Developing construction content writing that can help a company’s website snag a top ranked spot in search results, speak authoritatively on a wide variety of technical and niche topics, and motivate visitors to dig deeper is a challenge construction companies face every day. As a booming industry, construction is a competitive space – having the right kind of unique and stand-out content can make all the difference.
We asked a diverse network of construction industry professionals about the challenges they face in finding top quality construction industry content and gained some valuable insight into how to write construction content that hits the mark.
1. Writers Who Don’t Have a Grasp of Industry Jargon
“When we write content for our construction clients, it can be a little difficult to translate the construction jargon into easy-to-read content pieces. The construction industry is full of coded language that can feel completely foreign to outside customers. When your team communicates with the clients clearly, you’ll be able to decode their language and understand what certain terms mean. Then it’s time to focus on translating that jargon into manageable pieces of searchable information.”
Niles Koenigsberg – Digital Marketing at Fig Advertising
“Construction and maintenance service companies need to be a resource to potential customers. Content marketing is the way to expand your brand and establish expertise. But you have to know what those customers are looking for.
This means mining search terms and questions and creating matching content. My problem often derives from the business limiting their content and approach to industry vernacular and not expanding to match terms and concept customers may have. You will find many opportunities to expand your reach.
One of the signs of a healthy web page is ranking for hundreds or even thousands of keywords, which you can’t do unless you make an effort to reach that audience.”
2. Clients Who Don’t Understand The Value of Digital Marketing
“We’ve also found that those in the construction industry are not very tech savvy. The professions of the industry require a lot of physical labor, so many of them are not very focused on digital marketing avenues. They can tend to be more traditionalists when it comes to marketing and some construction veterans may fail to see the value in digital marketing. To overcome this, your team needs to effectively communicate to the construction client why SEO and content marketing are necessary. It’s just about communicating the value of these efforts in clear and simple terms.”
3. Content That Lacks Depth and Originality
“The construction industry can be tricky and challenging, especially when copy is involved. Often times copywriters don’t think the same way that markers do. If you tell a copywriter to create copy for the construction industry, they’ll likely write about a generic topic that’s uninspired and dull. Some ways to combat this challenge is to actually try and understand the audience you are writing the copy for, instead of just focusing on pumping out copy for the niche in general. Once you can better understand your audience, their interests and what type of content they want, you’ll be able to craft better copy that engages your readers and leaves them wanting more.”
“There are many challenges that can be faced in the SEO world, especially when it comes to the creation of content. Whatever the niche is that will be targeted – by that construction, retail, or even healthcare – setting up and publishing high-quality content helps to drive engagement, while also improving rankings and helping the brand build more authority.
The biggest challenge, in my opinion, would not be with the actual content production process, but rather in finding the right writers to create the content. While there are millions of people out there possibly looking for a job to write, they do not all possess the skills to create engaging and creative content.
Thus, spend some time and resources in finding the writer that is best suited for the project that you will be taking on. Ask a couple of writers who apply for a position to write a sample piece in the niche that the business targets, then compare these submissions against each other to find the writer that will work for your brand.
Bottom Line: Finding writers who can produce quality content may be the biggest challenge, which is why vetting multiple potential writers is so important.
Joe Flanagan – Software Engineer at GetSongBPM
“The hardest part about writing content for the construction space is the lack of unique statistics or unused reference points online. As a content writer, you need to differentiate your article from the other pieces online but finding statistics or data that is different from the other results on Google’s first page can be a challenge. Statistics add credibility to your piece but using the same stats as the top 3 ranking articles won’t give your piece any organic exposure.
Many of the valid or up-to-date statistics come from one or two main resources such as OSHA but are referred to all over the web. In order to differentiate your piece of content you may need to dig deep to find stats or data to support your piece. In addition, many construction articles reference outdated statistics which gives an author much less credibility. If you want to rank, I recommend trying Brian Dean’s skyscraper technique.
This means, if the keyword you’re looking to rank for has an article on Google’s top result with 10 tips, you one-up that article in writing a more informative piece with 15-20 tips. Another trick, try making an infographic or something visually digestible, this can allow your written content to be easily shareable.”
“Our biggest frustration when it comes to construction content revolves around scaling. We work with national companies that maintain multiple locations. Meaning, if we develop compelling content for a division in Atlanta, we now have 25 other branches to write for. At 500-1000 words each, this can be very challenging, both to serve the most-high at Google and, more importantly, our client’s customers. After much hemming and hawing, our solution for this dilemma was rather simple: delve into each location’s specific attributes, such as tourist attractions, parks, and annual events. For Atlanta, this sorta stuff would be CNN Tower, Coca Cola Museum, Mercedes Benz Stadium, Georgia Aquarium, MLK Park, and Centennial Olympic Park. We’d work these flavors into the material to give it a local flare, and it worked well! The client loved the personal touch, and they ranked nicely over a 6-8 month period.”
