Monthly Archives: October 2014

LEAD GENERATION FOR LUXURY CUSTOM HOMEBUILDERS

As luxury custom homebuilders and renovation specialists, we often wrestle with how to choose the right methods for generating new leads. Relationships with Architects and other building industry professionals are key; however, reaching the homeowner directly has always been a challenge.

Lead generation

As we consider our marketing options these days, we understand first that it’s a digital world. When homeowners don’t have a personal reference, they will seek out homebuilding and renovation professionals online. As a result, several players have surfaced in the lead generation space, including HomeAdvisor, Angie’s List, and Houzz, to name a few.

So how do you establish where to put your marketing dollars? We’ve determined that websites such as HomeAdvisor and Angie’s List can likely be a source of leads, but at what cost? We hesitate adverting on these types of sites because we fear that homeowners use them to shop for price only. They also tend to attract homeowners who are in the very early stages of consideration and/or searching for small projects. Those leads, in our experience, often fizzle out despite thorough attention and follow-up on our part. In addition, they tend to skew lower budget. Estimating any job requires a significant investment in time and energy. For this reason, it often does not make financial sense to tie up our staff to go after this type of lead.

Houzz is one website that we have invested in. This site attracts a high-end audience, and some talented professionals showcase their work there. We’ve spent time building our profile and we advertise on the site within the geotargeted upper and lower Fairfield County regions. The site has produced several custom home project leads, and we are currently building a custom home for a client that found us there. That’s a successful use of marketing dollars.

In addition to Houzz, we’ve been focusing our attention on content marketing to reach homeowners where they spend most of their time. Our investments in social media sites such as Pinterest and Facebook have generated leads and are a constant source of traffic to our website. And our email and e-newsletter campaigns have received positive feedback and have driven web traffic. Content such as industry-related articles and blogs have been successful traffic generators as well.

Marketing our homebuilding and renovation business has changed significantly since I started out. Print ads were the leading medium for creating awareness in the ’80s and ’90s. Today it’s more about putting interesting content out there and then letting the Client come to you.

Kelly M. Wright
Wright Building Company

THE ROLE OF PORTABLE ELECTRONICS ON THE JOB SITE

The way we do business on home building and renovation job sites is always evolving. One of the most significant changes to hit the workplace over the past few years is the prevalence of electronic devices. More than ever, my crew is becoming reliant on technology as they move through their workday. My Project Managers use their smartphones, laptops, and tablets to accomplish a variety of construction-related tasks while on the job. I’ve found this to be of significant value to the process while also being a slight hindrance.

Laptop Cropped

These devices allow me to stay connected to my crew and allow the crew to communicate with one another. They also allow my Project Managers to communicate with distributers and vendors to verify pricing, check on orders, review subcontractor agreements, and compare products, all while on the job site. This way of doing business can result in a more efficient workday by helping to avoid delays and trips back and forth to the office.

One of the most appealing functions of smartphones and portable computers is the ability to stay connected to our clients regularly and to be available for them when they need us. Reliable communication is of the utmost importance to us. Having devices that allow us to remain connected to our clients provides them with peace of mind. That’s critical.

Even though electronic devices can provide time-saving solutions, they can sometimes also be a drain on the process. Because the device is always with you, it can prove to be a distraction at times. When you pick up your phone or laptop, you’re putting down your work equipment.

Overall, I think the positives outweigh the negatives. As homebuilders, we’re always looking for ways to make the process more efficient. I’ve found it to be of real value to have easy access to information and the ability to communicate with others remotely.

Kelly M. Wright
Wright Building Company