Dec 26, 2022
Word of Mouth
I hope you won’t find this first note of the year to be too self-serving, but we have business to discuss. AsphaltPro readers, who typically understand the importance of sharing information and growing business alongside one another, will track with me easily here.
I’ll start by explaining something many of you know: I do a side hustle where I write wacky stuff about dragons and strong female characters who overcome adversity to save worlds from evil. Even with independent publishers doing the mechanics of publishing the books (there are no Big Five publishing contracts or advances in my impatient life), it takes word of mouth to let other humans know my titles are available for reading. It requires marketing, promotion, reviews on any review site we can find and so on.
Let me tell you how that relates to the asphalt industry.
In the asphalt world, we have a good, environmentally positive story to tell. We’re still innovating ways to reduce emissions that are already low. We’re still innovating ways to build pavement systems that will outlast our competition, thus reducing future materials use. What we need to do is be sure we’re marketing and promoting this good news to people who might not know it. Let’s leave some reviews of each other in good, positive terms that showcase how we’re saving the planet instead of backbiting on social media platforms. It would be in our collective best interest to nurture members of our crews into say nice things online.
Here’s an example. When your paving foreman sees a post online with a “smaller” paver, rather than pouncing on the opportunity to complain about his experiences with a similar model from that OEM, teach him to type in something about the warm-mix asphalt (WMA) being fed through the paver as an environmental win for that neighborhood. Is that cheesy? Of course, it is. Is that spreading better news for our industry? You better believe it is.
We also have an opportunity in front of us to increase our emissions-reduction practices with financial assistance from the Department of Energy (DOE). I invite you to read Advanced Energy Property Deployment Part 1 in the December 2022 issue and Part 2 for more information on the tax incentive and grant funding fog descending around us. Even if government guidance is still forthcoming, the concept of someday receiving a rebate for environmental excellence is enticing.
Keep your receipts.
Keep in mind, the reason we’re innovating advanced technology for asphalt plants and fleets is to continue improving. The goal is to make our industry the cleanest it can be. But don’t forget to share with friends and neighbors the continuing positive strides in your business. Don’t forget to tell OEMs you saw their information in AsphaltPro Magazine. Don’t forget the value of word of mouth.
I think that’s enough topics for one note. Dragons—which probably affect climate change—and defeating evil leading into marketing our good name leading into increasing our good name together. I think we’ll call that enough to lead us into a positive 2023. I wish all of you a safe, clean and productive upcoming construction season!