You don’t have time to mess around with massive advertising campaigns; there’s work to do and schedules to keep. Construction companies notoriously rely on word of mouth to get new customers, which is effective in a lot of places. However, a few additions and tweaks to your marketing plans and ad campaigns make the difference between growth and stagnation.
Volunteer time, products, or both
If you’re having difficulty finding time to advertise, the idea of volunteering probably seems absurd. But construction companies thrive when they’re visible in their communities, and volunteering doesn’t have to be a massive endeavor. Donate unused materials to local charities like Habitat for Humanity or nonprofits with storefronts that specialize in selling scraps. If you have a college with an art program in town, contact the department head and let them know that students are welcome to comb through scraps for any projects they’re working on.
And, of course, providing a charitable service, whether renovating a community center, helping after a natural disaster, putting a new roof on a veteran’s home, or upgrading windows for a nonprofit organization, generates plenty of positive press.
Keep your advertising ultra specific
Even if you’re a general contractor, the ads you run should be for specific offers rather than a basic ‘hey, we do great work, call us’! Break down what you do and create precise offers for small jobs that potential customers will find valuable. Three day fence installations, a set price for painting one room or replacing one room’s flooring, or an offer for installing a new sink, all target your services to consumers yet give you plenty of leeway to upsell.
Don’t just show off results
You do great work, and you’re proud of the projects you’ve poured your sweat and heart in to. But consumers expect good work – what they don’t know is how frustrating it will be to go through the process. You’ve probably heard plenty of jokes or backhanded comments about how contractors are never on schedule, always go over budget, and projects are often significantly more interruptive than the consumer wants. By showing before, during, and after photos in brochures and ads, you create a clear picture of the entire process, as well as show off your hardworking team.
Create instructional YouTube videos
Construction lends itself beautifully to producing informative YouTube videos, a marketing tactic that sets you up as an expert in your field, shows off your skills, and gives consumers something of value that they want to share, thus increasing visibility. Think of the super simple things you’re commonly called for that, with a little guidance, a homeowner could solve on their own, and teach people how to do it. The increased trust and exposure provides infinitely more sales than the few you might lose because someone is now empowered to do the job themselves. And for that group, when something bigger does come up, they’ll remember your company first.
Have some fun with it
Small things make a huge difference in visibility and increasing word of mouth referrals:
- Set up tables outside of a work site with free bottled water and ear plugs
- Give gift baskets with business cards, a treat, and some earplugs to neighboring homes and businesses when you start a new job
- Offer free Wi-Fi to people around your job site: setting up a sign with the password, network name, and a quick “hope this helps you drown out the noise” message go a long way to improve community relations
Remember: marketing your construction company doesn’t have to come with a high price tag or dramatically increase your workload. Focus on your customers’ needs and your community as a whole, then watch sales skyrocket.