At the 2015 Construction Marketing Awards, Hamworthy Heating were crowned the winners of the Best use of Website. I attended the ceremony with my colleague, Sam Boshier, Senior Marketing Executive. And those also present may well have seen our faces showing sheer joy mixed with shock.
You see, we didn’t expect to win. Don’t get me wrong, we know our new site is brilliant. Since launch in February, enquiries have been through the roof and payback came in less than 3 months. But we are not a ‘bells & whistles’ site launched on huge budgets. We were delighted just to be shortlisted.
So here is where I would like to thank the judges. They recognised our work to relentlessly focus on the customer. We had a very small timeframe to deliver the new site, and the easy thing would’ve been to lift the old site on to the new platform, but our instincts told us otherwise. How do we know, other than our analytics data, what customers actually want? When was the last time we asked them – in depth?
Our existing site had evolved over time, without much customer input, so we wanted to really get under the skin of what our customers need now and in the future.
Qualitative and quantitative methods including focus groups, online surveys, 1-1 interviews and workshops were combined with desktop research. This enabled us to develop:
- A full SEO strategy.
- A new site map and content strategy as from the research findings we decided to start afresh with content.
- User personas of the four main customer groups, clearly showing their differing needs and drivers.
- A writing template to ensure each page had a target persona with clear objectives and a strong call to action.
- A ‘guiding principles’ document, covering key research findings across content, design, navigation and language.
- A 3 year site development plan. The research enabled us to prioritise areas essential for launch and what could come in a later phase.
- A testing plan based on these priority areas and tested by customers.
And this, I feel, is at the heart of why our site has performed so well and is now an award winning website. We followed the basic principles of marketing, defined by the CIM as “the management process for identifying, anticipating and satisfying customer requirements profitably.”
I’m absolutely thrilled to win at the Construction Marketing Awards. It’s a great reward for all the hard work from our small marketing team. This gives us the confidence and renewed enthusiasm to achieve even more.
Author: Julie Shaw, Hamworth Heating