Getting Repeat Business and Referrals: The Art of the Follow-up

lead follow upWhile making good first impressions is an important part of lead generation in the construction business, it’s only a small part. If you want those leads to turn into paying clients, you’ll need to follow up on them in a way that shows them your firm is the best fit for the job.

Provide Real Value

Frequently contacting a lead “just to check in” does nothing to demonstrate your value and, even worse, it can leave your prospect dreading your calls and emails. Instead, go in with the mindset of helping your prospect solve a problem they’ve already acknowledged. Contact them with information or opportunities that will get them closer to their goals.

  • Send articles, blog posts, case studies and other material that provides useful information.
  • Offer to connect them with an industry professional who could help them.
  • Let them know about a new product or service that could benefit them.
  • Invite them to a relevant conference, talk or networking event.
  • Invite them out for drinks or lunch to discuss any problems they’re facing.

This approach to lead generation in the construction business positions you as a helpful expert who can be trusted with complex, high-budget projects.

Be Consistent and Persistent

Some leads require more nurturing than others, so regularly follow up with anyone who’s expressed an interest in your services. By contacting a prospect frequently and consistently, you’ll be in front of them at the moment they’re ready to buy.

That said, if a promising lead has disappeared for weeks, it pays to send a polite message letting them know you assume they’re no longer interested. This is often enough to grab the attention of a busy professional, but it also keeps you from wasting time.

Develop a system to track your leads’ progress through your sales funnel. Having a plan to follow prevents valuable prospects from falling through the cracks and alleviates any concerns you might have about annoying prospects with too much contact.

For more tips on productive lead generation in the construction business, contact Construction Monitor today.

 

5 Ways Social Media Can Bring You New Customers

social media marketingSpend some time browsing construction-related conversations on the major social media sites and you’ll quickly notice what a rich source of targeted leads these platforms can be. With a little nurturing, those warm social media leads can turn into some of your best customers.

Positioning — The text, images and videos you post to your social media accounts will attract attention from developers and other professionals planning a construction project. Regularly posting relevant, useful information demonstrates your knowledge and skills, positioning you as a helpful, reliable expert.

Listen to your target market — Social media gives you an unparalleled opportunity to listen in on what your target market is talking about so you can learn exactly what they need and want. By searching for those who are already talking about construction issues, you can zero in on potential clients and take the initiative in connecting with them.

Build relationships — Through social media, you can connect with prospects and business partners you might otherwise never know about. Because these platforms are built for conversation, they make it easy to form the kind of close relationships that translate into sales and referrals.

Create events — Live events give your potential clients a chance to get to know you as a person and develop the rapport that’s critical for winning clients in a high-stakes industry like construction. Events draw attention to your firm and help you demonstrate your expertise while discovering your prospects’ most pressing concerns. Facebook Live, Twitter chats, Google Hangouts, and Reddit’s Ask Me Anything (AMA) are all options for bringing in social media leads.

Advertise — Many social media platforms, including Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter, offer paid adverting options that let you send out your message to precisely targeted groups. This kind of focus can bring a better return on investment than more general advertising venues, such as magazines and websites. Each platform is unique, so before you jump in, research the approach that works best for the platform you’ve chosen.

For more ideas on attracting a consistent flow of social media leads, contact Construction Monitor.

3 Tips for Building a Construction Lead Email List

When it comes to online marketing for a construction business–or any kind of business– success or failure often depends on the email list. When you have new products or services to offer or you just want to promote your company, you can send emails to this list knowing there is already interest in your offerings. You can use the following three tips to help with email list building for your construction company.

