Influencer Marketing For Building Materials Manufacturers

Building Brands Ep 5 Matt Risinger Influencer Marketing For Building Materials Manufacturers

Matt dives into a number of topics centered around the benefits of using influential content creators as part of a marketing plan to increase exposure, where to find these influencers, and how you might approach working with one.

Episode Links
Find Matt on LinkedIn
Visit the Build Show on YouTube
Visit the Risinger Build Website

Episode Transcript
Tim
Welcome Building Brands listeners. In this fifth episode, I’m joined by Matt Risinger, CEO and Chief Builder, at Risinger Build. Matt is a builder in Austin, Texas. He and his team have been building architecturally driven homes that meet the highest standards of craftsmanship, durability, efficiency and comfort. As host of the Build Show, he has become a nationally recognized expert on building science and high performance construction. We dive into a number of topics centered around the benefits of using influential content creators as part of a marketing plan to increase exposure, where to find these influencers and how he might approach working with one. Enjoy the episode. If you’re an owner or marketer and the building materials manufacturing, distribution or contracting spaces looking to set up your brand for success now and in the future, this is the podcast for you. On this show we talked about brand and market strategies used in the real world that grow companies and truly connect with consumer audiences. So sit back. Listen in on, Let’s get to it. All right. Welcome, Matt Risinger, CEO and Chief Builder at Risinger Build. Matt, thanks for being on the podcast.
Matt
Hey, Tim. Thanks for having man appreciate it.
Tim
Yeah. Sorry I missed you at IBS, but I did see you. I much I saw you on, like four booths last week. So you had a busy week. It was fun to see what you were doing, even though I didn’t run into you. So that brings us to why you’re on the show today. You’re talking a little bit about influencers and the building materials space. I’m working with manufacturers. But before we get into that, why don’t you tell everyone a little bit of your background getting into building and then how you even kind of came into owning her own company and moving towards generating content? You know, we can work our way into that, but if you give us the early notes, we’ll build off of there. So people get to know you a little bit.
Matt
Yeah. Sounds good, Tim. So, uh, just coming up to my 25th anniversary of being a professional builder. I got my start right out of college with a national production builder, had had some interested in construction and done a lot of construction for ah, basically a church ministry growing up that was kind of like Habitat for Humanity. So I knew that I love construction and working with my hands and making things happen. But until this production builder came to my college to recruit, I honestly didn’t know that there is a career path as a professional builder. I just thought it was, you know, a handyman or carpet or type jobs. So anyways worked for a national production builder from 95 to 02. Learned a ton from those guys. Why was they kept you busy as, ah, twenty, you know, two to 27 year old builder. I was building tens of houses at a time, you know, typically have 30 houses under construction, sometimes with crazy fast schedules and ah, very organized system to build with with those guys learned a ton. And then 02, at this point, I was married. My wife and I moved with her job to Portland, Oregon. My wife is a ah doctor and was getting her training. So, uh, quit my production builder job and moved out to Portland and remodeled a 1920 Sears and Roebuck house for a couple of months. It kind of lived off a little mess that go ahead and Ah, and then got a job with a local semi custom builder. And that was a big turning point in my life. We, uh, in 02 we had the big kind of national mold crisis. We also have problems with houses that were built with EIFS. If you remember that all and uh and the builder I was working for had built several houses with EIFS that have a ton of problems. So as a young, you know, at this point, I was probably close to 30 year old. I was learning a ton about building science and building failures and was really kind of on this this learning journey of, like, gosh, I’ve just been throwing things together that way my boss told me to you up until now. What’s going on here? Why are we having problems of these houses and is there a better way to build? So that’s what all that kind of delved into building science and then fast forward a couple years and I move to Texas in 05. We were about to have our first kid and decided to be closer to my wife’s family. I started my own company have been kind of a lifelong dream to work for myself. Always been a little bit of an entrepreneur in life. And so in, 05 here I am brand new to Texas. Never built anything here. Have this home building company. And yet, like, how do I? How do I get customers? How do