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Marketing For Architects: 8 Effective Strategies All Freelance Architects And Small Firms Should Know [2024]

Thet Hnin

12 min read

November 11, 2022


Table of Contents

Here are some reasons why most architects DON’T see an improvement in their content engagement:

Common mistakes entrepreneurs and small businesses make when creating a website:

  • Lack of information on the architect and/or brand
  • No contact information
  • No clear CTA
  • Heavy reliance on project images without any description or context
  • No SEO optimization
  • No clear communication of what issues the architect can solve

While there are PR firms and agencies to handle content marketing for architects, many freelance architects and small architecture firms rely on self-marketing to promote their work.

In this blog, we explore what marketing is and how architects and designers should get started for an effective architecture marketing strategy.

What Is Marketing?

Illustration of a female holding a photo of herself on a large blue monitor screen

Marketing is the activity or communication process of creating and delivering to promote products or services to potential customers and partners.
Marketing is important for every business, whether it is a solopreneur or a large MNC. The right marketing strategy ensures you are ‘seen’ or easy to find, and when a potential client searches for you, they know you have what they are looking for.

As a solo practice, you are in charge of the preparation and execution of, well, everything for your business. This naturally includes marketing. Marketing, especially organic marketing, is a long tedious journey.

Think of it as planting a seed to grow a tree. You need to patiently wait for the seed to sprout and then grow into a small plant before it gets to your desired size.
But it is a worthwhile journey, and one that most freelancers have to go through.
Are you new to the world of freelancing and running a small business? Check out our expert tips on - How To Become a Freelance Designer: Experts Answer Your Questions About Freelancing.

Is Marketing Important For Architects?

Marketing for architects, in simpler words, is about promoting your services. There are so many architects out there, freelance or in permanent roles. So how do you stand out from the crowd? As much as it falls onto your skills, it is a difficult task without proper marketing.

Advertising your services is more or less equivalent to advertising your skills. How do you do that? The answer is simple – let them be seen!

A Strong Online Presence Goes A Long Way

Illustration of how architects use internet for advertising, social media and tracking data

Every business needs a strong online presence that communicates the strength of the business to generate brand awareness. Otherwise, where would you display the testimonials and reviews of your business and your design portfolio? In this digital era, offline marketing is no longer sufficient for a business to grow which necessitates online marketing, for architects and any other business.
There are several methods and platforms of online marketing for architects. It is not necessarily a must to have all; what’s important is to publish quality content on as many platforms as you can.

As a freelance architect handling all aspects of the business can be challenging. So don’t stress yourself out by creating marketing campaigns for all platforms. Architecture firms, even as a small team, can handle much more thanks to the manpower (which may include a content manager or strategist).

8 Strategies Of Marketing For Architects

Build A Website That Reflects Your Brand

The most straightforward method is to create your brand's website. In addition to your portfolio, you can include more information about yourself as the designer/architect and your business.

The most important information but one that many miss is a clear ‘call-to-action’. The CTA essentially sets the direction of your potential clients – what they should do if they like your skills and services. It can be as simple as “Connect with me” or “Let’s talk” which still tells your potential clients how to contact you. It can also be a Whatsapp API which makes it possible for your clients to access you directly and in real-time.

For the best landing pages (a web page where visitors ‘land’ via a link, usually for marketing purposes with a CTA), copywriting proves to be a necessity, so if need be, invest in a good copywriting service.

Another point to keep in mind – have a clean website that perfectly showcases your works and makes the visitor want to stay longer (or revisit!). Remember to build a website with your clients in mind and not other architects.

Make sure you track the following website traffic metrics

  • Number of visitors
  • Bounce rates
  • Session duration
  • Pages per session
  • Traffic source
  • Conversion rate

Yes, marketing metrics are not just reserved for marketing strategists and content creators! Many architects are now aware of the importance of good writing and content. Some have even made the transition to become writers and architectural writing is now one of the Top 5 Remote Jobs For Architects To Explore.

Screenshot of the main page for OMA architecture firm’s website

Keep A Blog To Share Your Expertise With Writings

Continuing from websites, next we have blogs. Many consider a blog to be either a type or a part of a website. It is the blog on a website that gets regularly updated, usually with blog articles (or posts). Blogging is a perfect content marketing for architects who enjoy writing; they can write and publish topics close to their hearts while displaying their expertise.

Alex Hogrefe, well-known to many architectural students for his visualisation techniques, keeps a blog on his website where he writes about the studies and projects he has partaken.

Optimise Your Content With SEO

Now you have a website and a blog. But how do you make sure people see your sites among the billions that exist on the internet? That is the role of SEO (Search Engine Optimization) – a process to optimise your website for better reach and rank higher on search engines using keywords. Ensure your content is always up to date and using the right keywords. You can keep track of how well your website is performing using tools such as Google Analytics.

Make Use of Social Media Platforms

Content marketing for architects does not end with websites. In this digital age, having a website alone is not enough, every professional also needs to be social media savvy. A strong social media presence brings you closer to larger audiences which will in turn increase the chance of getting more work.

