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A new start for marketers in 2020

A new start for marketers in 2020

2020 is already 16% gone! Is your marketing strategy in place for the challenges the new decade will bring? Here are 5 things to consider from Competitive Advantage:

Market growth

As our latest Market Overview reports, construction output is not expected to recover this year. But there is more optimism and a significant capital spend planned by government; HS2, Healthcare, Education. And housebuilder optimism combined with growth of the private rented sector all point to new opportunities.

Action

Understand the market forecasts, how will this impact on demand for your products and are there new sector opportunities you should focus on? There is a growth in offsite construction in key sectors which will change procurement routes. Have you taken measures to ensure you are engaging these new channels?

Grenfell and Hackitt

While the Grenfell inquiry tries to understand the cause of the disaster, the construction industry is moving to take action to prevent a repeat, although far too slowly in the opinion of Dame Judith Hackitt. In addition to changes to Document B of the Building Regulations, marketers need to be aware of the forthcoming recommendations from the CPA’s Marketing Integrity Group. Currently at the consultation stage, we can expect that later in the year they will make recommendations to improve standards of product marketing and possibly recommend minimum standards of product knowledge amongst representatives providing technical advice.

Action

Although the Hackitt Review was about fire safety, the issues raised relate to all products and changes will affect all product manufacturers. Ensure you have processes in place to update all of your marketing collateral when there is a change to product specification, or a standard is updated?

Sustainability

In the Queen’s Speech last December it was confirmed that measures will be taken to make the UK carbon neutral by 2050. We can expect a key part of this to be the Future Homes Standard. Currently in consultation, it is due to be implemented in 2025. As part of this, changes will be made to Parts F and L of the Building Regulations. In addition, there will be other changes to the way we currently live. Just recently the government has announced funding of two low carbon hydrogen production plants to power future industry and transport.

Action

As the UK moves towards carbon neutral the way we construct and use buildings will change. How will this affect your products and what opportunities will it present? Once you have understood this you can start to inform your customers, presenting your organisation as a trusted authority.

Brexit

When new immigration rules are introduced we can expect increased labour shortages, not just on site but in all skills. So new ways of getting things done are needed. Already we are seeing a growth in offsite construction and this will impact on how projects are designed, specified, constructed and products sourced. Our recently updated Offsite Report shows a significant lift in activity since it was last published two years ago.

Action

Have you identified the new group of decision makers and the supply channels they will use? Have a communication plan in place to ensure effective engagement with offsite decision makers.

Digital

Throughout the last decade BIM was the main driver for this. It is also the enabler for current industry initiatives – the projected ‘golden thread’ recommended by the Hackitt Review or to enable the logistics of offsite manufacture. But we are also seeing construction adopting Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning, Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality as a means of improve productivity.

Action

Review the BIM data you provide and new communications channels becoming available. What new information will be needed for VR and AR and can you use this to help specifiers better understand your products?

In Conclusion

As all of these changes start to happen, think about the key drivers for your customers and how your organisation can help to make their lives easier – be it new product developments, CPD seminars explaining the implication of changes or just new product literature.

Further Information

Competitive Advantage Consultancy specialises in helping building product manufacturers to be more effective at getting their products selected. Offering more than construction market research, we can work with you to inform and develop your strategy, with a range of sales and marketing tools all designed to help with your specification strategy.

Sign up to the Competitive Advantage newsletter for an overview of construction market activity as well as construction sales and marketing advice.

This article was written by Chris Ashworth the founder of Competitive Advantage, a consultancy which specialises in helping building product manufacturers to be more effective at getting their products selected.

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