The Dynamics of Marketing Commercial Roofing Services

Today, we go over the dynamics of the marketing world for the roofing industry.

commercial roof marketingMarketing. It is one of those words that roof contractors come across all the time. Despite all of the innovations that have come forward in marketing and advertising, nothing beats the power of word-of-mouth referrals. A stellar reputation for honesty, quality workmanship, and great customer service still goes a long way in any part of the building industry— especially commercial roofing.

With the timely arrival of new methods of communication, though, interacting with prospects, leads, and customers has become far less difficult. With communication avenues such as social media and texting, the barriers of time and space no longer hold as much sway in whether or not a roofing marketing campaign is effective.

Consumer surveys now show the power of the Internet in customers’ decision-making process: 98% of Americans say that they look for local businesses online using a search engine. There are 1+ billion active users on Facebook alone in any given month, and every 20 minutes users share 1 million links on Facebook, make 2 million friend requests, and send 3 million messages.

It is clear that people are interacting on these platforms. With so much “buzz” going on, it makes sense for roofing contractors to be there as well. Otherwise, these missed interaction opportunities mean lost business.

Roofing Marketing and Opportunities on the Web

Because so many people are finding these social media platforms and other digital methods of communication so appealing, roofing contractors can take advantage of this hubbub of social activity as well. The foundational principle that stands behind effective marketing strategies with these platforms is no secret, either—to be successful, a roof contractor must simply demonstrate that he is reputable. As is the case with word-of-mouth advertising, reputation is king.

For solid marketing strategies for roofing contractors, it is optimal to consider the following tips and ideas.

Three Marketing Tips and Ideas for Roofing Contractors

1. Do not ignore the power of having a professional-looking website. Your own website could be your number one source for generating quality leads. Do not be swayed by the promises of “effective” roofing lead generation companies that promise the world but then do not deliver or fall back on their commitments. The best way to attract leads is to show them what you have to offer. A professional-looking website offers that opportunity.

Make sure that your website is crisp and professional. It should have plenty of quality images that show “before”, “during”, and “after” pictures of your roofing jobs. Make sure that you and your workers are professionally dressed and at work when a photo is taken of your roofing job. Every word on your website should be directed toward informing consumers and enticing them to use your services—elsewise, the wording is not needed. Do not neglect the power of “roofing SEO” either—SEO refers to search engine optimization, or how you get a website at the top of search engines like Google or Yahoo. A well-ranked website can generate lots of free leads who need service immediately.

2.  Get active on social media like Facebook, Google+, and Twitter. With so many people active on social media, it makes sense for roof contractors to be there as well. It is especially important to become active on Google+. Among many other benefits, being active on Google+ has a direct bearing on how you appear in search rankings on Google, easily the world’s most popular search engine. Google+ social media interactions—and the data behind them—are open to Google’s search ranking algorithms, or the ways Google determines the search rankings of websites. Other social media platforms such as Facebook or Twitter do not make their data as accessible, and therefore do not have as direct an impact.

Becoming active on social media may seem time-consuming. But it does not take much to start out. Post pictures of roofing jobs weekly. Keep your “followers” engaged by issuing personalized messages during key parts of the year, such as the holidays. We offer more tips for navigating social media and making good use of it in a prior blog post, too. Above all, keep in mind two fundamental principles: demonstrate your work quality and examples of quality service, and engage your followers. Do not post updates about your roofing company alone, but also content that will be educational for your followers. You will build up your credibility more that way and won’t get ignored.

3.  Learn the ins-and-outs of LinkedIn, and leverage it for full advantage. Yes, LinkedIn is another social media platform. Why does this platform deserve mention by itself? Because it is a gold mine for quality leads. At present, there are over 259 million LinkedIn users from over 200 countries across the globe. Many of those users are in the United States, and LinkedIn is the premier social networking platform for professionals. That means that people who are decision-makers or potential referral partners are on there—and likely actively using it.