I build this brand of mine? And about a year after I started my company, I started building us a spec house or two in a nice part of town with an architect. I heard this guy, David Meerman Scott speak. He wrote a really popular book called The New Rules of Marketing and PR, and I heard him speak at a builder’s conference. It basically said, “Look, traditional advertising is dead. You can, as a small builder, advertise for yourself by starting a blog” and then shortly after that, kind of getting into social media. So I went for it, started blogging in 2006 “Matt Risinger and the green building blog” and within a short amount of time realized gosh, people actually are finding my blog, and I would go to interviews with the prospect, and they would say, hey, Matt, you know, I read several articles on your block last night. I really appreciated your thoughtful, um you know, whatever talking about window installs we’re talking about why you like this or that building product. And so it kind of gave me early and good feedback like, Oh, gosh, you know, if you if you’re willing, to put yourself out there and spend a little time on put some stuff on the Web, people will find you and this search engine called Google will send people your way. And then, ah, another year or so later, someone said him that if you were tried this flip video camera, this is, you know, before cell phones took videos. He said, you know, use this flip video camera. Then you could put it on this website called YouTube, and then you can then put the YouTube video on your blog, you know, kind of embed the YouTube video. So again, kind of same thing. I dabbled with it a little bit. And made a couple videos and, you know, I had maybe 5, 6, 7 videos on YouTube, you know, with mixed results for my end. You know, maybe 70 views or 60 views. And again I go to meetings and people like, Oh, my gosh, Matt, it’s so great to finally meet you. Have you? I would say What do you mean? Finally meet me? And they say I watched three or four of your videos on YouTube last night because when I, you know, searched your name and your company name those YouTube videos came up. And I realized quickly that these prospects, these people that were gonna maybe hire me to build their house had already felt like they’d gotten to know me through the videos that I put up. And so that early kind of feedback made me go oh, this is this is good for business. And honestly, I was spending, you know, very little money slash no money on traditional advertising. So then I had 300 bucks to buy a camcorder or ah, 150 bucks to buy a microphone. Or, you know, any of the equipment that I needed because I wasn’t putting magazine ads out and that sort of thing, and then fast forward another 12 years or so or 13 years to today I’m an overnight success. 12 years and 700 videos later. And and, uh, all of a sudden my numbers are really skyrocketed on the people that are washing my show. And my reputation is has taken a taken a nice uptick for for the better.
Tim
Yeah, I think it’s something like 500,000 plus followers and subscribers on YouTube.
Matt
Yeah, isn’t that crazy?
Tim
Yeah, it’s insane. YouTube is the second most popular search engine on the Internet, though, and it’s owned by Google, which is number one. So those are the two big platforms,
Matt
It’s pretty amazing.
Tim
What type of content were you generating in terms of topics? Were you, more towards the homeowners as a builder? Or were you trying to appeal to other builders and just talk about the products? Where did you start in that aspect? What were you trying to achieve?
Matt
Yeah, you know, I’ve always kind of been high level focused, as if my audience wasn’t a consumer. My audience was really another builder, and it’s kind of been my way to live out my dream of being the host of This Old House in some respects.
Tim
I was gonna say that when you mentioned your first house in Oregon.
Matt
Yeah. I’m gonna love watching that show growing up, and Tom Silva was the only builder. I knew as a 15 year old, and I didn’t think I would be a builder. As a 15 year old, I just knew that I really enjoyed what they did and knew that I wanted to remodel my own house or buy an old house and fix it up those kinds of things. But then as I got older and you know, I was building my business, that’s when I really kind of channelled my inner Tom Silva and said, All right, you know, I’m gonna teach people how to do this well, and as I learn, I’m gonna kind of teach people what I’ve learned. And also because of all those failures that I have experienced and all the money and heartache that my company spent in the early two thousands, it was a little bit of self preservation, like, look, guys, if you make a mistake, could be really costly, So let’s build things the right way and not make mistakes. And so I’ve always been pretty upfront with, gosh, I’ve screwed this up. Let me show you how to do it right so that you don’t have the same pain that I’ve experienced in the past.
Tim
Yeah, brand transparency. Personalization of it.
Matt
Yep.
