SEM (Search Engine Marketing) Consultant.
Part of my job is to help Clients solve their problems leveraging today's web technology.
There are a lot of different technologies out there that can help clients in the services marketing sector. By meeting with existing and new clients on a regular basis I've found that there are a few out there that can and should be considered in a firm's integrated approach; whether they're in the construction, architecture, or engineering industry...or all of the above (eg, full-service).
There are essentially two reasons you blog:
The first is to gain relevancy in a search engine's eyes against your competition. Remember, when your potential employee, partner, customer or client is out there looking you're competing against thousands if not hundreds of thousands of other AEC firms who have information JUST LIKE YOURS. For instance, a search for "construction company richmond va" yielded a staggering 334,000 competing websites. It's great that you paid to develop a nice looking site. But first thing is first: Is it even being found?
The second is that you provide great marketing information for people who seek it. Maybe you're talking about your company (eg, a new hire) or perhaps you're showing off a new project. The goal here is to provide something of value and provide it often. A blog is really just an arm of the website body. It's constantly changing, moving and waving at everything in sight. It's then (metaphorically) grabbing your client by the hand and leading them back to your marketing information or website.
This is commanding more of a role in the AEC world recently.
But wait, before you jump right in--consider the guidance of some of your top level younger team members. They're great for insight into strategy and ideas. Don't let them go overboard, but consider their feedback as legit. They understand the inner workings of how the social world works and can be your best consultants in the matter. One of the best performing marketing committees I've ever been on was a multi-generational web 2.0 committee where the older and younger generations respected one another's opinions. It's amazing what kind of progress can happen with that combination of elements.
Of course, there is one caveat to all that is social: it's a lot like real life...be careful what you say and do because it's not easily forgotten (or removed from the web!).
The smartphone industry has seen explosive market growth over the past several years. The AEC industry is way behind the curve on this type of marketing technology. Do I see a wedding in their near future? You betcha. From using QR codes for job site inventory tracking to showing a company portfolio for business development purposes, the push to mobile will happen in the next couple years and it will happen fast.
How can you use video to sell your AEC firm? Easy! Sometimes a visual is all people are looking for. There are some great examples of video usage out there already which I've provided links to below:
Again, today's marketing world even for professional services companies deems an integrated approach includes consideration of things like website development, search engine marketing, social media, mobile and video technology. These elements combine together with traditional media and branding can have a profound impact on any sized firm's bottom line.