Home Builders Association of Greater Springfield

A year after the Home Builders Association (HBA) of Greater Springfield revamped its website in late 2010, average daily traffic had more than doubled and the amount of time users spent on site tripled. Activity and connections with the HBA’s social networks also increased. The websites was designed, among other things, to be easily updated.

Since the association comprises more than 400 builders, remodelers, construction suppliers, subcontractors and advocates for construction professional in 10 counties in southwest Missouri, its website distinguished the content visitors viewed based on which user category the visitor is in.

Blogs were the association’s solution for managing regular content updates with limited staffing. Blogs also provided a way to organize information by topic category. The association had 20 different blogs and nine locations where visitors went to blog. These blogs encompassed issues like advocacy by the HBA president and chief executive officer and topics aimed at consumers like the local home shows, parades of homes, remodeling and green building.

The Springfield HBA also had a comprehensive social media strategy, since so many builders and others in the construction industry used social media to communicate. The association uses Twitter, the microblog with a 140-character limit for tweets, as a way to provide useful, time sensitive and relevant information about HBA event and meetings. Because of the volume of tweets and followers, the Springfield HBA uses tools, like SocialOomph, to program some tweets.

Although Twitter was a natural technology fit for the HBA, there was still a very important reason to actively engage on Facebook: its millions of users. Maintaining a meaningful Facebook presence while simultaneously managing blogs and a website is challenging but necessary because members and the public interact there.

The Springfield HBA’s YouTube channel is a vehicle for sharing and storing video content accumulated from its promotions, local television shows and members. These videos are easily embedded in blog posts and on the website.

To save money on postage, paper, printing, hard copy design and in order to repurpose content, the HBA uses MailChimp to designate RSS feeds from its website to populate a quarterly email newsletter, Housing News Weekly.

Managing 20 blogs in nine locations as well as several Twitter accounts, Facebook and LinkedIn pages and groups, a YouTube channel, quarterly RSS-to-email newsletters and other social media became overwhelming.

mRELEVANCE redesigned the website and made it a more sophisticated, multicategory, user friendly blog with RSS syndication, social media, video and other features. A Find-a-Pro search tool enables consumer visitors to connect with builders, remodelers and associates in the Greater Springfield area.