Survey Reveals Popular Marketing Strategies for Construction and Related IndustriesDecember 5th, 2019 by Kyra Thompson
A report released by the Society for Marketing Professional Services (SMPS), a community of marketing and business development professionals, predicts what the future of marketing strategies and skills will look like according to those in the architecture, engineering and construction (A/E/C) industries.
The report outlines what strategies and skills are currently prioritized by the A/E/C industries and which are predicted to be the most important in the next three years.
Beginning with the definition of marketing as presented to survey respondents, the report establishes that marketing is “the process of creating firm awareness; building and differentiating the brand; driving business development activities; and identifying, anticipating, and satisfying client objectives to achieve profitable business goals.”
It also establishes that the landscape of marketing is significantly changing with the shift of generations pushing for more digital marketing.
“Together, millennials and Generation Z will comprise as much as 75% of the workforce by 2025,” the survey claims.
Marketing Strategies Current and Future Perception
The report outlines the A/E/C industry’s current perception and use of several marketing practices and the predicted future perception and use of those practices.
The marketing practices included:
- Personalized marketing: using past consumer interest to determine content;
- Account-based marketing: targeting the highest value accounts;
- Social media marketing: engaging with the target market;
- Influencer marketing: getting individuals and websites with large, quality followings to promote your services;
- Thought leadership and content marketing: providing the insights, talents and knowledge base of your organization as a “free sample” of your services;
- Client experience: the sum of every interaction a customer has with your business;
- Proposal automation: software that automates certain types of proposal data; and
- Branding: the sum of expectations, memories and relationships that account for a consumer’s decision to choose a service or product.
A few other marketing practices included the use of media (podcasts, videos, lead generating, etc.) on a website and creating content with voice search optimization in mind. Voice search optimization is different from search engine optimization, which has been a heavy focus of media marketing strategy recently, states the report.
The most important strategies according to the survey responses were:
- Networking: 78.41% say it is the most important strategy currently and 58.59% expect it to be the most important in 2022;
- Client experience: 53.3% say it is the most important strategy currently and 69.9% expect it to be the most important in 2022;
- Branding: 40.97% say it is the most important strategy currently and 39.21% expect it to be the most important in 2022; and
- Thought leadership: 39.65% say it is the most important strategy currently and 48.46% expect it to be the most important in 2022.
The survey results also predicted the rising popularity of education-based marketing strategies as opposed to previously used promotion-based strategies.
Takeaways and Action Plan
A few of the recommended action points as presented by the report are to expand your knowledge of the current marketing environment, seek training on relevant marketing strategies, create specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, time-sensitive (SMART) goals, adjust your marketing budget and create regular reports about success.
The survey responses are representative of six demographics in the A/E/C industry: architecture (16%), engineering (29%), architecture/engineering combined (18%), general construction/design-build combined (22%), geotechnical/environmental combined (3%), and other (12%). The survey includes both national and international respondents, from a fairly even distribution of larger firms (1,000+ employees) to smaller firms (1-19 employees).