Part two – Understanding the key drivers

In the last article we explored the importance of understanding the construction market and how understanding the decision makers can improve the effectiveness of your promotional marketing campaigns. In this piece we explore the key drivers for the construction sector and how to identify your competitive advantage to set you apart from the rest.

Understanding the key drivers

Companies often think they understand their markets and simply group their market through predetermined categories based on application type, company type, industry classification, and products or services offered. Many of these, in isolation, are flawed because the assumption is that, for example all specifiers such as architects in private and public practice, building contractors, house builders, civil engineers, have the same requirements or will respond to the same marketing propositions.

What companies should focus on is market segmentation, which is driven by customers, i.e., understanding the needs that customers are seeking to satisfy and ultimately what are the key drivers or motivators driving their choices. The list of drivers may be related to aesthetics, design flexibility, performance, speed and ease of installation, compliance with planning and building regulations, sustainability, and health and safety on site. Understanding which is important for each customer type is crucial to maximising the value of your offering.

Identifying your competitive advantage

Creating your own competitive advantage or uniqueness is what makes you different from the rest. Differentiation is a key foundation in your marketing strategy for construction markets. When your competitors would equally claim they have products which offer quality in the way of reliability, performance and fit for purpose then the message can easily become lost in a mire of me too claims and in some cases provide nothing more than what customers expect i.e., compliance with standards, or for example a floor covering targeted at leisure wet areas to provide excellent slip resistance.

The traditional marketing approach might consider your unique selling proposition (USP), which focuses on a rational approach identifying functional features of the product/service and the benefits this provides to the customer. A more effective approach is identifying your emotional selling points (ESP) or emotional buying triggers identified with your target audience in mind and used to strengthen and differentiate the value of your brand or product in the mind of the specifier/buyer.

What next?

In the final article in this series we will explore the shift from old marketing to new marketing, the need to engage, educate and inform, the key marketing tools for the construction sector and business development.

How your strategy can benefit from reach-mc

  • Specialists in business strategy, marketing expertise & business development, leadership and management, product management, new product development and effective marketing campaigns.
  • Specialist expertise for the construction and property, manufacturing and distribution, building materials, drainage and water management, renewable energy and home improvement sectors (bathrooms and kitchens, tiles and flooring).
  • Successful track record targeting architectural specification, building contractors, housing developers, installers & contractors, and distributors.
  • Winners of the Construction Marketing Awards 2014 for strategic planning and management.
  • Leo Aspden, founder of reach-mc is an approved High Growth Business Coach, a Chartered member of the Chartered Institute of Marketing (CIM), Steering group member of the Chartered Institute of Marketing Construction Marketing Group (CIMCIG) and a Fellow of the Chartered Management Institute (CMI).