The Rise of Social Media in The Construction Industry

Posted by MDA Projects on Wednesday, March 26, 2014 with 11 comments
When we talk about social media, we talk in terms of LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, and the like. However, technically speaking social networking began with the click of a button in 1971 when the first email was sent.

Until fairly recently, the last 10 years or so, people logged on to the Internet to mainly search the web and send and receive emails. The very notion of “online community” was practically non-existent. 

Then came the social media revolution. Facebook was launched in 2004, and, while preceded by My Space and a couple of others, this is, arguably, when social media began to drastically change the way people communicate.

Social media revolution

Initially viewed by many business professionals as a means to gossip and a waste of time, these naysayers have since begun to realise the value of social media. In fact, only now, are we beginning to properly understand how to use social media to create real business value.

More than 1.5 billion people have a social media account and the medium continues to change the way people live and work. Social media has quickly become a critical business tool with far-reaching capabilities partly because it’s fast, and relatively low cost.

Millions of professional people use social networks daily to build visibility, gain access to important business information, and to grow their bottom line. The majority of these professionals operate in the B2B arena.

Construction too hands on for social media

While the construction industry has lagged behind somewhat in adapting to a digital age, many construction businesses and related professional companies are starting to take advantage of social media benefits.

Still, the old argument that social media is too hands on to be really successful in the construction industry comes up from time to time. Not to take anything away from the important role performed by every construction team member from the ground up, not everyone in the industry is mixing cement and carting wheelbarrows. There are an increasing number of respected industry professionals who actively engage on social media and with measurable business success.

Not a random act of marketing

Time spent on traditional marketing communication platforms such as print, radio and television is on the decline. By contrast, time spent on social networks for business purposes is increasing. In spite of the gradual switch from traditional channels to social media, studies show that most construction industry professionals who engage on social media on behalf of their company still don’t have a social media strategy. Without a clear strategy, and it needn’t be complicated, it’s difficult to measure what works.

Before embarking on any kind of social media undertaking for business, it’s important to know where you want to go. Do some research to understand which social media platforms are likely to be best for your objectives and the market you’re trying to reach. Studies show that LinkedIn and Twitter are top B2B platforms and are the most effective in the Construction industry.

Regardless of the route you decide to take, the reality is that social media is no longer a question of whether it’s necessary for business but rather a question of how well it’s executed.