Monday, September 23, 2013

Marketing: Your Best Strategic Weapon

With Debra Andrews, Founder and President of Marketri, LLC
Marketri, LLC (Philadelphia, PA) is a full-service provider of customized, results-driven marketing solutions for small to mid-sized B2B companies in the A/E/C sector. Marketri’s president, Debra Andrews, sat with A/E Marketing Journal to discuss how to best market your firm in today’s changing, increasingly mobile environment.

1)    You state that the A/E/C industry has been relatively slow to embrace marketing as a strategic weapon.  Why do you think this is so?

From my experience in working with A/E/C firms, they tend to be very sales and business development driven and not focused on marketing.  I believe they feel that personal relationships and having the lowest bid drives new business, and that marketing doesn't play a role in either.  This may have been the case before the era of modern marketing, but now potential purchasers can read authentically helpful content from your competition.  They can view their experience online, check out their recommendations and endorsements on LinkedIn, view impressive photography on Pinterest and more.  What some firms don't realize is that their marketing savvy competitors have entered the "sales cycle" through effective marketing without having that personal relationship in place.

2)    Why is technical knowledge so necessary for effective communications in the A/E/C industry?

Within the B2B marketplace, in which A/E/C firms participate, sales of products and services are complex, meaning the price point and the consequences of bad purchases are higher.  The ability and willingness of A/E/C firms to share their technical knowledge through marketing communications is extremely important to gain the trust and confidence of a potential buyer.

3)    What are some of the most successful marketing campaigns you have run for A/E/C companies?

Marketri worked with a civil engineering firm to help it become the area's leading resource on sustainability ("GREEN").  Through inbound tactics (including blogging) and outbound programs, consisting of article placements, speaking opportunities and hosting a "Sustainability Summit," we were able to successfully brand the firm in this area.

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