While creating a brand identity isn’t the easiest thing in the world, it is certainly one of the most important factors in determining the success of a company, especially in high-competition industries such as construction.
Construction companies run the gamut, from large-scale commercial-construction concerns to small, one-project-at-a-time home renovation businesses. Even with the current housing shortage and high housing demand, competition still exists in all aspects of the construction business, regardless of locale.
For that reason, it makes sense to design an effective brand identity that contributes to business growth … and perhaps even ensures your company’s survival.
Here are the top 11 tactics for creating a construction brand identity that will take a business from foundation to finishing work.
1. Build Your Brand From the Ground Up
With any business, it’s essential to isolate the motivating factors that go into creating the brand and to define the audience the company will cater to and the promises it will make—not to mention its ability to follow through.
An important first step in designing a fantastic brand identity is analyzing the brand’s goals and motivation. What is the mission statement? Who is the audience? What is the end goal for the brand as a whole?
Taking the time to make sure these factors are put in writing and clearly understood is like laying the foundation for a building: It’s impossible to build a brand identity without having these questions answered and goals established.
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2. Research the Competition
As mentioned, there’s a lot of competition in construction. Despite the fact that good construction companies are always in demand, it’s important not to simply rely on that demand and forgo researching your competition.
It isn’t just a matter of realizing which other companies may be offering similar services to your chosen audience; you also want to avoid looking too much like another company, which could be confusing for your audience and subvert your attempts to create a brand identity that truly stands out.
Compile facts about your local competition, including their specialty, experience, audience, and visual branding elements, such as the colors, fonts, and graphics they use in their branding. It’s important to know these elements so you can avoid using them in your own branding.
3. Choose Your Business Name Carefully
What’s in a name? Well, if you don’t choose the name for your business carefully, your audience may have trouble remembering your company—or may avoid it entirely! People tend to like simple, straightforward names, especially for construction companies. Business names that are too convoluted, difficult to pronounce or spell, or that don’t accurately reflect the focus of a business can result in loss of customers.
Using your personal name for your construction business is a good way to put a face to the company and reflect your individual dedication to the business. Choosing a name that highlights the focus of your business or that reflects a positive quality embodied by your brand are other options. Words such as “reliable” and “trustworthy” are good examples.
4. Use a Tagline for Your Company
If you choose not to use a “quality” word in your business name, consider including one in the tagline—a short quip attached to your company name/logo that embodies the qualities of your business. Taglines aren’t in common use in all industries, but they’re a great opportunity for a construction business to further promote its brand identity and make the most of its branding as a whole.
5. Design an Accurate Logo
Your company logo is an important piece of your business’ branding, as it serves as the primary visual identifier for the brand. Your company logo is usually the first piece of branding that attracts or interests a new customer, and it’s the visual cue that’s most commonly connected with the company.
Creating a logo that is accurate, unique, and memorable is vital to establishing your construction company’s brand identity. Other factors play into the design of a great construction company logo, but the most important thing is to ensure the design accurately reflects the brand you want to portray.
6. Color Choice Matters
In designing your company’s brand identity, from the logo on down, color choice is one of the most important factors to consider. Your choice of colors can influence how customers see your brand, as well as appealing to your target audience and even motivating them to seek out your company.
That’s a tall order for color choice, but it’s consistently a key factor in brand identity effectiveness. The most common color choice for construction businesses is black, which is perceived as powerful, no-nonsense, sleek, and straightforward. A close second is blue, which is associated with being trustworthy, reliable, and calm—all sought-after qualities in the construction business.
While you don’t have to create a brand identity that centers on the most popular colors, as you make your decision, you should take the popular colors into account and understand why they are commonly used.
7. Create a Local Focus
Location, location, location is important for housing, and it’s just as important for a construction company.
Construction services, unlike many other industries, are not generally outsourced or bought online but are done hands-on out in the open by people. For a company establishing its brand identity, it’s important to make local appeal a highlight.
Consider including your local area in your business name or in the tagline, or talk about it in other branded materials and advertising. Many companies also encourage their audiences to “Hire local” or “Call your local company.” Building a strong sense of community makes sense for a brand identity that will thrive on community loyalty.
8. Highlight Your Company’s Specialty
There are endless areas of specialty for a construction business. Does your company focus on building new homes? Renovations or additions to existing homes? Small-scale commercial construction? A trade, such as framing or HVAC?
Whatever the case, keying in the specialty of the brand is important in building an effective identity that makes accurate, deliverable promises to your audience and keeps them. Focus on the specialty in your marketing materials and company website.
9. Design for Your Audience
We’ve discussed the need to focus on your areas of expertise, make promises that can be fulfilled, and keep the local aspect at the center of your brand, but another tactic you must employ is to ensure your brand identity is designed specifically for your target audience.
In short, make sure you fully understand your target audience and what it’s looking for, then build your brand identity in a way that specifically appeals to its members.
10. Communicate Effectively With Your Audience
Along with targeted brand design, you must ensure your marketing materials effectively communicate with your target audience. That includes choosing where you advertise. If your target audience is young, first-time homebuyers, for example, you wouldn’t be advertising in AARP’s magazine but would more likely be focusing on social media.
It also means choosing the most effective way to communicate. Whether that communication takes place via social media, email, print advertising, or on your company website will depend on the demographic nature of your audience.
11. Be Easy to Find
While we’re talking about where to advertise, the final brand-building tactic is to ensure that—whatever channel or platform you choose—your brand is easy to find and easy to connect with.
Social media accounts are often recommended as one of the top ways to communicate with an audience, but they’re also useful for enabling your audience to get to know your business better and to reach out to you.
Of course, the main source of information for a brand is its company website. Ensure that your domain is accurate and the site is easy to find. There’s nothing more frustrating than trying to track down information about a company and it being challenging to find online.
Also, when customers or potential customers do initiate connections with your business through email, your website, or via social media, don’t neglect to follow through and acknowledge their effort with a prompt reply.
A Final Word on Brand-Building
Building a great brand identity will help distinguish your company from the other construction companies in your area. Using these 11 tactics for construction branding will enable you to create a brand identity that will help your company grow and thrive.
Zaheer Dodhia is a serial entrepreneur and founder of Logo Design. His deep understanding of business needs and expertise in graphic design and search engines fuels a passion to solve small-business and startup problems using affordable branding solutions. Connect with him via LinkedIn or Twitter.