A college professor once told me on the first day of class: “Whatever work you do, be absolutely proud to put your name on it.” It’s advice I’ve always remembered because it applies so aptly in life, marketing, and any other profession. As a marketer to the A/E/C industry, I’m often reminded of my professor’s wise words because the architects, engineers, designers and builders we have worked with have a portfolio of outstanding projects, all of which they’re proud to showcase.
Unfortunately, some firms often struggle to share their work with the world, and ultimately their target prospects. There’s a vast audience of potential clients who would enjoy these projects, but reaching each individual can be both difficult and time-consuming. Social media gives firms a great advantage, however, some tools have limitations in either their audience or technical capabilities. With that in mind, I recommend the social networking tool Behance to A/E/C professionals and firms to effectively display the projects and work they’re so proud of.
What is Behance?
Behance.net is an online community of designers and those who appreciate their work. The site’s mission is to give professionals the power display their work to an expanded audience. Behance is described on its site as a “platform to remove the barriers between talent and opportunity.” In other words, Behance aims to help professionals who create original work the opportunity to show that work to a vast audience of potential clients.
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Behance welcomes “design” of any sort, from computer animation to graphic design to film to music, advertising, and art. For professionals in the A/E/C industry, there are categories for Architecture, Engineering, and Interior Design.
Let’s get started:
Create your profile and portfolio.
Behance allows firms or individual professionals to create a profile and build a portfolio of individual projects. Each project includes fields for a title, description, and a collection of photos or even videos. Naturally, the photos/videos are the most eye-catching aspect of the project, and opportunity lies in displaying high-quality images.
Projects can be found in a number of ways. The site’s front page is always swirling with a variety of the most viewed, most appreciated, and most discussed projects in each category. Furthermore, you can assign “Tags” (aka Keywords) to project that users that can help increase the likelihood visitors will find them in a search. In addition to keywords, visitors can also browse and filter results by:
- Creative Field
- Time Posted
- Popularity / Ratings
Visitors to Behance have the ability to interact with projects in a number of ways. It’s easy to comment on a project, “Appreciate” a project (similar to Liking on Facebook), recommend a project to other users, or “Collect” a project. Projects collected by a user are then displayed on that user’s personal profile, making it easier for that project to be seen by even more people on Behance. By adding your firm’s website address to your profile, you can encourage the people viewing your projects on Behance to visit your company’s web site as well.
Why should A/E/C Firms Use Behance?
Behance is similar in many ways to Pinterest, one of the world’s leading social sites, and to Houzz, a highly recommended A/E/C marketing tool, both of which have been proven to drive traffic (and leads) to user’s Web sites. Like Pinterest and Houzz, Behance provides a highly visual platform on which an A/E/C firm can display its work to an audience that is specifically interested in architecture, engineering, and/or design,
Think of Behance as a hybrid of the two, striking a balance between the high-traffic of Pinterest and the more targeted audience of Houzz. This balance makes the website a powerful source of traffic and potential leads for any A/E/C business.
We’d love to know about your experience using Behance and how effective it was in growing your A/E/C business. We’d also like to hear about similar platforms you’ve found to be successful in sharing your work. Please comment below!