Discover your free Construction Marketing Ideas Email Newsletter

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Our new websites

With the leadership of, we now have new websites for North Carolina, including the domains for Charlotte Construction News and Triangle/Triad Construction News.

The design may well become the template for our other publications.

In the meantime, we've set up new interim corporate page at to describe our different publications.

Of course, The Design and Construction Report, reflecting its special status as an online magazine, has its own appearance.

A question for marketers is how important it is for a single organization to have a truly standardized and consistent website style.  If this is really important, we might be seen to have problems.  However, I think the diversity of looks and feel on the different websites is actually a healthy sign for this business.

First, we are exploring creatively a number of different approaches and can learn from them which works best and which can be improved.  Then we can confidently develop our template.

Second, and perhaps most important, sometimes too much effort is spent by marketers on trivial matters in the name of "brand consistency".  What is really important is the underling culture and values of the business and its ability to relate well to current and potential clients.  I think we are far better off by encouraging staff and contractors to be creative and to explore new ideas than to force them into standard processes.

Nevertheless, I think the new North Carolina sites will soon become our overall business website template.

What do you think?

Google Books: Construction Marketing ideas

Construction Marketing Ideas: Practical strategies and resources to attract and retain clients for your architectural, engineering or construction businessI've posted this reference before, think it worthy to invite you to take a look again at Google Books and the opportunity to preview substantial sections of Construction Marketing Ideas:   Practical Strategies and Resources to Attract and retain clients for your architectural, engineering or construction business.

Or you can go directly to the actively-maintained Construction Marketing Ideas blog.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

New Design and Construction Report issue published

The latest issue of Design and Construction Report has been published.  You can view it here.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Remembering Sonny Lykos

I head down memory road in this posting in the Construction Marketing Ideas blog.

This 2006 image shows the late Sonny Lykos (right) with Michael Stone.

For some of Lykos' insights -- he hated "free estimates" -- see this earlier posting about The Process, which showed how he escaped that trap.

Friday, April 23, 2010

Advertising works, really

Of course since we sell advertising for a living, I cannot disagree with Michael Stone's recent blog posting:  Advertising works!

The challenge is that many otherwise successful contractors "rely" on word of mouth and referral business.  The good news is that if you have (in good times) enough of this business to survive, you will likely do much better with effective advertising . . .

But . . . when you first go into the advertising space, you may find you are pouring good money after bad (spending money with little or no results).

There are ways around this problem, which I periodically outline at the "real" Construction Marketing Ideas blog and in my  Construction Marketing Ideas book

The Construction Marketing Ideas book on Google Books

The Google Books listing for Construction Marketing Ideas: Practical strategies and resources to attract and retain clients for your architectural, engineering or construction business is live now, providing another resource for you to preview the book's content.

Of course, you can also visit the actively maintained and updated Construction Marketing Ideas blog (with more content than this sort of self-promotional posting) at

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

The Construction Marketing Ideas book: An update

Construction Marketing Ideas: Practical strategies and resources to attract and retain clients for your architectural, engineering or construction businessToday, I received the first positive review on for Construction Marketing Ideas: Practical strategies and resources to attract and retain clients for your architectural, engineering or construction business.

So far, we've sold about 15 books, with the bulk of the orders in the last two days.  It's exciting seeing the response.

You can purchase the book at or at the actively-maintained Construction Marketing Ideas website.  If you prefer the book in digital PDF format, visit the website and you can order it for download at 50 per cent off the print price -- but I still think that books like this are meant (at least for now) to be read in book format.

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Design and Construction Report

We're starting the page layouts for the next issue of the Design and Construction Report, which I expect will be online next week.

The Construction Marketing Ideas book -- more

We're making good progress in setting the Construction Marketing Ideas book with various online ordering services, notably and (soon) through Google Books.  The first copies are selling, as well.  (We'll ship and invoice for the pre-ordered books on Monday now that we have our own copies in stock.

You can also find more information at the actively-maintained Construction Marketing Ideas blog.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

The publisher search project

We're at about 120 resumes in the search for Associate Publisher of The Design and Construction Report. See this Craigslist posting for more information.

People who answer the posting with their resume receive an "autoresponder" answer with links to an sales survey (test) and a questionnaire. I expected few would complete or answer the survey -- thinking their resume is all they need -- but have been impressed by the overall quality of the responses. Most people who have responded would make it through the initial "screen" in conventional recruiting approaches.

The big challenge will be to decide who should be finalists for a thorough evaluation, which costs significantly more to us than the $25.00 Craigslist postings, as we believe in paying fairly during the working trial period.

I describe the process here and update on our progress in daily postings at (the real and actively maintained blog).

