Modern Sales Challenges of Building Material Manufacturers
The Indian building material industry is anticipated to be well over US$60B annually (INR-Crore 400,000+); half of which comprises of new projects segment.
Besides the commoditized products such as steel, cement; all building projects require other essential products such as:
- Sanitary Fixtures
- Doors, Windows
- Innovative Facade Materials
- Piping Systems
- Electrical Components
- HVAC & Firefighting
- Landscaping & dozen other sub-categories
Keeping up with Modern Living Experiences, Ensuring Safety, Adopting Technology & Aesthetic Trends; Constantly Innovating Portfolio of Products & Optimized Sales Outreach to their target market are hallmarks of leading Building Material Manufacturers.
Now, let us examine the problems faced by building material companies in terms of finding future prospects for their businesses.
1] The Advent of Specification-based Approvals during Material Selections:
For significant & visible public/private sector projects; which comprise of a significant chunk of urbanization in India; most products have to be specified by Consultants (Architect, Structural, MEP, Facade, etc) & approved by Developer/Owner’s Procurement/Contracts teams.
The specification-based approvals approach has been gaining significant traction in Indian construction industry over the past decade & very few products are procured without a techno-commercial analysis.
This is indeed great news for organized segment within the Building Materials industry; whose products usually comply with the most stringent of specifications & quality assurance is higher than local small-sized manufacturers.
However to make the most of this trend, the organized segment is required to sharpen their focus on key players – Architects, Consultants, Developers in key geographies using modern Sales Management techniques.
2] Intense Competition among Building Material Manufacturers:
Considering the rapid urbanization in India, hundreds of manufacturers have come up in each building category spicing up the competition. Consequently, there are innumerable product options for each material catering to Architects, Consultants, Project Owners. These options come at different price points & mostly comply with technical specifications.
For each construction material category, there are dozens & in some cases hundreds of manufacturers providing equivalent products complying with technical specifications. From Specifiers, Influencers & Decision Makers’ perspective, there is little to differentiate among various options.
3] Unstructured Approach toward Sourcing, Nurturing, Tracking & Closing Opportunities:
Most Building Material manufacturers (irrespective of their size) do not have an optimized CRM implemented in their workflows. Their standard practice is to depend on Sales teams to generate project leads based on their networking, meetings with Consultants, Contractors, Developers, Independent Primary/Secondary Research, etc. However, the main output & skill of Sales professionals is generating revenues & this is required to be their prime purpose & focus at all times.
For any Sales professional, spending more time with prospects is much more valuable as compared to finding those prospects. Optimizing efficiency of Sales teams has a direct positive impact on the revenues of the company. Hence non-core activities such as Market Research, Finding Project Opportunities should be outsourced to other companies having expertise in these areas .
Adopting a Structured Data & Analytics Approach for Project Sales is a panacea to these modern challenges.
Over the next few posts, we will explore how Biltrax Construction Data can help Building Material Manufacturers accelerate this transition.