Four ways to grow your AEC client roster with relationship mapping

Person draws a relationship map network.

In an effort to jumpstart
lagging productivity , the architecture, engineering and construction industry is looking to cutting-edge technology, like augmented reality, artificial intelligence and machine learning.

It makes sense. Artificial intelligence is already revolutionizing logistics, construction, and even design. Now it’s simplifying how AEC firms build the business relationships that matter.

Read on to find out how your team can use intelligent relationship mapping to grow your client list, and make your existing clients even happier.

1. Drum up more personalized introductions

While many AEC firms are rightly looking to digital marketing and social media to get their name out there, even in the digital age, the bulk of AEC leads still come from recommendations. Indeed, business development professionals report they’re 4.2 times more likely to score an appointment if they have a personal connection to a lead.

But not all recommendations are created equal. In fact, when your firm isn’t looped into the referral process, more than half of leads won’t contact you. And social media connections don’t necessarily mean your referrer and lead really know each other.

That’s why the best introduction remains the warm introduction, a referral from someone who is legitimately familiar with you and your lead. But sussing these connections out can take a lot of time. Unless you rely on relationship mapping to do the heavy lifting for you.

A good relationship map illustrates detailed connection intel so you can see, at a glance, who in your network really knows a lead. And when you can quickly see your strongest lead relationships—based on factors like length of contact, most recent interaction, and type of shared activity—you can be more strategic when asking for warm introductions.

2. Reveal connections, opportunities

That leads us to a challenge facing many AEC firms: their relationship map is a bit blank. They just don’t know who they know—or how well. Because, too often, critical client and lead info is buried in an underutilized CRM tool (or multiple tools) or, even worse, in the address book of a single team member.

If this is a familiar pain point for your firm, a new kind of technology: relationship intelligence automation software (RIA) can make all the difference, by filling in the blanks for you.

A relationship intelligence platform like Introhive uses data automation to instantly sync and flesh out your contact records—no more relying on your team to do manual data entry. So, your CRM adoption rates and data accuracy goes up, too (as much as 90 percent with Introhive).

The platform passively collects, analyzes and scores any info it can from inside and outside your firm, from transactional data to customer service inquiries to social media profiles and other online activities. Then it serves up at-a-glance, easy-to-decipher relationship assessments across all of your team members, suppliers, clients and leads. (Request a demo from Introhive to see this in action).

3.Wow prospects with insights, expertise

Whether they find you via a Google search or a warm introduction, AEC buyers will judge you primarily based on your relevant experience and team expertise. And expertise here goes beyond knowing how to get their project done, they also want your team to educate them on new ideas or perspectives.

That’s why, if you want your firm to stand out from the competition, it’s more important than ever to show up for client meetings fully educated, not only about the client’s needs, but also their background and their industry.

In the past, this meant a lot of time spent researching. But relationship mapping platforms like Introhive can ease this burden for you as well.

Tools like Introhive’s Pre-Meeting Digest deliver a custom email report right to your inbox before every client or lead meeting so you’re instantly prepared for success. The report is filled with intelligent information, from company news to stock quotes to social media posts to attendee profiles to all your relationship insights, and a lot more.  

Armed with the digest, you can spend the time you would have used on research to instead focus on your strategy to win over a lead or make headway with an existing client.

4. Hold onto existing clients

Today’s AEC buyers, like all consumers, expect a higher level of service than in the past. They’re less tolerant of delays, cost overruns and permitting hassles. And more than three quarters of them say it’s never been easier to take their business elsewhere.

In this kind of environment, a focus on client retention is paramount for AEC firms that want to grow. After all, it’s hard to get warm introductions from clients who’ve abandoned you for the competition.

Thankfully, a solid relationship map built on relationship analytics, can help your firm not only net new clients, but keep your existing ones happy. The connection strength measurements and instant visualizations make it fast and simple to spot a relationship in hot water. And some advanced tools, like Introhive, will even ping you with proactive email alerts highlighting concerning relationship trends.

Outfit your ACE firm with tech that reveals valuable relationship intel

Relationship mapping for the AEC industry, or any industry, works by highlighting and scoring the connections across your business network. That gives you a deep well of valuable insights to draw from, including knowing at a glance who has the strongest relationships to key leads, or which accounts might need more attention. And those are just a few examples of what intelligent relationship mapping can do.

And when equipped with a 360-degree view of your total network, thanks to state-of-the-art tools like relationship intelligence automation software from Introhive, your team can get a big assist on building and maintaining business relationships.

Request a demo or contact me to learn how Introhive can help you grow your client roster and strengthen existing relationships today.

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