Ready for 1,140,000 New Housing Starts?

Here are a few tips to help your company spring into action for a successful 2015.

Builders all over the Northern U.S. climate zones are gearing up to ditch their shovels and pick up their hammers. According to a recent post in Kiplinger’s “single-family housing starts to expand at a double-digit rate in 2015, on a pace to hit 770,000, up from 646,000 last year...Multifamily starts are expected to pick up by 5% this year, to 370,000.”

With the anticipated increase in activity and the beginning of second quarter just around the corner, is your building materials marketing department ready for spring? We gathered some ideas and quick insight from some of Interrupt’s key team members that may help you launch your spring with a renewed focus on delivering on your brand promise and your business goals.

1. Be there for your R&R customers when they need you most

Bill Rossiter, Interrupt CEO says spring is the prime selling season for the R&R industry. Support your customers with these five actions.

  • Sell the WHY. Stop giving your contractors tools to sell your products, instead give them the approach to sell the “why story” of what their customers are looking for.
  • Define your promise. Create a strong value proposition around your brand – if you don’t have one, develop your brand promise both to the contractor’s business and to their homeowner’s home.
  • Enable your contractors. Provide your contractors innovative in-home selling tools that will help them tell a differentiated story and drive more upgrades.
  • Lead with leads. Train your contractors (and your internal organization if you aren’t doing it powerfully) on a dynamic lead nurturing process. Leads that are appropriately nurtured will become conversions over 80% of the time.
  • Be responsive. There is nothing more maddening to a contractor who puts his credibility on the line for your brand and then cannot get a response from his brand partner.

2. Are you on track to meet your 2015 goals?

Dave Schiever, Director of Strategy, weighs in on actualizing goals that were set during 2015 planning season.

“It’s an all-too-common occurrence, come June, you realize there are some important annual goals that are at risk of being met and the window of opportunity to make sufficient strides seems to be closing fast. If you have recently taken audit of your team’s marketing goals and it seems like this scenario is going to start impacting your ability to sleep, now is likely the best time to reevaluate some priorities and your resource allocations.

Whether your immediate needs are to gather insights to fuel new strategies or getting development going on a commercialization plan to support a new product launch, give Interrupt a call and we’ll help you get your goals back on track…and maybe find you an extra hour of sleep tonight.

3. Spring forward by checking in

Senior Account Manager, Bethany Wittes, thinks the change in weather is a good time to sweep through your CRM or customer lists.

“Now that spring is upon us – let’s think about spring cleaning! It’s a good time to audit your contact list.  Have all the reps clean up their contact list; verify that their contacts are accurate and titles and contact info is up to date and update why they are buying or not buying from you – you usually see a pattern. And once the cleanup is complete, have them touch base with those that they haven’t called on as frequently as they should.”

4. Is your brand seasonal?

Associate Creative Director, Matt Davis, says seasonality and brand sometimes go hand in hand.

“It’s a compelling question to ask. As the spring building season starts anew, perhaps it’s time to take a look back — yes, back — at your brand this past winter. Re-evaluate its presence in the market — in the head, heart and hands of your customer base, your sales team, your leadership, the public at large, et al. Was it a truly visible, confident brand, or did it lay dormant, in hibernation, quietly awaiting the more exciting blooms of spring? Successful brands demand constant presence, attention, support and development, no matter the time of year. And unlike the seasonality of the building world, brands truly suffer when they’re neglected, even for a short time. So let’s start the spring building season with a four-season brand building plan. Your spring 2016 season will thank you for it.”

5. Never too early to think about Holiday traffic

Director of Digital Marketing, Brandy Wimberly, says it’s time to plan for the biggest eCommerce time of the year.

“Spring is all about dads and grads when it comes to eCommerce, so if your building materials marketing team has any oversight over big box eCommerce or even on your website, it’s time to plan not only for spring but the holiday gold rush that's right around the corner. Think more broadly about how your products are connected to projects that are relevant to dad, grads, college bound kids and the potential for holiday gifting. With the increase in omni-channel opportunities it’s also important to start strategizing how your in-aisle experience converges with your web and mobile presence.”

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