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Best Social Media Practices for the Construction Industry

If you’re looking to grow your construction business by reaching a larger audience of potential customers, social media marketing can be a smart addition to your overall marketing efforts. Construction professionals and business owners use a variety of social networks such as LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter and YouTube for marketing communications.

Social media uses for your construction company include:

  • Brand-building to enhance your professional reach and reputation
  • Networking and relationship-building with current clients, colleagues and prospects
  • Resource-sharing with your customers, vendors and other stakeholders
  • Outreach to and interaction with the public, such as local residents affected by construction projects

Integrate social media marketing into the public relations, offline and online marketing initiatives you already implement. Don't rush to abandon the marketing tactics you are currently using that still work, but don’t stick with tactics that are no longer effective simply because that’s the way you’ve always done it.

Social media marketing should provide gateways to your website and key information about your company. In turn, when someone visits your website, provide them with ways to connect with you in social networks by linking to the ones you’re using. By offering people more ways to hear from you and interact with you, you strengthen all your communications efforts.

Here are some other ways to leverage social media for your construction business:

  • Monitor and listen to what the public is saying about your projects.
  • Pull in direct feedback from the public in more interactive and ongoing ways than a basic form on a website.
  • Publish content that showcases your expertise and highlights your industry accomplishments.
  • Perform on-the-spot market research by surveying your following.
  • Initiate and engage others in conversations related to your work, your industry, and your community.

Observe Best Practices

Social media marketing best practices start with developing internal guidelines and policies for your team’s use of social networks and other online and mobile communications tools. Include these guidelines in employee handbooks and also pair them with training protocols.

Write and publish external "rules" to inform anyone who interacts with your company through social media channels what you deem acceptable behavior and content. You should also develop and publish a privacy policy that outlines what information you gather from your followers and how you will use it. Ask a lawyer or your legal department to review these documents to make sure they cover any issues that could come up in an online community.

To get the most out of social media marketing, think about your purpose. Are you looking to educate the public or network with business colleagues or both? Knowing your audience helps you determine what tools you should use to reach them. A quick survey of them can narrow down what social networks they’re actually using.

After you identify the right social media tools to use, focus on what you want your audience to do once they connect with you. Do you want them to contact you? Engage in dialogue? Provide input? Learn more about your company, project or community issue? Work those goals into your messaging and social media campaigns.

As you begin engaging with others in social media channels, make sure you spend as much time listening as you do posting information or participating in conversations. On the flipside, spending too much time in social networks can be just as detrimental as spending too little or no time at all.

Find a balance where you get a good return on your time and money. That starts with attracting the right audience, getting feedback and participation and communicating your message to a larger, receptive audience to positively impact your business.