Tim
How are you finding the time to generate all this content? I mean, where you’ve gotten now, where you’re actually working with other brands besides your own personal branding with your builder company. You’re helping generate content for them too, but it was the content that you started with for your own company that caught their attention between your follower count and the way you were producing this and it must take time. Do you have a general idea of how you’re fitting this into your schedule is a business owner and marketer and influencer?
Matt
Yeah, it’s kind of crazy these days. You know, about three or four years ago, I started spending more money on doing these videos and I wasn’t getting a lot of money out of it, per se. You know, I had Google AdSense that I was making a few bucks on, but my company was starting to build more, more expensive houses. And so I said to my business partner at the time, he’s no left and has started his own company, but I said, look, you know, if we’re gonna build these multi-million dollar houses, I need to make the use that looked better than just a flip video or you know a camcorder video. I’m gonna hire a pro crew, and I’m gonna really invest in put in publishing one video week that looks good. So that if someone building an expensive house, you know a two, three, four million dollar house watches it, they’re gonna say, Oh, this, you know this Matt guy’s got a good video thing. He’s smart and, you know, it didn’t look like some homemade thing. And that kind of set me on a different path, which I didn’t expect, but it also was costly. So then so then I went to some people that I had some relationships with some manufacturers and said, Hey, I’ve already made several videos about your product cause I like it or about how to use a particular product I like. Why don’t you help me out with defraying the cost of this? Because this is expensive. And as a result, you know, together we’ll make some good content that I think will be helpful for your brand. Then at some point I said, gosh, this is crazy that I’ve got an outside crew here, why don’t I hire inside guy? And now I’ve got two guys full time for me that produce content for me and and now it’s super easy because I can say, Hey, guys, after lunch, something’s happened on a job that I really want to capture. Come with me and let’s go shoot this. You know, I got the full flexibility and freedom to do that, and now it’s turned into a whole other business. I started production company two years ago, and now I’ve got a full website with other creators that are creating content as well. Other builders on my website build share network dot com. So it’s turned out to be a whole other business that I didn’t expect.
Tim
And you’re you’re sort of all in on video now it seems like. Is there a particular reason that you I mean, I know you’ve had success in the YouTube channel. It was it mostly because that’s where the groundswell came from? Or do you find a particular benefit to using the video platform over any of the others, like audio or just, you know, images or more blogs?
Matt
Yeah, you know, for me It was a nice switch to go from written blogs to YouTube. And it’s been a while now. I still write blogs occasionally, but I’m I’m kind of an out loud processor or a verbal processor, I should say. And so for me to stand up and talk on the camera about something I’m passionate about, it’s really easy for me to ah, to, you know, my videos are not scripted. I just have kind of a mental outline and go all right, let’s let’s do this. So video. I find it much, much easier to produce a video than it is to sit down, write something. I have a harder time kind of gathering my thoughts when I’m writing and making it as professionals I want it to be. Plus, because we’re such a visually oriented industry. Houses are visually appealing and interesting. There’s something about video that’s really good connector. I feel like compared to stills and in the written word and and, of course, our whole nation has become much more video oriented. So I kind of coined my new website, I’ve been coining Netflix for builders because, you know, people love sitting down at night and watching a Netflix series. Why wouldn’t you do the same thing about something you’re passionate about for work.
Tim
Yeah and building materials, you know, the audiences for building materials, building products, architects, designers, builders, homeowners. They’re all visual. They’re looking for inspiration on a style level anyways, so having having that video is 100 times better than just having images. Plus, you get to talk people through. It’s just a very interactive platform. You mentioned going to some of the manufacturers that you already enjoyed using their products, and were talking about them and approaching them about doing content as a partnership. Is that typically how you have found yourself working with some of these manufacturers or have you gotten to the point now where some are approaching you? And what is that approach like, whether it’s you going to a manufacturer, them coming to you about an idea of doing a collaboration together?
Matt
Yeah, it’s mixed Tim. You know, I’m still pretty picky about who I work with and products that I want to have on my videos or be associated with, You know, for instance, I’ve had a couple of companies come to me that were products that I didn’t think were superior or that I thought had a flaw and I said, Gosh, guys, you know, I really appreciate the opportunity, but this is not a product that I would be interested in using or I wouldn’t put it on one of my houses. So I don’t think we’re right fit and that’s that’s hard. It’s kind of it’s kind of half and half these days where some brands will come to us and say, Hey, we got this or this that we’re interested in talking about with this be something you’re interested in? And then sometimes it’s us cold calling to like I found this great product. I think this is really cool, you know? How do I get ahold of someone there who would be a good fit? You know, director of marketing and then also in our in our business, we’ve not been particularly the building products industry in general or building were not particularly progressive industry.
