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Marketing in the construction industry: more than just a list of services

Do you ever find yourself comparing similar offers in a particular market, and you just can’t see the difference?

It must be frustrating.

When everything you see is just a list of services, you don’t get enough information to make the best choice (and you probably turn to Google reviews to see what people are saying).

Well, the same goes for your construction industry business.

Your market offer needs to stand out, whether you’re selling building materials to builders, tools to trades businesses, or engineering services to construction companies. 

Look at our work on brand awareness, brand promises, and brand recall to start to understand why this matters.

Disruption in construction industry marketing

What is everyone else doing?

“We do the best kitchen renovations.”

“Our civil engineers have more than 50 years of combined experience.”

“Our door and window products are super efficient and trendy.”

Does any of this sound familiar?


Because it’s the current “standard marketing strategy” for 99% of construction industry–businesses and construction companies out there.

But, it falls short.

None of it will ever make a buyer go, “wow, I can’t believe I’ve never seen this before. I have to give them a call.”

And, when it comes down to it, isn’t that the job of your marketing messaging?

It’s time to create a unique market offer, and run a marketing strategy that delivers a highly-optimized message to your best buyers with a consistent cadence.

The concept of disruption in business

Disruption is not a new phenomenon.

Aware or not, you’ve witnessed it in almost every industry.

In fact, if you’re reading this on an iPhone, you’re holding market disruption in your hand.

Companies that successfully disrupt the market are redefining the rules of the game and creating new value propositions.

At the largest scale, it changes the way business is conducted, and flips the script for what the market expects.

Take a look around.

How many flip phones are on sale around you today?

In the construction industry, disruptive market offers are absolute game changers.

Fact is, the industry as a whole is primed for disruption in every market, from private residential renovation services all the way to supply contracts for the biggest construction firms.

When everybody is doing the same thing, those who step up to the plate and think differently have the opportunity to take immense market share, and rapidly scale their business.

And, you don’t need to change the entire market.

You just need to do enough to change what your buyers expect by changing how they think about their purchases.

You need to identify a unique marketing opportunity in the construction industry, and create a distinct market offer that will:

  1. Wake up your ideal buyers, and

  2. Win new and repeat business over and over

Identifying marketing opportunities in construction

The industry today is different than it was more than 20–to–30–years ago.

As it is in every sector, technology is playing a crucial role in driving disruption.

From Building Information Modeling (BIM), to robotics and automation, advancements are transforming traditional practices and buyer expectations.

Additionally, solutions that were once new and special, such as sustainable construction practices and the integration of renewable energy, are now more commonly expected as good practice.

Which begs the question: where do your biggest opportunities lie?

How do you build and deploy a construction industry marketing strategy that doesn’t just drive incremental revenue increases, but one that actually puts your company on the map across your whole market?

To start, define your target audience

Your core market offer has to be unique and valuable

Just having an offer is not enough.

Your audience is accustomed to being “pitched,” either actively or passively hundreds of times each day.

So if you’re going to make an offer? 

Make it unique.

And, if you’re going to make a unique offer? 

Make it uniquely valuable.

The art of crafting an offer goes beyond the scope of this article, but think for a moment: if you were your buyer, what would make you regret saying no to?

Start with the most outrageous amount of value you can offer to your clients, and walk it back to the edge of reason, where it’s unbelievably valuable to them, but you can actually fulfill it.

Your core market offer can be the difference between a steady, growing business, and a business that takes off faster than you could imagine.

Your Ideal Client Profile (ICP) is your champion

Before you even think about spending a dollar on digital marketing or a new website, take a look at your ideal buyer and what they currently have access to in the market.

What offers do they see over and over?

And what are you doing differently?

It’s key to define your difference and match it to what keeps your ICP up at night.

So key, in fact, that we devote a lot of time to our construction industry clients helping them figure out who their best buyer actually is, and what they need to hear.

Your marketing plan has to factor in the target.

Without knowing if it’s a project manager with three competing deadlines to manage, or a CFO who needs to whittle down costs and complete projects faster, you’re sending your message into the wind.

And, your marketing tools and marketing budget won’t yield results.

Marketing your product or service isn’t just putting up some case studies and paying an agency for SEO.

It’s a concerted effort of matching messaging to buyers and connecting with them where they’re primed to hear you best.

We like LinkedIn and trade shows.

Some of our construction clients have great results with YouTube and in-person info sessions.

Your ICP will be the guide for when, how, and to whom you deploy your marketing messaging.

Don’t burn your marketing budget on lead generation services

It can be tempting to buy a list of leads or contract with an agency who promises they will fill your calendar with appointments.

In many cases, the leads just aren’t the right buyers (see above), or even if they are, they’re not at the right buying stage to be receptive to your offer.