Each social media platform serves a different purpose. In online marketing for architects and designers, the content should be curated to fit the purpose of a platform rather than uploading everything on every platform.

Here are the two most popular social media platforms for architects and designers.

A screenshot of LinkedIn profile of Henning Larsen

LinkedIn - A powerful networking tool for any professional, LinkedIn is a must-have platform to communicate with like-minded people and prospective clients. Getting clients should not be the sole purpose of using LinkedIn; you can reach out to other industry professionals for collaborations. These collaborations can include guest posts on blogs, podcasts and interviews with other architects and industry professionals, all of which prove to be assets for marketing for architects. In addition, LinkedIn also provides sponsored content and personalised ads that will appear in the Feed for better reach.

As a professional networking platform, LinkedIn is more formal than other social media platforms, so your profile photo, headline and the ‘About’ section should reflect professionalism.

A screenshot of the Instagram page for Oneistox

Instagram - Architecture relies heavily on visuals and Instagram is the perfect platform to showcase your designs; final renders aren’t the only thing you should add, feel free to include conceptual diagrams and photos of models.
While it is not all about aesthetics, Instagram can also act as your portfolio where all project images can be in one place. It is the 4th most-used platform with over a billion active users!

The user range is extremely broad; not only are there content creators and other designers but there are also educational sites and media platforms that share the impressive works of designers. Reach out to these accounts to have your work featured as part of your marketing strategy.

Email Marketing

While many may question if emails are still relevant, it has been a constant and reliable mode of communication for businesses. Architects and architecture firms can execute email marketing campaigns to keep in touch with both prospective and past clients. These campaigns are usually a series of planned emails to nurture trust and credibility and to present solutions that may invoke an interest and response from the audience.

For effective email marketing, your emails should offer value to the reader, either with insights or design solutions. Avoid complicated details in your emails; instead, keep them simple and digestible.

If you are just starting as a freelance designer or have just established a new firm, online presence and word-of-mouth marketing are the best bets. With the aim of achieving a strong online presence in mind, here are some necessary items for marketing as architects.

Referrals & Testimonials

Both referrals and testimonials not only show your expertise as a designer but also your professionalism. If you already have existing clients, they might refer you to someone they know who could use your services.

For effective free marketing, architects can exploit the good ol' word-of-mouth marketing to reach potential clients. If your current client does not have anyone they can refer you to, ask them to give testimonials.


Image of Graviton architecture portfolio booklet by Studio Bons

In design and architecture, a portfolio is one of the most important items all professionals in these industries should have. A well-curated portfolio allows your potential clients to see your work and judge if your skills are the right fit for them – meaning, it helps you win work. Your portfolio may just be the perfect conversation starter to promote your firm!

You can present your architecture portfolio in several ways. If you plan to have a website, you can create a page for it instead of using a portfolio site.

If you do not have a website yet or do not plan to have one soon, which we would dissuade you from, you can use online portfolio sites such as Behance and Issuu. Behance works more like Pinterest where you can create multiple web pages for each project. Whereas, many architects and graduates use Issuu to publish their portfolios in a digital booklet format.


I know, this is an activity rather than an item. But this is the most vital step in marketing for architects. There is no right or wrong rule for this – just go out there and be present. Online networking can happen through social media platforms while offline networking usually happens in seminars, exhibitions and competitions. So never miss an opportunity to attend such events. Through talks and discussions, people will get to know more about you, not just your design skills but also your communications and interpersonal skills which can be used to determine if you are a right match to work with.

Marketing For Architects = Marketing Your Skills

Image of a laptop, tablet, a coffee and a notebook with ‘You are your own brand’ written’

Working in a well-established company will naturally tie you together with the company brand, which can be used to your advantage, but as a freelancer, your name is your brand. Ensure that your personal branding is in the top position; who you are, your goals and values as an architect or a designer and who your target clientele will be are all part of the checklist for personal branding.

The skills of an architect are reflected in the design, drawings and management of the projects. Therefore, it is essential that people know about your projects, as a freelance architect or a newly established architecture firm. There are plenty of options to showcase your work; you just need to ensure you are choosing the best one for your brand.

Specialising in a niche can help you narrow down your target market. Here are 5 Best-Paid Architecture Specialisations you need to know.

Don’t Slack Off!

Content creation for websites and social media requires continuous effort, as does your marketing strategy. An effective marketing strategy will effortlessly attract new clients without you having to chase them. Even a small architecture firm can achieve a positive PR exposure to win both work and talents against larger firms.

Remember, you are planting a seed and you need to constantly take care of it to reap its fruits. It is advisable to create a content calendar for each platform and stick to it. Marketing for architects is a new and necessary skill. It is no easy task but with the right tools and effort, you will soon enjoy the benefits.

Starting your own business can be both nerve-wracking and exciting at the same time. Read how André, one of our BIM course mentors, did it successfully - Starting Your Own Architecture Firm: An Architect's Success Story.

Never stop learning and trying new things to reach greater heights in your career!

Discover more career advice on our Resources. You will also find industry news and insights on our Instagram and YouTube channel so go follow them now!

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