In times such as these, where there is so much uncertainty, fear and frustration, it has never been more important for your brand to show the world exactly what you’re doing to shine a light in the darkness.
We’re lucky that we live in a time where social media holds a unique power that allows us to project our message on to a screen that could potentially be seen around the world. It possesses a fantastic opportunity for companies to demonstrate their social value alongside the government’s new public procurement model.
The COVID-19 pandemic has led us through a significant change. Lockdown has ironically united communities. People have volunteered to help those self-isolating and shielding. People are closer to their neighbours than ever before, and communities and charities are benefiting greatly from this. People are more engaged and they want to be involved.
From 1st January 2021, the government will be placing greater emphasis on how contractors will positively contribute social value to the areas that they are bidding for work in. The new measures will go further than the Social Value Act of 2012 and ensure that all major construction projects actively evaluate their social value.
Areas that are being assessed are COVID-19 recovery efforts, economic inequality tackling, equal opportunities recruitment, climate change fighting and health and wellbeing improvement. Companies must show a minimum of 10% of the total score for social value, according to the above themes, for it to be a differentiating factor when bidding for new work.
With this in mind, what can your company be doing to demonstrate its Corporate Social Responsibility? This article will discuss five examples of how you can communicate your social value and CSR endeavours throughout your content marketing strategy.
1. Create forums where new ideas can be heard
COVID-19 has had a devastating impact on so many businesses and people’s livelihoods and the new government social value model is obviously centring this when deciding which firms to give new work to.
Why not offer your support to a local community group or create your own! Discuss innovative new ideas and provide a framework for action. Collect and share their incredible stories on your blog to highlight what you’ve done to help and to spread the word for more to get involved.
2. Listen to the environmental conversation
Of course, all construction firms should be thinking about their carbon footprint and what they can do to minimise the damage to the environment surrounding their projects. Using your social media channels to respond to and engage with activists, scientists and speakers on the topic tell your audience and potential future clients that you are active in the conversation.
Listen to and take note of what the planet needs and incorporate that into your company’s’ sustainability plans. You could also produce a series of blog posts detailing what your company is doing to combat climate change.
Blog content can also be repurposed and implemented into your email marketing strategy; this will enable you to keep your prospects updated and engaged with your business activity on a regular basis.
Think of recently completed projects and use them as case studies for your contribution to the environmental cause. Highlighting this CSR data will significantly elevate your value to your future projects.
3. Set sustainability goals for the future
Articulate your plans to work on projects that greatly benefit the areas they’re in detail how you will provide jobs and opportunities for the local communities. Pledge to reduce your waste and give something back to the world with every project that you undertake.
Think about dedicating a section of your website to showcasing your plans for the future. Within this new section, you could also showcase a powerful video that communicates what your social value plans are and explicitly outline what your targets are for the future. If your data is accurate, throw in a few impressive statistics from your previous projects.
It’s a good idea to update your audience on how things are going, so have a sustainability report produced every couple of years to ensure that you’re still on track to achieving your goals for a better world.
4. Offer training to anyone who is looking to break into the construction industry
One of the most significant difficulties facing the construction industry is the skills shortage. The pandemic may have caused people to seriously think about their next steps in life. Whether they’ve lost their jobs due to COVID-19 or are just at the beginning of their careers, construction is an industry that many may be considering right now.
Unlike a lot of career options, the construction industry has (and probably always will) thrive and of course, anyone new to the industry will need the proper education and training.
Build relationships with schools or attend career fairs and talk to prospective new employees about the wide range of opportunities that the construction industry offers. By promoting your company’s expertise and the training options that you provide, you could definitely open some doors into our industry.
You can document your time doing charitable activities or in schools on your social media, boosting your community engagement and to build trust in your brand and its message.
5. Involve your diverse workforce when communicating your message
Perhaps one of the simplest things you could do to demonstrate your CSR is producing a short video or series of blog posts, celebrating the members of your team. Your people are invaluable and their stories are so often unheard. Ask them to share the reasons they chose to work in construction and what their hopes are for their future at your company.
Dedicate a page on your website to your people, complete with some professional photography and short introductions to everyone. Document your team building days on social media to show off how much fun you have!
Promoting the fact that you are investing in your people will not only win you reams of wonderful, talented applicants for your next job opening, but it will also boost your social impact.
The time is now
It goes without saying that expressing your dedication to social value is not only vitally important to the communities in which we work but also for the future health of your company.
Fundamentally, there is an opportunity now to create a different way of doing business, where social value becomes the heart of any company communications or marketing campaigns.
By meeting all of the government’s social value needs concerning COVID-19 recovery, tackling economic inequality, fighting climate change, and promoting community integration, the basis for change is already happening and there’s a strong appetite from within the industry to play its part and you can too!
How can we help?
Project Five Creative is a digital marketing and web design agency who specialise in the construction sector. We love to work with companies who have a real passion for generating social good within the communities they operate in.
We love to inspire our clients to continue to do more for their people, marketplace, community and the environment by creating a strategy that works for everyone and helps their businesses to thrive.
If you’re interested in finding out more about what you can do to increase your social impact or require help with creating the right content needed, start a conversation with us!