  1. Exchange value for email address: Along with the useful information already on your website, blog, or social media pages, you can offer a particularly valuable item in exchange for a site visitor’s email address. In most cases, this will be an ebook, white paper, or report covering a specific issue or area relevant to visitors’ needs. Site visitors can enter their email into an opt-in form and then download the item. In this exchange, leads get useful information and you get their email address and permission to send more emails.
  2. Ask for referrals: Ask your existing customers for referrals (via email address) to friends, colleagues, or relatives who may be interested in your services. Happy, satisfied customers are usually very willing to provide referrals. You can then approach these referrals via email with higher confidence that they will be willing to hear your message.
  3. Provide ongoing news and information: You can acquire email addresses by providing an online subscription to a regular newsletter or other email-based publication. Subscribing to the newsletter will again require the lead to willingly give you an email address where the newsletter can be sent. This allows you to market your company through the content you provide in the newsletter. It also provides the opportunity to maintain awareness of your company by showing up regularly in the lead’s email.

Construction Monitor can help grow your business with up-to-date data on construction starts, along with suggestions for best practices in marketing and lead development. Contact us today for more information on email list building for the construction industry and how you can benefit from a large email list of both leads and existing customers.

 

Why Blogging Works to Generate Leads

Blogging now rates as one of the most effective strategies for construction lead generation for different reasons. Take a look at how Construction Monitor, a company that delivers leads based on building permits gathered nationwide, plus other pertinent construction information and statistics, structures its blog.

Construction Blog Categories

Construction Monitor’s blog categories are varied and target anybody associated with the construction industry. They include:

  • Construction technology
  • Construction tips
  • Construction trends
  • Green building / housing
  • Housing / building permits
  • Landscaping architecture
  • New construction
  • News
  • Pool and spa
  • Remodeling projects

Increase Your Construction Leads

In the last two months of 2016, Construction Monitor published posts directly related to construction lead generation and marketing. One such post deals with the value of creating buyer personas. Buyer personas are a snapshot of the relevant traits of an ideal customer, including what that customer would want. What constitutes an ideal customer depends upon the type of construction a company provides. For example, a maker of pools and spas could target a relatively prosperous family with children in the suburbs. Buyer personas, therefore, have the positive effect of sharpening the focus of marketing.

Another informative post is entitled “Know Your Audience: Where and How You Interact with Potential Customers Matters.” This post describes dealing with customer questions and problems in both in-person and online interactions. A critical factor in interacting with the customer online is answering their questions quickly — otherwise they’ll seek out other sources. It goes further, though, and notes how even the design and text of marketing materials can be geared toward specific target audiences.

A potentially valuable post for a client deals with the increasingly used professional networking platform, and one that can also help with construction lead generation, LinkedIn. To generate these leads, the article recommends going beyond merely creating a LinkedIn profile by actively connecting with relevant persons, joining groups, sharing information, and providing recommendations.

These are just three examples of very beneficial information which can be found on a company’s blog for construction lead generation. For more information about blogging, marketing, and other construction topics, call Construction Monitor today!

Best Practices for Online Lead Generation

Every day, your would-be clients are online looking for construction firms that can provide the information and services they need. Focusing on proven-effective online lead generation techniques will bring more of those clients your way.

Design Your Website to Bring in Leads

Your website is one of the most powerful tools you have for online lead generation, but to do the job effectively, it must be designed with focus. Everything on your site should guide your visitors toward contacting you. Provide content that highlights your services, include a call to action on every page, and offer incentives to sign up for your mailing list or call you.

Optimize for Online Searches

Once you’re confident your website is ready to turn visitors into leads, make sure it’s optimized to perform well in search engines. Add content that contains keywords your clients might use in their searches, correctly use HTML code such as header tags and image alt tags, and strategically interlink your pages. Check how your site works on mobile devices. If you hire an SEO company, choose one that can show you their prior successes.

Get Active on Social Media

Sites like Facebook, LinkedIn, and YouTube let you build relationships with people in your target market and turn those connections into sales leads. Instead of just posting photos of your latest projects, really engage with your market by answering questions, offering tips and suggestions, and asking your own questions. Consistency is critical. To avoid spreading your efforts too thin, stick with just two or three social media platforms where you can be active regularly and build a real following.

