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Construction Blogging

This topic contains 129 replies, has 32 voices, and was last updated by  theamcguy 2 years, 12 months ago.

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  • #472878

    Anonymous

    TO ALL MEMBERS!!!

    This behavior is completely unacceptable! If you want to bicker like school kids do so in private message not,I repeat NOT, in the open forum. If there is someone here who annoys you – ignore them. If someone says something out of line, tell a moderator. The past few weeks I have been more of a babysitter for children than a moderator on a forum comprised of adults…some of the behavior I have seen in this thread alone is absolutely ponderous.

    There will be a few members receiving pm’s from me shortly – the content of that message needs to be needed. There are some of you who were actively pm’ing me while taking part in this BS…upsetting to say the least. I will say that in all probability some of this mess will be related to Jim, not my preferred action but it is what is necessary at this point.

    TO ALL;
    After reviewing this thread I am shocked to see what has gone on in here today, Chad is right about babysitting. I’ve never seen such a new and important topic needing so many deleted posts in the first two pages, This is ridiculous and those involved should be ashamed of themselves. You know who you are and I now know too and have a new member watch list, I will not allow my site to turn into another ordinary argumentative forum like the others that are out there.

    Consider this as your last Warning, we have other disciplinary actions that we don’t like to use and we haven’t used for 2 years but don’t be surprised if you start to see them again.

    Off topic point grabbing meaningless posts will cost you points, and the more deleted points you get the closer you get to being banned. And if that happens you’ll lose your entire point balance with no chance of redeeming…… I could take 3400 points away from members right now on this thread, Grow up people. The Hammer is coming down……….Dabbs

    #472891

    theamcguy
    Pro
    Fayetteville, NC

    Are we not already “blogging” on these forums?

    That’s what I thought too.

    Not really. This a forum with interaction between members on a variety of subjects somewhat related to whatever common interest binds the members. In this case tools, trades, construction.

    A blog on the other hand is hosted by an individual where he posts about subjects that interest him. He could post daily, weekly, whenever he feels like it. It could be an article, short news snippet etc. There really is no interaction between the blogger and the readers unless the blogger solicits comments. ToolGyud is a blog, BTP is a forum. I have two examples below of blogs.

    http://toolguyd.com/

    http://www.joesherlock.com/blog.html

    Automotive Pro
    Fayetteville, NC

    #472939

    kswiss
    Pro
    edmonton, AB

    Sounds like something that would interest me, count me in.

    #472947

    TopNotch
    Pro
    elmwood park, NJ

    Amazing how much everyone has to say LOL

    Seriously before cell phones and computers people kept to themselves way……more.

    @theamcguy I see blogs as an opinion piece. Just like forums but I like you said the difference would be one sided.

    Working Pro since 1993

    Tom M

    #472979

    Sir_Mixalot
    Pro
    Melbourne Beach, FL

    Amazing how much everyone has to say LOL

    Seriously before cell phones and computers people kept to themselves way……more.

    @theamcguy I see blogs as an opinion piece. Just like forums but I like you said the difference would be one sided.

    And they didn’t post on forums either…LOL
    It’s a different world now and people are actively searching out information online. So if someone has some proven experience and valid information to share with others, why not share? Give a little and get a even more back.
    Do you still advertise in the phone book too?

    #472994

    Anonymous

    Glad I missed all the excitement 🙂 I do want to address this blogging subject. I am living proof that running your mouth for a bit can be lucrative..not necessarily always in cash, but in free products as well. This is going to be a long post, so grab yourselves some coffee. I started blogging back in 2012 when we revamped our little squirrely website. This came as advice from another gentleman in Jim’s position somewhat, who convinced me it was a good idea. So, when we would finish a job, I would show pics, list the products that we installed or used. Sometimes, I gave my opinion, sometimes not, but mainly just provided information. After 4 or 5 jobs and blogs, our customer calls ended up in us having to install a dedicated phone line which is now our office line. That was the first year we worked year round, and haven’t stopped since. People would leave comments or questions on my blog, or call the office line with questions. One thing I learned was people want instant gratification. An answer or a solution right now. If you know your blogging subject well enough to answer those questions you feel someone may ask, then that will give you more content to provide in your blog. The more content and photos you provide, the more the SEO will pull you up in the first google search pages.

