Jay Elie knows what it takes to succeed in an economic downturn. Elie, owner of Ridgecon Construction in Metro Detroit, has focused his company’s marketing efforts on what he calls the four C’s: content, context, connection and community.
Elie’s company established a program called No Roof Left Behind, which gives people in the community a way to help their neighbors who have fallen on hard times. The No Roof Left Behind web-based system allows people to nominate homeowners in need who could benefit from a new roof. After the nominations are reviewed, the company selects four finalists, and the public votes for the most deserving candidate. When the winner is revealed, the company installs the roof at no cost to the homeowner, and the community comes together to celebrate the occasion.
“We wanted to do something that really engaged the community and focused on us,” said Elie. “It allowed us to differentiate ourselves from the other contractors.”
Another way to make connections within the community is by using Q.R. codes. Elie said the sky is the limit when incorporating codes into the roofing industry. Q.R. codes can be found on just about anything these days, from ketchup bottles, T-shirts and even in bathroom stalls. Elie mentioned that the best ways to use these codes can include print advertising, which can lead prospective customer to realize additional savings online — and accommodate online scheduling at the same time.
He also noted that the Q.R. codes are targeted to the smart phone user and therefore a user-friendly website has to be specifically set up for the mobile device. “Mobile sites can be just as robust as the PC site,” said Elie. “We want people to get to know us and the website is the best way.”
Elie outlined three main points when using Q.R. codes. They are:
1. Test it — over and over.
2. Include a call to action.
3. Have a mobile-ready website.
For target marketing, Elie uses direct mail testimonial postcards that link to a 30-40 second video testimonial from someone in a selected neighborhood. Other mobile marketing tactics Elie focused on were his “Meet the Driver” videos, which are linked to a Q.R. code on the company’s vehicles. The videos, which are posted on the company’s website and YouTube, showcase his company’s drivers in front of their trucks as they talk about their role at the company.