How do you obtain the best construction marketing results, by looking in, or looking out? This is a trick question. The answer is "both" and "neither" because the explanation depends on what you are looking at!
If you are introspecting, thinking, reviewing and questioning, if you are asking yourself the question: "Am I doing the right thing to build and improve the business and its client service?" then clearly looking in makes sense.
But if you are doing that in front of your clients either in your marketing communication or (worse) your immediate interaction with them, you are in big trouble. Steve Yastrow's recent blog entry "Stop talking to yourself" captures this point really well.
We of course must see beyond our current business bounds to obtain ideas, insights, capture market insights and understand industry trends. And we of course need to find new clients -- and some of them are people we don't know, and who don't know us. (So it is helpful to advertise, promote, create publicity, and develop recognition resources to find these new clients.)
But since most new business either arises from repeat business from current clients, or first-hand referrals and recommendations (again from your current clients), logically we should focus most of our marketing resources internally.
So look in, and look out -- but watch that you are focusing on the right construction marketing priorities.