Funder Mifflin Inc. is a global construction company that is getting ready to enter the social networking industry with a new social network site that they have created. In order for them to fully understand what they are getting into they wanted me to research a social networking site as an actual benchmark to compare it to the needs we have at Funder Mifflin Inc. Below I will be discussing the company Western Water Constructors who successfully created a construction social network site in 2008 called ConstructionExchange.com. I will be discussing what they did and how they did it and also how their core strengths will help us jump into the global marketplace.
Funder Mifflin Inc. is in the global construction industry. In order for us to better understand their social networking needs I wanted to research another company who has started up a social networking site in the construction industry.
The company I researched is called Western Water Constructors which is based out of Santa Rosa, CA. They created their social networking site in August of 2008 and the site has been growing ever since then. The company is a 49 year old construction company that specializes in water treatment plants (Halverson, 2008). They started this site because their 33 year old VP and their 28 year old IT director had a vision just like we do here at Funder Mifflin Inc.
Their original idea was to just create a plain site where people could go and rate different construction companies. They wanted to make it similar to Yelp.com but that idea did not go over very well at all. They then began focusing on other types of social network industries such as LinkedIn, Craigslist and MySpace. The reason they chose to turn to these types of sites is because they wanted their users to be able to network with each other and share photos. They also wanted to be able to advertise construction industry job openings and equipment (Halverson, 2008).
When they first launched their site they marketed to their friends and also contacts that they had in the construction industry. They also started doing what's called crossover advertising. This is where they advertised on other social network sites such as LinkedIn and a lot of their new members found their site through LinkedIn. Once they did this they started ...