Tim
Agreed.
Matt
So, for instance, I’ve got ah, lumber manufacturer that I’m working with currently. I think they make fantastic products and I’m interested in using more engineered products on my houses, and I’ve got a mid level contact at this company that is a huge fan of my show and would love to connect with us and and, you know, do some more work together. But the management above them is like, Why? Why would we spend one penny on YouTube? That’s dumb. Like what are we gonna get some TikTok video with some cats on it? You know, they just don’t get it. You know, they’re used to doing traditional advertising, print and that sort of thing, and they just don’t see why they would ever be interested in a partnership with a company like mine. So that’s hard.
Tim
I’m mean when you’re talking about appreciating the quality of a product that you might bring into one of your videos the way that you would say it. Well, you did say it was I would put those into one of the houses I was building. Is there something that a manufacturer should approach someone like you with to provide the right information to allow you to make that decision? If you’ve never heard of the company before, or if they just want to make sure that you had all the right information to be able to judge that to give them a a fair assessment and an answer back before moving forward. Is there anything they can prepare to provide you to help with that introduction?
Matt
That’s a great question Tim. Yeah. You know, I think there’s a lot of builders, remodelers and architects like me that are very analytical and want to really know the facts and not just the glossy sell sheet. And sometimes that’s also touching and feeling it. So, for instance, there’s a plumbing manufacturer that that I’ve been talking to you recently that has some new products. They sent me their literature and I thought, OK, sure. But it wasn’t until they sent me some samples and I could actually put the fittings together, touch them myself that I said, Oh, wow, this is This is I like this. This is better than some of the competitor products. And funny enough, one of the things that I thought was really awesome was like a little blip on their marketing sheet that I didn’t even see when they sent me the you know, they’re kind of PDF sell sheet, but it took actually touching and feeling and in that case, actually cut a couple of fittings in half so you could see what was inside of them. Yeah, and that’s what I was like. Oh, wow. This has a double gasket. That’s totally different than their competitors. And it was one of those, you know, kind of ah ha moments that have they not sent me any product, I would have kind of lumped them together in the “me too” category of another product, but because they sent me a bunch. And actually, they said, Hey, we’d love to have you make a comparison video. You know, you be honest. Tell us what you think. Pit us against all these other brands and we’ll pay you for your time to do it. I was like, Okay, sounds good. I can’t promise you that I’m gonna love it. In fact, I did. I was super shocked by it, But not maybe because the reason they thought I was really gonna like it. So that was That’s cool. And when you find a manufacturer that’s that’s willing to say we have a really good product, why don’t you test some? Why don’t you get some samples? You know, can I get you a real life sample of it? Not just this one inch by one inch sample we give away at a trade show. That makes a big difference to me.
Tim
You also mentioned the value of what content generator like you can provide back to the manufacturer. What are they particularly looking for in that return on investment? By financially contributing to the project and keeping materials for the project and helping push that back out into the public? What is the gain that the manufacturer gets that you’re accomplishing with this type of work?
Matt
Yeah, so when we talk about kind of influencers in general, there’s a whole range. And there’s lots of influential builders in the world that have, you know, some amount of following among professionals that if you’ll give them some product to use and really touch and feel and develop that relationship, they would love to talk about your your product in your brand. I’m a little bigger these days than that, and this sounds egotistical, but I mean that to be in that I’ve been kind of professionally focused on this. This is like half my business is building houses. I’m figuring out what are the best products and methods out there and evaluating products. And so my kind of difference is that I’ve got this big following of builders and remodelers and architects that kind of are interested in my thoughts on how to build a better house. What are the better products out there? Um, what’s my take on existing products, and would I use them or not? And it is kind of a unique position. If I feel a lot of kind of need to steward that position, well, meaning that I need to make sure that I’m that I’m really not just following dollars, but following my heart to say, you know, how do we build a better house in America? What are the better products? Because people are relying on me to be honest and not just be a a marketing shill for whatever company is going to pay me. So I do have a bunch of companies that pay me and that’s been wonderful, but I’m always making sure that theirs are truly products that I do believe in and I think are better than the average product out there in our best in class, so that it’s kind of the unique position that I’m in where I need to make sure that I’m I’m really evaluating things with integrity and not just with dollar signs.
