Written by my friend Mark Buckshon of Construction Marketing Ideas
This weekend Iâ€™ve been mulling over situations where I failed to follow â€œbest practicesâ€ in construction marketing and had my hand slapped, and where we did everything right, and still got our hands slapped.Â The â€œIâ€ and â€œweâ€ are deliberate.Â I will always take responsibility for anything that goes wrong with this business and the â€œweâ€ occurs because I wish to spread the credit among colleagues.
Ah, best practices.Â Generosity, sharing, respect, never forcing your marketing message down unwanted places, giving, honor and the like.
Bad practices:Â Spam, intrusion, offensive communications, (unwelcome) interruption, cliches, boredom, disrespect, sloppiness.
I know a few people who (at least to me) always seem to get it right â€” everything is â€œbest practicesâ€ â€” and some who always seem to have it wrong, but if you are like me, most of us are somewhere in the middle.Â We screw up, get angry, mess up relationships or take things for granted.Â Or, worse, we do everything 100 per cent correctly, and the other person (organization) just milks us for all our free stuff and then discards our generosity like a heap of trash.Â (Of course, even thinking that happens is â€œbadâ€ because we are supposed to be unconditionally generous.Â Sure.)
These points, especially, operate in the space of permission and relationship marketing.Â If yo are a star with fame and recognition and a great personal brand you donâ€™t have to work too hard to pull new business in.Â But if you arenâ€™t quite there yet, how do you climb that mountain of success?Â You want people to know who you are and how good your services really are, but they just donâ€™t care (unless they know you already).Â And you perhaps just donâ€™t have enough people ready to refer you or purchase your services through your existing network.
So you need to reach out â€” with advertising or paid marketing services (like PR agencies, SEO â€œexpertsâ€ and the like).Â And most of what you find out there is either crap, overpriced or simply doesnâ€™t work very well.Â Â Maybe you can get faster results, cheaper, by spamming, telemarketing or canvassing.Â You cross to the dark side to survive.Â Or you call someone like me and pick brain â€” Iâ€™m â€œfreeâ€ after all â€” and donâ€™t think of buying anything in return.Â (Self-wrist slap here . . . Iâ€™m supposed to be generous without worrying about reciprocation because it just happens, right.)
There is a right answer and conclusion here and it is something I need to remind myself about when things are less-than-perfect.Â We are all less-than-perfect though we can still aspire to higher standards and do our best to keep things in perspective.Â Sometimes magical insights arise at the strangest places and where you least expect them; and sometimes you will do everything the way you should, and feel like youâ€™ve been drained as your energy is sucked out by takers.
I will be generous.Â I wonâ€™t intrude or irritate or offend in my marketing.Â I will learn from my mistakes.