Guidance for AEC Industry Firm Management and Principals
Organizational structure and procedures are a top-to-bottom mentality that takes leading by example and setting and maintaining firm priorities. On a marketing level, organization is critical. Without clear information, access, and know-how, your firm’s marketing team has very little to work with, so a system and process is critical to their consistent success.
Here are five ways you can support the Marketing Department:
- Commit to a database. Databases are collections of information that are organized and therefore easily accessed, managed, and updated. They are essential for providing Marketing consistent access to needed information. Without a devoted effort to establish and maintain a database, valuable time and money is lost while marketing hunts down necessary materials for their work. Consider an AEC industry-specific database such as Unanet (Cosential), Deltek, or AEC360.
- Commit to high-quality photography. Professional, high-quality photography is invaluable for all marketing efforts. Without proof of finished projects, your firm cannot provide clients any avenues for good faith and information. Progress images and construction images can also be beneficial. Secondary to photography are design images from project planning and design phases, which provide marketing, and therefore future clients, a different perspective on the work getting done by the firm in question. Providing photography and resources to obtain it is crucial.
- Offer access to training. Training and guidance are necessary to keep your team at the top of their game. Training may include time for learning new software, or it could be membership in an AEC industry professional organization. Guidance can mean hiring a consultant to review processes.
- Provide software and equipment. While a good amount of marketing collateral can be created in-house without additional costs, to ensure these pieces are professional and first-class, you will want to provide the correct resources. Invest in the software and any equipment—general or specific—that you and the department have agreed upon so the firm can reap the benefits of quality collateral.
- Listen to the advice of the marketing director. Let the department guide you with their wish list, and together assign a reasonable budget to obtain their needs and requests. Marketing will be able to provide expert opinions on what is and is not necessary for their work to be successful. Make sure all crucial processes have working and efficient avenues for completion.
Overall, the first and last points are critical—listen to the marketing department and provide a consistent, reliable pathway to all necessary and helpful materials. An organized database will help everyone, not just marketing, and at the end of the day, a top-notch marketing department will help everyone too.