Tim
Yeah, it sounded like when you were having someone contact you and and evaluating their product to see if it’s something that you would back. Them having their pieces put together on their side, too. You know, this podcast is about having the right brand strategy and market strategy, which means understanding your differentiation, making sure that your product development is actually something that could be put up against others in the market and then explained why. Yeah, you know. So when you’re talking about being sent literature and being sent actual materials to evaluate, they should have their act together to before they even come to someone like you, because it’s not going to be your job to do that for them, your job is just to evaluate and pass along the word and give your endorsement of the product because you believe in what they’re telling you. And they have the data and the materials to back it up, which they can provide you. Yeah, so in order to do that, they need to do a little bit of homework on their own and before they go out searching for someone like you or even a builder that just might want to implement the product in a larger, high profile project. That’s another easy way to get into an influential area. How should these material and product manufacturers be looking for people like you? You know, you probably come across other people you mentioned. You had a site where you had other content generators on it as well. Where should they be looking to try and make connections with, you know, someone that has as large of the following is you all the way down to someone that might be a builder that is influential in the region or someone that Is this a really good content generator somewhere in the middle between you and a builder?
Matt
Yeah, those are great questions. I think that you’re really you’re looking for people that have integrity and what they do and have a reputation for excellence. And interestingly enough, I think kind of most people that are in this world have one medium that they’re that they’re kind of best at. For me, that’s YouTube. You know, I’ve got a large half, a little more than half a million following on YouTube, but my second and probably just as prolific is Instagram and I’ve got 60 some thousand people I have following my Instagram feed. And that’s a great way to connect with people because I talked with people all the time on direct messages through Instagram. And so, looking at those platforms, you can find influential people. But don’t forget about the LinkedIns, the Twitters, the Facebooks of the world. There are even some builders that are on TikTok these days, some of the younger generation, so there’s a lot of places to look. But being actively involved in one of those mediums is the way is the way to find those people. You know, I’ve always kind of told people that social media for for builders is kind of like going to the bar and saying hi to your friends at happy hour. You know, when I grew up, cheers was the was the TV show to watch, and ah, everyone knew Norm when he walked in the bar. That’s kind of what Instagram has evolved into in a lot of respect for this next generation down below me that you know, 30 to 45 year old builder, and I’m on the other hand, I’m on the upper end of that scale. But, you know, I interact multiple times a day with builders that have questions. Um, they’re posting. Hey, here’s an issue. I’ve got my job site. What do you guys think? Or here’s this product I just got Have you had any experience with it? And that’s a great way to find out what people are doing, what their personalities are, whether they’re people you might want to work with.
Tim
Is there anything that you would think is a good measure to see if they’re actually getting good engagement? Is it like, Are they getting comments and responses on their posts? Are do their posts look somewhat professionally, or at least organized in a way that they come off pretty well, which is why people like looking at them and liking them. Is there any like, particular technical thing from a platform or content standpoint that might make someone stand out over someone else?
