Running a construction business can be a challenging undertaking especially with the high capital costs and notorious cash flow issues. However, with the following weapons in your arsenal, you can manage your construction business efficiently while growing your business too. 1. Get Listed in Local Business Directories: Gone are the days when your prospective customers would use Yellow Pages to find local business information. According to the 2016 Local Consumer Review Survey, nearly 69% of consumers went online at least six times to find local business information in 2016. What’s more, an astounding 91% of consumers relied on online reviews for shopping online. href=/6-ways-to-improve-your-moving-companys-cash-flow/ Getting listed on popular online business directories, therefore, is crucial to getting in front of the prospective buyers. There are quite a few business directories where you would want to get listed. Here are some very popular ones to get started: Google My Business Bing Places Yelp Facebook Pages Better Business Bureau® Angies List Yellow Pages White Pages Super Pages City Search Local.com Manta.com Moz’s local business directory is very useful if you are looking for local directories specifically associated with your niche. 2. Demonstrate Thought Leadership: Establishing leadership online as well as offline is a great way to getting more business. As the construction industry is getting noisier with marketing campaigns, the only way to cut through the noise and entice your prospective customers is by building a brand through thought leadership initiatives such as blogging or commenting on newsgroup threads. While blogging is very effective in promoting your expertise with prospective customers, there are a few other activities you can engage in to promote your brand. Participating in Quora (such as “how do I start a construction company”) and conducting Ask Me Anything (AMA) sessions on Reddit can also help you get noticed and land your potential business opportunities. Here’s a great post that will give you a head start on, construction blogging ideas. Besides these online activities, you should also aim to join construction industry events and trade shows and learn from fellow peers and leaders. Even if you can’t afford to exhibit, companies with great trade show presence tend to build their brand quickly. 3. Leverage Project Management Tools: There is a slew of free project management tools to help you with collaboration and team management. Slack, Procore, CoConstruct and BuilderTrend are some of the nifty tools many successful construction companies use to manage their team seamlessly. Not sure which one to choose? Here’s a comprehensive comparison of popular project management tools for construction. 4. Use Business Prepaid Cards to Control Cash Flow: Why prepaid cards for business you may ask? There is a new generation of prepaid cards that allow owners to set spending limits and store types for each employee card (e.g. Bob the Project Manager can only spend $500/week, the card only works Mon-Fri, and can only be used to purchase gas at the pump and at the hardware store; all other transactions will be declined). Running a construction business can be relatively harder than any other business due to the high capital cost associated with day to day operations. Therefore, controlling expenses will not only help improve cash flow, but save your valuable time as well. One of the many effective ways to reduce your business expenses is using business prepaid cards instead of traditional credit cards for managing your business expenses. The business prepaid cards from Bento offer you peace of mind and your employees the freedom to carry out essential business transactions on behalf of the company. Since each employee has their own card with limits, the business owner is freed up to focus on day to day operations and growing the business. 5. Get Customer Testimonials: Customer testimonials are not just effective promotional tools, they are the catalyst for inspiring trust in your prospective customers as well. No wonder then why so many businesses are leaving no stones unturned in encouraging their customers to share their feedback using a wide range of tools. When it comes to collecting customer feedback, there’s a host of customer feedback tools to choose from. From using free tools like Google Forms to investing in premium CRM tools such as SignPost and GetFeedback, construction firms can empower their customers with a robust feedback mechanism and leverage these testimonials to grow their business via social media. 6. Use Social Media Channels: With a staggering 1.8 billion photos being posted online everyday, your online visibility revolves around what you share online. The good news is that construction companies can make use of this trend and drive their brand across social media channels like never before. By sharing interesting and interactive images of your projects across your Facebook page, Instagram profile, and Pinterest page, you can boost your engagement in a big way. If you’re constrained by time, here’s a guide that will show you how to link your social media channels to Facebook. 7. Stay Engaged with Your Followers: Merely creating profiles across social media channels may not be effective for your business promotion. In order to gain new followers and boost brand value, you must engage with your followers in creative ways. You can do it in many ways which include: Sharing your latest projects on Facebook page Reaching out to followers on Twitter Sharing your latest blog posts on social media channels Posting images of your projects to Instagram Commenting on other’s DIY projects, etc. Final Thoughts: With the construction market becoming more competitive than ever, using technology and modern tools has become indispensable for your business. From managing business expenses to promoting your expertise to engaging with your social media fans, there’s a great deal of opportunity for construction companies to explore and grow. Don’t be disheartened if you don’t see immediate results, but by implementing all of these practices, over time, your construction business is bound to experience growth. Happy building! About Bento for Business Bento for Business offers a new generation of technology-driven SMART employee expense cards for SMBs, nonprofits, organizations and associations in the form of a business prepaid MasterCard. You can set monthly spend limits and allow only certain purchase categories (e.g. Bob the project manager can only spend $500/week and the card only works to purchase gas, hotels and at the hardware store). Turn cards on/off in real-time and receive SMS text message or email alerts for every purchase or decline. Enjoy unmatched visibility into cash flow, eliminate expense reports, and save time & money. Use this link to learn more and start your FREE 60-day trial of Bento’s business prepaid cards.