With a well-executed campaign, a home builder can reach potential customers and generate some pretty solid leads. Leads that need a new build, a renovation or an architect. Whatever you do in the construction industry, this is a practical guide with examples to inspire a campaign for your building or renovation service.
How To Do Marketing For Builders
reach your Audience by knowing your audience
Before you start running marketing campaigns as a builder, you need to consider exactly who your target audience is.
- Who are the people looking to build a new home in your service area? Not broadly, specifically. Create a clear demographic picture. Consider that some demographics will be more expensive to reach than others.
- Consider the current and forecasted market environment. Maybe certain demographics have put renovation ideas on hold because of interest rate rises for example.
- Talk to current customers, ideally those that you've enjoyed working with, to understand how they selected your service.
When you have a good understanding of your audience, you'll be able to better tailor your marketing campaigns to their needs and preferences.
Luxury home builders Toll Brothers are targeting those that appreciate high-end details. They've created a design studio with pre-set variables that prospective clients can use to personalise their new home. This is a great way to offer personalisation, without offering so many options that the prospective customer suffers from choice paralysis. It also enables the company to scale personalisation services.
The Toll Brothers campaigns tap into their target markets love for high-end finishes by inviting prospects to 'love every detail'. This is what their target audience want, and, can afford.
Here's an example of a Toll Brothers ad:
With so many options available, the team at Toll Brothers have, if you'll forgive my pun, homed in on the personalisation process. They've created an experience that attracts their target market - a demographic that is looking for high end finishes. By creating a pre-set environment, and inviting people to experience it, they create a feeling of confidence that Toll Brothers can create the prospect's dream build.
Bonus - the design studio also makes personalisation more of a set-process internally. This is far more scalable for the business than offering clients a 'blank sheet of paper.'
A smaller business example is Forces Property Direct in the UK. This company has a very clear target market - British Military Personnel. Their ads picture military personnel, and promise they'll help families 'get onto the property ladder sooner, rather than later'.
Carefully considering the type of individual you want to work with can help you differentiate yourself from other builders and craft higher performing campaigns.
ARTICULATE YOUR VALUE, SIMPLY
A quality value proposition captures your Point Of Difference in a concise manner.
- Are you a passive home specialist?
- Do you specialise in sloping blocks?
- Small apartment renovations?
- Home automation?
- or at-home care?
- Do you offer a super speedy turn-around time compared to competitors?
- Why should prospective buyers choose your service over the many others?
Articulate your difference concisely, so that your message can be placed across every touchpoint and understood by prospective customers quickly.
Billy Cotter Construction promises that they'll 'nail the details' in their billboard advertisement pictured below. I've seen a version of this ad where the 'nail' actually sticks out of the billboard, which is a pretty cool idea advertising idea for a builder.
Create your Offer
One component of a successful marketing campaign for a home builder that can often be neglected is the actual marketing offer.
Think of your offer as the bait on your fishing line or the nail for your hammer. Your hammer would be pointless without a nail, and your fishing line would be useless without bait. Running a campaign with a call-to-action improves performance.
Examples of marketing offers for a home builder include...
- Free consultation
- Q&A opportunities eg. 'Ask an architect'.
- Fixed price guarantee (not always good for business however, depending on your service).
- A housewarming gift: XYZ appliance offer
- Grant-ready packages
- Design satisfaction guarantee
- Free landscaping package if you sign within XYZ time
It's worth noting that you don't necessarily have to discount your service - home builders I work with as a marketing advisor all report the best clients they work with aren't normally looking for freebies, but they may be looking for a bonus such as 'Interior design included'.
Offers can also be based on other resources, such as time.
- Fast start without delay
- No material delays
- Ready to go
Immediacy creates urgency - urgency to proceed with your service offering.
One of the best offers I've seen is the offer of a holiday via a commercial partner, while the renovation is underway.
use a quality campaign Landing Page
Your website 'landing page' is the page prospective clients 'land on' when scouting out your services. It's often linked directly to an advertisement, so you can better measure the performance of your ads.
Think of your campaign landing page like the 'net' cast when fishing. If it's full of 'holes' your campaign investment is not going to catch as many service enquiries as it should.
A successful campaign landing page will follow a proven conversion structure. Don't skimp on imagery - people want to see your finished builds.