4. Writers Who Don’t Understand the Construction Industry
“When I have tried to find writers for construction, my biggest issue has been finding writers who actually know what you’re talking about. The truth is, they are incredibly hard to find. A great way to combat that is to write especially detailed article plans for each article written.
These plans should be every H1, H2, and H3 title the writer should use, along with a few dot points on what to talk about in each section.
If you get good generalist writers and give them a great plan, you should be able to make it work.”
Vince Massara – The Content Friends
“Our 3 biggest challenges when it comes to getting content created are:
1) Getting info from our clients. Because our clients are busy running a business and often haven’t given much thought to brand tone, voice, or differentiation, we rarely have the info we need, and it falls upon the writer to make the brand stand out.
2) Creatively covering the same content over and over again. We all have our ways of phrasing and explaining things, and when you have a large number of clients offering the same products and services, it can be challenging to come up with a unique way of saying the same thing (like what is a chimney crown and what does it do) over and over again.
3) Scaling the writing process. When you’re in an industry that’s somewhat technical and you have a specific way of writing and building websites, finding freelancers with the time, talent, and technical knowledge (within budget) is incredibly challenging. In fact, we’ve had such terrible luck with it we’re considering a “fast-track” in-house training. The goal is to provide several resources and give freelancers the technical knowledge needed to accurately write about the industries we work with.”
“I used to work with an agency before and we had a client who was in the construction business and who wanted content written as part of their digital marketing package. As soon as we got into it, we realized it may be a bit of a problem.
The reason is – construction experts usually don’t make good writers and good writers don’t have much expertise in construction. Basically, it was difficult finding someone with niche expertise and a great skill for writing.
That’s why we went for niche job boards (such as Problogger) and looked for candidates with specific knowledge of construction work. It took us longer than we thought, but we ended up with a writer that the agency still uses every time they need content in this specific niche.
The bottom line is – don’t settle for generalists if you’re looking for high-quality work in a specific niche. It may take more time and money to find them, but they are out there and they are completely worth it.”
“The biggest challenge in construction content marketing – both as a producer of content myself and outsourcing/assigning it to other writers – is writing on topics I have lacked knowledge in, as well as writing to an audience that I’m not familiar with. This is in terms of both style and tone, but also in knowing the jargon and terms associated with the construction field.
You can hire a freelance general content writer to produce construction-specific content, but in my experience it is worth the time and money to either:
A) Hire a full-time writer that can become an expert in construction-related content and topics over time through research and immersion in the topic.
B) Hire a freelance writer who has a background in construction.
Going the route of a general writer with no knowledge runs the risk of making your brand look unprofessional and novice at worst, or having a writer spend way too much time researching a subject at best.”
5. Writers Who Don’t Understand Digital Strategy or Can’t Produce SEO Content
“The biggest challenge in content creation is achieving high-quality content in terms of SEO. Using the best keywords correctly and targeting the best audiences. Lots of people can write content, either if we ask our clients to do so or if we do it ourselves. However, writing content that ranks high is not as easy as it may seem. Knowing how title tags work and optimal keyword positioning is essential. Another thing we find challenging is to create long-enough content. We’ve found that articles of at least 3000 words perform much better.
The best thing we can do to avoid content marketing mistakes is to analyze and plan the content. Every time we write an article for a client or ourselves, we develop a table of contents with a high level of detail. We write the titles containing the correct keywords and organize all the sections with all the subtopics. We set the desired length for each section and if there should be any media or additional resources. We also add some annotations with the desired keyword list and density. Content writing is much easier and more accurate from here.”
“Not many content writers in highly specific niches like construction also have SEO expertise. Often, there is a disconnect between content that informs our audience and content that is SEO optimized, which makes it tricky, but not impossible, to get niche content that ranks.
To bridge this gap, we rely on a team of marketers and SEO experts who work directly with our writers to ensure that our message comes across accurately while also giving us a chance to rank for priority keywords. Our content process starts with SEO experts offering guidelines to our writers on primary keywords to build the content around, secondary and related keywords, word counts to line up with ranking articles, and structure suggestions to get the highest SEO benefit. Then, our writers have an SEO-optimized starting point that informs their approach to creating content. From there, it’s their job to build on that foundation in a way that helps current and potential customers solve everyday problems faced in operating their business.
The added benefit is that our writers become more well-versed in SEO and our SEO experts further understand our niche. As these two areas of expertise converge, each team’s job gets easier and the collaboration becomes more successful.”