Effective marketing in the construction industry revolves around creating a name for yourself through consistently delivering results (and the right story about your results) to your market.

Lead generation strategies look great on paper, but they don’t convert as well, and they can quickly burn through dollars that could otherwise be spent on getting hundreds or thousands of ideal buyers to know more about your business.

Nobody likes to think of themselves as a “qualified lead.”

So when your appointment setter phones them, or your cold email hits their inbox, you have a big hill to overcome in terms of building rapport and trust.

Especially if you haven’t done your ICP establishment and you’re reaching out in all directions.

Focus on partnerships, content, and testimonials

Your marketing efforts in the construction industry will often come up against one main barrier: cost.

When everything from email marketing to Pay–Per–Click (PPC) ads, such as Google Ads, costs hundreds or thousands of dollars per month, it can be tough to justify the spend unless the returns are immediately measurable.

And, they usually are not.

So, look to areas you can focus on that are free (or nearly free) and have outsized returns in building your brand presence.

Partnerships as a growth strategy for construction businesses

Partnerships are often overlooked, and rarely pursued.

If your product or service (eg. floor refinishing) is contextually related to another that you don’t offer (eg. interior painting), it can make a lot of sense to connect with providers of what you don’t offer, and create a partnership.

This can take the form of an affiliate relationship.

For example, if they secure a client, they can then make an introduction to your business. 

And, if that introduction turns into a project for you, you can pay a percentage back to your partner for the referral.

This is hugely useful as a marketing tactic for businesses in the construction space because:

  1. You only pay on results, and

  2. You get the benefit of a warm handoff to a client you otherwise may never have met

This is especially useful if your product or service is less commonly sought, but makes sense to add onto something more common.

For the record, this type of relationship is useful in the B2B space between engineers and developers, project managers and building material suppliers, and more.

The most difficult part of building a network of partnerships to support your construction marketing strategy is actually building the relationships.

It’s a lot like making a sale, but with the potential for outsized returns if you can build a powerful network.

Content marketing for construction businesses

Everyone thinks Search Engine Optimization (SEO) for construction is a saturated or useless strategy.

But, SEO is just one piece of the content marketing puzzle.

Great content is just that.

It should educate or fulfill some need for the reader, and position your brand as the solution they may be looking for.

While SEO or content marketing may seem less useful in a B2B context, that’s actually not true.

When you make great content, part of the distribution process is to promote.

You can take pieces of what you have written or filmed, and actually create an entire content calendar on social media to promote and drip-feed to your network.

Optimized content works in three ways:

  1. It gives your website a fighting chance at ranking on Google (SEO)

  2. When a prospect or lead lands on your site, it positions your brand as a relevant authority, and

  3. It provides context and content for social media promotion and building your network of industry peers

Don’t make the mistake of assuming content marketing doesn’t work in the construction industry.

There is a lot of potential value in building a library of content that resonates with your ideal audience and positions your brand as a leader in your space—it’s not all SEO gimmicks.

Testimonials do your selling for you in the construction industry

What’s better than telling your prospects how great your brand is?

Having happy clients say so on your behalf.

If you own or manage a business in the construction industry, you need to be focusing on collecting client testimonials.

Written content is nice. 

Video content is even better.

It’s absolutely an investment of time and money in your marketing, but it creates so much value as a marketing strategy—it might be the most effective investment of all.

Further to that, it’s worth considering your local SEO.

Local SEO is how your business appears in Google as a Google Business Profile.

And, the most powerful factor in driving your business up in map rankings?

Testimonials (in the form of Google Reviews).

If you can’t get a testimonial from a client in video format, and they don’t want to approve a blurb for your site, you should absolutely encourage them to leave a positive Google Review.

The volume, sentiment, and cadence (how fast they come in) for your Google Reviews are the factors that determine which businesses get to the top of Google Maps for “service or product near me.”

Deploy your construction marketing strategy

When you believe you have the best service or product and you deliver the best value to your market, it’s your responsibility to ensure the market sees it the way you do.

That’s marketing.

Understand your audience at a deeper level.

Build an offer that they can’t reasonably turn down.

Deploy messaging consistently to your market, and have your clients also do so on your behalf.

Leverage relationships, channels, and your unique perspective on the industry, and actively create a brand that your clients trust and resonate with.

You can spend all the money in the world on paid ads, but the above will amplify your marketing investment far beyond the effect of simply throwing more marketing spend into the mix.

Want to learn more about how Clickex is the next best click for powering your growth? Chat with our team today and let us show you how to build a legacy brand through the power of the internet.


Colten Nahrebeski

As your certified Google Partner — trust Colten with your conversion rate
optimization. His 8+ years of marketing experience started with international brands, such as Philip Morris Japan. He is literally obsessed with increasing your booked calls and client meetings. His name might be Colten: but his game is most definitely business development.

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