Matt
Yeah, I mean, generally speaking, I think if I was a brand looking to interact with an influential person in the in the building industry, you’d want to look for a feed. That’s generally a business feed. Ah, you know, for instance, I’ve got a buddy Brad, AFT Construction in Arizona, who kills on Instagram and generally Monday through Friday. It’s all about his business. And then on the weekends, he opens up a little bit about his kid’s soccer game or a birthday party went to, which makes him a real person. But his brand and his feed is really mostly a work feed. On the other hand, I got a message from a ah builder that I know who I wanted. I wanted to send people to his feed because I knew that he was doing really good work and I went to his feet first and realized, Oh, this is mainly pictures of food that he ate of restaurants or bars that he went to, and he only had a couple of work pictures, and I thought, What a what a bummer. Like I know he’s doing fantastic work. One picture he posted was amazing, but because he’s not really focused on it or he’s kind of scattered, it’s more like just a personal social media tool for him and not a work tool, I thought, Well, I’m not gonna send people there because I didn’t want to encourage people to go there If he’s not really a work. Ah, feed. So, you know, I think that goes for both brands and for and an influence or an influential person listening to this. That’s good advice I got years ago was, you know, remember that anything you put out there reflects on you personally, and you are a brand. So, you know, be cautious about what you’re putting out there, and I kind of follow that same strategy is generally Monday through Friday. I only talk business, and then on the weekends, I typically don’t post. But if I do, I’m putting a few things out there about my personal life, my family so that I’m not just a faceless brand. And I would give that advice if you got brands listening too, you know, interact with your audience as a person and not just as a nameless for faceless corporation, you know, make make your company social. Whatever social, you’re going to use something that would be beneficial to your audience of customers that that are gonna find you. Does that makes sense?
Tim
Yeah. Once someone makes this connection they’ve come with the right brand assets that come with the right product information. You’re like, You know what? This is a really good product. I want to work with them. I’ll help them create something. What should they expect? In terms of the ways that influential content generators work with brands? I know that some people work on a referral kickback for for links. I’ve seen that before for different levels of influencers. There’s actual paid content generation where they help contribute to the production. You mentioned something like that earlier on, and sometimes it’s just a value feel like, Look, if you want me to post something, that’s gonna be X amount of dollars just because I have a lot of stuff to do and I have a lot of people that I could tell this about, and that’s what it’s worth it is it the whole gauntlet? Should they do, they expect a certain type of relationship with a certain level of influential content generator. Is there something I didn’t mention that they should be aware of? Just as in terms of the types of ways that content generators like to be compensated for their production time, and their opinions and their influence.
Matt
Yeah, that’s that runs the whole gamut, Tim. Unfortunately, it’s it’s hard to nail that down, and usually it’s depending on size from what I’ve seen out there, you know, for instance, about 3, 4 years ago, I started getting, ah, enquiries about Hey, we’d like to advertise on your YouTube channel, and these weren’t building products. These were just general brands, like, uh, SimpliSafe or, ah, Hello Fresh or some other brand you’ve seen advertised and all they care about those brands and typically going through a PR agency is number of impressions because they’re not necessarily interested in your influence. Me, Matt Risinger putting my personal stamp on Hello Fresh. Let’s say they just simply want that metric to be out there of how many people were introduced to the brand and this offer on my channel of, you know, hello fresh dot com. Backslash meant rising or whatever is just to be clear, I haven’t worked with them, but but it’s simply a matter of, you know, how many views will this video get? And that’s how we’re gonna pay you. So if it’s you know, 50,000 view video. You know we’re gonna pay you 5000 bucks. If it’s more like 100 or 200,000 of you video, you might get more like 7500 bucks or, you know, some dollar figure associated with a higher number of people being introduced their brand. Now in building products, it’s a little different because there’s there is a certain amount of, ah, personal cachet that comes with myself or anyone else endorsing a brand or talking about a brand, especially in a paid way that usually is a little bit more costly than that, but also is usually more cautious as well. You know, making sure that there’s a good fit and that the center of these are are right. And and I would think that brands that are out there doing that, too, or they’re interested in those deals. They need to be just as cautious as the creator because they want to make sure that they’re hitching their wagon to it to a good horse. And that you know, the people that they are attaching their brand to are people, that they would want out there talking about their brand, that makes sense?