    Once the blog was off and running and showing up well in searches, the calls and offers for products started coming in as well. Acurio Lattice & Privacy panels was the first to contact me. We did have alot of customers asking for lattice, but none wanted the flimsy cheap stuff, so when they called I jumped on it. Not only did they send me enough privacy panels to install on a deck, for free by the way, they continue to give any of my customers great discounts and have sold a bundle for them. All I did was a do a blog about their products. So every year after that, anytime there’s been a new deck product come out, I showcase it on my blog. If the manufacturer hasn’t contacted me, then I contact them, offer to provide a link to their website, and give them photo credit for using their pics of the product. That has so worked so well, that manufacturers will send me even better photos, put my company as a link on their website, so in turn I get better exposure as well. This is how we got started in selling so much aluminum railing. I got enough aluminum railing to install on a large deck for free, took photos, put on my website. Blogged about how it would never rust, never needed painting, would last for years, and could be melted down, and recycled at the end of it’s lifespan, making it a green product. People lost their minds in our area, and we can’t keep enough in stock for the demand…..I’ve worked my way until now as a contractor that promotes the American Aluminum railing system, I get a huge discount, and more money in my pocket. I have a garage full of products that literally can go out and find what the customer is asking for, take it with me to estimates. If the can see it and touch it on the spot, the more likely you are to sell it. I’ve become a middle man of sorts, and now after all this time, will receive commission or a cut. I would say this last year alone, I made 8k in cash payments, and alittle over 12k in free products. Have just completed a deal last week where a deck/patio furniture company wants to use our decks again this year for staging their outdoor furniture. Last year I charged $150.00 per use, this year to use my decks, I charge $250.00 and split it with the homeowner. How did they find me? My blog, and I keep a portfolio on houzz.com where alot of products are sold in their online store. When sellers saw how many people would click “like” on my deck photos, I started getting tons of offers for outdoor heating products, canopies, retractible screens, you name it. Once I featured the product on my blog, it would send traffic their way, and the more traffic off my blog, the sweeter the amount of goodies I would receive. Jim told me to do a pinterest account, I did. Same results. I only spend 179.99 per year on marketing, and that’s to pay for my website. houzz, pinterest..all free accounts, but the blogging links to manufacturer websites, and the networking connections from the products I’ve blogged about has been a Godsend for my business.

    So, it works. I don’t get to go on and on like I used to, not enough hours in the day, but even a one paragraph blog, as long as the content is accurate and informative, will drive joe schmos and companies to your blog, and you will start to receive offers.

    Good luck to any of you that decide to try it, and don’t be afraid to talk. We all know all of you have the gift of gab on here :). You may sit and stare at your screen for the first few trys, worried how you will come off to an audience…but trust me, people will read it. None of you will be more surprised than I was in the beginning. If I can pull it off, I know any of you will be able to do it. 🙂

    #473000

    TopNotch
    Pro
    elmwood park, NJ

    Amazing how much everyone has to say LOL

    Seriously before cell phones and computers people kept to themselves way……more.

    @theamcguy I see blogs as an opinion piece. Just like forums but I like you said the difference would be one sided.

    Do you still advertise in the phone book too?

    You probably know nothing about being in business prior to the internet, it was better. People think being in business is about having a website these days and social media or other nonsense have become jobs for people that make better money than the contractor doing the work. I see that as a recent fad that will evolve and hopefully come full circle.

    Unless your a specialist working in volume or emergency services, I am against internet advertising.

    The lack of respect for your time and skills are becoming worse with false impressions. Home advisors and all of the other companies are moving contractors around like pawns devaluing the construction process. Your not a reality show or mouse click with a price attached. A personal site is another job keeping it relevant.
    I have said this before too, you could have been a shoe salesman last week but if your good on the computer you can create an illusion of work photos and testimonials that didnt really happen or skills only recently acquired via a video. It takes years of experience to properly predict your labor on a wide scope of work. This short cutting leads to underbidding and corner cutting.

    Word of mouth is #1 and I admit its a problem people dont talk like they used to and go to the net first.

    Working Pro since 1993

    Tom M

    #473005

    TopNotch
    Pro
    elmwood park, NJ

    It sounds like exactly what I said Tara a full time job. Your partner is lucky to have your time and dedication promoting a “specialty”.

    And I respect the effort and dedication that goes into it all.

    Maybe its just me but the ambition I had the first 5 or even 10 years doing this is long gone. Not the passion for the work, just the beating of the drum.

    Working Pro since 1993

    Tom M

    #473010

    Sir_Mixalot
    Pro
    Melbourne Beach, FL

    Amazing how much everyone has to say LOL

    Seriously before cell phones and computers people kept to themselves way……more.

    @theamcguy I see blogs as an opinion piece. Just like forums but I like you said the difference would be one sided.

    Do you still advertise in the phone book too?

    You probably know nothing about being in business prior to the internet, it was better. People think being in business is about having a website these days and social media or other nonsense have become jobs for people that make better money than the contractor doing the work. I see that as a recent fad that will evolve and hopefully come full circle.

    Unless your a specialist working in volume or emergency services, I am against internet advertising.

    The lack of respect for your time and skills are becoming worse with false impressions. Home advisors and all of the other companies are moving contractors around like pawns devaluing the construction process. Your not a reality show or mouse click with a price attached. A personal site is another job keeping it relevant.
    I have said this before too, you could have been a shoe salesman last week but if your good on the computer you can create an illusion of work photos and testimonials that didnt really happen or skills only recently acquired via a video. It takes years of experience to properly predict your labor on a wide scope of work. This short cutting leads to underbidding and corner cutting.

    Word of mouth is #1 and I admit its a problem people dont talk like they used to and go to the net first.