Invest in Pay-Per-Click

A pay-per-click (PPC) ad campaign, in which you pay only when someone clicks your ad, can bring in highly targeted leads, but only when skillfully managed. You’ll need someone to monitor the campaign daily and continually tweak your ads and the list of keywords involved. You’ll most likely need a budget of several hundred dollars before you see a conversion.

For more tips on online lead generation, contact us at Construction Monitor.

Developing a Proper Buyer Persona

The more you know about your customers, the better you’ll be able to serve them. From there, you will be better able to provide what they need in the moment and anticipate what their follow-on requirements will be. A buyer persona gives you a detailed profile of your ideal customer that you can use to guide your marketing techniques and customer service efforts. The following information shows some ways to create a proper buyer persona for your customer base.

  • Remember the purpose of the persona: A buyer persona is a snapshot of your ideal customer. It collects the personal, professional, and financial characteristics of your best possible customer into a single profile. The persona represents the best, most profitable, and easiest-to-serve customer that could engage your services. The persona won’t represent every customer, nor can you limit yourself to serving only those customers who possess the characteristics of your ideal persona. However, with a proper buyer persona in place, you’ll have a better idea of what you can offer and what type of customer will be most willing to buy it.
  • Establish the basics: The foundation of a buyer persona is demographic data of your ideal customer. This includes information such as age, marital status, education, income level, and geographical location.
  • Look beyond demographics: Once you have the basics down, look more deeply into the lifestyle of an ideal customer. What would his or her average workday look like? What would this person’s goals be? Why would this individual want to engage with your company, and what challenges or problems would he want to solve through a business relationship with you? Answering these questions may take some creativity and imagination, but they can be critical in establishing the type of customer you want to attract.

Construction Monitor supports today’s companies with up-to-day information on construction starts and with usable advice on marketing and growing your company. Contact us today for more information on the process of creating a buyer persona and how these types of detailed customer profiles can help you target your marketing and expand your business.

Using Demand Generation to Drive New Construction Business

When customers are looking for construction services, they often have a pretty good idea of what they need. However, the techniques of demand generation can also be applied in the construction industry to improve lead generation and customer acquisition.

What is Demand Generation?

Demand generation involves the type of marketing that promotes awareness of and interest in your company. It is designed to not only make leads and potential customers aware of what you have to offer, but to make them excited to know more and to do business with you. This type of marketing requires a long-term commitment, but the results can be substantial.

Demand Generation in Construction Marketing

  • Show where you are needed: Demand generation shows benefits of your products and services that may not be immediately apparent. If you are a remodeling company, for example, customers understand that your services will improve the visual appeal and functionality of remodeled spaces. However, they may not recognize that an effective remodeling job can also improve a structure’s energy efficiency, making their indoor environment more comfortable and saving them money on heating and cooling.
  • Provide unique approaches: A lead may understand at a basic level how a project is designed and built. As a demand generation tactic, you can provide detailed information on the construction process and what can be expected. Text descriptions, diagrams, specification sheets, and even videos can give a level of detail that other companies don’t provide, improving your company’s reputation for being helpful.
  • Educate and inform: Offer ongoing education for your leads and customers. This can take the form of a regular blog, an informative website, or frequently updated social media pages. Give away some of your most valuable information to create goodwill. Interact with your leads and customers on your social media pages.

Construction Monitor provides the most recent data on construction starts, providing you with insight into where your company’s products and services are likely to be needed. Contact us today for more information on using demanding generation in construction marketing and how this technique can improve lead generation and bring you more customers.

Lead Generation Toolbox: 4 Methods You Can’t Afford to Ignore

lead generationA steady flow of construction leads keeps your firm running strong and fuels your growth. To achieve that steady flow, you need a strategy based on reliable lead-generation methods. There are plenty of methods you could use, but a few stand out as especially productive.

Active Prospecting

Whether it’s by cold calling or inviting key business owners to luncheons, you need to reach out to bring in leads. When you contact your prospects, mention someone the prospect already has an interest in or identify a specific business issue you can help with. Always have something of value to offer. Reliable construction industry data can help you identify good prospects and better define what you can offer them.