Tim
Yeah, There’s no set scale for this in, you know, building products, building materials, fashion, technology, you name it. There’s there’s no like influencer pricing scale, things to consider. I guess they’re just what everything we’re talking about, which is follower account and keep engagement count. Quality of posts. Do they have the reputation that you want to attach yourself to? You are you is a brand someone that can provide the right assets for them to be able to do this effectively? Yeah, and when you put those things together, it’s sort of evaluate on a case by case basis. Obviously, the smaller the influencer, you know micro-influencers could be very good because they have very tight, loyal followers. They don’t have the big, you know, epic follower count, but they can get a very pointed message out very quickly. That might be something that you do a referral link or small content fee. Then the larger you get with production costs, things like that. You’ll provide materials, brand assets and potentially even worked with an agency or something like that. That’s where you’ll kind of see the price to start to go up. But at that point, the reach would be higher and the quality of the production would be higher as well. So what do you like to use as a metric for saying that you had a successful post content generated post for a manufacturer product? Is it? You know, are you looking for impressions? Are you looking for comments? Are they tracking anything through some sort of like landing page link or anything like that? What types of things do you use to help show activity that might be generated from one of your content pieces?
Tim
Yeah, Tim, you know, typically at the marketing company or the company that you’re involved with, they’re interested in impressions. They’re interested in comments. But you know, the metric that I love the best is the hardest one track, which is how much website traffic did you get? How much did your reps say people were talking about the product or learned about it from from the build show? Those were really hard to track, but that once those happen in the company, then the company goes, Oh, yeah, This is awesome. We need more of this. So a real recent example. For instance, I had a video I published last week. The videos done really well, you know, several 100,000 views. But the thing that the company was really excited about was their phone was ringing and people were interested in their product that hadn’t heard of it before. It was a really kind of obscure but really well built product. And so that’s the kind of stuff that makes me go. Oh, man, that’s so cool. You know, I thought the company that people, the product were all excellent. They’re kind of under the radar. And for me to highlight that and have a good experience with them and meet them and make a video with them, and that and that make a big difference for them. That’s really cool for me. Another one that I’ll mention briefly is ah, company called T stud that I made a video on several months ago. It’s basically an insulated stud, a product that that enables you to kind of insulate in between the core of a stud. I made a video on it. I thought it was a really neat product, and they got so many inquiries, e mails, requests for samples. They basically had to hire additional people to handle the flood of requests and it really jumped them forward in their business.
Tim
And what you’ve got going on there, too, is that the companies were also sharing back with you things that are happening on their side as a result of this. It’s not, like you’re saying, it’s a very hard thing to track. But if they notice something is different from a phone call volume or an e mail volume that can indirectly potentially be correlated back to the influential content generation that went out.
Matt
And that’s huge.
Tim
And that’s what you need in a little bit of a collaboration on the effect of all this to you, they need to have their ears and eyes open. While you have your tracking, that you can actually see through comments and impressions on your side and see if those things correlate.
Matt
Yep, And those air super hard track and let last example tell you on that front that was kind of a phone that was the Huber booth at a BMC share. Recently, a BMC’s a lumber company and Huber, if you don’t know those guys engineered wood products company, I made a video with them a year or two ago, and I kind of coined the phrase zip 2.0 in the video. I think I’ve titled it that and one of the reps from Charlotte. I think they have 100 reps or so on the ground. I’ve never met him before, said, Oh, man, it’s so so fun to meet you, Matt. I still get calls every week by people that are interested in zip 2.0, which is, You know, what I coined on this video a year or so ago and where can they find this particular product that’s part of that system? You know, that’s that’s proof in the pudding for me that talking about good building products, good practices in elevating that game and what I’m doing on YouTube is not just traditional marketing, but is really helping people and is solving problems out there. And I think that’s why companies like people like me and other influential people out there because we kind of understand the day to day of what builders were going through and the problems they need solved and we’re able to talk about theirs in a way that’s that’s different and frankly, harder for a company to talk about those. And so there’s this kind of whole new type of advertising that’s influencer marketing. But I think we’re still in our infancy. I think we’re I think we’re going to see this expand massively, especially in the building products world. Over the next couple years.
Tim
You were talking about how, a year or so ago, you did a video for someone, and they still get calls of people mentioning that that is part of the channel that you choose to operate in. Video is long lasting, and when you put it on something like YouTube, which is basically an archive system for topic based videos, that asset that was created in collaboration between you and the manufacturer just lives there forever. It’s a little bit different than social media, where it kind of gets buried in a feed. YouTube isn’t like an instagram or, you know, even a TikTok or something where you post a video and it gets buried a year later. YouTube is searched, chronicled, topically based and can be embedded on other websites, so that asset could be used five different ways and it will always be there to be searched if someone’s looking for that product name, product type or the topics that you’re talking about.
