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These 6 Areas Need to be in All Digital Marketing Plans for Tradespeople and Construction Companies

First things first, yes tradespeople and construction companies do need a digital marketing plan or strategy. Not only do you need a digital marketing plan, you need a good one. The digital world can be somewhat overwhelming and the technical side of things can be incredibly confusing. The following tips will be a helpful start for your company and act as the foundations for your digital marketing strategy.

Here at Shake & Speare, we’re aiming to help tradespeople and construction companies embrace the digital world and all of the benefits that it can deliver. You won’t be alone, in fact in a 2016 survey 95% of construction companies said that they’re looking to invest time and money increasing their digital marketing. In the last two years more and more companies are expanding, growing and developing their plans.

Construction and Tradespeople Marketing Strategy Statistics

Of those 95%;

88% of them were looking to increase their social media marketing strategies including growth of their paid online advertising. That might be through Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn, all of which offer targeted and geographically specific advertising. Not to mention the power of Google AdWords.

71.4% were planning on creating an email marketing strategy to contact their clients and interested audience members directly.

71% were going to decrease their direct paper mail.

These statistics clearly show that tradespeople and construction companies are moving away from traditional marketing methods and into digital. Newspaper adverts, radio, billboards and mail dropping.

These old methods are proving to be expensive, wasteful and outdated. Digital marketing, thanks to detailed analytics, allows you to see how much you’re spending, the results that they give you and suggestions of next steps.

What needs to be included in your construction company’s digital marketing strategy?

There are 6 key areas to focus on. They’re almost all linked together and it all starts with your website. The website itself is your set of foundations. Social media, a content strategy, email, paid advertising, it all points towards your website.

1 – Your Website: The Face of Your Construction Company

It’s an age-old saying but it still rings true- first impressions count. Nowadays though, the first impression that people get of your company isn’t you, and nor is it the people in your business…

It’s your website.

What’s the first thing that most people do when searching for a product, service or information? They Google it.

No longer is the face of your company just you and your team. Your website is your ‘shop window’, and should be regarded as a member of your team and therefore accountable.

If it’s slacking then it’s probably time to have a word and get it back up to scratch. If you don’t, then it could drag your business down and provide a negative face for your company.

Generally, people are becoming less and less keen to pick up the phone, at least in the first instance, and instead will come to your website.

The internet and especially Google is now the first place that everyone goes when searching for information, and customers will judge your company as soon as they land on your website. Your job is to make them feel confident and positive about the services you offer.

Your site needs to make your customer trust you, understand your brand and speak to them on their level.

2 – SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) – Making Your Construction Company Attractive to Google

Conducting SEO is the process of optimising your website for search engines (in this case Google). The aim is to make your site attractive enough that Google puts you higher up the ranking!

Ignore SEO and you’re wasting the potential of your website.

People who might want your services simply won’t be able to find your business, or will have picked someone on the first few pages of search results before their attention span ran out.

Investing in SEO means investing in your business. The more attractive your site is to Google, the more likely it is to be found, meaning more potential clients visit your site and more clients get in touch.

There are many ways to improve the SEO of your website, including:

  • Using keywords effectively
  • Improving on-page features like headers embedded in the text, compressing images and titling links correctly
  • Improving page load speeds
  • Building links to your website from other, trusted websites
  • Designing and using an effective content strategy

The most important factor, and this is the crux of it, is simply to put yourself in the mind of the customer. What do they want? How can you help them? By giving your customer value and not wasting their time, people will enjoy your site, spend time on it, share it and that will lead to a higher ranking.

3 – Social Media – The Social Side of Your Construction Company

By the end of 2016, 67% of adults in the UK owned a social media account. That number will have only grown in 2017/2018 and beyond.

When it comes to construction companies, there are 3 key platforms to be part of:

Twitter – Excellent for quick news, the latest trending ideas and news direct from the horse’s mouth. This is your direct access to people thanks to the @ method of tagging people you want to target.

LinkedIn – A professional networking tool. This is your way of making meaningful connections to those in businesses you want to work with, for or simply for finding jobs.

Facebook – Facebook speaks for itself nowadays. You can build a company page and develop your reputation thanks to the review feature.

With all of these, simply having an account isn’t enough. You’ll need to be active, post regularly and engage with your audience. That means asking thought provoking questions and replying to comments.

That said, don’t fall into the pit of wasting time on social media. By using tools like Hootsuite, you can schedule posts that will post automatically at a specific time. Set aside 20 minutes a day to respond and engage, or employ someone to manage it on your behalf.

4 – A Content Strategy for Construction Companies 

When we talk about ‘content’ we basically means everything that you put out into the online world. That might be via social media (LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter etc), your website or even in print.

A content strategy is a way of managing that content so that it works for you and your business to attract new customers or engage with your current audience.

Content can come in many forms:

  • Articles and Blogs (our main focus in this section)
  • Videos
  •  Infographics
  •  Photo albums
  •  Case Studies
  •  Checklists and help sheets
  • Social Media updates and interactions
  • Viral memes etc

Blogging or article writing is by far the most popular element of a content strategy and with good reason. Writing articles is your opportunity to become an authority in your area. Your voice becomes the leading one in your field and you can quickly gain traction in different circles.

The best thing about this style of strategy is that once it’s out there, it’s always out there. People will continue to find your piece and perhaps share it.

5 – Paid Advertising (PPC – Pay-Per-Click)

PPC is a form of paid advertising and gives you the power to jump to the front of the queue for a fee.

There are two main platforms for online advertising related to construction and trade companies.

Google AdWords:

Displays results related to the keywords that a user has searched for

You bid an amount to pay Google to show your advert

Google shows your advert when users type in a specific term

Your adverts can be at the very top or bottom of page 1.

Google will only show ads that are linked to great websites and great content, after all they are still a customer service based company!

You can pick text only or image ads.

Search network ads are only shown on Google and are purely text (for the most part)

Display network ads can be image based and are shown on Google’s partner websites

Facebook:

You create a visual ad based around a picture or video with a textbox and a link to your site

You set a daily budget amount and timescale

Facebook shows your advert to users in the demographics and locations that you choose

You can set your audience based on their search history and interests

Ads can also be shown in Messenger and Instagram

Both of these are great options but require a lot of set up, management and time. Most importantly, they also can spend a lot of money quickly.

Plus, it’s only effective as long as your website is able to convert visitors. Spending money on advertising that leads to a poorly designed, inefficient website is no different than throwing money down the drain.

6 – Email marketing

Building an email list might sound somewhat old school when it comes to digital marketing but it is still an incredibly powerful tool. Psychologically speaking, people still feel that email is a more formal method of communication and, as long as it isn’t spam, is respected too. In fact, 56% of millennials still claim that they would prefer to be contacted by brands via email.

Email allows you to talk direct to someone who has given you permission to contact them. That means you have great access to that person and their inbox!

Use email to send tips, update your readers with a newsletter and generally stay in touch with them.

Time to launch a digital marketing strategy for your construction company!

If that hasn’t made you feel motivated to start a digital marketing strategy, if you’re feeling confused still or would simply like a chat about your plans then drop us a line. We’ll happily take you out for a pint or a cuppa (if you’re in the Bristol area!) and we can discuss a plan for you. We’ve helped some great clients such as local Bristol company, Clear It Bristol.

Questions, or comments, let us know! How are you planning on launching your strategy? Have you already started? What are you doing? Questions, questions, questions!

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