Consultant Clare Ross of the Clare Ross Organization has added his opinions to this topic:
First you need to market yourself to potential clients who have ongoing building programs that you can do. When you have a relationship with the client, then you can go to the architect with a good solid project lead in hand. If you also have a good relationship with the client and can make an architectural recommendation to the client, all the better.Clare's points enhance the observation that the solution to marketing to architects is unfortunately not a simple direct mail piece and a "lunch and learn" presentation. Your best way to win business, it seems, is by connecting the dots and providing useful leads and business to the architects from which you wish to receive business.
Contractors who come to the table with a solid project lead get the architect's attention. Learn to develop a relationship of sharing leads with the architect's business development staff and they will share their leads with you. In this case you are building your relationship with their BD team. They will then open the door to their technical staff on their current projects.
The second situation is where you are selling yourself to their technical staff on projects already underway and coming ready for bid. That's a tougher sell unless you have worked with them before and they will usually stick with their proven relationships with other contractors. Successful contractors work on developing your own client relationships with clients who have ongoing building programs. When you have that kind of client relationship base, architects will seek you out