Enoch sears, AIA is a licensed architect who practices in California. He also runs www.businessofarchitecture.com where he helps architects develop and improve their businesses. We talked a little bit about what Enoch does and specializes in. He works on commercial projects such as hospitals. We discussed the fact that Architects really have an opportunity to shape the world we live in. Now, Enoch says, architects are a small piece of the puzzle because there are so many experts that come together to form a project. Using the hospital example, in addition to the normal things, you need an equipment consultant team to help.
Contractors are taking the lead role because they are assembling the teams. It’s not clear why that is. As a result Enoch is working with Architects to take some of this back so that they become the ones that organize these teams. The challenge is the liability.
In the end we discussed that whichever your goal – changing the landscape of the profession and taking some control back, or simply growing your business, the platform from which we operate in this day and age is the social media landscape.
Enoch also runs www.ArchitectsMarketing.com where he explains to people that the goal is to create useful, engaging and informative content. This creates trust. People begin to follow your work, and in time they contact you. Sometimes it can take 18 months before they do, so you have to hang in there and don’t give up.
You want to market information about working with an architect instead of marketing the actual services of an architect. This again builds trust and then when they do come in they are better qualified leads. This means they are already planning on working with you, and they already expect to pay more for your services because they see you as an authority in your field. And you ARE!
One thing for sure that I was thinking about before my interview with Enoch and now I am convinced about this, is that the same basic process applies to how to grow small businesses using social media. I have also learned that the challenges are basically the same. Small businesses face the challenge of how to leverage social media and invest the time needed to do it, while still making a living. The other thing I noticed is that it seems to be really beneficial to join a community of like-minded people. Even though the challenges may be the same, it helps to know that you are talking with people who experience those same challenges through the same pair of glasses. Enoch is proof of this in the Architecture profession. I am proof of this in the accounting profession.
The really nice thing is that when the sun comes up every day, somewhere, someone else in the world is experiencing the same challenges and social media let’s us connect and share to ease the burden and improve our opportunities. Now the question is how to people like me, connect further with people like Enoch (where we both do the same thing for our respective professions) and create synergies.