Among the many construction marketing groups and services I view, the Society for Marketing Professional Service’s (SMPS) Certified Professional Services Marketer (CPSM) social media list has some of the greatest relevance, especially in monitoring the “what is important” within marketing departments at medium to larger architectural and engineering practices (and to a lesser extent, construction businesses.) These are marketers in the trenches, and they have common problems — often in the chaotic and ill-planned (in many cases) proposal submission process.
This is an environment where word-of-mouth, from non-competing peers, thrives.
One marketer explained problems she is having a with a widely used general business/sales lead management/CRM system. (I won’t name it here, adhering to my general policy not to negatively identify specific businesses or organizations in this blog.) Several viewers quickly responded with their recommendation, which I can safely post (because it is 100 per cent positive.)
Consider this response:
I believe the answer to your frustration could be found with Cosential. I have found this to be one of the friendliest and most customizable CRM systems anywhere, more reasonably priced that most others, with great and responsive technical help. And best of all, it was designed and created specifically for the A/E/C industry, so the people who make it work really understand our needs. Contact Jennifer Heitler at (800) 505-7089 x7107. I bet she can help you.
Or this one, from someone totally different
We are in the process of implementing Cosential here now. It’s a fabulous program, very user-friendly, smartly configured for AEC firms right off the bat, cloud based and accessible from your mobile phones, etc. And the best part is that it’s extremely affordable compared to other programs. You might contact Jennifer Heitler at firstname.lastname@example.org to learn more.
(I can’t imagine Jennifer or Cosential minding me reposting the contents from the closed group publicly. In this context, though I won’t publish the names of the individual posters — several of whom I know personally and respect.)
Did Jennifer ask the individuals to post these testimonials on internal CPSM group? Maybe. But it is unlikely these industry peers would do this, unless they were truly happy with the product and service? How much is the direct referral/word-of-mouth reference from a qualified and genuine user-base group worth? I think you get the gist of this point.
Obviously you don’t earn this sort of reputation without delivering the goods, but when you know your community, you may be able to encourage and support positive word-of-mouth referencing. I can think of fewer less expensive and more expensive sales and marketing strategies.