Think about changing how you communicate with your customers
It’s a frequent lament that I hear talking to Business owners in the Construction and Property Industry that ‘we don’t need to ‘do’ Twitter because none of our customers use it’. Also they say ‘I’ve got a LinkedIn account but I only use it to accept offers from people to connect’ or ‘I can’t see the merits of Facebook in our Sector’. These comments are nearly as frequent as ‘We want to send out a 6 page Newsletter to our Clients three times a year’ or ‘we don’t think that updating our website is a current priority’.
It’s a shame that the people that make these comments are often not in touch with the way the world is changing in terms of technology and most importantly how people (yes even your clients!) are choosing to communicate and gather information.
It’s a bit like those marketing and product selection challenges on The Apprentice when Lord Sugar advises – “don’t think about what you like as an individual – think about what will sell the best.”
This is where I think so many people in the Construction Industry go wrong in terms of marketing their services. No doubt, how you market your Organisation is about how much you want to grow and how much you would like to identify new clients and I also recognise that it is a ‘generational thing’ but if you are hesitant about the benefits of updating the way you communicate with your customers here’s 6 reasons why you should stop hesitating and start changing now!
It is a reflection on you as a business: Prospective Customers might think are you unlikely to be up to date with other technical issues in the Sector (like BIM or On-line file sharing systems) if you have an out of date website. Even more so if you tend to send boring Newsletters with content that isn’t relevant to them.
It builds trust: If you are more accessible to your customers, they can read about you, your opinions and see your photograph (please get your LinkedIn profile updated with your photo!) your prospective clients are more likely to trust you and consider placing an enquiry with you…
“If you have a good story to tell, tell it in a way that’s an authentic conversation with the customer. You can’t just preach to them. You have to engage them, so that they can come to learn and believe it, and build that trust with you.”— Joel Yashinsky, McDonald’s Canada.
Source: Youtility by Jay Baer
It makes things easy for customers to gather information: Remember “Up to 90% of purchasing decisions start with an online search” Source: jeffbullas.com
This includes business services – not just when you want to buy a new car or book at Hotel!
If your customers can’t find quick, relevant and engaging information about you and your Organisation, they are more likely to click the ‘close current tab’ button and look for one of your Competitors on line instead!
If you don’t do it – all your Competitors will. Eventually!
If you think that ‘nobody else’ in your Sector is up dating the way they communicate, trust me – they will be doing so eventually, so why not be one of the Leaders of the bandwagon rather than jumping on it when everyone else is already there.
It’s a recruitment tool: Having an up to date Website and Social Media presence can help attract new, younger staff to your business. Did you know the following facts?:
“LinkedIn has 238 million users internationally. The majority of users are aged between 26-34 followed by 35-44 age group. It is the number one social media networking tool for business-to-business interaction.
Twitter meanwhile has over 500 million users internationally with the majority of users between 26 and 34. It is the best tool for interacting directly with clients or customers in real time” Source: Susan Dolan
So – its worth thinking about how you want your business to appeal to the younger generation coming through. Get out there and engage with them.
It avoids the ‘Out of sight out of mind’ syndrome: As any good Business Development or Marketing professional knows, it is so important to keep in touch with your customers. No amount of social media can take the place of actually meeting someone for a coffee and discussing future business opportunities.
But you are only human and will have limited time for business to business meetings especially if you are the owner or partner of an Organisation. Communicating regularly in the right way to your Clients, with compelling, punchy content is your security blanket when you can’t get out there yourself.