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Experts Weigh In on What's Coming in the Decorative Concrete Industry

Concrete Industry Forecast red door on blank concrete wall indicating where is decorative concrete going.We asked everyone the same set of questions. It wasn’t easy to approach this, given our friends’ varied experiences and applications. Perhaps the first challenge to looking ahead this way is defining the industry in general.

Cannabis Construction: Entrepreneurs Using Hemp for Home-Building

House made of hempcreteThe New York Times recently reported that hemp fibers are being worked into concrete to form a mixture called hempcrete. While no one would want to smoke this stuff, it does seem particularly useful as a building material.

A concrete solution to climate change?

A better understanding of how carbon dioxide is absorbed by concreteA better understanding of how carbon dioxide is absorbed by concrete.

Surviving the Game of Business By Capitalizing on Every Opportunity

Football players playing the sport they love.Our industry, like football, has seen advancements. One visit to the World of Concrete conference will confirm this. But think about this for a second. Every job, whether in Texas or Dubai, has at least one thing in common. Finishing the job still comes down to a human and a shovel. As complex as our industry is, it still comes down to a tool that sits in every work truck across the globe.

Benefits of Membership in an Industry Association for Decorative Concrete Contractors

A group of silhouettes in green on a yellow striped background.Membership in an industry association or society offers numerous opportunities for education, peer networking, and accessing a wealth of information that helps us grow professionally. There are several organizations that support concrete contractors and concrete construction.

Pros and Cons of Specializing in Decorative Concrete

Part time or full time, should a concrete contractor provide decorative concrete, staining concrete, stamping concrete all the time?I have to guess some, maybe even most, of Concrete Decor’s readers enjoy the benefits of the decorative business as only a part of their contracting services. You may very well be one of the many who are wondering if you should make the leap to specialize in decorative work full time or simply offer it as one of many services.

Successful Contractors Offer Good Customer Service

Man jumping on a graph with an upward arrow of improvement.Turning a profit in today’s construction industry is no accident. This is why it is essential — now more than ever — to practice the strong fundamentals that every successful business is built on. I witnessed a perfect example of such a business this fall and it made me rethink my effort as a decorative concrete professional.

The Pros and Cons of Taking On Military Concrete Polishing Projects

AAFES (Army & Air Force Exchange Service) showcases polished concrete projects in many of its stores up to 150,000 square feet.

As a polishing consultant I get to wear several different hats, but by far the largest amount of my time is spent managing polished concrete programs for retailers. Polished concrete is an aesthetically beautiful and valuable flooring solution, but it is fairly specialized.

Generating New Business Relies on Making the Phone Ring

Making the phone ring is essential to business growth.It all starts with a call. It doesnt matter how talented or artistic or expensive or cheap you are, all new business starts with a call. New work is the lifeblood business growth.

Full-Time Marketing with Part-Time Resources

Colorado Hardscapes mean lean construction crew.When people compliment Colorado Hardscapes Inc.’s marketing department, I tend to smile just a bit. People often mistakenly think our decorative concrete company operates like a large corporation, with multiple staff just waiting for their next task.

For Bomanite Personal Relationships are Part of the Plan

Dan Sieben, Mike Bernath, Brad Bowman and John Wilcox pose at a social dinner in the late '80s.A good marketing strategy was only part of the overall picture. Just as crucial to Bomanite’s long-term franchising game plan was the networking — the sharing of expertise and innovations among the highly diverse and widely dispersed franchisees.

Are You Afraid to Seal Concrete?

Serene setting at a upscale hotel where luxurious lounge chair sit atop a stamped concrete pool deck.I firmly believe that the lifeblood of our industry is new and innovative products that continue to move the decorative market forward. A close second, the oxygen of our industry, is word-of-mouth advertising by satisfied clients who have had their expectations met.

Successful Construction Training Requires Commitment and a Plan

smoothing out concrete with a trowelTraining in the construction industry seems more daunting than some other professions. With all of the moving parts of our industry, we not only need to train on skill and leadership, but also safety and technology.

Improve Your Sales and Customer Relations with a Decorative Concrete Design Center

Colorado Hardscape's Concrete Design Center Showroom - In 2001, Colorado Hardscapes made a move that forever changed its approach to sales and marketing. The company moved into a new concrete design center, the first of its kind in Colorado.In 2001, Colorado Hardscapes made a move that forever changed its approach to sales and marketing. The company moved into a new concrete design center, the first of its kind in Colorado.

PCA says U.S. cement consumption increased in 2013
Natural Networking Making Friends Builds Business

a woman and a man shaking hands - As high school students, most of us were encouraged to join a variety of extracurricular activities to build our resumes and make us more well-rounded people. As adults and business owners, joining an association, as well as attending conferences and trade shows, can have some of these same advantages, but they can also help grow your business.As high school students, most of us were encouraged to join a variety of extracurricular activities to build our resumes and make us more well-rounded people. As adults and business owners, joining an association, as well as attending conferences and trade shows, can have some of these same advantages, but they can also help grow your business.

How Joining Forces with Other Construction Companies Can Boost Your Bottom Line

Boosting your bottom lineYou basically have two ways to make more money in decorative concrete — you can increase sales or reduce the cost of doing business. Businesses in times like these have a tendency to become paralyzed when becoming proactive would be the best option. One good way to become proactive is to consider a team approach.

Taking Great Project Photos with Your Smartphone

Taking Great Project Photos with Your Phone CameraIphoneography — or “i4neography” — is a term that has been around for a few years, and as you may have guessed, it pertains to photography via iPhones.

Concrete Professionals Should Mind Their Manners While on Mobile Phones

Iphone in rose gold sitting on a concrete countertop.While on mobile phones, concrete contractors should conduct themselves professionally to make a good impression wherever they may be.

Turn a Connection into a Decorative Concrete Sale

Making good connections with people earn you higher numbers in sales.The decorative concrete industry is driven by fascination. Inspiring this fascination in customers is only possible when you connect first and foremost. Unfortunately, this is the number one aspect I see missing within our talented artisans today. Just like your ability to create with color and concrete, there is an art to connecting with architects, designers and owners.

Tips from Concrete Contractors who Embrace Customer Service

Emoji for smiling to frowning red, yellow, green, representing customer service. from https://www.keeping.com/customer-service/excellent-customer-service/Contractors share customer-service tips that help make their businesses successful.

Concrete Polishing Pitfalls to Avoid When Bidding

Lucas Oil Stadium, home of the Indianapolis Colts pro football team, as polished by American Concrete Concepts inc., of Springdale, Ark.Arenas and stadiums are a market that is gaining momentum in polished concrete. Between high schools, colleges and professional sports teams, there are a lot of these venues around the country. As they come up for remodel, polished concrete is a great option for the flooring on concourses and even under seats.

Successful Email Marketing for Concrete Businesses

email marketing concrete businessesIn the world of email marketing, the “e-blast” can be a highly successful vehicle for connecting with your customers. But all too often, decorative concrete contractors underuse this vital marketing strategy.

A Tip of the Hard Hat to Safety on the Construction Site

decorative concrete live hard hat and super etch plusThe debut of Decorative Concrete LIVE! at the 2017 World of Concrete in Las Vegas was met with resounding approval as job site safety took center stage in the annual event's Silver Lot.

Contractors Should Have a Resource Network in Place

Unrepaired concrete that is in desperate need of improvement.The air temperature is 97 degrees F, the concrete arrives late and it turns out it’s a hot load. A set retarder is added, which only makes matters worse. The concrete now sits for eight hours before you can do anything with it. Now what?

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