We are currently surveying construction professionals, asking them questions about their journal readership, blog readership, social media activity, use of product directories and CPD requirements. This is to inform the fifth edition of the Construction Media Index report, due to be released September 2017.
Findings are currently being analysed to provide insight into how best market and communicate with architects, main contractors, housebuilder, builders’ merchants and offsite manufacturers.
Over the years of completing the survey (the first one being in 2011) we have seen the rise of social media and smartphones. Social networks are increasingly being utilised by marketing teams to influence sales.
- 92% of marketers say that social media is important to their business. (Social Media Examiner, 2015)
- More than half of marketers who’ve been using social media for at least two years report it helped them improve sales. (Social Media Examiner, 2015)
Early indications from this years’ Construction Media Index (the industry’s largest independent communications research programme) show that adoption of social networks in a work capacity for construction professionals is set to remain.
Facebook usage by the construction sectorPrelim research show 6% increase in Facebook by #construction professionals for work Click To Tweet
So far Construction Media Index responses show Facebook has seen an increase of 6% for work since 2015 by construction professionals. With 27% of Facebook users using it in a work capacity.
Facebook is the leading social network with over 42 million Facebook users in the UK. Facebook accounts for one in every six minutes spent online and one in every five minutes spent on mobile.
In contrast to our findings Hubspot 2017 figures show 74% of people say they use Facebook for professional purposes, a significantly higher proportion than indicated by our Construction Media Index report.
In 2015 the Construction Media Index revealed that most construction industry decision makers use more than one social network for work and the social media channels used vary with profession. With those aged 36 – 55 more active on social media for work than other age groups.
We will have to wait and see what the final results of this years’ 2017 Construction Media Index reveal for the leading social network.
LinkedIn usage by the construction sector
Engineers are the most represented profession on LinkedIn. In deed LinkedIn is known as the professionals network. LinkedIn has approximately 21 million UK users, with 60% of the UK’s student and working population using LinkedIn.
The Construction Media Index research in 2015 showed that 49% of respondents use LinkedIn for work. This year early analysis of initial findings show 78% of respondents use LinkedIn, and the majority (91%) use it for work, a marked increase of 42% when compared to the 2015 findings.
Marketers need to be bear in mind that the average LinkedIn user spends 17 minutes per month on LinkedIn. So less active user base than other networks. The 2015 Construction Media Index findings showed most respondents who use social networks will use more than one network for work. For example, if a member of Twitter, the respondent will also be a member of LinkedIn and/or Facebook. Put simply there is not one social network that meet all the requirements of the construction marketer, as ever a tailored multi-channel tailored approach is required.
Social media as a construction specification tool
Interestingly statistics by Hootsuite show 50% of B2B buyers use LinkedIn when making purchasing decisions.
Newer social networks that have established themselves in more recent years have been more image based. With Instagram, Snapchat, Pinterest all showing increased growth. 87 percent of users cite Pinterest as the reason for buying a certain product. Not only that, but 93 percent of Pinners have used the site to plan for a future purchase. And half of internet users watch video clips online at least weekly, an increase of 9% since 2014.
How does this translate into the specification of construction products?Social increasingly used for #construction product info & ideas shows prelim research. #SpecStrategy Click To Tweet
Preliminary findings from this year’s Construction Media Index shows that social networks are increasingly used for product information and ideas. Early findings place the use of social networks for product information at 43% an increase of 14% from 2015.
Preliminary findings of the Construction Media Index are showing that
- 90% of professionals in the construction sector are active on social media
- 91% of construction professionals use LinkedIn for work
- 43% of construction professionals use social networks for sourcing construction product information and ideas
The team here at Competitive Advantage will continue to analysis the Construction Media Index survey findings, with final conclusive results available at the end of September. It is clear though that social media will remain an important tool in the construction marketers’ communication kit. Our research aims to help inform your strategy, not just for social but for your full communications strategy.
The full Construction Media Index report will provide comprehensive guidance on online and hardcopy journal readership, digital readership, usage of social networks for work, sources of product information and ideas, sources of technical information, use of product directories and CPD. Reports will be cover survey results from Architects, Main Contractors, Housebuilders, Merchants and Offsite Manufacturers.
The Construction Media Index is sponsored by:
The Construction Media Index is supported by: