How to market building materials to home builders, architects and interior designers - Vetrist

How to market building materials to home builders, architects and interior designers

Marketing has massively changed in the last few decades. Research shows the average person sees 4,000 ads per day and only around 100-200 register. That’s a lot! You are now competing against a mass amount of other people for space. This article shows you how to market building materials to your customers. 

Contact me to have a FREE SEO audit 

How interior designers, architects and home-builders search for products has changed. 

This article will show you strategies on how to market your building materials company and increase your leads and ultimately drive sales.

The fundamentals

First things first – any marketing strategy you undertake you need to make sure you are targeting the right audience with the right message and using the right method.

This is why most marketing strategies fail today. Getting all 3 components right can be difficult and in most cases never happen.

Below I go over 3 different mediums you can use to implement a marketing strategy that will position you at the forefront of your business and make you are an expert in the field.

Content Marketing

This is all about creating great content that your target audience wants. True content marketing is connecting your audience with answers to a problem they may have. And that can be through blogs, email marketing, video, e-books.

This is where most companies fail, They mainly talk about themselves and how great their products are and it’s often too salesy.

marketing building materials

The companies that stand out are able to position themselves as thought leaders and helpful experts willing to solve a customers problem, regardless of what stage they are in the buying cycle. Whatever strategy you use, by solving a problem you are providing massive value that other companies just don’t and won’t do.

What does this mean for you? When a customer is ready to buy, they will think of you first. You have clearly positioned yourself as an expert, they won’t even think twice about going anywhere else.

The great part for you is that most building materials companies aren’t creating content AND if they are it’s just a glorified sales pitch which not only customers do not want to hear. But Google is not interested in ranking either!

Now let’s say you sell flooring and you work in a specific niche. A comprehensive article titled “How to lay {niche} tiled floor – a step-by-step guide”.

You are not only helping out a customer, but you have the opportunity to show your tiles within the content and you can be sure that an architect or interior designer will come back to your site if they are looking for a product in your niche. You have provided valuable content that solves someone’s problem.

This is ultimately going to increase your leads and drive more sales.

Owning your niche

Unless you are a very large multinational company, very few building material companies are really owning their niche and putting themselves out there as thought leaders and experts in the field.

This gives YOU the opportunity to start writing content that people are looking for. This can be difficult – finding the right keywords, phrases and making sure people are looking for it is all down to SEO keyword research (more about that later).

But there a multitude of different subjects you can write about. One objection I hear often is that “my product is boring, no one wants to read about it”. I guarantee you, that there will be a ton of people interested if you help solve issues related to your industry.

Types of articles you can write about

  • “How to…”
  • “11 best….”
  • Inspiration
  • Design
  • efficiency
  • Profitability
  • costs

So before you write something, make sure you have your target audience in mind. What are they searching for? What problems can I help solve? These are all important questions before creating any new content. The content that you like to read is content that is going to help you in your daily life or that matters to you.

Who cares about your product…. You do.

What does your audience care about… their problems!

So before writing anything, ask yourself, what issues and problems does your audience have that you can fulfil?

With all this in mind. You need to realise that content marketing is something that you build consistently over time. It’s not a one time shot. Now the problem these days is that just creating content and putting it online wont’ rank you on the first page of Google in a competitive niche, this needs to be coupled with a comprehensive SEO strategy, which I go over below.

In this next chapter, I’m going to break down exactly how you can improve your website SEO and make all your articles SEO friendly.

SEO

An acronym I’m sure you’ve heard been thrown around before. Essentially, implementing a good SEO strategy can allow you to rank on the first page of google for a number of keywords. This is directly linked to producing great content. But great content is nothing without anyone reading it. Using SEO gives you the opportunity for people to see your content and ultimately, your website/products.

Below I’m going to show you a step-by-step guide on things you should focus on, from keywords to backlinks and everything in between. There are a number of softwares that are paid, if you don’t have these I will try and provide free alternatives in exchange.

Keywords

Keywords are the terms and phrases you want to rank highly for on google. But it’s no good just picking something out of thin air and trying to target them. There are 3 things you should take into consideration when targeting keywords.

  1. Is your target market searching these terms?
  2. How many searches per month do these keywords have?
  3. How difficult is it to rank for these keywords?

These 3 questions need to be asked before optimizing your site for these keywords. Get one of these wrong and you could be going down the wrong path.

Ahrefs is a great SEO tool that allows you to measure your website’s growth and find related keywords in your niche. 

Ubersuggest is a free alternative that still provides great analysis.

Here, you want to be searching for keywords that are high in search volume and low in competition. These are gaps in the market where you can fill. 

Google Trends

Google Trends is a great free place to start. It allows you to explore different trends within your niche and understand what keywords people are searching for and when. 

Marketing building materials

So if we look at the keyword “tiles” for the last 12 months, we can see a relatively steady and popular query in the last 12 months. However, on closer inspection, there is a dip in December and then a sharp rise in the new year. 

So if we check google trends for the past 5 years we can see this is, in fact, an annual spike and the best time to post an article on tiles would be right at the beginning of the new year. 

marketing building materials

Now, of course, you are not going to target just “tiles” as anybody looking within your niche is not going to type “tiles” into google. However, if we drop down, Google Trends provides us with some search queries within this industry. And as you can see, it shows you what is trending and topics that people are searching for. This gives you the opportunity to write a comprehensive article on one of these queries, let’s say “hexagon tiles”. 

marketing building materials

Now if we click on hexagon tiles and check the search volume over the last 5 years we can see that hexagonal tiles are becoming more and more popular over the years. 

marketing building materialsOn-Page SEO

Before doing anything it is important to really optimize your on-page SEO. As well as keywords, below I’ll show you some simple steps you can take to optimize your on-page SEO, to make sure not only customers can navigate through your website, but Google can crawl through it easily too. 

Site speed

Check your site speed with this tool – https://gtmetrix.com

page speed test

A slow website is going to affect your user experience, people have very little patience when it comes to loading pages. Don’t give your user an opportunity to leave your site due to slow loading times. This will ultimately effect your bounce rate. Over time a low bounce rate will be detrimental to your SERP rankings. 

If you are using WordPress, there are certain tools you can use to improve your rankings such as:

Smush – this compresses your images so your site loads quicker https://wordpress.org/plugins/wp-smushit/

W3 total cache – increasing website performance, reducing load times via features like content delivery network (CDN) integration https://wordpress.org/plugins/w3-total-cache/

XML Sitemap

This is so Google can easily scan through your website and see all of your pages and posts.

Create a google search console account. This helps you see what keywords you are currently ranking for and allows you to submit a web page sitemap. This allows Google to easily crawl through your site and index your pages.

Https

Google takes internet security seriously. And if your website is not secure than search engines are less likely to rank them. Contact your hosting provider to change this if you haven’t already.

Meta tags and descriptions

Your pages should include your keywords or some form of it in your meta title tag and description.

This not only allows Google to understand what your content is all about but allows a prospective customer to understand what they are clicking on.

Others

There is so much more to consider with your on-page SEO. including rich snippets, SCHEMA, Creating a mobile responsive site and so on.

The ones provided will give you a great start. If you’d like to know more feel free to contact us and get in touch to see how we can help. 

Off-page SEO

Backlinks

backlinks for building materials company

Backlinks are a way for Google to measure how important your site is. They are still the most influential ranking factor when it comes to your site. If you have 1000s of other websites linking back to yours, this is a strong indication to Google that what you have to show is relevant and holds a lot of value and they are more likely to rank you higher.

There are a multitude of ways to acquire backlinks and in most cases, it is not easy, takes time (if you do it the right way), there are black hat methods but you want to steer clear of these. Below I have listed a number of ways.

Guest posting on other blogs and link back to your own.

Reach out to other blog sites similar to your own to-do guest posting. Make sure to link back to your own. There are certain websites like https://legiit.com and https://dfylinks.com which do this all for you. Some of these packages aren’t cheap and cost a lot of money, but it is an easy way to acquire links.  

Use a Public relations strategy, follow and create relationships with journalists in your niche and be sure to contact them if you have anything newsworthy or a great project you’ve finished or completed.

One method I used with a flooring company included contacting journalists within the design and architecture niche when a project was finished. Allowed them access and pictures to the site. 

Skyscraper method

This term has been coined by an SEO guru named Brian Dean, who regularly makes amazing SEO and digital marketing content for his audience.

  1. Find articles within your niche that have a lot of links to them, generating a lot of traffic and generally ranking high on search engines. You can do this by using tools such as Ahrefs, putting your competitors’ websites in and searching their top pages.
  1. Once you have this information, create content that’s 10x better and more comprehensive than this. Beat the existing content that’s out there already on length, design and current information.
  2. Use the ahrefs tool to import all the websites that are linking to your competitors’ article and email them your updated, improved and even better article.

This takes time, but a well worth endeavour if done right. Over time, this piece of content will naturally gain a lot of backlinks as well. 

Tip: Collating primary data that is unique and only done by you. Is BRAND NEW information that is very valuable, Google likes original content rather than re-hashed information. 

Linking to other sites

If you have a website that is ranking on page 2 or 3 of Google search results, you can help move up the rankings by passing on some link juice to some lower ranked pages. 

Link Juice refers to the value or equity passed from one page to another. This sounds counter-intuitive, but if you link to other sites and reach out to these, they are far more likely to link back to yours in the future and might even share your content. This is a pretty easy and effective way to link back to your site.

It also shows Google that you are serious about your content and that you have done your research, you are not merely making facts but sourcing your material. This all shows legitimacy in the eyes of Google.

Reverse Guest Posting

white hat backlink strategy

In a nutshell, when people reach out to me to try to guest post on my sites (I have Guest Post pages published on them through which they do the outreach), I instead negotiate a non-reciprocal (i.e. not linking back and forth between 2 sites) link exchange with them. 

Note: I don’t do reciprocal link exchanges. Ahrefs has conducted research and found that reciprocal links are very common, but my personal preference is to avoid them. 

So if they reach out to My Site (A), asking to guest post and link back to Their Site (B), I ask if they have a second site, and if it has a decent DR rating (generally I look for a DR 25+ site), I’ll have Their Site (C) link to My Site (A). 

Local SEO

Local SEO is important to so many businesses. How many times have you typed in some variation of “………… near me”. People often search for a store or service near them and search engines want to provide the best results. Often times things like your Business name, address and phone number being on other sites can really help with this. These are called citations and provide evidence of your location and business.

Google My Business (GMB)

marketing building materials

Create a GMB page. Again, easy and simple to do and notifies Google that you’re a real business in a particular area.

Google will provide a listing of 3-7 businesses close to you in relation to what the customers wrote (map pack). Ranking in the top 3 for these businesses can make a huge difference to your bottom line and really drive sales.

If you want a comprehensive guide on exactly how to rank on google map pack for your local business, check out my free guide here.   

On-page Local SEO

Make sure your onsite copy is better than your competitors. And that you have listed clearly what your service or product is, where you are located and what areas your service.

Social media influencer ads

This has proven to be a great way to market your product. These days architects, interior designers and home builders spend hours trawling through Instagram looking for inspiration. Times have changed and your customers are tech-savvy, willing to go through a lot of images and media to find what they want.

Social media can be a great way to market your products, but you need to have eyes on your product first.

You can do this by targeting influencers. The idea is to target Instagram profiles within your niche who have tens of 1000s of followers. Let’s say you’re in the home improvement sector. You can target Instagram influencers who have an interior design page, home improvement page or even things like country living pages where home improvement is a big part of their profile.

There are hundreds and thousands of different profiles and ways to target your audience. But below I have highlighted the difference in posting on your own Instagram page vs an influencers’ with thousands of followers. One has over a thousand likes with tons of engagement, the other has less than 50 likes. This type of engagement can really put your product out there. 

