Following on from our post on how Building Product Manufacturers can best utilise social media, we’ve listed a few of the questions we often get asked as a construction marketing agency when it comes to creating an effective social media strategy. These should hopefully resonate with you and help to clarify a few common queries surrounding the topic.
So without further ado, let’s begin…
“I get that social media is needed but where do I even begin?”
Rather than jump ship and spread yourselves over all social media platforms out there, it is imperative to determine where the people who comprise your target audience are most likely to look for work-related information. If you do not have a business reason for establishing a presence on a certain channel, then do not waste your time and resources on it. First things first, start by doing a little customer research and using social listening tools such as Social Mention to determine the list of social platforms best suited to your manufacturing business.
By doing this from the word go, you’ll prevent yourselves from spreading your resource too widely and sporadically. If you don’t keep a steady stream of information across all of your social sites, then people wont have a reason to keep coming back. This will mean that when you do have valuable content to share, your audience may not be interested in checking out your social profiles.
This follows nicely onto the next statement…
“…but I don’t have the time to create even more content!”
A common misconception is that social media requires brand new content. However, social is just one of the many ‘push’ tactics surrounding your construction website, meaning that content used should be extracted and repurposed from what already exists.
While a social activity plan should be created from your initial research to ensure everything remains professional and streamlined to your objectives, this should be formed from your existing
“Nobody cares about my new office or staff members!”
If your goal is to grow your business, create awareness or even get sales leads, you must share posts about something your audience actually cares about. They care about information that helps them to solve a problem or to be better at their profession. This may involve product demonstrations, ‘behind the scenes’ access, free guides, useful tools and project case studies.
And while it may not feel like it – talking about your staff and the latest office updates is actually an excellent way to attract potential new colleagues! You’ve got to be able to present your company as an appealing place to work with a strong team culture.
“That’s all well and good but where are my conversions?”
People expect to see instant results from social media and often tire from the consistent effort that is required. Whilst you should typically wait around three months to start measuring the outcome of your social media efforts, you should also consider that each platform will be associated with different goals.
Instagram for example, may not drive high conversion rates, but your brand awareness could significantly improve when tied in with an effective Facebook strategy.
LinkedIn could be focused on networking opportunities and conversions rather than lead nurturing, while Twitter may be used to improve your relationship with existing clients.
It’s important to be realistic about what to expect from each platform, and to acknowledge that each outcome will differ depending on how you’re using each one. Less click-throughs doesn’t always mean less success.
Set yourself success metrics and a realistic evaluation plan before deciding whether it’s a wasted time and effort.
“How do I get my followers to bother engaging with us?”
Focus on building a strong social following across the selected platforms first and after consistent management and quality posting, engagement should happen naturally over time. However you can also try specific tactics for engagement, by prompting your followers to contribute to a specific social campaign.
Get them to share facts or positive experiences about your product or industry in exchange for an exclusive resource, run competitions using unique hashtags, create surveys and run the results past your following. You’ll be surprised how many people will actually want to participate! If engagement is key, ensure you join communities and smaller forums to connect with influencers too.
“Is paid social advertising worth it?”
Ever since social media sites started implementing algorithms that only show your posts to a select (and small) number of your followers, paid social media has become a strong factor in to reach a larger audience. This has made large-scale organic reach difficult for many businesses to achieve.
A paid post references social media content that businesses have chosen to “boost” by laying down a credit card for a one-time or ongoing payment. Paid posts can be geared toward demographic-specific users and have a much larger audience than organic.
For example, Facebook introduced “pay to play”, where you can guarantee a certain number of views on each post based upon how much you want to invest.
You can pay as much, or as little as you want to reach the number of users you choose. Even a small investment will typically have a much larger reach than traditional organic posts.
But don’t worry – you don’t need to spend a small fortune and before you start spending, you’ll want to take a look into whether targeted ads or boosted posts will help you meet your marketing objectives. If social media is new to you, start by focusing on your “organic” social activity plan first. Distribute high quality, engaging content to a strong following before analysing whether paid advertising is an initial requirement.
While the growing shift towards social presents challenges for building product manufacturers in the sense that they must learn how to respond and communicate on another level, it also enables you to demonstrate a greater commitment to existing customers with the hope of attracting new ones. Leverage yourselves as remarkable thought leaders in your field by implementing a strong social media plan today.
For more information on how your construction business could best utilise social media marketing, download our eBook or give us a call on 01908 671707.