The construction industry is enjoying good growth now. Because of this recovery, construction company owners and marketers are setting goals to make sure they gain a better share of this increased revenue (source: U.S. Construction Trends and Outlook).
The Internet, in conjunction with top-performing marketing tactics like inbound marketing, is the catalyst for one of the newest construction industry trends: setting goals in anticipation of growth.
An ambitious construction company CEO or marketer can reap enormous ROI with some planning and tweaking of marketing tactics.
All marketing functions within two broad realms: Setting goals, and executing those goals using a series of planned, actionable tasks. It may be tempting to fly by the seat of your pants because it seems more laid-back to do so, but not knowing where you're going can add plenty of stress.
To Begin, Set S.M.A.R.T. Marketing Goals
Everything starts with an idea. Right? Wrong. Everything starts with a good idea. Setting S.M.A.R.T. goals requires putting your head into the project and relying on what you already know intermixed with you know you can achieve.
S.M.A.R.T. goals are:
So what are you planning to achieve heading into next year? The following S.M.A.R.T. steps will help you with your planning:
Step 1: Be Specific About Your Goals
Take out a notebook and write the answer to this question: "What is your overall marketing goal for the coming year? Below are some possibilities:
- "I want to increase my sales by 10%."
- "I want to start pushing out educational information online, such as in a blog."
- “I need to get going with social media.”
- "I want to offer a new category of services."
- "I want to increase my marketing efforts while staying within budget."
These are all great places to start; you may have other ideas. Any of the suggestions above are entirely realistic goals.
Step 2: Set Goals That You Can Measure
It's important to set measurable goals. If you're going to spend either time or money executing your goals, it would be nice to know the ROI, or lack thereof, of your efforts. Right? With online marketing, everything is measurable. Not so with conventional marketing efforts. And I might add, most all of the current construction industry trends in marketing are moving away from conventional marketing.
Still have your notebook out? Here's the Step 2 question: "Name the situation that best summarizes your marketing needs?"
In step one, you stated a goal. What would be the first step in beginning to achieve that goal?
If you’re trying to get leads and increase sales using Internet (through inbound) marketing, the #1 solution that always achieves the most success is getting more visitors to your website. From there, you need a way for those visitors to become leads.
Armed with what you need to accomplish, set some actionable tasks such as:
- “I need to review and revise my content to make my website more relevant. (Or you may need a website redo).”
- “I need to add a ‘request a quote’ form, or other conversion paths so those visitors can become leads.”
Potential customers visit your website because they are searching for what you offer and can do.
Maybe getting leads is not your #1 goal. No matter what it is, you need a viable path to achieving your goal.
Step 3: Set Goals That Are Attainable
The questions you need to ask yourself for Step 3, are numbers-based.
Once you set a measurable goal, you need to plan on how much of an increase do you want.
Staying with the example of, "I need more visitors to my website," how many more do you want?
Using your KPIs, there are many ways to project marketing ROI, and there are a lot of factors to consider.
The graphic below represents one simple formula we use to project website traffic, leads, and customers acquired.
Step 4: Set Goals That Are Relevant
The numbers in the graphic above are entirely attainable with inbound marketing. Not only are these goals attainable, they might be attainable with some rebudgeting rather than a whole new spend. And your cost per lead (CPW) could drop since inbound is often more affordable than traditional marketing tactics.
A 2% lead to customer ratio would account for an average amount of competition in your marketplace. Some niche areas of specialization might do better: Construction industry trends are favoring specialization more and more (source: Sikich).
Step 5: Set Goals That Are Time-Bound
While having everything together so far, you need to ensure you have a time line for meeting that goal you wrote down in step #1. From the example above, if you do decide your goal is to increase website and social media traffic, you need to know when you will accomplish this in order to know when to start working on the secondary goal of hiring subs and teams to do the work. You don't want a situation where you end up with more contracts than you know what to do with!
Some questions to ask yourself:
- When would you like to reach this goal?
- How many hours per week can you dedicate to inbound marketing?
- What is the biggest marketing challenge preventing you from reaching this goal?
Besides setting a time frame, facing your hurdles and pain points are also must-do's if you're to succeed in this process.
We’ve developed a super a fun and super easy to follow resource on inbound marketing you can download for free below. You’ll get a more thorough idea on what you can do with inbound and even can use the download as a prezi for your team! Just click on the graphic.