Inbound marketing for construction companies is the holy grail for getting leads compared to any other marketing strategy on the planet.
What is “inbound marketing?” It's a comprehensive package of deliverables driven by a series of intelligent and intentional marketing strategies to achieve a certain set of goals. The goals must be stated. For example, “I want X number of qualified leads within a Y timeframe, at Z cost.
The general tenets of inbound are the same of all verticals, but it’s not always a “one size fits all game.” Each deliverable must conform to the needs of customers each company will have.
Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
Marketing for construction companies using the Internet begins with SEO.
Since inbound is all about your company website, your website needs to show up whenever someone Googles looking for some solution to their pain points or needs.
Why all the fuss about SEO? Because of the correlation between website visitors, leads, and conversions. The more visitors, the more leads you’re likely to get, adn the more important SEO becomes.
1) Optimize All Site Pages
Optimizing site pages simply means setting up the structure of those pages so search engines can index them correctly. Pages need to be optimized for both search engines and for people because real people type in the search queries, but robots actually generate the results. Pay attention to the following five page attributes:
- The URL of each page. Incorrect: Mywebsite.com/123Bpage. Correct: Mywebsite.com/my-really-great-blog-article.
- The page title. Page titles are important since they should convey exactly what the page or post is about.
- Header tags. Each page should use an H1 header tag. Although there is some debate, we still understand search engines look for H1 title tags.
- Image “alt” tags. Since a robot can’t “see” an image, you get to describe what the image is about.
- Body text. The body copy should contain at least one keyword that describes the main topic of the page.
A good rule of thumb to apply when creating pages or editing existing pages is: Break up content into one page per topic. If you have too many topics on one page, you stand a great chance of losing readers. They’ll simply get tired of trying to sort everything out and head to some other website.
2) Build an Off-site SEO Strategy
Off-site SEO is often called, “link strategy.” Link tactics have legitimately gotten a bad rap because of “black hat” link farming tactics that less than scrupulous SEO consultants have used, and still are using today.
So don’t buy links—ever. But what you should be doing is linking to other relevant thought leaders. Your goal in having a website is, of course, to promote your branding, but when you do that, you’re playing to the same tune as many of your competitors.
Inbound is about solving for potential customers. It’s about creating great content on easy to navigate web pages. Part of the process in solving for customers is giving them places to go on the web that will supply additional, helpful, information for them. By linking out, you simply are being helpful. You’ll get a lot of mileage with that.
Lastly, if you’ve published a lot of blog articles, it’s helpful to link to them from other pages or articles. This way, you build an inter-network of pages for both people and search engines, and you'll increase your domain authority; you’re website will have more clout on the Internet.
Blogging is the “meat and potatoes” of every good inbound campaign. You gain exposure on the web by publishing outstanding content, and lots of it.
Blogging as an inbound marketing for construction companies tactic can mean big wins over time, because many of your competitors are not doing it.
3) Use blogging and Premium Offers
Blogging is a door way to gated content. If you’ve been running PPC ads—Adwords or Facebook, you know you pay every time someone clicks on your ad and heads to a landing page. Not so with blogging. A blog is not advertising. It’s providing solutions for your leads: They read a blog, then click on a call-to-action, and are then directed to a landing page where they fill out a form to get a premium content offer you’ve created. Bingo. You have a lead without paying a penny for PPC.
4) Build Your Online Presence with Blogging
Each time you publish a blog article, you are adding to your authority as a thought-provider on the web. You are aware that the first hurdle you must conquer for your leads is trust. Today, people won’t buy unless they trust you can deliver. By positioning yourself as a thought-leader, you will stand to earn the trust of strangers to your business way better than by self-promotion.
One blog article can get hundreds or thousands of views over time. Each time someone finds your article, you have a chance that person will convert into a lead. If you’re paying for content writing, you only pay once, no matter if the blog is read once or 10,000 times. Can you see the positive ROI potential here?
Social Media Publishing and Interaction
You will get leads through social media. Twitter, Facebook, and Google+ are outstanding places to interact with current and potential customers. So many marketers use social media in unproductive ways. If you’d like to know all about getting customers through social media, download our free e-book.
5) Learn How to Choose the Right Network
Step one of social publishing is to know where your customers are. If your customers aren’t on Pinterest, you don’t want to spend most of your time there. If say, they’re tuning into Twitter, then you need to focus on learning how to use that social platform.
For example, Twitter followers will expect you to frequently “tweet” posts of very quick and easy to digest, but also interesting and relevant content. Facebook, on the other hand, is fun, casual, and image-intensive.
Inbound marketing for construction companies who have mostly B2B customers would want to post on LinkedIn, as well as on a few other networks. B2B customers will look for more a professional culture on LinkedIn—so don’t post photos of your office party there. Save that for Facebook.
6) Engage Your Audience
People who are on social networks have certain expectations. For example, if they follow you on Twitter, you can engage with them. Two of the best ways to engage is to either ask a question of your new follower, or make a very positive comment. If they have a website, visit their website.
I once visited a follower’s website, saw they had posted a link for a premium offer, clicked on the link, saw a way that they could improve their conversion rate for that offer, then called them on the phone and shared my suggestion. The 5 minutes I spent on personalized engagement earned our company a qualified lead.
7) Develop a Content Calendar
A huge key to success is to publish consistently, and regularly. Having your publishing schedule on a calendar really can help. Once you earn followers, they’ll anticipate you posting new, relevant information for them.
It’s sometimes helpful to set a theme for a certain timeframe. Sometimes we’ll post a week’s worth of social content on all one theme. If it’s a sought-after topic, like “construction safety,” everything you post will be digested by your audience who is hungry for your helpful tips, knowledge, and expertise.
Get on Top!
If you take the steps to get on board with inbound marketing, you’ll quickly become the leader in your niche or market. Becoming the “go to” person or company has enormous value, again, because of the trust you establish.
Even if you’ve been in business for 50 years and have an established reputation, inbound will build upon that foundation in an active way you can control.
Key take-a-ways from this blog article:
- For effectiveness, lowest cost, and long-term success, nothing in marketing beats inbound.
- Inbound marketing is a comprehensive approach to marketing using lead intelligence and careful strategy.
- Driving traffic to your website is important, but once visitors arrive, then need a path to convert into leads through content offers, calls-to-actions, and landing pages.
- Posting on social media networks and engaging visitors on those networks also produces leads.