I was talking to new client not so long ago on the subject of his order book and what the next year was looking like. “Not good”, was the response. I was a bit shocked because he gave the outwards signs of being a pretty successful builder and had not raised the issue of marketing with me. The truth was he had been so wrapped up on a complex 18 month reno project, that had grown an extra arm and leg, he had not done anything to generate some leads for over a year. He had almost become invisible in the market.
That’s the problem if you have no marketing strategy in place. There is a habit of many business owners in the trades to just take what the market dishes up and not put some proactive systems in place to generate work. “I get all my work from word-of-mouth”. That’s great when WoM is working, but what if it isn’t? What’s the back-up plan? Usually there is none. This is particularly true when you are busy, or the market is stronger and the perceived need to generate leads is less. But as the title of this post suggest, I recommend people to dig the well BEFORE you are thirsty.
Putting a pro-active marketing plan in place will help smooth out the usual ups and downs of the construction industry. It may not eliminate them all together, but it will help. It will also improve the QUALITY of lead. Rather than just taking whatever is dished up, by deciding on the ideal work you want and targeting your marketing to that sector, you will be surprised what you will achieve.
By targeting your marketing you will also be able to command premium pricing and increase your margins. Targeted marketing, consistently applied over time, will help you achieve a higher level of trust in the market and a reputation as the “go-to guys” in your chosen market segment.
So, despite how solid the market is looking, I suggest you develop and implement a simple marketing plan for your business. I have a Marketing Audit process that will help with this and is a low cost way to reset your marketing and sales processes for the future. Email me here to find out more.
Andy Burrows The Trades Coach