Learn how to use this amazing resource for full benefit. Just consider this tip and the potential it can hold for your marketing alone: check out LinkedIn Groups. There are groups or online communities on LinkedIn that are wholly devoted to particular areas or professional focuses. Find the groups or associations that your customer profile demographics fall into, and join them and engage them with quality, educational content. Take time to build “online relationships”, and you may see more leads coming your way than ever before.

Roofing Contractor Marketing Support and Our Platform

Should you want professional marketing support behind your roofing company, you can benefit from our partnership with Top Roof Marketing, the only nationwide marketing firm focused exclusively on commercial roofing contractor marketing. Among other things, their team does SEO, roofing websites, social media, direct mail, and more.

For other effective roofing marketing ideas, give us a call at 800-670-5583. We will be happy to help you with your needs and show how we completely stand our contractors with our full-service platform. We also offer a free commercial roofing e-book filled with information on how to build and maintain a strong, profitable roofing business.

Lakehouse targets Green Deal with latest acquisition

Building contractor Lakehouse has taken over Scottish energy services group Everwarm, its fourth acquisition ion the past four years.

Founded in 2011, Everwarm specialises in installing energy-saving measures, including insulation and renewable energy schemes, for homes and businesses across the UK.  Like Lakehouse, it does a lot of work for housing associations. It has 250 staff across its offices in Bathgate in West Lothian and Bedford, England.

In the last financial year – only its third year of trading – Everwarm recorded a turnover of £46m and pre-tax profits of £6m. It is an approved PAS 2030 assessor and installer for ECO and Green Deal measures. 

Everwarm managing director Michael McMahon said: “Our deal with Lakehouse is the result of a year-long search for a suitable partner.  Rather than a corporate investor, we were looking to join with a business that would allow us to diversify our range of services and help us build on our success to date.  We have found a like-minded partner in Lakehouse and joining the group will allow us to offer more to our clients.

“Becoming part of the Lakehouse group gives us scope for long-term growth in England.  Working in Scotland, where green funding is significantly more generous, we have rapidly built expertise through delivering funding and installation across more than 45,000 properties in just three years.  Now, we look forward to growing our English operation within the Lakehouse group and bringing a wider asset management offer to clients in Scotland.”

The merger represents an expansion of Lakehouse’s geographical reach in Scotland and into the renewables and energy efficiency market. The Everwarm name will be retained in Scotland but dropped in the rest of the UK.

Everwarm joins the group through an all share deal, with the merger taking place debt free and maintaining Lakehouse’s low gearing levels.

The addition of Everwarm takes Lakehouse’s total headcount to approximately 1,200.

Everwarm becomes the fourth business to join the Lakehouse group since 2011.  K&T Heating Services, a gas servicing, installation and compliance business,was taken over in 2011; Allied Protection, a West Sussex-based fire safety and compliance specialist, joined in 2012; and East-Anglia based Foster Property Maintenance was added in October 2013.

Lakehouse last month announced a 24% growth in turnover for 2012/13 to £190.6m.  Pre-tax profit increased 48% to £7.1m. 

Lakehouse executive chairman Stuart Black said: “This merger represents another milestone in Lakehouse’s programme of acquiring successful, complementary businesses that expand our capabilities and reach.  With so much debate about the direction of policy in the sustainability sector, we see this deal as a vote of confidence in the green economy and the fact that energy efficiency, fuel poverty and zero carbon homes are going to remain central to any government’s agenda.

“Sustainability is a fundamental plank of our business and we’ll be drawing on Everwarm’s impressive delivery record to expand our retrofit division.  There are huge opportunities in London and southeast England – a domestic market which is remarkably immature in terms of retrofit and energy efficiency.

“The merger will allow Lakehouse and Everwarm to leverage each other’s strengths and service offerings across the areas we cover.  We share a culture of aspiration, entrepreneurship and flexibility in delivery, and this deal opens up new opportunities both for us and our clients.”