How to market building materials to home builders, architects and interior designers 1How to market building materials to home builders, architects and interior designers 2

I suggest making a list of 20-30 influencers. Contacting them asking if they do sponsored posts and work out your budget and which ones work best for your company. Take into account the content you want to promote, the time and day which is best for your posts.  

Before diving into this consider three things

– is your product visually appealing?

– is the market your targeting looking on Instagram?

– is the Instagram influencer your targeting have the right market?

If you can tick all the boxes then this method can be a great way to generate more leads and ultimately get you more sales.

The great part is that you will also gain followers to your page, this is essentially free marketing. Somebody might not buy from you straight away, but as a follower, they can be constantly reminded of your amazing products. When they are ready to buy, you are the first one they think of.  

Pay-per-click Advertising

Pay per click (PPC) advertising is increasing year by year. 10 years ago google ads were incredibly cheap but they are only increasing as time goes on. You can spend a fortune on paid advertising now and not see any results.

The important thing about PPC advertising is measuring.

You HAVE to measure everything you are doing in order to see your results.

This goes down to your Cost per click (CPC) and your Cost per acquisition (CPA).

Facebook Ads

A great way to visually show your products and grow your audience too.

Create ads targeting your audience.

Make sure you understand you really understand your target market. Age, gender, interests, locations. This will help you hone in on your demographic and provide better results.  

Types of ad

Facebook video ads receive 10 to 30% more views and populate up to 11 times larger in news feeds.

But quality is key here. Whether you choose videos or photos, the quality must be good.

Pixels and event codes

Facebook allows you to put a pixel and event codes on your website which allows you to measure the customers’ journey through your site. From your home site to the thank you page once ordered. This allows you to see exactly how many people are buying vs how many clicks your getting.

This can tell you a lot more about your site. Is it optimized for converting sales? Are people going to your checkout page and not ordering?

Looking at the stats is key and making sure you optimize the customers’ journey.

Retargeting

Did you know that around 96% of visitors that land on your website are not ready to buy? They usually enter your website, wander around a bit and then leave, often forgetting about your website entirely. Using Facebook retargeting ads can help you remind your customers about your products.

When a person visits your webpage a cookie is placed on their browser. This essentially means that you can track their visit and from there you can re-target them depending on where they have landed, how long they have spent on your site and you can target them with other more specific ads.

Google Adwords

Google Adwords is an incredibly powerful tool if used correctly and is already being used by a lot of building materials companies. Again, with PPC you only pay for the people that click on your site, but it’s vitally important you know your market very well and the type of keywords they are searching and if your website caters for what they are searching for.

How to Google Adwords choose who to show? 

  1. How much are you willing to pay for a click?
  2. How relevant is the ad compared to what’s on your site? Essentially, you don’t want to run ads for fireplaces when you sell kitchen cabinets.
  3. The landing page experience. How effective is your website at keeping visitors and getting them to purchase? If your website is confusing to navigate and not very clear, the customer doesn’t have a great experience.

Adwords Keyword research

Broad match – allows your ad to show for variations of your keywords, this is the default setting. (this can waste a lot of valuable PPC).

Broad match modifier – A middle ground between the broad match and other restrictive keyword matches. This creates slightly better-targeted traffic but still may produce irrelevant results.

Phrase match – This is when a person will use your keyword in the search results in the right order but can include either words either side.

Exact match – this is exactly what it means. You will only show up when people will type exactly your keyword in and no extra words.

Keyword match types for google adwords

Exact match and phrase will give you the best targeted results. However, you need to understand what your audience is searching for and if there are any search results for it in the first place. 

Conclusion

Whatever marketing strategies you choose to do, make sure to always have your customer in mind. How can you serve them, implement a strategy that serves to improve and make it easier for you and them?

Become a thought leader in your field. When a customer or client wants to buy what you sell, let your brand and your company be the first one they think of and the first when they see.

Implementing these strategies is not easy and takes time, effort and patience. If you would like a consultancy call to see how I can implement these strategies and more feel free to contact me or give me a call.

 

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