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LinkedIn & Business Development: A Crash Course for General Contractors

LinkedIn & Business Development: A Crash Course for General Contractors

LinkedIn, the infinitely valuable tool that every member of your team should be leveraging

March 18, 2022

10 min read

Learnables

Edward Gonzalez

Edward Gonzalez

Founder at Buildr

Business development for general contractors is rapidly changing in that digital and traditional means of relationship-building are integral to success. A wide range of tools exists to help extend the reach of builders to keep projects and clients coming in, because only one person can only go to so many conferences and shake so many hands.

At the heart of those tools, and perhaps the greatest cheat code currently in existence in the world of business development, is LinkedIn. And it's completely free! "The social media site for professionals," provides a wide range of tactics designed to help general contractors grow and reach a larger audience. 

So what are some ways, for those working in business development at a general contractor, one could leverage LinkedIn to help support the growth of their company? Let's dig in.

Build a Captivating, Stand Out Company Page

Before we even get to what you do on the singular, personal level, we need to start at the foundation: your company’s LinkedIn page. Many times the first contact that your target audience will have with your company will be this page. It should be prioritized because your profile will be its gateway. It should:

  • Clearly and concisely communicate the general contractor’s services. This language should be utilitarian while also friendly. Hammer home the market you build in.

  • Lay out the company’s narrative; how did it start? Where is it headed? Newness isn't crippling, for many it's an advantage. Fledgeling GC's move faster technologically and are hungrier to keep pace with their tried-and-true competitors.

  • Display info about previous projects while making note of project type expertise. The projects you highlight are the sorts of projects you'd want to continue working on.

  • Outline the company’s headquarters and leadership team. Legitimacy and personability are at stake here. Prospective clients want to know who they could be doing business with someday and that they're living, breathing people (with smiles).

  • Employee advocacy; make sure you have as many as your team on LinkedIn as possible with fully developed profiles, listing skills and accomplishments they have. Again, legitimacy and personability.

In addition, your company page should display a logo and a cohesive brand with any other touchpoints for the company, such as its website, other social media pages. If you're not yet confident in those alternative social medias, or you don't see them as fortuitous in attracting your ideal client—scrap 'em!

View your company page as a branding tool, a credibility-building tool, and a contact page. It should bring together all contact information, website URL, special services, and associations. 

Building a Strong LinkedIn Page Means Sharing Content

Once the company page is primed for success, create a content sharing strategy. Sharing content helps position the general contractor to get in front of its target audience. Here are some factors to consider:

  • Determine what the target audience is interested in. This could be commercial organizations planning to expand or builders poised for growth.

  • Choose locally focused content for those general contractors that operate in a specific area.

  • Provide content that outlines the benefits of working with the organization. Showcasing work that’s completed is one option. Having a good photographer is integral to a GC's marketing strategy, because the visual story you tell with your projects could be make or break for prospects.

  • Hammer home the general contractor's efficiencies and overall transparency to ease their clients' fears and concerns. Dialing in on imperfect instances of humanity is what can set a company apart from others that are too buttoned-up and stuffy.

  • Incorporate industry-relevant content that demonstrates the company’s ability to meet innovative goals. "Woke" is overused, but it's important to be in the cultural know depending on your market and post accordingly.

LinkedIn content should not be salesy. It does need to be published regularly, but not necessarily daily. Consistency is key, no matter the cadence you decide to go with.

A core component of building a LinkedIn strategy is sharing content from others. Ensure the content is directly relevant to the company and to the target audience. It should also be timely, current insights that people are interested in reading right now.

Tips for Sprucing Up Profiles

Personal profiles and company pages need to be up-to-date and comprehensive enough to meet all needs. To do that, consider a few tips.

  • Professional headshots are such a valuable expenditure. Putting a name to a face makes it more personal, and looking one's best doesn't mean just wearing nice clothes; an experienced professional should be taking your photo. Ensure personal profiles have quality photos and are linked to the business’s company page. 

  • Encourage employees to round out their professional profiles, too. It’s easy for interested parties to go deeper and do some general vetting for backlogged relevant experience.

  • Include keywords in your LinkedIn marketing. That includes in profiles. Focus on general contractor terms relevant to the company – terms that help them stand out – and include some local optimization. 

  • Work to build inbound links. This is perhaps one of the most important search engine ranking components for your profile. 

  • It’s also critical to know what your competition is doing. For this reason, take a look at other general contractor pages in your market and professionals in the target area. Work to ensure the profiles of your management are better. 

Be a Secret Agent to Promote Your Company

Promoting your company by simply being an active LinkedIn member will soon be an essential step in many organizations. It’s one of the best ways to get followers, including target audience members. Encourage the general contractor and employees to share content from their company page in hopes of getting people to follow it. Be sure that the updates to the pages show up in the LinkedIn Feed as well. This also helps push content further. 

Encourage employees and colleagues, or others related to the business, to follow your company's page. The more followers you and your company have, the more legitimate you look.

Remember: No need to be salesy on LinkedIn. It's a social media, after all, and people are here to hang out and be entertained. Organically befriend and connect with people without concern for ROI. Comment on popular posts with the understanding that your profile could be clicked on be a prospect, thus your profile should always act as a chute to your company page. Trick it out with a company-specific banner and links-galore. Because if you look obsessed with your company, it's good for both you and your company.

Lastly, your posts don't need to always be about your company. Share the occasional blog or company milestone, sure. But entertainment in general is attractive, and creating a post that has nothing to do with your company that gains an iota of virility could do more for your company as a side-effect. LinkedIn is an amazing resource for finding alternative online communities and in-person events as well.

By taking these steps and consistently creating relevant and engaging content, the general contractor’s LinkedIn profile will yield better results, including more leads, better networking opportunities, and brand building. That’s exactly what they need for long-term, effective business development.

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