Social media, inbound marketing, content marketing…however you would like to approach it, many AEC firms struggle with one BIG problem. No original content.
As the conversation about web presence and marketing shifts to a blog or Facebook, many firms are quick to suggest that they have no resources to create content. They therefore dismiss a blog as an option in their marketing plan, and can even further dismiss other social media just by association.
However, even if you don’t plan to employ a full-time blogger at your architecture or engineering firm, never fear! There may be more useful original content lying around than you think. Here are a few ways to still incorporate social media into your marketing strategy without the need to “feed the content beast” of a new blog with a dedicated staffer.
Tumblr – Even if your firm isn’t planning to write a daily dissertation on “form following function” you can still blog and enjoy the benefits of developing original content. Tumblr is a less demanding style of blog where you can just share a photo of a project if you’d like (of course with some user-friendly captions or keywords). Then at the times when there is a little more to write about, there is a venue to share your post that’s much more useful than a Facebook note or a company newsletter.
Newsletters No More – It may be time to rethink (or even ditch) your firm newsletter. The same content can become a weekly post on your blog that will have far more value from a search engine traffic perspective. You can still use email to share monthly highlights from your firm, but instead of making it a formal letter it can be a “blog highlights” style newsletter.
Content Switchboard – So nobody in your firm wants to write and manage a blog…so what! You can still become a hub for relevant info by using Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and more. The important factor there is focus. If you’d like to separate your firm from the majority of Twitter users that just repurpose content, maintain a focus on your firm’s brand, your target audience and your overall marketing strategy. Stay focused, relevant and tweet/post often to build fanbase.
Loosen the Reigns – Many principals react negatively to creating fresh content because THEY don’t want to write it or don’t have time. However, there are often plenty of untapped resources within a firm that would love to spend an hour or two a month contributing to a firm-wide blog. The keys for success for this approach include writing guidelines and a single publisher (perhaps a small group) responsible for keeping things moving.