Planned Referrals

Referrals are some of the most favorable leads possible, but getting them requires some forethought. When a job is nearing completion, invite your client and their friends to the construction site for a progress review. When the job is done, follow up with a thank-you package that includes a referral form the client can use to pass along the contact information of anyone who might need your services. Consider offering a reward for every lead that turns into a sale.

Strategic Trade Shows Participation

Choose the right trade show and you’ll put your business in front of hundreds of potential clients. To attract qualified leads, design your booth and signage to clearly express what you do. Provide useful information, whether through signs and pamphlets or in conversation. Attract attention by handing out giveaways that are closely related to the services you offer.

Goal-Oriented Website Design

If you expect your website to bring in construction leads, you’ll need to plan the path your visitors will take from the page they land on all the way to the contact or sign-up form. Start by providing useful information prospects are searching for online. Then optimize every step to move your visitor forward. That means including strong calls to action at the very least.

For more information on attracting construction leads, contact us at Construction Monitor.

How to Leverage Strategic Partnerships to Generate Construction Leads

The process of building a construction business can be done alone, but it will be significantly easier and faster if you collaborate with other companies and form strategic partnerships. A strategic partnership is designed to allow your company and one or more partners to accomplish more together than you could individually. Here are some suggestions for forging mutually beneficial strategic partnerships and some lead generation tips you can use to help you and your partner grow.

  • Partner with companies with products and services that complement your own: Look for partners whose products and services are not identical to your own but that complement what you offer. If you specialize in new construction, for example, you might consider strategic partnerships with electricians, HVAC professionals, or paint and carpet suppliers. They can help direct you to leads that may need the type of construction services you offer while you help them with access to new construction projects and customers.
  • Partner with companies that have an existing customer base: A company with an existing customer base that is larger than yours will have access to more leads for your company. This can mean partnering with companies that have been around for a long time or that are highly successful. Offer these companies a partnership of value and they are very likely to want to work with you.
  • Partner with companies whose lead generation processes are more effective: One of the most effective lead generation tips available is to partner with a company whose lead generation techniques are more effective than your own. Perhaps such a company will have more business than it can handle, or it may get leads from potential customers who could use your company’s more specialized services. Trade knowledge with this company and learn its best lead generation tips.

Construction Monitor helps builders, renovators, designers, and other professionals in the construction industry with up-to-date business data and practice tips. Contact us today for more lead generation tips and additional information on how you can use strategic partnerships between your company and others to improve your business performance.

 

Reputation Management: How Your Online Reputation Can Affect Your Business

reputation managementYour reputation is among your company’s most valuable assets. Whether online or in the physical world, your reputation tells potential customers what they can expect when they deal with you. It is particularly important to maintain your reputation online, where leads and potential customers can easily find information — true or false — about your company. Here are some important ways your online reputation can affect your business and why reputation management is important in the online world.

  • Customers have access to much of your history: Customers can easily find information about your company’s history online. You can control what kind of information is available on your official website and sanctioned social media sources such as Facebook or Twitter. Outside of these resources, however, your customers can find other material such as newspaper articles, assessments of your company on review sites such as Yelp, and simple mentions on personal blogs or websites. This information can give potential customers a comprehensive picture of your reputation.
  • Customers can see your customer service in action: Potential customers can see how you handle customer service issues when they occur online. For example, if someone posts a complaint on your website, it’s easy to see how long it took for your company to respond and how you resolved the issue. Customers and leads can see for themselves the speed of response, the tone you took, and what you are willing to do to correct errors and ensure customer satisfaction. This can strongly influence a buying decision in cases where customers make emotional (rather than logical) choices.
  • False information is easy to present: In the online world, it is easy for disgruntled customers, competitors or pranksters to post false or negative information about you. Online reputation management gives you the opportunity to directly address this information and correct it (or have it removed) before it can harm your company.

Construction Monitor provides the most up-to-date business management data for construction firms and affiliated companies. Contact us today for more information on reputation management and how to effectively maintain your company’s reputation, and continued success, online.