 

 

Queen’s Awards recognise construction

Willmott Dixon, Berkeley Group, ISG and Turner & Townsend are among the construction companies recognised in the 2014 Queen’s Awards for Enterprise.

Contractor Willmott Dixon and house-builder Berkeley Group were cited in the sustainable development category, while ISG and Turner & Townsend achieved the accolade for international trade.

One area that the judges highlighted in the decision to grant a Queen’s Award for Enterprise to Willmott Dixon was how it invests ‘£1 million annually for improving skills and social fabric in local communities’.

Willmott Dixon claims to have pioneered low-waste, low-carbon, building structures. Other factors behind the award include being the first construction company to achieve carbon neutrality and attain the Carbon Trust Standard. Willmott Dixon says that 88% of its construction projects achieving at least an EPC B rating and the percentage of its waste sent to landfill has been cut from 40% in 2007 to 5% in 2012.

Willmott Dixon group chief executive Rick Willmott said: “We have invested considerable time and money over many years to ensure sustainable development is part of our culture and values, and you can see this in the output of what we build.  We do it because it is in the best interest of our business, the environment and people in the communities where we work.”

This year is the second time that the Berkeley Group has been recognised, having previously won the award in 2008.  The company said that the award recognised five years of continuous achievement in delivering sustainable development.

Berkeley Group claims to be the first house-builder to commit all new homes to be designed to Level 3 of the Code for Sustainable Homes and in 2010 it committed to appoint an ecologist on all developments to advise on protecting and enhancing biodiversity.

International trade award winner ISG said that its demonstrated to the judging panel that its strategic diversification into new growth markets and geographies across the globe deserved recognition.

“The Queen’s Award for Enterprise in International Trade represents an independent validation of our achievements,” said ISG chief executive David Lawther. “We continue to grow our businesses, working with multinational customers such as Google, RBS, Marks and Spencer, Unilever, Barclays, Louis Vuitton and Tiffany.

 “The profile of the UK construction sector has never been higher overseas and received a major boost following the successful staging of the London 2012 Olympic Games, in which ISG played such a key role. We have combined that reputation with organic growth and a series of strategic and successful acquisitions in key markets internationally, while continuing to improve our position in the UK.”

Turner & Townsend’s award follows previous wins in 2003 and 2009. Over that same period, its turnover has grown from £61m in 2003 to £360m for the financial year ending 30 April 2014, while the workforce has trebled from 1,128 to 3,609.

It has opened 43 new offices in the last 10 years and now operates in 130 countries around the world. Overseas markets account for 55% of the turnover.

 

 

 

The Benefits of a Cool Roof

cool roof benefit exampleToday we build on prior blog posts about energy-efficient buildings and the ENERGY STAR program and its role in qualifying cool roof systems. At present, Americans spend about $40 billion in annual building cooling costs— one-sixth of the electricity generated in the United States each year. One option that has emerged as a way of containing energy costs is the “cool roof system”—which provides great reflectivity for lower A/C costs. But how exactly does the cool roof system provide benefits?

Below, we take a quick look at how a cool roof can benefit building owners and human populations as a whole.

