Driving Qualified Leads with Targeted Digital Marketing

February 26, 20242.5 min
Driving Qualified Leads for an AEC Firm with Targeted Digital Marketing

In the competitive architecture, engineering, and construction (AEC) industry, firms rely on new business development and lead generation to sustain growth. However, traditional marketing tactics are often ineffective in reaching ideal prospects. In this case study, we’ll explore how we leveraged targeted digital marketing strategies to deliver over $5 million in new project leads for one of our design-build clients.

The Problem: No Lead Generation Foundation

Our client approached us looking to expand into new markets and client verticals. However, they lacked a steady lead generation program to contact qualified prospects. Specific issues they faced:

  • No structured lead-generation process
  • Minimal brand awareness in new local region
  • Website generated few inbound leads
  • Overreliance on referrals for new business

Our client needed help developing their brand identity and digital presence to consistently engage new commercial construction leads.

The Approach: Targeted Digital Marketing

We devised a digital marketing strategy optimized to attract their ideal clients. Key components included:

Buyer Persona Development

We built detailed buyer personas identifying the firm’s prospects within commercial construction. This included their demographics, challenges, preferred content formats, and buying journey stages.

Content Creation

Based on the personas, we created a content strategy for them centered on educational thought leadership content. This included whitepapers, case studies, videos, and blog posts tailored specifically to inform and attract their ideal buyers.

Search Engine Optimization

To reach prospects researching online, we optimized their website for relevant search terms like “commercial construction near me”. This included technical SEO improvements and content focused on ranking for buyer keywords.

Paid Search Ads

We ran Google and LinkedIn paid ads targeted using keywords and buyer persona attributes. This allowed them to appear prominently when prospects searched for construction-related services.

Email Marketing

Using website visitors and ad conversions, we built an email nurture program that engaged prospects with valuable content over time. Email drove further brand awareness and lead capture.

The Results: 5X Increase in Qualified Leads

Over 6 months, our digital marketing strategies generated tremendous new business opportunities for them:

  • 168% increase in website traffic – SEO and paid ads increased monthly visitors.
  • 217 new leads from website conversions – Content and email nurturing captured more prospects.
  • 5X increase in sales pipeline – New leads focused on high-value targets.
  • $5.2 million in potential new projects – Qualified leads converted into profitable opportunities.

In less than a year, our client’s sales pipeline grew 5X, validating our digital approach. The momentum continues today through ongoing lead generation.

Key Takeaways

Our success in generating new construction leads provides several insights for AEC firms:

  • Digital marketing needs to align with detailed buyer personas.
  • Educational thought leadership builds brand awareness and trust.
  • Search optimization expands visibility and website traffic.
  • Paid and organic search work together to reach prospects.
  • Email nurturing moves prospects through the buying journey.
  • Consistent lead generation brings continuous sales opportunities.

For AEC firms looking to grow, an integrated digital marketing strategy is essential. As we demonstrated, leveraging online tactics to connect with buyers delivers measurable new business.