Oscar – Marketing Professional from Route
6. Construction Industry Clients Who Don’t Have Time to Focus on Content Marketing
“I do content marketing for some of the top builders and remodelers in Atlanta. By far the biggest challenge right now is getting really busy designers and project managers as well as owners to provide information for articles. It’s time consuming to look in various places for info about products, design plans, and notes about construction. Many remodeling company owners want to proof blog articles, but the articles stack up because they don’t have time.
My solution with one remodeler is doing a once a month Facebook Live. He knows all about the projects, and we show the website photos, he answers questions and provides insights. Then I create content by editing the half hour video into 15 short videos. Problem Solved!”
“I’ve worked with several construction companies in the past years, but the biggest struggle with developing construction content is actually a struggle that persists in almost every industry I’ve worked in.
I do not put anything up on a client’s website unless they’ve approved it. It’s their site, they own it, and they have the right to decide what does and does not go up on it. In some cases, a company can be held liable for incorrect or inaccurate content on a site. For these reasons, I send all posts out for approval before posting. This system breaks when clients fail to keep up with the approval process. I’ve had certain construction companies take over 3 months with several follow ups to get back to me on blog posts with approval. It can really derail SEO efforts when I can’t put up any new content for over three months. Getting approval or feedback on content has been my biggest struggle by far. Construction companies stay busy and it can be hard to reach someone with enough time to read an article if the company doesn’t have any kind of dedicated internal marketing or advertising department.
In situations where clients are unresponsive, I’ve started proposing a new system. I’ll give clients who opt-in 30 days to review content from the date I send it over. If I don’t hear from them within 30 days, I’ll post the content live and email them that it’s live. They can email me with any desired edits to have the live post modified. So far, historically unresponsive clients have been open to this approach and it has helped me prevent serious bottlenecks in the content process.”
“Don’t wait for them to volunteer ideas, give them suggestions!
Professionals in the Construction industry keep very busy in the day-to-day management of their clients and projects. Instead of waiting for them to think of a good topic for content, consider giving them suggestions that are industry specific and of interest to their target audience.. If necessary, it might be helpful to give them a direction or outline for their input. Once they provide their information and thoughts for the content, be sure to proof the information and edit as needed for publishing.”
“The content creation struggle – and it’s not unique to construction – is that the people in the business often don’t have time to produce content or even write professionally if they did have time. Outsourced writers don’t have the knowledge and experience to write genuinely helpful content for the local audience.
One way that we’ve solved this is by partnering with a local PR firm. They investigate the topics provided, ask specific questions of the business leaders and the community to extract key insights, and that provides the substance of the article. We’ve satisfied the professional writing criteria that the construction folks don’t have while still attributing their direct knowledge and expertise. It’s not perfect but we’ve done a much better job of delivering more in-depth and insightful content to their audiences.”
“Construction companies that we work with are owner operated or the owner is heavily involved. A business owner is trying to run your business. They are bidding on jobs, managing people, working on financials, all while trying to grow their business. There is so many obstacles that are demanding the attention of these owners or managers, the to get a Time allocated for content creation is difficult.”
“After writing content for companies in the construction industry for almost 4 years, still the biggest challenge I’ve faced is getting the starting information from the client. Our creative process starts with a phone call with the company in order to get accurate information to best write the informational piece of content, but that phone call can often be hard to schedule. The most effective solution to this problem is so simple – call on rainy days! For exterior contractors, roofers, or anyone who works outside, calling on rainy days gives you a higher chance they’re actually in the office, and available for the conversation.”
Alexa Kurtz – Marketing Strategist at WebTek
“Our biggest challenge is communicating information from the experts, to those producing the content. Our shop managers, Sales Reps, and owners are all experts in their field, and have so much knowledge to provide. But they have very little time to sit down and communicate all that valuable knowledge to the people responsible for sharing it online.
So far, we have not found a single solution. But it certainly helps if the content creator is very clear and specific about the subject matter they’d like to focus on, so they can ask direct questions of the subject matter experts. If you notice a certain keyword is trending down and you want to write a blog post about that sub-topic, decide on a few specific questions ahead of time. This will help you quickly get the quotes and details you need.”
Construction industry professionals spend the majority of their time in the field due to the nature of their business. When they are in the office, there’s not always time to delve deeply into the intricacies of content marketing and the value of search engine optimization. Curating a digital strategy and producing relevant content can feel foreign or far-removed from the day-to-day of the construction industry.
Remaining competitive in today’s technologically advanced marketplace requires an understanding of the impact of digital marketing and the powerful effect doing it right can have on a company’s growth and position in the industry.
Verblio has a network of high quality writers across the nation who know how to write construction content and understand what it takes to produce properly optimized, dynamic content that can move your construction company ahead of your competitors. Our writers are standing by to help support your construction content needs. We have the experience, knowledge, and expertise to help with even the toughest industry challenges. Contact us to learn more today!