Constructor - July/August 2013 - (Page 14)
What’s Your Story?
BY STEPHEN E. SANDHERR
AGC members and
the country are
their story via sites
like Twitter and
employees – they
are all out there
telling their stories,
I WILL NEITHER CONFIRM NOR DENY the fact that I may have been the last person in
our ofﬁce to trade-in my beloved Blackberry for an iPhone. However, I will say that
when it comes to social media, I do not pretend to be an expert in the ﬁ eld. So to say
that it is becoming increasingly difﬁcult to keep pace in this social age, well for me,
would be an understatement. On the other hand, something I am absolutely sure of
is that this world we live and work in – on-line, on blogs, on Twitter and Facebook
– that world is here to stay. Moreover, it will only continue to evolve. Even in writing
this column, my head starts to spin when I think of all the social media platforms out
there and the endless opportunities they represent for industries just like ours. But to
quell that overwhelming feeling, I have started to think of all that social media is and
can be as one simple thing – another way to tell your story.
It may not come as a surprise to most of you, but the construction industry is already
there. AGC members and chapters across the country are already telling their story
via sites like Twitter and Facebook. And potential owners and potential employees –
they are all out there telling their stories, too. We as construction professionals have
a very unique and interesting story to tell. Every project, every renovation, every new
high-rise – those are all stories unique to your company. They are stories we as your
association and you as a company representative want to tell – and perhaps, more
importantly, show – to the largest audience possible.
We at AGC of America are lucky to be able to see so many great images of member
projects as they come in through programs such as the Alliant Build America Awards,
Operation Opening Doors and the BIMForum. Or the informative safety videos we
receive through programs like the Willis Construction Safety Excellence Awards and
are then able to pass on to members through our various safety training programs.
These images and videos are more than just snapshots and moments in time, however.
They capture complex designs, countless re-designs, best practices and the hard work
of members across the country. And to recycle the phrase for what is likely to be the
umpteenth time, a picture does, in fact, say a thousand words. A picture tells a story.
And if you haven’t already – it is time to start telling yours.
Seventy percent of all social media activity now involves an image or video of some
kind. In other words, you can now use a simple image to share news, best practices
and achievements on a multitude of social media platforms with something as simple
as a picture. You can start the conversation with something eye-catching, something
beautiful and you immediately capture your audience. But that conversation – your
story – shouldn’t end there. You have gotten the audience into their seats and now it
is time to play the movie.
One thing about the various social media platforms out there is how easy it is to
share a photo, a comment or an article. Whether it be on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube,
Flickr, Instagram or this new thing they call Vine (I will refer you to Google for that
one), the moment someone chooses to share your story with their followers or on their
page, that is when you have become unofﬁcially endorsed by another. In 2012, Forbes
published a Market Force study indicating 78 percent of respondents said the posts by
companies they follow on social media impact their purchases and 81 percent of respondents indicated posts from their friends directly inﬂuenced their purchase decision.
This is the advantage I see in social media - communicating your story in a way
that might be a change-up for your current audience and something that might catch
the eye of someone you’ve yet to reach. So if you’re still asking, “Why? Why should
CONT’D on page 16
14 constructor | JU LY/ AU G U ST 2013
Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Constructor - July/August 2013
Innovative Ideas Modernize 78-Year-Old Bridge
DeConstructing Social Media
Stand-Out Safety Program Earns Opp Construction Grand Award
2013 AGC/Willis Construction Safety Excellence Award Winners
2013 Liberty Mutual Marvin M. Black Excellence in Partnering Awards
Money Isn't Everything
AGC in Action
Wall of Wind
Weathering the Storm
Green, Safe and Fast
Leading the Way
Summing it Up
Going Interstate? Go NASCLA.
Do the Math
Legislative and Regulatory News
2013 Regional Resource Guide
Member and Chapter News
Index to Advertisers
Constructor - July/August 2013