PFMI gains momentum

Most Frame Building News readers are aware that the National Frame Building Assoc-iation recently launched its Post-Frame Market Initiative (PFMI) to grow the entire post-frame industry.  Our efforts are paying off as the PFMI gains momentum!

According to market research, the commercial market is the only market expected to grow over the next few years — and post-frame holds many advantages that are ideal for commercial construction.

In addition to association reserve funds and contributions by suppliers and others specifically for the PFMI, NFBA has raised pledges totaling more than $1 million for the marketing effort from various industry groups that will benefit from post-frame growth.

The NFBA is using marketing techniques to reach out to the “gatekeepers” who influence decisions in the commercial building market — primarily architects, specifiers and commercial developers. NFBA has placed ads in publications that are key to our “gatekeeper” target audience that are key to commercial project decision-making.

NFBA has developed a marketing web site that directs business referrals to suppliers, designers and builder members who opt in to be listed on it. NFBA is spending a large proportion of its marketing dollars on Internet search engine advertising. 

The PFMI so far has driven new traffic to The Post-Frame Advantage website, specifically commercial-related website keyword searchers. NFBA has also made keyword search engine advertising-related placements to drive non-commercial “pole building” and similar term searchers to the NFBA.org web site, so non-commercial NFBA member companies will also gain more business referrals for non-commercial post-frame structures.

NFBA has placed full-color ads in Architectural Record and Design and Build Magazines, directing commercial architects, specifiers and project developers to visit our new marketing web site and to request a copy of our new, 120-page, full-color, hard-bound “Post-Frame Advantage Handbook.” NFBA also sent a full-color direct mail postcard piece to more than 5,000 architects, enticing them to visit the new website and order a copy of the book.

“Post-Frame Advantage Handbook” will be a proud addition to the libraries of many architects and other “gatekeepers” to the commercial market. The book makes a strong case for the many advantages post-frame holds for commercial projects.

Members who know design professionals, commercial project developers or other “gatekeepers” who could be influenced by the book and other marketing efforts, are asked to send their contact information to nfba@nfba.org.

NFBA is exhibiting at Wood Solutions Fairs, sponsored by the WoodWorks Initiative specifically to educate architects, specifiers and developers about wood-framed buildings.  This is the audience NFBA seeks via the PFMI. 

NFBA staff and volunteer leadership have provided resources to assist NFBA Technical Advisor Harvey Manbeck in the development of new educational sessions for this audience.

He presented two well-attended sessions at the latest Wood Solutions Fair. Both received excellent response. Many came to visit the NFBA booth after Dr. Manbeck’s presentations, where they visited with NFBA Secretary/Treasurer Larry Edema of Wick Buildings.  An ambassador for NFBA, he volunteered his time to travel to the event and distribute books and other literature.
We plan to put more effort into education and trade show participation in coming months for the PFMI project.  We plan to exhibit and provide educational programs at future events.

The PFMI will grow the entire post-frame industry, but first and foremost it will grow NFBA members’ business.

An important part of the strategy is to direct people to the new website, where they may “Find a Builder,” “Find a Supplier” or “Find a Designer.”

NFBA members receive the business leads that result from this efforts. We track how many people visit members’ websites, send e-mail or look up members’ addresses and phone numbers, so NFBA members know how many business referrals they receive as members.

All supplier and design professional members are listed on the site. Builder members must complete the “Builder Opt-In Form” confirming that they perform commercial work. NFBA members are encouraged to double-check their listing on the NFBA.org site as well as the new website for accuracy.

NFBA membership provides many benefits, but probably the most important member benefit in a slow economic environment comes from business leads received from membership. Now is a good time to join us.

To NFBA members in good standing, we express our appreciation. Without your support, the marketing effort would not be possible.

Knight is the NFBA president and president at Knight Enterprises, Inc.

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