Amongst some of the most unusual projects we have handled is public relations for a Construction companies. Construction companies?, I hear you exclaim. Yes, that’s right you read correctly Construction companies.
The main reason a construction company will hire a Public Relation consultancy is to assess, then adapt its reputation in the market place. Often this involves outreach public relations within the local community.
When we first approached this sector around eight years ago in Barbados there were only a handful of companies in the sector. You could literally count them on one hand. All were locally owned. We successfully increase awareness and goodwill. We even made presentations to win contracts on their behalf. We successful brought our campaigns to a close.
Over the years our consultancy went on to address other business sectors to increase our client base. However, we noticed a shift in the construction marketplace. Whilst the local companies (part of their business plan was regional growth) scanned the region winning awards for their innovative structures. Construction companies from other territories entered the Caribbean, in particular Barbados from the USA with the financial backing and prepared to launch sustained branding and marketing campaigns. Many used internet marketing tools.
What was noticeable is that smaller Barbadian contractors and artisans entered the market place at the same time utilizing word of mouth as their marketing tool. This is all well and good but some discounted the value of an agency to their peril. As a result many are not longer with us as they were unable to defuse negative situations, reports of shoddy workmanship, fees and no work, many of which were untrue. The odd one or two sort to solve the problem in house in the event of a pr crisis.
Strategy consultants always believed that no matter the size of the construction firm correct public relations positioning would give these companies the competitive edge. We are living proof that effective public relations can help to grow the smallest firm.
It’s easier to shift public perceptions, develop credible contacts and develop the positive opinions of potential clients if you have a well-known name of good standing. This means your name has influence and you would be able to overcome negative media images should they occur.
For example, recently a construction company owner was in a tussle with an organization over a rental arrangement whereby he stated that he had creditors to pay and had locked the building as a result of non-payment. This publicity although it seemed to solve the immediate problem he perceived may cause other issues in future. It really is important to start goodwill before problems occur.
So we would like to hear from you so if you have started a new business in the last year. If you’re a small business, with a product or service or even a personality with a talent anywhere across the globe with an amazing story or tips about how you made it, just send your story to us today!
Perhaps you have invested a new process, won an award, gained even a larger project or even donated to charity by taking something like the ICE bucket challenge.
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What makes a successful campaign through a public relations consultancy is that it should be able to help you to write releases, network with local and international trade and mainstream media contacts plus teach you how to talk to them so that your message gets across. Even better the consultancy should be able to organise your social media work utilizing the internet to at least double awareness as well as helping you with a sales presentation so that you clinch that all important deal.
I term it as the mortar of public relations ceiling the bricks (product/service/personality) of construction to create a solid campaign. The process is the same for any industry sector or personality.
Building awareness and goodwill is the key to public relations success.
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