Gone are the days when you showed up in the print edition of a construction magazine and your reach was limited to total circulation, shelf-life, and pass-along sharing. Those that get published in the trade media or on influential blogs will feel the positive effects for many years to come thanks to the internet. The value of online publicity is virtually infinite.
The Shift from Print to the Internet
Construction magazines, like general magazines, are increasing their focus on online publishing. Why that’s happening is multifaceted, but it has a lot to do with people increasingly reading online.
With that said, most magazines now have a print and online presence. You usually have the option of downloading entire issues or reading individual articles. Most trade publications are aggressively amplifying that reach through social media and mass emails. Whether we ever see the elimination of print remains to be seen. The new reality may be a combination of print and digital.
Is Online Publicity Less Meaningful?
There has always been a certain mystique about getting published in print. Does getting published online have the same effect? It depends on whom you ask.
Let me ask you this. What is your objective when it comes to getting published? For most of the construction industry, it’s always been about getting seen by the right people, whether customers or prospects. If more people are seeing your content, does it really matter whether its in print or on a screen?
The Age of Unlimited Reach
Construction magazines once relied on snail mail to distribute their magazines. They got some additional reach by handing out copies at trade shows. Your reach was finite.
The beauty of online publishing is that the reach is now virtually unlimited. That means that your news can reach more people in more places. That optimism must be tempered with the fact that not all readers are your customers and prospects, but some are.
The Gift that Keeps on Giving…Leads
Perhaps the most exciting part about getting published online is the never-ending possibility of leads. 10 years down the road, a prospect could stumble across your news and contact you about a certain piece of equipment or project. This, of course, assumes that the magazine gives your content a permanent home on its website and maintains the integrity of the page.
How might this work? Let’s say a contractor is in the market for a new excavator and they visit a magazine’s website to do some research. Whether they use the site’s search engine, or visit the relevant section, who’s name do you think they’ll see?
Key Words and Inbound Website Traffic
Whether intentional or unintentional, it’s likely that your news, whether a news release or a job story, will naturally contain key words. (I say naturally because many construction firms have never done formal keyword research). If you’re a paving contractor, for example, “asphalt paving” is most likely a key phrase.
When you incorporate key words or phrases into the headline or body of your piece, it will continue to pay dividends when search engines like Google crawl that magazine’s website in the years to come. That means that your odds of being discovered online increase over time.
Preserving Your Legacy for Future Generations
The work the construction industry has done over the years is incredible. It’s one of the reasons so many of us enjoy viewing picture from the old days. I heard of a sad story where a national publisher acquired a certain family of regional magazines and purged back issues dating back to the early 1900s because they didn’t want to pay for storage.
The internet has also granted construction magazines the ability to better catalog and organize the back issues containing your news. Your great-great granddaughter may be able to someday look back at the work you and/or your company have done. This assumes that the technology doesn’t change drastically and that the integrity of the content isn’t compromised.
The bottom line is that getting published on a construction magazine’s website is just as valuable, if not more so, then showing up in print. That may be a tough pill to swallow for those of us that grew accustomed to print, but it’s time to face reality. This additional reach that presents a virtually infinite possibility of future leads is one of the benefits the internet has granted us and it’s one that your construction firm should welcome.
What other added benefits have you seen by getting published on the internet? Share your thoughts.
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