Marketing is no longer just direct mail and advertising campaigns, when we think marketing we think digital, personalised emails, targeted social media campaigns, SEO, blogs and instant downloadable content.
This is the same for B2B as it is for B2C and the construction sector is no exception. Our Construction Media Index shows an increase in the use of social media for work from 65% in 2013 to an initial result of 90% for the 2017 report.
Customers expect a tailored service
Digital marketing enables us to deliver targeted communications, triggered by customer behaviour. An important consideration when thinking about marketing to construction markets, the construction design process and supply chain is complex and has many influences on product selection.
We live in an age with information at our finger tips, where the customer expects instant service. 2017 saw an important milestone, half of the world’s population now has access to the internet. And half of internet traffic is mobile (Source: Digital Trends 2017). Here in the UK nine in 10 adults use the internet, spending 21.6 hours online each week. (Source: Ofcom Adults’ media use and attitudes) So it is safe to say that the world is a digitally connected world.
Digital marketing brings many advantages, allowing the marketer to tailor content, enabling a more individual approach to the customer relationship.
When developing marketing it is important to consider the customer journey and develop personas to inform your marketing strategy. In fact 62% of consumers said that if brand content was more personalised to them they would be more likely to seek out other information or content to learn more about the brand. (Source: Raptmedia) We have developed a series of construction personas to help the construction product marketer.
The rise of social media marketing
In recent times social networks have become an economical way to market. Figures show there are more than 1.6 billion social network users worldwide, with more than 64% of internet users accessing social media services online. (Source: Statista) The leading social network, Facebook, accounts for one in every six minutes spent online, and one in five minutes spent on mobile. (Source: Hootsuite). By 2018, the number of social network users worldwide is predicted to grow to 2.44 billion, or nearly one third (32.58%) of the projected global population. (Source: Trackmaven)
Visual marketing methods work best
Recently we have seen social networks evolve to include greater functionality, particularly in the area of visual. Good news for the marketer. With Facebook Live broadcasts getting priority, Apple Clips making it easier to create and edit visual content for social share, snapchat and Instagram competing for greater market share by launching AR and VR functionality. This move to a more visual social media is reflected in the statistics:
- Visual content is 40X more likely to get shared on social media than other types of content. (Buffer, 2014)
- 4X as many customers would rather watch a video about a product than read about it. (Animoto, 2015)
- Almost 50% of internet users look for videos related to a product or service before visiting a store. (Google, 2016)
Getting your brand noticed online
All this digital technology has caused attention spans to dwindle to a mere 8 seconds, yet apparently our ability to multi-task has improved (Source: Telegraph). Which may explain the report that two-thirds of YouTube users watch YouTube on a second screen while watching TV at home. (Google, 2016)
So how can the marketer get noticed in the busy online world? It’s about returning to marketing basics. It’s about knowing and understanding your target market.
Ofcom report that the most popular activities online are sending and receiving email (93%), using instant messaging (78%), looking at social media sites or apps (76%) and uploading or sharing videos or photos (70%) (Source: Ofcom Adults’ media use and attitudes)
Researching your customers will inform which channels are best to use in your communications. How to adopt a multi-media approach that optimises engagement.
For communicating with construction professionals our Construction Media Index market research shows that LinkedIn is a popular network, with 78% of respondents using the network. Yet the average LinkedIn user spends 17 minutes per month on LinkedIn, so a less active user base than other networks. 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.
The Construction Media Index 2017 research aims to inform your communication strategy, not only for social media but for trade journals, online presence through blogs, newsletters and website. It seeks to help you understand how best provide construction product and technical information. Each Construction Media Index report covers survey results from specific key decision makers in the construction supply chain. The 2017 survey results provide findings for Architects, Main Contractors, Housebuilders, Merchants and Offsite Manufacturers.