Or have them fill out a contact form that allows you to obtain critical contact information for future marketing campaigns.
The key is blogging on topics your target customers will be interested in knowing more about and doing it regularly, at least once per week. Think about the kinds of questions your customers ask most—what are their typical pain points? Do they need help understanding how to meet the requirements for LEED certification? Do they need advice on HVAC systems to consider? Those should be the subjects of your blog posts. If you position yourself or your company leadership as expert problem solvers, you’ll be well on your way to gaining more market share.
Establish a regular email marketing campaign
Do you know that substantial list of customers you have from all the projects your company has completed over the years? Combine that with all the leads your sales team has generated, plus leads garnered through that company blog you started, and you have the first critical tool of a successful email marketing campaign: warm prospects.
Now it’s time to reach out to all those prospects regularly through email. The easiest way is to launch your email marketing campaign via a third-party provider like MailChimp or ConstantContact, both of which have performance-tracking tools to help you evaluate the return on investment of each email campaign. That way, you’ll know if you get more “opens” and “click-throughs” from your monthly e-newsletter or your quarterly report on industry trends, for example.
Don’t underestimate the power of imagery, either. Add beautiful photographs of recent projects you’ve completed to your marketing emails.
Build a video channel
Like photographs, videos give your clients and prospects engaging visual insights into the kind of work you can do and what the end results look like. Start a company YouTube channel, link to it from your website and social media platforms, and start uploading video tours of recent jobs you’ve completed, whether that’s a multi-million-dollar custom home or a major city infrastructure project.
Other potential ways to use video include creating time-lapse videos of construction projects from start to finish, having one of your project engineers discuss a topic you’ve recently covered in a blog post, or creating a vlog that provides insights on a day in the life of a field supervisor. Videos provide a fast and entertaining way for clients and prospects to understand your company, what you do, and what you might be like to work with.
If you’re just starting out, keep it simple. Many of today’s smartphones have professional-quality video capabilities, and you can use relatively inexpensive video editing software, like iMovie or Adobe Premiere Pro, to professionalize those videos even further. Be sure to link video snippets on your Facebook and Instagram pages as quick-to-watch “stories.”
Set up an online resource library
In keeping with that larger goal of establishing you and your company as a trusted resource for building expertise, start setting up an online resource library that’s easy to find and browse on your company website. In addition to blog posts, a resource library is also a great place for how-to guides and ebooks geared toward your customers and prospects.
Consider pulling together guides on topics like “How to Plan Your Kitchen Makeover,” “Best Picks for Deck Materials,” or “Selecting a Building Site.” You can then link to these resource guides from your blog posts, social media postings, and email campaigns.
Final Thoughts on How Contractors Can Build Business With Content Marketing
Establishing a solid content marketing plan and implementing it isn’t a one-off job. Content marketing means consistently creating actionable resources to not only build trust online but to position yourself as a building industry expert. As a builder, you already understand the value of contracting out tasks and overseeing their completion. When it comes to building your content presence and crafting marketing materials, consider hiring one of nDash’s talented subject matter experts.