IMHO: Your Construction Company Needs to Do (a Little) Social Media Marketing

It has been my (marketing) experience that Accounting and Construction industries are generally slow to adopt any Social Media (SM) strategies. While the Construction side is quickly realizing the benefits of communication between the office and field via mobilization, there seems to be no convincing them of the uptick for SM as an optional tool for sharing content.

To that end, I’ve created my own imaginary Objection/Resolution arguments to make a business case for SM as a communication, branding and sales tool:

Facebook

Objection: We’re not allowed to go on Facebook at work. And I don’t have time anyways.

Resolution:  One person in the company should have ‘rights’ to access FB.

As the dedicated company SM Admin, she/he should:

  • Act as the company’s liaison to the community
  • Support the company’s charity or cause
  • Engage with industry organizations (great industry exposure, by the way)
  • Endorse (‘Like’) industry publications for reciprocal publicity (for example, Reed Construction Data is on SM all the time and gives great “love”)
  • Share the company culture (photos of company events or milestones that create goodwill and are also great recruiting resources)
  • And ‘like’ or promote good customers and vendors
  • Link to blogs or landing pages to share content with calls-to-actions (forms, demos, etc.)

Updating your company’s FB page is actually an easy and quick way to do all the “right” things as a best practices company!

Twitter

Objection: I don’t “get” Twitter.

Resolution: Think of Twitter as a micro-blog or text message which grants access to companies or people that were previously impossible (if they so choose).

For example, I had a software issue that I submitted through “proper channels” and could not get more than a canned response from a third-party ticket system. When airing my frustration on Twitter, the CEO tweeted back with a help solution that was not only satisfactory – it was IMMEDIATE.

Twitter leap-frogs the gatekeepers and infrastructure that protect companies from unwanted interruptions. It is a voluntary “relationship” – where communication is when/where/who you want it with.

Twitter is also a very valuable marketing and PR tool; best used creating reciprocal relationships and links to other traditional marketing channels (web pages, blogs) that generate LEADS!! Twitter is a essentially ‘micro-leap’ via links to more content where the audience may engage in whatever value is perceived.

TIP: Find your vendors, competitors, and customers twitter accounts and see who follows them and who they follow. You can easily click on the ones you would like to add right from their screen. It’s interesting research as well as introducing you to people or companies that you want to include in your nurturing programs.

Caveat: Twitter is not for everyone within your organization. Either your Marketing person, an SM Admin or a C-Suite Executive with time and enthusiasm should participate. It takes some savvy. Do it well or let it go.

YouTube

Objection: It’s too expensive

Resolution: If you have a phone camera and an internet connection, it’s free.

Seriously, this IS an investment – in your brand. Quality content is the benchmark for good video. The marketing case for it is that 85% of online users view video content.

And it converts! Almost half of content viewers say they seek further info on a product or service after viewing a video! Crazy good, right?

There are a ton of companies that do professional marketing videos and syndication. If you don’t have the internal resources, this is an easily outsourced project.

LinkedIn

Objection: It’s a tool for job-seekers

Resolution: Well, yeah it started out that way. However, it’s grown to be a new-fangled forum. (But it’s also a great recruiting tool!)

Yup, you heard right. It’s a sexy forum. Follow thought-leaders, respond to questions, join groups; LinkedIn is a virtual networking.

From a marketing standpoint, however – LinkedIn is wrought with LEAD GENERATION potential. Have your sales team join group conversations and participate as a neutral SME (Subject Matter Expert). Trust me, they will slip in your product or solution as soon as they have established their expertise (and people ask for recommendations all the time). It’s an awesome tool for your sales team!

Summary

Once you get the knack of SM, it’s actually very easy to syndicate content to all of your channels with the help of HootSuite, TweetDeck or another SM management tool. Most of them are free for a limited number of channels. As with any business strategy, you should start with a SM plan. Even if it’s a commitment to tweet 2x a day, blog once a week, and post to Facebook daily – if you calendar it, you’re more likely to succeed. If you want copious resources on SM marketing, Hubspot’s marketing library is a great place to start. You may have to give up your email address, but that’s a small price to pay for some solid edification.

Ultimately, all of these syndicated marketing channels allow opportunities to drive content consumers to MORE information and ultimately SALES.  Think of it as reaching more of your potential audience in multiple, syndicated channels and platforms. SM, in the best sense, creates in-bound leads.

Isn’t that case enough?