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Quantity, quality or both

At the real Construction Marketing Ideas blog, I'm exploring over several postings the challenges of the "numbers game" vs. deep and meaningful relationships in sales and marketing. These postings are supplemented by reports on my continuing marketing to find a suitable publisher for The Design and Construction Report.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Design and Construction Report Career Opportunity

This posting will appear in several cities in the next couple of weeks.

An opportunity to develop the market for the Design and Construction Report (, the first national online publication for the construction industry. You can find additional background at the Construction Marketing Ideas blog (

Work involves prospecting for qualified clients (some leads are supplied but representative must should be able to take the lead in discovering potential clients assessing and developing the opportunities), setting up advertising feature profiles and sponsorships, and selling ads in the features for this unique publication which combines online video, linkages, and association with a rapidly-growing online and offline network, which enhances the lead-generating potential.

We'll pay a guaranteed salary of $40,000.00 per year to the qualified candidate. Income potential $80,000 to $100,000. Work from your own home.

You should be extremely self-reliant and comfortable working on your own most of the time. It is helpful to be able to connect and participate in construction association and networking activities.

Sales experience is less important than aptitude (we will test and evaluate your potential in a multi-stage process before offering permanent employment.)

Candidates who pass initial (brief) tests will be invited to work with us on a short-term assignment (with an agreed-on compensation guarantee) to validate your competency and determine whether you really will enjoy the work.
If you are interested in learning more, email

Saturday, April 10, 2010

The Construction Marketing Ideas book

Futile comments

I deleted another three "junk" comments today by people trying to game the system. Even assuming that the comments would be worthy of publishing (they weren't) they would have had no value for SEO.

Generating original, useful, and relevant content takes a lot more work but it is the only way to truly succeed at the process.

While I am keeping the Blogger account for Construction Marketing Ideas in place largely because of the archives, the real stuff is elsewhere, at

But if you insist on posting spam comments on this blog, you will simply be asking for a fast "delete".

Wednesday, April 07, 2010

New ideas, new directions

I'll write some more tomorrow morning in the Construction Marketing Ideas blog at

Tuesday, April 06, 2010

Social media ROI for construction marketing?

The question mark in the title is there for a reason. You can learn more by heading to the relevant posting at the actively maintained Construction Marketing Ideas blog at

Sunday, April 04, 2010

Great marketing, bad advertising?

In today's Construction Marketing Ideas blog, I take a look at a rather amazing ad. What do you think?

Friday, April 02, 2010

Hopes and dreams for construction marketing

I had hoped for some inspiration that could really help a new construction company start-up when I noticed this article title in the news feed of the Construction Marketing Ideas group.

"New Builders' Success Benefits from a Thoughtful Construction Marketing Strategy"

is the title from the article published in (a worthy site/publication).

The advice is worthwhile, as far as it goes. But it suffers from a real weakness: The lack of valid stories of whether any new contractor could actually apply it (unless it is an exceptional business funded with deep capital reserves.)

I'd like to say that you can develop a comprehensive marketing plan and strategy at start-up but in fact you are most likely to need to fly by the seat of your pants and you will make plenty of mistakes at the beginning.

The biggest problem is that most paid marketing approaches (advertising and commercial lead services) won't guarantee results and until you know what works through trial and error, you won't know whether you are throwing good money after bad (and you won't have enough money to risk on that type of thing.)

So you are faced with a couple of options: Going for public work and hoping that others don't have the inside track, and your costs are really the lowest, or (in the residential marketplace), working with high return but painful approaches like canvassing -- assuming you don't have a network of friends and colleagues to give you a start.

You can build this into a plan and try to develop your brand, but at the start you will be lucky to survive.

However, once your business gets big enough that word-of-mouth is starting to work, you should start advertising. You'll make mistakes, but eventually find a formula that works.

Then it gets interesting. Walking our dogs, a neighbour who is in charge of marketing for a multi-million dollar retail business says trying new things once you are established is really quite easy. Existing ideas are constantly tested against new approaches; and if the new approach works, it becomes the control. Since you are already spending the money, the risk is limited.

But you have to get there first.

Thursday, April 01, 2010

How to increase company performance through increased co-operation

It is a scientific fact that cooperating is natural for human beings. Since business difficulties and poor performance are constantly linked to lack of cooperation, the question is: why do people choose not to cooperate? The answer, addressed in this Webinar, may surprise you. What to do about it may surprise you even more. Gain ‘permanent’ tools for increasing cooperation and company performance levels throughout your organization.

The 90-minute Webinar starts at 3:30 pm edt on May 17. For more information, visit here.

Remember, the real Construction Marketing Ideas blog is at