[Tweet “Of those working at managerial level, 68% visit Twitter and 40% visit LinkedIn every day #construction”]
Social media is a powerful tool, assisting many businesses in all sectors with customer interaction and lead generation. But did you know that within the construction industry, of those working at managerial level, 65% visit Facebook, 68% visit Twitter and 40% visit LinkedIn for industry news and developments every day (RRC,2016)
Construction companies who invest time in establishing a solid social media presence can enjoy a number of valuable benefits for their business. Not only that, social media can also provide a platform to position yourself (and your company) as an industry leader and ensure that your name is at the forefront of any potential contracts or tenders.
Here’s our list of the five primary reasons for every forward thinking construction company to use social media in 2016:
1. Attract the Best Talent
In construction, you’re only as good as the people that work for you. The best construction companies employ the best talent – and these are the companies that win the tenders.
Using social media is a great way for job seekers to research prospective employment, with 67% using Facebook, 45% using Twitter and 40% using LinkedIn according to recent research. In addition to visiting a company’s website as an opportunity to learn more about their potential employer, job seekers will nearly always visit their social media profiles as a way of determining their culture and personality. This is particularly true for the millennial generation. Company Facebook pages in particular are powerful communication platforms when it comes to finding out about other members of the team, what value they place on humour and what the general office environment is like. Factors such as these can make or break a potential candidates decision to come and work for you. Would they enjoy working at your company? Do your aspirations fit their own? Those construction companies who ensure their social media profiles are kept up to date with regular and engaging content that is of interest to potential employees are more likely to appear exciting, dynamic and more compelling than those who don’t. In turn, you can expect to attract exciting, dynamic and compelling candidates too. Unfortunately, companies who don’t embrace social media as a way to attract talent in the digital age will lose out to construction companies who do.
[Tweet “Social media is a great way to attract the best talent #recruitment #construction”]
2. The Best Type of PR
Does your Construction company regularly engage in community or charity-related activities? Have you got something positive to tell people about the company? Social media provides the perfect platform to generate support, gauge opinion and provide insight into your values and culture – building your PR persona at the same time. Corporate Social Responsibility (or CSR) is an essential part of any businesses’ operations, as it reinforces your intentions of operating ethically and your commitment to supporting local causes. A key aspect of public relations is working with the media to promote any “good news” stories to a wider audience. An established social media network, provides construction companies with the tools they need to shout about their success from the rooftops, as well as providing a quick and easy facility to reach out to journalists, to speed up and enhance your chances of promotion – the opportunities are almost endless!
10 years ago, when journalists wanted a quote or expert opinion for a piece they were writing, they went to their phone book. Now, they go to social media. Now, it’s the companies who have an active presence on the main social networks who will be asked to contribute to national press features and publications. Want to make a quick impact? Get on Twitter!
3. Dominating Your Niche
If your construction company is still young and growing, and specifically if it operates within a particular niche, social media is a great way to get yourself on the road towards dominating your niche. Researching what your competitors are doing across social is a great place to start, helping you to harness ideas, and go one step further in creating quality content which will drive new business to your website. Take Skanska for example
— Skanska UK (@SkanskaUKplc) March 11, 2016
— Brickmakers Wood (@Brickmakerswood) March 9, 2016
Skanska describe themselves as “an inclusive and responsible business that is helping to build a better society”, and they certainly do a good job of reinforcing this belief through the content they post on social media. Skanska tweet about winning a “Safe Fleet” award, as well as retweeting a post regarding some charity work that employees have undertaken. This not only reinforces their position as a responsible and ethical business, but maintains a consistent message about their activities, enhancing their reputation. The use of images also provides visual stimulation, increasing engagement.
— David steptoe (@Davidsteptoe97) March 10, 2016
We want to find more diverse talent 4 the future of business and a culture where anyone can flourish says James Wimpenny @BAMConstructUK
— BAM Construct UK (@BAMConstructUK) February 29, 2016
BAM’s posts reflect their commitment to employees, providing an insight for prospective employees into what it would be like to work for them. They do this by retweeting employee posts, where the content conveys a positive message about working for the company. They also use social media to showcase their “UK top 100 company” status, enhancing their reputation to attract talent and help win contracts.
By emphasising your niche through social media, you will quickly become the ‘go to’ company within that niche.
4. Show What You Know
Another key reason to use social media in construction is the power it has in placing you as industry experts within your particular field. Whether you specialise in buildings, infrastructure or the industrial sectors, social media is the ideal platform to keep those interested in your brand up to date with news, accreditations, awards and developments. The key to this is ensuring your posts are not only regular and relevant, but also provide links to blog articles on your website and LinkedIn pulse articles which provide thought-provoking and expert insight into specialist topics. This will allow you to establish yourself as a “thought leader:”
“an individual or firm that prospects, clients, referral sources, intermediaries and even competitors recognize as one of the foremost authorities in selected areas of specialization, results in it becoming the go-to individual or organization for said expertise.” Forbes.com
In construction it’s very difficult to differentiate yourself from your competitors. Unless you SHOW your expertise and knowledge, there’s no reason for clients, employees or the general public to assume that you know any more than the next company. By publishing content that shows you to have a team of true experts working for you will quickly help position you above your competitors.
5. Winning Contracts
We know this is the most important point of all and what you’re most interested in. Within the UK, a recent survey found that UK construction companies are not using social media as effectively as firms in the US for communication purposes.
Social media, well thought out content and expert insights can have a huge impact on how you position yourself within the marketplace. Producing regular, engaging and thought provoking content will over time improve your interaction with potential stakeholders, project leads and other thought leaders in the industry. In turn this will grow and maintain a strong web presence for your company leading to more business and successful tenders.
It’s becoming increasingly common for clients and decision makers to take note of digital content throughout the decision making process. Much like press coverage, awards and local reputation used to (and still does) play an important role in determining who gets contracts, digital content is fast becoming the first stop for decision makers. If you’re a forward thinking, reliable construction company with exciting ideas, the best construction talent and a drive to grow and expand – you need content and social media accounts that show that!
Do you work in the construction industry? Does your company’s social media do you justice?
We currently work with a number of companies across the UK to help them fully harness the value of social media. If you’d like to know more about how our social media management and content marketing services could help your business take the next step, please don’t hesitate to get in touch.