The Cool Roof and Its Consumer Benefits

  • Cool roofs have high reflectance and emittance values. Emittance values and reflectance values are formal terms for how much heat a roof is able to release, and how much of the sun’s energy a roof is able to reflect as light back into the sky. The Cool Roof Rating Council, a leading non-profit, third party organization that measures and certifies energy-efficient roofing, says that “cool roofing” is able to reflect and emit a substantial amount of the sun’s energy. Because of its great emittance and reflective properties, a cool roof therefore keeps heat from transferring to a building below, where it will be taxing on an air conditioning system. As a result, building owners enjoy a comfortable interior space during the hot summer months and can recoup 10-30% in cooling savings.
  • Cool roofs reduce buildings’ carbon footprint on the environment. Since cool roofs conserve electricity, they play a direct role in the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions into the air. When buildings use less electricity for their cooling, power plants generate less electricity and release fewer carbon emissions into the air. Cool roofs’ reflective properties also have a substantial impact on lessening global warming and its effects: instead of transferring the sun’s energy to the building below, a cool roof bounces the heat back into the atmosphere as light. This reflectivity also increases the roof’s lifespan, making it less susceptible to deterioration caused by the sun.
  • Cool roofs raise public standards for environmental well-being and public health. The Cool Roof Ratings Council reports that growing public awareness of the benefits of ‘eco-friendly’ roofing has led to improved building codes and more active “green building” programs across the United States. As these building codes incorporate minimal requirements for roofing products that meet minimal energy-efficiency standards, new buildings are constructed with cool roof systems, and more solar radiation is reflected back into the sky and more absorbed heat released during the day. The end result is improved air quality, which helps cut down on health issues arising from the influence of smog or lasting periods of heat (e.g., heat stroke, heat exhaustion, dehydration, or asthma).
  • A cool roof can give a building owner sharp energy savings at electricity demand peaks. A cool roof reduces electricity usage at the hottest periods of the day. As a result, the energy grid does not perform as heavily, and building owners who pay for electricity according to times of usage can see substantial energy savings at peak times of demand for electricity.

It is clear that a cool roof system can offer a building owner great value: a more comfortable building, less environmentally taxing energy consumption, substantial energy savings, and more. Many roofing product brands build on top of these benefits, though, offering building owners much in the areas of protection and long-term durability.

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Conklin Cool Roof Systems and Their Additional Benefits

roof coating fabricOne such brand is Conklin. Conklin has been a leader in the energy-efficient roofing market since it created the first acrylic roof coating for the commercial roofing industry- an innovation that played a part in propelling energy efficiency as a consumer concern in the nonresidential construction industry. Since its creation of this cool roof coating, Conklin has been a leader in high-performance, energy-efficient roof coating systems for 35 years. Over 2 billion square feet of roofing have Conklin products applied on them.

When applied, a Conklin cool roof system is characterized by a seamless impenetrable membrane that lies on top of an existing commercial roof. Because it is seamless, the roof does not have trouble with leaks and even stands up to powerful outdoor extremes such as hurricane-grade winds or hailstorms. The building’s structural support is reinforced, and the old roof has its life extended for decades without the heavy expenses of roof replacement.

Conklin cool roofs reflect up to 85% of the sun’s heat in the atmosphere, generating heavy energy savings for building owners. A Conklin cool roof system can pay for itself in just five to seven years with these tremendous savings. Plus, all Conklin roof systems are backed by non-prorated warranties covering materials and labor.

Should you be interested in learning how a Conklin roof system can be of use to your commercial roof and save you money, give us a call at 800-670-5583. We will be happy to schedule a free roof estimate with our highly professional roof contractors.

The Place of ENERGY STAR® in Determining Cool Roofs

cool roofToday we build on top of our blog post about “The Benefits of Energy-Efficient Buildings”.

Cost reduction is a top priority for any business owner or facility manager. With the appearance of energy-efficient building materials in the construction industry, consumer interest has increased in what energy-efficient roofing (or “cool roofs”), among other materials, can do for cutting costs.

The United States Environmental Protection Agency’s (U.S. EPA) ENERGY STAR® program has been of particular benefit in labeling roof systems that are energy-efficient. But what exactly is the ENERGY STAR® program? And why has it become so relevant in the construction industry? We take a look at some answers below.

What is ENERGY STAR®?

According to EnergyStar.gov, ENERGY STAR® is an EPA-established “voluntary program that helps businesses and individuals save money and protect our climate through superior energy efficiency.”

In its legislation in 2005, the Energy Policy Act, Congress declared ENERGY STAR® to be a “voluntary program to identify and promote energy–efficient products and buildings in order to reduce energy consumption, improve energy security, and reduce pollution through voluntary labeling of or other forms of communication about products and buildings that meet the highest energy efficiency standards.” Since then, thousands of ENERGY STAR® products and services have been brought to market.

