Social media doesn’t seem like a good way for contractors to advertise. But, more and more, large and small companies alike are getting in on the action. Here’s how to make it work for you.
Start a Company Blog
It doesn’t seem intuitive for a construction company to start a blog, but if you want to start advertising on social media, you really need to. Why? Because the blog is where you will create your own community.
You see, when most people advertise on social media, they have a place where they send visitors. People who are terrible marketers just shuffle followers and fans from one social media site to another or they don’t put out enough calls to action to make social media marketing worth the effort.
But, according to New Home Sales Coach, social media is one of the most power ways to advertise your brand – but you need to move people away from sites like Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn to your site.
The key to a great blog is providing useful, practical, information. If you want to build a community of loyal readers, readers who become customers and then refer you to other people who become readers who become customers and so on, then you need to make sure you’re offering a high value in every single blog post.
For example, if you’re writing about how homes are built or how steps for a patio are put together, don’t just explain the process, explain how it’s done and how homeowners or prospective homeowners could do it themselves.
Why do this? Won’t people just cut you out of the picture and build their own home? No way. They’re not going to do that because building a home is really difficult. But, the perception of a “how to” post is that it reveals the “tricks of the trade.” It’s practical in the sense that if people wanted to, they could build a patio or deck, do landscaping, or build and entire home.
You could also focus blog posts on related topics, like how to get construction loans, negotiate deals with architects, and how to do small projects after the home is built (e.g. decorate the interior, paint, and add finishing touches that aren’t possible during the construction phase).
Yet another idea is home repair and remodeling articles with detailed “how to” instructions.
Evaluate Your Social Media Channels
Before you dive right into social media, you should consider whether it makes sense to have a presence there. Some of your customers might hang out on Twitter, for example. But, is this where most of your customers live online?
Most construction companies benefit from having at least a Facebook account. But, make sure you branch out into Pinterest, Google+, Houzz, and YouTube.
Each social media site you set up should be linked to the other in some way. Some sites can naturally be linked together, like Facebook to your blog. Or, if you’re signed up to Quora, you can link your Quora account to Facebook so that every time you post an answer to a question, it reposts it to your Facebook account.
If your blog is connected to Facebook, then you can autopost your blog updates to Facebook too. The more social media profiles you can link to your blog, the better.
Ideally, when you publish to your blog, it should go out to all of your social media accounts.
Use Every Digital Inch Of Space
When you sign up to a social media site, use every available digital “inch” of space they give you. Put your company’s logo up there, make sure to use your company’s colors (branding) and really spend some time creating a space so that it looks like the account is maintained. When users see a social media profile that doesn’t get used very often, or that looks inconsistent with what’s on your blog, it makes it look like the social media account isn’t actively maintained.
You’ll end up losing followers or fans this way – not good.
Don’t Be Afraid To Pay For Advertising
In the beginning, you’ll probably have to pay for ads. That’s fine. Facebook advertising is still affordable, and you can use it to shuttle leads to your blog. Just keep in mind that, at some point, you will want to get most of your traffic from referral sources or organic traffic.
This will be accomplished through cross promotion of your social media accounts, doing a good job getting listed in local search engines, and reaching out to other bloggers in your industry and asking them to promote your content or share it (which they will if the quality is there).