Angela Robbins Taylor
C3 Executive Director
4 ways to grow a construction business in 2023
Everyone wants to see business growth and it generally becomes a focus for organizations as we wind down one year and gear up for a new one. As you are planning for 2023, we want to offer you four practical ways to grow your business and brand in construction.
1. Grow your sales pipeline
2. Keep existing customers coming back
3. Form strategic partnerships
4. Diversify your offerings
Grow your sales pipeline
For companies just starting on their business journey, the sales pipeline is the priority. No sales means no business. But how important is this for a successful company just wanting to grow? It is still a priority. If you rely on the existing customer base alone, you will not continue to see growth. New customer relationships must be fostered regardless of how successful your company is currently. When thinking about how customers decide to buy with you consider who they are and what they want from you. Next consider, what they see when they first interact with you because first impressions are important, and what motivates them to buy with you. Doing this research will help you to understand the sales funnel that leads to successfully closing the deal.
Tips for finding new pipelines
Getting your foot in the door requires that someone is out pounding the pavement. This could be someone out passing out marketing materials or hosting a booth at a tradeshow or it could be a business development strategy that places your company at the same events as your target company. Whatever way you choose to seek new contacts and customers, keeping track of what you learn, who you talk to, and action items are key to follow-up and eventual successful conversion to being a happy customer. Customer Relationship Management (CRM) systems offer a lot of helpful ways to track this interaction and make more strategic decisions.
Keep customers coming back
Nothing is better than repeat business. It doesn’t take as much work to find or cultivate an existing customer as it does to find new customers. But it does take creating a brand that is known for its excellence and delivery of high-quality products. It is also critical to realize that customers have a relational bond with those from whom they procure services. We all know that we are on some bid lists and not others. Keeping your company in the mix is also about maintaining relationships as well as product delivery. Having that CRM will help you realize who you might need to go see because they haven’t sought you out on bid day.
Form Strategic Partnerships
A strategic partnership can be many things. It could be a way to align your company with another to accomplish a larger project, like a joint venture or acquisition. It could also be becoming an industry expert that strategically aligns with community or educational programs to assist in bringing new talent or projects to the industry. It might even include aligning with a non-profit or community initiative to fund or receive funding for programs that give your brand a quality stamp for corporate social responsibility. Whatever the strategic goal for your business it may be more easily accomplished in partnership.
Current strategic partner opportunities
Across the nation, construction science and management programs rely on strategic partnerships with companies to provide internships and professors to train the next generation. Additionally, with the rise of career and technical education programs, public and private schools are seeking similar partnerships with builders. Often the builders who are in partnership with an educational organization may end up with contracts for service or installation in existing buildings and new capital campaigns. Maybe you don’t want to teach or have time for an internship, but you have other ideas about boosting your company’s brand through social responsibility. Try a strategic partnership with a local food bank, Habitat for Humanity, or another charity that shows your commitment to creating a better tomorrow. Socially responsible employers have better engaged employees which leads to longer retention and better productivity.
Diversify your offerings
Don’t rely on what has always worked without also exploring what might work as well. When seeking to diversify never give up what you are already great at doing, simply add to it with things you can do equally well. Diversification could be adding new services to existing product lines, creating a loyal customer program, expanding to a new product line or service, or moving into a new construction vertical or geography. But in our current environment, it could also be diversifying the people that work with you and for you. An inclusive and diverse workforce will often create new synergies and thought patterns that challenge the status quo and force us to move into the future. However, you diversity do it with intention and strategy and most definitely accountability. Nothing feels less successful than starting the same something new each year because it didn’t get the attention and accountability it needed to thrive the previous year.
Growth is achievable in 2023. If you are seeking to expand your current capabilities take a look at the C3 website to see if we are offering programs or continuing education that might help. Looking for a strategic partnership, we have a lot to offer in the way of committees to showcase your business and expertise while you help us grow. Want to find a new customer pipeline come visit us at events and fundraisers throughout the year or take us with you to your events and introduce us to your peers. Let’s grow better together.
Construction Industry Institute (CII)
Construction Users Roundtable (CURT)
National Center for Construction Education and Research (NCCER)