American consumers and investors have also adopted stronger consumer commitments to energy-efficient products and services. The public’s knowledge of ENERGY STAR® is shown by the fact that approximately 85 percent of the American public today recognizes the program’s blue label.

“ENERGY STAR Roofs”- Earning Qualification

energy starFor a product or building to be qualified for the ENERGY STAR® logo, it must meet EPA-implement third party testing and certification. The ENERGY STAR® program makes use of testing, third party review, and compliance screening for strengthening consumer trust of qualified products and buildings meeting high energy-saving requirements. Generally speaking, the program breaks down products and buildings into four categories, with products having its own “Products” category and buildings being broken down into “New Homes”, “Commercial Buildings”, and “Industrial Plants” categories. Over 4.5 billion qualified products have been sold in the program’s 20 years of existence, and at present over 1.4 million new homes and over 20,000 facilities have the program’s blue logo.

These categories are where the program becomes relevant to the construction industry. Industrial plants must be certified and approved by a professional engineer to meet energy performance score of 75 or higher. They must also pass an EPA compliance screen test. For qualification, commercial buildings must achieve an energy performance score of 75 or higher on Portfolio Manager, an online tool for measuring building energy efficiency, and be verified by a qualified licensed professional.

According to the program, around 40 percent of commercial building space is benchmarked for energy efficiency by the program’s Portfolio Manager tool.

Cool Roofs and Energy-Efficient Buildings

Roofing Services

Our fully trained commercial roof contractors provide:

  • Roof maintenance & repair
  • Inspections & leak detection
  • Energy efficient roof systems
  • SPF roof insulation install
  • Roof life-extending solutions

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Since it is the building part closest to the sun, the roof plays a big role in the determination of whether a building is energy-efficient. Roofs that have dark colors absorb the sun’s heat and then transfer the heat to the building below. That means that more air conditioning has to be used to keep the building cool. Americans spend almost $40 billion a year cooling their buildings, according to the program.

For ENERGY STAR® qualification, roofing products must meet “initial and aged solar reflectance values”, or certain rates of reflectivity at different portions of their lifecycle. Another concern the ENERGY STAR® program maintains is a roofing product’s “emittance”, or its “ability to release absorbed heat.” Values between 0% and 100% are used to measure emittance and reflectivity. Roofing products do not have to meet emittance requirements for qualification, but the EPA is looking at adding it as a requirement block for ENERGY STAR® qualification. Most roofing products have emittance values above 85%, with the exception of metal surfaces.

Cool roofs certified by ENERGY STAR® are said to reflect a greater portion of the sun’s rays than less energy-efficient products. Because of this, they can lower rooftop temperatures by up to 100° and reduce maximum-point cooling demand by 10-15%. Many roofing brands meet these qualifications, but some stand out for other benefits.

The Conklin Company and High-Performance Cool Roofs

Conklin’s cool roof systems have been found to recoup energy savings that are so great, building owners find their cool roof systems can pay for themselves in just 5-7 years. These cool roofs reflect up to 85% of the sun’s heat and harmful UV rays.

In addition to great energy efficiency, Conklin cool roofs are known for providing a seamless membrane across an old roof. The end result is that the old roof is protected from the sun’s deteriorating effects, harsh weather conditions, small and large leaks, and the other roofing issues that arise. In fact, Conklin has been the leading innovator in the cool roof systems market since it created the first acrylic roof coating back in the mid-1970s.

The Conklin Advantage for Your Needs

Conklin_RSShould you be interested in learning how a Conklin roof system can benefit your needs, give us a call. Be sure to ask about the commercial roofing industry’s only non-prorated warranties of up to 20 years backing our Conklin roof systems. These warranties cover all materials and labor for their coverage periods.

Jet-fuel-from-waste plant planned for Thurrock

British Airways has announced multi-million pound plans to build the world’s first facility to convert landfill waste into jet fuel.

