April 2020: 8 Lean-In Marketing Ideas for Homebuilders Right Now
All homebuilders are facing a new reality: It’s time to think creatively about how to respond. Here are some steps builders can take now as we brace for a downturn and look ahead to the inevitable return to better days.
1. Use social media to reach out to potential customers.
Many people are spending more time on Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn and other platforms right now. Jump in with posts of your own, but make sure they’re upbeat, respectful and forward-looking. Offer whatever “entertainment” you can, like photos of past projects, colors or fixtures your selections staff is loving right now, virtual walk-throughs of homes or continued updates of work on current sites.
2. Use email newsletters and blog posts as another way to reach out and keep your name top of mind.
Here are some things you can write about:
- Current interest rates and how homebuyers can take advantage of them.
- Description of the lots you have available. Remind people that they can walk those lots right now as they look for ways to get outside and avoid cabin fever.
- Benefits of home building versus remodeling. People stuck at home right now could become fed up with their current living arrangements, but they may not be comfortable bringing contractors into their homes for a while. The months-long home building schedule could align perfectly for when things get back to normal.
3. Reach out personally to current clients and prospects.
Be authentic and genuine in your concern for their health and reactions to this crisis. People will remember how they were treated during this time.
4. Dive into Facebook: Ad costs are down which means you could stand out.
Consider advertising now on Facebook or through Google AdWords to reach people who may not be familiar with your past work. Just look at the screenshot below: Don’t those gorgeous home photos attract your attention away from the gloom and doom news updates?
5. Take advantage of small business loan programs that are available to you.
They could help you retain staff. You can find more information about the CARES act and how it might apply to your business here.
6. Stay in touch with real estate agents.
These agents have clients already looking for new homes. Building a new house could be a great alternative, given the longer lead time. Looking down the road eight to 12 months to move might feel more comfortable now.
7. Work on your marketing, your operations manuals or your company messaging.
If your schedule is sluggish, take that gift of time to focus on documenting your company’s processes. With a record of how your company does things, you will be able to get your ducks raring to go and be ready to hit the ground running when the market ticks back up. If you need motivation to get started or further guidance on how to do it, download the ebook The E-Myth by Michael Gerber.
8. Work with your team to create a SWOT analysis for your company and a one-page digital marketing strategy.
Use this analysis to attempt a plan the next 12 months. Remember this plan will need to remain fluid, but you can use the information we have right now to make your best guesses. If you already have a SWOT analysis, now’s the time to review and revise it for our current circumstances.
At BigOrange.Marketing, we believe in planning the work and working the plan. That means we create an editorial calendar and digital strategy to guide our work for the next six to 12 months. Work with your team to ideate campaigns, offers, content and more. Or if you are looking for expert help to do this for you, contact us. We are always on the lookout for quality American businesses to partner with.
Crisis Marketing Resources:
"The start of 2020 proved a favorable period for homebuilding, registering a post-recession peak in activity. Prior to the coronavirus outbreak, adjusted for seasonality, single-family permits and starts posted strong tallies. In January, year-over-year, permits for single-family abodes rose some 21%, the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) reported. Last month, seasonally adjusted single-family starts grew by 6.1% to a little over one million. "
Read the entire article on Forbes: Homebuilders Face The Effects Of Coronavirus