Wednesday, September 16, 2009

There will be pie... but not a lot.

The pie for 2010’s building products industry will be smallish. Commercial building is still on life support and residential building (although showing signs of improvement) is still in critical condition. Here’s the thing; small as it is, your category still has a pie. What are you doing to insure your piece is worth having? You can’t jump-start the economy by yourself, but here are three things we think you could be doing:

1. Make it personal: Call your best customers, send them a letter and book a ticket. Your relationships are worth their weight in gold right now. Find out what they’re hoping to accomplish; how you can help and what you can do better. Make a commitment, better still, make a few impressive promises… and keep them.

2. Keep Marketing: Keeping a moving body in motion requires a lot less energy than trying to get one moving from a dead stand-still. Cut back if you must, but do so carefully. Consider using HTML email blasts – but if you’re going to send something make it interesting, or you’ll find yourself filtered after your first attempt. And no, that does not mean you have to create a newsletter.

3. Renegotiate: Magazines have never been skinnier. Now is great time to “grab eyes.” Regardless of what anybody tells you, a good media plan and a solid creative campaign can add effectiveness to the rest of your marketing mix. Work with an agency that knows your industry and chance are good you will get both.

One thing we know is 2010 will occur. Even the most strident followers of the Mayan calendar insist that the end the world will be no sooner than December 2012. So as long as we’re all going to be open for business anyway…

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