    I agree with a lot of what you say. I went into business on my own in 1995 and didn’t have a website until 2007. So yeah, I did business before the internet blew up. Once I saw things going in the www direction, I knew it was time to at least get something out there to be able to hopefully sustain a business long enough to be able to support my family into the future. I had know idea I would enjoy all of the aspects of building and running a website. Then along came forums and next social media. They all have their place and are not for everyone.

    Fast forward to 2016 I have more work than I can handle. I charge $35.00 for me to show up and give an estimate, which is unheard of for a drywall contractor or painting contractor in my area. Why? Because of my internet presence.
    I can tell you in my trades it would be difficult to survive on word of mouth alone in my area. And I’ve been in business for over 20 years.

    I’m glad you’re doing good with your business and much success in 2016!

    -Paul

    #473013

    TopNotch
    Pro
    elmwood park, NJ

    Thanks Paul…..admittedly I too could be doing better. Glad you are making it work.

    This is the kind thing that worries me moving forward where marketing giants become the GC.
    http://www.remodeling.hw.net/business/operations/repair-wars-the-expanding-role-of-online-home-services_o

    Working Pro since 1993

    Tom M

    #473032

    ChadM
    Moderator
    East Palestine, Ohio

    It is an ever evolving world…just as we have to adapt our work practices to accomodate new materials we need to adapt our marketing to accomodate new mediums of communication. Today’s youth live on their smartphones and social media and today’s youth are tomorrow’s customers. Like Top-notch said – word of mouth is number 1 but word of mouth is changing…it is less and less conversations at a picket fence and more and more posts on Facebook or a like on Pinterest.

    @tarac – awesome post, thank you!

    Chad

    A Working Pro since 1993

    Member since 12/07/2013

    #473036

    theamcguy
    Pro
    Fayetteville, NC

    Top-notch said – word of mouth is number 1 but word of mouth is changing…it is less and less conversations at a picket fence and more and more posts on Facebook or a like on Pinterest.

    Agree 100%. It is becoming a virtual world and marketing needs to adapt to stay current.

    Automotive Pro
    Fayetteville, NC

    #473060

    bethepro
    Keymaster
    Mt Prospect, IL

    Are we not already “blogging” on these forums?

    In a sense you are, but in the sense that you want to be the owner of a blog and make some money, then no. Blogging in the construction space online has some interesting aspects to it and those who are making money are crating content for niche audiences. That’s really what I would be giving advice on. It looks like we can use join.me for the webinar. It also seems like we have a few interested members for sure. So lets decide on a time when a webinar would be so that we can get the most members.

    Email us at bethepro@bethepro.com

    #473067

    yellaD
    Pro

    I only spend 179.99 per year on marketing, and that’s to pay for my website. houzz, pinterest..all free accounts, but the blogging links to manufacturer websites, and the networking connections from the products I’ve blogged about has been a Godsend for my business.

    :)

    Wow @TaraC, that was a great post! Thanks so much for sharing, it was motivating and educational. 🙂 I’m curious, did you spend $179.99 on just the domain name, or the actual production+domain name? Also curious as to how long did it take to update all your social media sites if you had so many?

    #473074

    kswiss
    Pro
    edmonton, AB

    It looks like we can use join.me for the webinar. It also seems like we have a few interested members for sure. So lets decide on a time when a webinar would be so that we can get the most members.

    I think an evening during the week would be best for me but I have a pretty flexible schedule.

    #473076

    It looks like we can use join.me for the webinar.

    If you have an enterprise or pro join.me account (even trial) you can record the session too, so it could be archived to the site, along with future webinars

    #473082

    Anonymous

    @yella D once you get it established, and get the hang of it, it’s not that difficult. Ive not posted on my website since February 4th. When I get a chance, it will take 5 to ten minutes to update with our latest project or to talk about something else. Same with houzz or pinterest. After your account is established, just update by loading your photos. I spend maybe 2 hours tops every couple weeks updating. We don’t use facebook, twitter, instagram. We own our domain name, and repurchase each year when i renew my website.

    #473084

    Anonymous

    @chadm thank you and you’re very welcome

    #473095

    58Chev
    Pro
    Etobicoke, ON

    @TaraC,
    Great post. I can only imagine how your blogs would read. 😉

    I use HOUZZ but just as part of a forum there. I should look into the blog side of things.

    Thank You

    “If you don’t pass on the knowledge you have to others, it Dies with you”
    — Glenn Botting

    #473097

    Clev08
    Pro

    Top-notch said – word of mouth is number 1 but word of mouth is changing…it is less and less conversations at a picket fence and more and more posts on Facebook or a like on Pinterest.

    Agree 100%. It is becoming a virtual world and marketing needs to adapt to stay current.

    I hate that so much time is spent on Facebook, Twitter, ect… But trying to fight it would be signing up for the losing side. As much as I dislike all the social media stuff out there I will eventually have to give in…
    P.S. This is coming from a 23 year old

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