Five signs that you need a new PR strategy
Whether you know it currently or not, every construction and building products company needs to invest in Public Relations (PR).
When we talk about PR, we don’t just mean one big hit over a short space of time, what we’re talking about is a long term communication strategy that helps your company achieve its objectives.
There are many reasons why you ought to invest in PR and here we have listed what we think are the five main ones:
You’re looking for more sales leads
People believe what they read much more than the ads they see. In fact, various studies show that readers are seven times more likely to respond to PR than advertising1. It’s one of the reasons why our clients in the construction sector that are looking for more sales leads commission our services.
We begin by putting together a PR strategy that integrates on and off-line media as well as digital marketing and social media. This creates an integrated communications plan that has a co-ordinated message across all platforms, which is much more powerful. For example, it can be a blog about a particular issue in the construction industry, such as ‘fire ratings’, which is an obvious example.
If, for example, you are a company that offers a solution in this area we’d usually begin with a blog about EN13501 and the differences between A1 and A2 fire ratings. Once this was uploaded to your website we’d tweet links, post details on to LinkedIn, send out a press release and edit into a white paper or thought leadership article and get it placed within magazines that your customers are reading.
The result is that architects and contractors who specify or install fire rated systems are much more likely to read about your product. And, with PR being seven times more effective than advertising, you can be confident that it will result in more sales leads.
You feel advertising is expensive and doesn’t deliver the results it used to
There’s no doubt about it, advertising is expensive. Then there’s the fact that once you stop advertising, with most of it now being online, you instantly lose all SEO benefit.
PR is different, because once a press release, case study or article is listed on an online site such as Construction News, Construction Enquirer, Housebuilder or RIBA Journal it stays there almost indefinitely. All the time it creates an inbound link back to your website, which Google likes. It helps too that including a press release online is much less expensive than an advert which, when you think that it may be on there for years, means that the cost per lead could be very low indeed.
You are about to launch a new product or service
PR is a very cost effective way to launch a new product that can achieve results way beyond what other forms of marketing communications can achieve. We have helped clients in the construction sector over the years launch new building products as diverse as anti-slip decking, weatherboarding and bathrooms, through to doors and windows.
There are a number of options, depending on the budget and what we think is the best communication strategy. If it an innovative new product that has the ability to change the industry, then we might recommend a press event, either in London (that’s where most of the editors of the construction and architectural magazines are based) or at an exhibition such as Ecobuild, UK Build Show or FIT show.
Alternatively, you may want to go for a low key launch of your NPD, and here we’d recommend an on and offline PR campaign. It’s a great way to communicate the benefits to potential new customers or gauge their response before rolling out wider or more specific new product launch initiatives.
Brand awareness is declining
Sometime you just want to give your brand a boost and there’s no better way than an ongoing PR campaign. You may have a variety of reasons for doing this, such as highlighting some recent investment, announcing a re-brand or attracting potential investors. Either way, using PR to gain coverage in the local business press or trade magazines get the message across quickly and effectively.
You need new and exciting content for your website
Adding new content to your website means that it’s much more likely to be picked up by Google in its search rankings. So, when we produce editorial content for our client it’s fairly straightforward to edit this for use on your website.
Having a company blog will also do wonders for keeping your website up to date and well ranked with Google. Blogs are a great way of creating content when you don’t always have new products to launch. For instance, we can write blogs on your behalf that comment on latest topics and trends within the construction industry, which helps your search engine ranking in the long run. The new content gives your customers a reason to return to your site, too.
If any of the above resonate with your business then it’s a sure sign that you ought to be considering PR. As a professional public relations agency we specialise in the construction sector and can put together a communications strategy that aligns with your business objectives.
Take a look at our latest case studies to see how we have helped other construction companies around the UK.
Alternatively, call us on: 01709 300130 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Carl Ruff (1968) reported a study of sales enquiries in which promotional messages about the new product were communicate via PR and advertising. Each enquirer was asked where they had obtained their information. Ruff found that PR outperformed advertising for that particular product by a seven to one ratio (in some publications the ratio was 2.5 to one)