3 hard and fast rules for builders, tradies and construction businesses
Figuring out what direction you want your business to take can be a tough one. It’s often a case of too many options and not enough clarity. Whether you’re an Apprentice thinking about your next move or a Tradie looking to branch out and start your own business, simply starting, without a plan can be a costly mistake.
Tip #1: Nail your niche
The building and construction industry is HUGE, with lots of competition, areas that you can specialise in and clients to target.
In order to nail your niche, you first need to work out where you’re competitors are playing.
- What services are they offering?
- Who are their clients?
- Are they restricted by location?
- What do they charge?
- Are they doing anything different that’s working for them?
Once you know where they are, you can fill the gaps – where they are not – or simply, do it better.
Quality service will gain you loyal consumers and a referral network larger than you can imagine. As much as marketing and online presence counts, word of mouth referrals will always build trust faster with new clients.
You might be thinking – “But there are so many different areas!”
We hear you.
Choosing your niche is also about eliminating the type of work you don’t enjoy doing and finding the work you love, knowing your ideal client and going for it. By honing in on your niche you’ll be able to find those gaps in the market and make them work for you, ensuring that you’re on everyone’s tender list (or speed dial)!
However, if you’re still not sure what your niche is, researching is a great place to start!
Tip #2: Experience is King
As much as Instagram and social media makes the entrepreneur journey look easy. The fact of the matter is, it’s not. It’s going to take hard work, long hours, passion and grit. By committing to your vision and your goals, day-in and day out, you will build momentum and start to see your business grow. Building a business takes time.
However, it also comes back to having the skills on the tools and in business. How often have you seen someone who is a skilled tradesman, but struggles with the business side of things? We have heard these stories all too often.
The key is to back-up your experience on the tools with the right people to support your business or, to gain the business skills and knowledge yourself! Either way, you want to make sure invoices are sent and paid on time, that you stay on top of the paperwork and payslips are being sent to your guys. Among many other things…
There are so many ways you can further your knowledge, hone your craft and gain the edge in the industry. By undertaking an Apprenticeship you’ll get the skills onsite and you can even look at a BSB42518 Certificate IV Small Business Management to get the practical how-to guide of running a business.
Tip #3: Be seen online
These days if you’re not online, consumers will start to question your business. Are they legit? What are they hiding? Can I trust them?
There’s no question that you do top-notch work however, it’s no good if potential customers can’t see it. Times have already changed and if you’re not online, it’s time to get on-board.
Social media is your platform to showcase your work, get others (ie. happy customers) to speak about you and a chance to share a bit of your personality.
Here’s the thing, one of the first steps a potential customer will do when deciding to work with you, is look you up:
- Were other people happy with your service?
- Can I find you online?
- Does your work look good?
- Can I relate to you?
- Did you turn up on time?
Think of your online presence as a trust builder, it says, ‘yep I’m pretty good and others think so too’. This creates something called transferred trust. Let me explain…if a mate told you that his Barber was brilliant and you liked the look of his haircut, would you be more inclined to go check it out? Same thing online. When customers can see your work and you’ve got some great testimonials from past customers, potential clients are more likely to choose you over your competition.
Establishing a presence on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Google, and LinkedIn can lead to a bunch of potential new customers!
Setting up a simple website with who you are, what you do and how to contact you is also a super simple way to be seen online. It’s also a great way to establish your niche because, chances are half of your competition hasn’t and won’t do this. Wix, WordPress, and many other providers can help you create a simple website with ease.
So what are you waiting for? Get cracking!