How an established engineering firm overcame inertia to drive lead generation

A national engineering firm with offices around the country was having trouble keeping pace with competitors. It lacked a modern website that could be used on smartphones and tablets, and there was little to no awareness of the company in cities where it had offices. The firm was also having difficulty attracting and recruiting top talent.

While its competitors had been consistently expanding their digital footprints, our client had remained focused on non-digital marketing tactics (flyers, banners, and print ads) because that was what their internal staff knew how to do. Over time, this turned a small gap between our client and other engineering firms into a large chasm. The firm offers many services for different client types, and historically they had presented the information in a way that confused people and left them unsure about whether the firm could meet their needs.

There had been no search engine optimization (SEO) efforts on the firm’s previous website, so the firm’s search engine visibility was low and there were no internal processes for growing or maintaining their SEO. The firm also had no local SEO strategy, so the existence of smaller regional and local offices had confused search engines and online directories about where the firm was actually headquartered, what areas it served, how many other offices it had, and where those additional offices were located.

Visually, the firm faced the same issue many national firms with regional offices do: over time each regional and local office developed its own version of brand standards. Marketing materials and internal communications looked completely different depending on which office they originated from, making it difficult for the firm to have a strong brand that people would recognize.

The firm had always relied on their name and reputation to carry the conversation about what they did and the value they delivered. This worked within a generation, but as new people moved into leadership and the number of market players increased, fewer and fewer decision-makers were willing to shortlist the firm based solely on their name. The firm saw leads and employee candidates flocking to other firms, and they recognized that they needed to do something — but they didn’t know what or how.

We were hired to “fix it.”  As a result of our work, the firm’s increased visibility and growth in highly qualified employees ultimately led to a lucrative acquisition by a global firm.

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