As Architect’s we get so excited about working on projects, researching new materials, designing some detail we have never thought of before, etc. However, we are often oblivious to the tasks we must constantly manage to ensure we have projects to work on. A while back I posted CONTRACTS 101, so it made sense to post MARKETING 101.
Everyone has heard the following:
“You need a marketing strategy”
“You need to brand (not in the cattle sense) yourself”
“You need a 2 minute sales pitch”
“You need to loose 10lbs… wait, that might just apply to me”
“blah, blah, blah, etc., etc., hoochie mama, serenity now”
While having such is great, it is not required. Remember the basics and you might be surprised with the results. A few weeks ago a potential client contacted us about designing a new home- we got very excited and for the next few weeks we corresponded, we sent sketches and such, a fee proposal was prepared, and a construction cost estimate was established. And as of writing this post, it still may mature into a real project. Wow! That’s great……hold on, rewind the tape, how did this come about?
Then it hit me- how did the client find out about us? So I did the obvious, I asked. The response:
“It was through the AIA website. And by the way, too many architects registered there don’t have a website, let alone a good one to see what type of work they do–and I am amazed at how many don’t even have an email address or phone number!! So kudos to you for doing so. Good marketing on your part”
So I thought that cannot be, we architects are marketing whores, and I mean this in a Pretty Woman sort of way. So I looked around the AIA’s architect’s directory – Holy Crap fellow AIA colleagues, the client’s correct! Why register your firm (and pay upwards of $1,000 in AIA dues- the magazine doesn’t count for anything) if you’re not going to use membership to your advantage? Posting your firm information and portfolio is great, but useless with no means of contact.
So here it is Einstein, Marketing 101- Provide contact information so a potential client can actually contact you! Remember the basics of marketing as you do the basics when designing a decent structure- if the basics are clear and concise, beautiful things can result!
**Reference to our website was a direct quote, I know it needs work… but the basics are there! I’ve been careless on properly referencing the images and just used an image search engine. Don’t try and use my contact information to get in touch with me- I’m on to you grasshopper!