Matt
Yeah, I totally agree Tim. It basically YouTube is evergreen content. So you know, sometimes I make a video that gets a ton of views and then nothing. Most of my videos there will get good uptake, but if it’s a good video and it’s and it’s ah ah, helpful video for builders out there, it’ll get the same number of views next year and then almost the same number of the following year. And it just keeps growing because people are looking for that and finding it. So literally this week I published a video on how to install a window and a zip system sheeting. Wasn’t a super watched video. I got 25,000 views in the 1st 24 hours, which is kind of okay for me, but not great. But I guarantee you that video will still be getting 20 30,000 views a year, 3, 4 years from now, because it’s kind of evergreen content and people are always searching for that, so we’ll come back five years from now and that video will have 250,000 views or 500,000 views, and that’s kind of the way it goes when you make some video is helpful and it’s searchable, and that’s the beauty of your right. That’s the beauty of YouTube compared to Instagram for sure.
Tim
So is there anything you think that building materials manufacturers will continue to be doing? Well, they be pushing forward to do more work with influential content generators moving forward? Or do you think they’re too shy about it right now? Or do you think that’s something that everyone is really jumping into?
Matt
I think that we’re seeing a slow uptake, and that is certainly not everybody, just a few companies that are doing it. But the companies that are doing it are grabbing market share and companies that are stuck in traditional advertising methods. They’re they’re gonna be behind and they’re gonna have a hard time catching up. It’s it’s gonna be interesting to see what happens over the coming years
Tim
And then I usually like to end up with this kind of final question. You can choose the answer based on influential content or just brand as a whole, but what’s one critical thing that you think every building materials, building products manufacturer should be doing for their brand right now?
Matt
I think one critical thing that every brand should be doing is assigning someone to be the face of the brand, or at least the voice of the brand and engaging with people on Social. For instance, Huber Engineered Woods. They went into Instagram maybe two years ago, and here we are two years later, they’ve got 15 or so 1000 subscribers. But the big thing that have is they’ve got a really great way of interacting with the general builder who’s using their product or who has questions and even their VP of Marketing, Doug Asano has his own Instagram account and interacts a ton with people on Doug’s probably got 40,000 or 30,000 subscribers on his Instagram feed, and people know hey, that’s the head guy of Huber and they love when Doug says, Hey, your job looks good, man. Good job. I bet he spends 20 minutes a day and Instagram. Not a ton, but that 20 min investment date means that their company has a huge amount of goodwill among builders because they’re out there meeting people at the bar and saying hi and checking in with the. So that’d be the one thing I’d tell companies is invest a little bit of time and effort into having a voice in the social media world.
Tim
Yeah, if you have a really good brand strategy too. You, you will have a voice and tone for the corporate brand that can help unify all of the different posts and comment wording that you’re using that will keep it a little bit more human but also consistent so it sounds like the same account every time it interacts with someone.
Matt
Totally.
Tim
And that’s just something that they can do on their own before they dive deeper into Instagram or decide who they want to work with, who meets the profile of what this company is about?
Matt
Totally.
Tim
Uh, is there anything that I haven’t brought up that you think is important for manufacturers to know when thinking about working with influential content generators?
Matt
Man and we touched a bunch Tim, it was really good to talk today, man.
Tim
Yeah, it was pretty awesome. Before we go, though, where can people find out more about you, the channel, Risinger Build?
Matt
Yes, oh ah, my website for my building company is risingerbuild.com. I’m also RisingerBuild on Instagram r i s i n g e r build b u i l d. If someone’s interested in talking to my company or me personally, it’s my emails matt m a t t at risingerbuild dot com and then my website with the the one that I mentioned. This kind of Netflix for builders is build show network dot com.
Tim
Cool, well this has been awesome.
Matt
I really appreciate it, Tim. Thanks for having me on buddy.
Tim
You bet. If you’re interested in hearing more stories and strategic insights from industry experts, please subscribe to the building brands podcast on Apple Spotify or Google. If you’ve enjoyed this episode, please post a review and share with others who may be interested as well. Thanks for listening.