This is a 4-part series, so click here to start with 1.
Do you wonder how to add value to your clients between projects? I am sure you do, because your talents are architecture, engineering, or construction not marketing. Correct? Here are some ideas to get in front of your clients in between projects. Don’t think that just because a client may only design and build a facility once, they don’t matter. Referrals are important, too. If you stay in front of these people, too, they will be your best business developers!
Here are some ideas to provide value without selling your clients anything.
Step 1: Articles – Finding articles really isn’t too hard, but it does take a little time. I always say something worth doing usually isn’t easy but it’s well worth the effort. Set up google alerts on all your clients (www.google.com/alerts) and receive a weekly update (they also do daily or in real time, too). This is free to set up and comes directly to your e-mail box. Make sure you are specific in your term, though, otherwise you’ll get too much information on the email and you won’t act on it.
Step 2: LinkedIn – Log in and browse LinkedIn at least 3 times a week. There are a ton of articles that you can share both through LinkedIn and also emailing to clients. You can find these article from your connections or groups you have joined within LinkedIn. Think about all your connections and who would benefit from reading that article. Also, remember the pain points of your clients and prospects, because articles you can share will address a solution to their problem. You don’t necessarily have to provide every answer but you can share different articles that will be relevant to their problem. Be a resource and provide good, relevant content both on LinkedIn and through your emails.
For example, if you design, engineer, and construct K-12 schools and come across an article about how to increase funding for schools, you would share that article with your clients and prospects that are school superintendents. You preface by saying, “I found this article about how to increase funding in your school. I’m not sure if you have seen it or read it, but I immediately thought of you. It addresses some good points and suggestions on how to increase funding.” You can also speak directly to one of the points mentioned in the article and how your firm could help them with that particular point. It starts the conversation.
Step 3: Trade publications, including architecture, engineering, construction, or your clients’ industry, write all different types of articles and give lots of resources that can help you educate your clients and prospects. This could be technology, trends in the industry, retaining and recruiting workforce, budget issues, human resources, accounting, marketing and the list goes on. Just think about what your client or prospect would find helpful and share that. It may also be a book, a website, a podcast, a seminar/workshop, political event, or a networking event.
With some dedicated time, no more than 20 minutes a week, you can start to make an impact. Through the steps above, it will become normal for you to always be thinking of your clients and prospects and how to share knowledge. That’s what business is all about: helping find a solution, improving your process to make it better for your clients and employees, and having fun!