Need an independent review of your landing page? Drop me a line.
You may also be interested in: Building Blocks Of A Successful Home Builder Website
choose your broadcast channels
When choosing your campaign channels, consider once again where your audience is at. You might use TikTok for example, but they may be less likely to spend time there.
Tip: Running your campaign across multiple channels tends to amplify performance for all.
Consider timing, location, age - it's all important. Marketing channels should work together, rather than apart and you'll maximise return on a marketing campaign by weaving your campaign through multiple channels.
Campaign channels for a builder:
- Direct Mail - Flyer drops have dropped out of fashion in recent years, but it also means your flyer is more likely to be read. People are more likely to read every word of a printed document, vs scanning an online ad. Use recycled paper.
- Social Media Marketing - Different audiences use different social media channels. Consider where your target audience is. Social media is great to showcase 'social proof' of your service quality and help others get to know your team.
- Radio advertising - the likes of Smooth FM shouldn't be underestimated. It might be a traditional channel, but if you have a traditional audience, your campaign may match the means nicely.
- PR - PR can be a beefy investment for a small business, but it can build great momentum and maximise your search engine presence. Its cost can be a barrier to entry, but because of this less use it, which can play in your favour. It can generate significant results over time particularly during a recession when many advertisers are forced to dial back their online presence, giving you opportunity to magnify yours.
- Google Ads - Google ads is what we call a 'high intent' channel which is why it can generate a significant volume of enquiries for service-based businesses. You can even choose Google Ads to run targeted display ads specifically on real-estate websites. Read more: Are Google Ads Worth It For Small Business
- Your own onsite signage - Don't neglect clear signage and a clean build site. Some of the best onsite signage I've seen for home builders are simply big, black panels with classy white branding. It hides the mess of a construction site and creates a sense of mystery and anticipation.
Tip: Keep your branding consistent to build strong recognition and market confidence.
There are many more marketing channels and combinations to consider as a builder. If you're interested, here's a guide on how to blend digital marketing with traditional media.
build awareness of your service with public relations
PR can be an undervalued form of marketing, often because it may not guarantee results or can be cost prohibitive. But it's not to be underestimated - it ties into everything, even SEO. PR can magnify your reputation and awareness that your offer exists.
Former Australian Prime Minister, Scott Morrison, wanted to promote his home builder scheme. To do so, he announced it via PR, and a press conference.
His press conference, captured in the video above, resulted in some unconventional responses from a nearby homeowner, who asked him to 'get off my lawn'. In turn, this resulted in a surge of publicity regarding his announcement.
Sometimes, how your offer gains publicity, can be unconventional. PR teams often have creative individuals that can cultivate amazing ideas for your business.
The awareness generated through PR can improve the performance of other campaign mediums and offers competitive opportunity to those that can afford it.
You build awareness that your service exists and is a desirable one by investing in brand awareness campaigns like the ad below by H&M Homes. The campaign invites prospective buyers to 'fall in love' with the brand.
The clever ad starts with what looks to be a marriage proposal, before cutting to the bloke down on one knee kind of 'caressing' his home. It's backing vocals are, 'Can't take my eyes off you' by Frankie Vallie.
This kind of campaign can make the brand more desired by the prospective home builder.
using reviews in ads
A simple campaign example for a builder that works wonders is a campaign that includes positive reviews. You can add them to your campaigns like Bloor Homes has done in the UK, pictured below.
Bloor Home's 4.4 star rating is more believable than a straight A, 5-star rating. Everybody knows nobody is perfect, after all.
Tip: If you do get bad reviews, respond to them professionally.
Trust Pilot is commonly used in countries like the UK. It is considered a highly reliable and independent source for service reviews, as it's more difficult to get reviews verified (eg. some services require proof of invoice), and therefore can be more trusted than the likes of Google Business reviews.
marketing campaigns for home builders
Running effective marketing campaigns for home builders requires a combination of strategy, creativity, and channel knowledge. You may be surprised to know that you won't need the slickest creative, but you do need to be clear. By understanding your target audience and creating clear, compelling messaging, you can generate leads and grow your business. And remember, always be open to adjusting campaigns based on performance data to support Return On Investment (ROI).
Need some independent advice? Drop me a line.