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Building Lasting Online Relationships in the Construction Industry

Imagine your customers raving about your products or service with some of their closest friends. How do we get there? Well, let’s get started.

If you're in marketing or sales, then you're probably great at talking to people. And good news--that's all you need to excel with your company's social media account (read: you don't actually need a social media coordinator if you can do it yourself!).

At its heart, social media is an online communication method. So when you create a business account, your number one priority should be communicating with your customers. Your customers don't want to be sold to--but they do want to learn more about the things that interest them. So if they're interested in your products and services, then all you need to do is tell them about it in an interesting, conversational way.

What Does It Mean To Be Interesting And Conversational?

For starters, keep it simple and lighthearted. Talk about how your product or service is used by celebrating people who have demonstrated success with them. Keep in mind, people don’t want to buy your products, they want the benefits your product or service offers them.

To make my point I’ll share one of my favorite quotes by Theodore Levitt – “People don’t want to buy a quarter-inch drill, they want to buy a quarter-inch hole”. Essentially, people buy drills because it will make holes, not because it’s a drill. Engaging with your audience in an interesting and conversational way is the first step to building a relationship. The more you engage with your audience, the more you will be seen as an authority or even a trusted advisor.

Once you've found your voice, use it. Keep the posts going, and share relevant news from the industry--even if it doesn't directly tie in with a service you offer. The more often your clients see your brand actively participating in the community, the more respect you'll gain.

The fun really starts once your social media following starts growing and customers begin interacting. Direct messages and comments are today's fan mail: If you get one, consider it a hot lead from a potential client. This is your opportunity to chat directly and build a rapport that can pay off big time in the end.

But beware--it's best to use social media right, or don't use it at all. Maintaining a social media platform takes a lot of planning and engaging with your customers, and it's important to stay active. For a company, a stagnant social media account is just as welcoming as a store with boards on the windows and a "Go Away" sign on the door.

Current customers feel neglected when their posts aren't appreciated, and potential new customers have no reason to trust a business that stopped engaging with its community years ago.

So How Do You Do Social Media Right?

  1. If you're opening a new account, draft at least a month's worth of posts first. It's a good idea to have content pre-planned so that you don't have to think too hard at the beginning.
  2. Follow the accounts of other leaders in your field for ideas and to find potential followers.
  3. Use appropriate hashtags to help gain traction as a thought leader in the industry, and allow potential customers who don't follow you to discover your posts.
  4. Always respond to user questions and comments, and the sooner the better. Even if this relationship doesn't become a new deal, the potential customer feels impressed and appreciated.
  5. Users pay more attention to posts with images or videos, include those in your social media plan whenever possible.

Social media is an important part of building your brand and engaging with your customers. If you're not fully invested in it, you're missing a huge part of your potential market. Stay up to date with all the latest trends and techniques in the construction industry with our resource library.

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