0

New Flash: Rome Wasn’t Built In Two Days Either


I firmly believe we live in a world that leans towards, and leads us to, instant gratification.

Fresh hot coffee, by the cup, brewed instantly. Do you want your friends to see what you are having for lunch? You can upload a picture instantly. Do you want the latest music from your favorite artist? Simply, download it instantly.

When it comes to building new business, ‘instant’ can help but cannot replace that which it cannot replace.

Developing a brand takes time.

Building trusted relationships takes time.

Developing a portfolio of solid projects takes time.

I am a big believer in not reinventing the wheel. I prefer to look around, see what others are doing, and doing well, and try to follow. Who has not heard of Coca Cola? Yet, I see ads for Coke everywhere. Why would a brand like the Mayo Clinic feel the need to be on Twitter? Yet they are and they are crushing it. Why would contractors with billions in revenue use a lead service? Yet many do.

Buying a CRM is not a business development strategy. Placing a single ad in a publication is not an advertising campaign. Sponsoring a hole in the local association golf tournament is not a marketing program.

I often use the following when engaging a prospect or client: “Buying a treadmill will not get you in shape…however, the continued and effective use of it will.”

The key is ‘continued and effective use’.

I’ve witnessed companies spend thousands on CRM and use it continually, but not effectively. I have worked with companies that bought a healthy dose of advertising for one trade show but that was all. I have written business plans for companies only to follow up six months later and learn they never read it.

Of all industries, the design and construction industry understands what it means to follow a plan. There are not too many buildings that go up by assembling a couple hundred building product manufactures, subcontractors, contractors and designers on a vacant piece of land with everyone just winging it on their own.

They follow a very specific set of plans and specifications to a successful, completed goal.

The same should be true for that portion of business charged with gaining new customers and keeping current ones. The desired results will not happen overnight, through a single tweet, one blog post, one half-page ad, a golf shirt with the new logo, etc. Success will come from a dedicated program that can be executed effectively and continually.

Instant is for soup.
_______________

Bobby Darnell is the founder and Principal of Construction Market Consultants, Inc. An Atlanta based management consulting group specializing in business development, CRM, sales, marketingm, lead generation and profitability as well as executive placement for the Architectural, Engineering and Construction industry.

Bobby can be reached at bobbydarnell [at] cmconl.com

This article first appeared in the December, 2017 issue of Properties Magazine
www.propertiesmag.com

0

So Thankful For CRM

This is the week of Thanksgiving – a short week in business and, hopefully, a week where we all take time to count our blessings.

As we wind down another year, I am reminded of a few occasions where I went to our CRM for answers and am thankful the information was easily available.

As in most businesses, our contracts are sometimes signed by someone who eventually leaves the company and their replacement may not have a full understanding of our services. This happened two days ago when a new contact needed to update our agreement.

In retrieving a copy of the current agreement, at a glance I was able to tell the following:

— How we discovered this company
— How many approaches it took to secure the company as a client
— Details of our interactions
— Their payment terms
— Specific warranty information
— Fee schedule
— Our win/loss percentage
— Length of each sales cycle
— Names and sources of key contacts (LinkedIn, trade show, networking, etc.)
— Industry classifications: (1) AEC (2) Specialty Contractor (3) Building Envelope
— All files related to this particular client
— Locations and key contacts for all active opportunities

I could keep going but I believe you get the idea.

Yes, one could argue I could do all that with a spreadsheet and files on a hard drive which is true. I could also spin the thread to weave my own cloth to sew my own clothes but who has time for that?

It doesn’t have to be Thanksgiving week for me to be thankful for my trusty CRM, which allows me to focus on what is important for my company; whether it is building new business or effectively providing services to our clients.

Obviously, I have much more to be thankful for other than CRM but I have yet found a way to get paid for my love of family, guitars, raw oysters, good health, my home, coffee, etc., etc.

Happy Thanksgiving!

———————–

Bobby Darnell is the founder and Principal of Construction Market Consultants, Inc. An Atlanta based management consulting group specializing in business development, CRM, sales, marketing and profitability as well as executive placement for the Architectural, Engineering and Construction industry.

Bobby can be reached at bobbydarnell [at] cmconl.com