BA will build the GreenSky London fuel facility, in partnership with Solena Fuels, at the Thames Enterprise Park, part of the former Coryton oil refinery site in Thurrock, Essex.

Construction is due to start in the next 12 months and be completed in 2017.

The hope is that the project will revolutionise the production of sustainable aviation fuel.  Approximately 575,000 tonnes of post-recycled waste, normally destined for landfill or incineration, will instead be converted into 120,000 tonnes of clean burning liquid fuels using Solena’s technology.  British Airways has made a long-term commitment to purchase all 50,000 tonnes a year of the jet fuel produced at market competitive rates.

Willie Walsh, chief executive of British Airways’ parent company IAG, said:  “The construction of the GreenSky London fuel facility at Thames Enterprise Park will lay the foundations for British Airways to reduce its carbon emissions significantly.”

Solena has been developing the project and will use its patented high-temperature plasma gasification technology to convert the waste efficiently into synthetic gas. This gas is then converted into liquid hydrocarbons using third-party technologies, including cleaning and conditioning of the gas, a Velocys Fischer-Tropsch conversion process, hydrocracking and electric power production.  With the initial engineering design completed, Solena and its partners are now starting the next phase of engineering of the GreenSky London facility.

The assets of the former Petroplus Coryton Oil Refinery were acquired by a consortium comprising Vopak, Shell and Greenergy in September 2012 and rebranded as a joint venture named Thames Oilport. The joint venture proposes to develop a refurbished terminal for the bulk importation and blending of fuels and to redevelop the rest of the former refinery site as Thames Enterprise Park.

Andrew Owens, chief executive of Greenergy said: “This is an ideal site for a biofuel initiative like Solena’s and we are very pleased to be associated with it.  It is located on the Thames with fuel storage and fuel pipelines and good road, rail and jetty infrastructure.  Thames Enterprise Park’s main goal is to provide regeneration of the former Coryton oil refinery following its closure in 2012.  The facility proposed by British Airways and Solena is exactly the type of high profile technology project both we and Thurrock Council want to attract to the site, particularly given the number of skilled jobs provided.”

The GreenSky project is backed by Barclays Bank. Gabriel Buck, head of CAPEX financing solutions at Barclays, said:  “This is undoubtedly a unique and ground breaking project. The economic and environmental fundamentals will, we believe, be attractive to investors from both a debt and equity perspective. The project debt structure has been identified with preliminary agreements in place with an Export Credit Agency who are not only providing the guarantees but also the funding.  We are now focused with the project team on getting all aspects of the funding structure completed.”

 

 

Loan helps pave way for £750m Knottingley power station

St Paul’s Developments has been awarded £2.45m of funding from the Leeds City Region Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) for remediation and infrastructure works at its 110 acre former chemical works site in Knottingley, Wakefield.

The works will pave the way for a new £750m power station to be built and operated by Irish energy company ESB. This is expected to create approximately 1,000 construction jobs.

The £2.45m has been allocated from the LEP’s Growing Places fund which provides loans for projects that will create economic and employment growth in the city region. The loan is to be repaid and made available to the LEP to recycle to other projects.

Following discussions with Wakefield Council about planning options for the extensive 110 acre site, ‘special policy designation’ was granted in September 2012, providing flexibility in the way the site is used.

St Paul’s Developments has already demolished and decommissioned the former home of Oxiris Chemicals on a 25-acre section of the Knottingley site.

The first phase of development at Knottingley will be the creation of a £750m combined cycle gas turbine (CCGT) power station on a 50-acre plot, subject to planning approval from the secretary of state for energy & climate change by April 2015. St Paul’s Developments applied for the loan from the Leeds City Region LEP to get remediation and enabling works going ahead of handing over the site.

Development manager Dennis Enuson said; “We are delighted to have secured the funding from the Growing Places Fund to enable us to further prepare the site for the power station project which would represent a significant investment into the Leeds City Region. Our long-term vision is to bring the redundant site back to life by creating a mix of uses which can happily co-exist on such an extensive site.”