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Should Architects Advertise? The History of Marketing For Architects

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Although advertising is an effective way to promote one’s business, many architects are skeptical of publicly marketing their services.

Surprisingly, the marketing strategy for architects has historically been looked down upon and seen as inappropriate and unprofessional within the field. Although this stigma has passed, many architects are still unsure if advertising is a practical way to promote their services.

The answer is yes, architects should advertise. Below are some background info, advantages, and ideas for advertising.

A Brief History

Though marketing might be seen as an easy way businesses can promote their services, this has not always been the case for architects.

In the early 1900s, the American Institute of Architects adopted the Principles of Practice, a set of rules advising workers on the proper etiquette and ethics of their respective fields. One of their defining rules “barred architects from using even the simplest forms of marketing” and thus began the complicated feelings surrounding architects’ advertising.

It wasn’t until 1972 that the U.S. Justice Department overturned this rule, permitting architects to market their firms. Despite this change, many architects were still apprehensive to engage in any sort of advertising; it was seen as unprofessional, and companies didn’t want to damage their reputation.


How do you increase exposure for your brand, market your products, and increase revenue? Advertising. 

Although many architects are skeptical about jumping into advertising, it’s worth it. There are a number of advantages to marketing your brand. LinkedIn Marketing Solutions highlights some of these pros, such as its ability to “generate leads, drive website traffic, and build brand awareness.”

Additionally, advertising fights competition, allowing you to set your business apart and showcase your company’s unique skill set that makes people want to hire your services. It’s a great way to increase exposure for your company and engage with your target audience.

The best part? Advertising drives sales and increases brand notability: two vital components to growing your company.


How do architects advertise? There are many different ways to advertise your business and several marketing strategies to choose from. Here are a few brief ideas to get you going.

Start with the 4 p’s of marketing for architects: place, price, product, and promotion. The concept has been around since the 1950s, and Investopedia describes them as “the key factors…involved in the marketing of a good or service” and they also “interact significantly with one another.” Additionally, they highlight how “as the marketing industry has evolved, the concepts of people, process, and physical evidence have become important components of marketing a product” as well.

By utilizing different combinations of these concepts, businesses can promote their services and gain exposure in their community; it’s a great way to start thinking about how to advertise your business best.

From there, you can begin to strategize, thinking about the best way to reach your target audience. Where will you advertise? Will you advertise via print or digital platforms? If you’re feeling overwhelmed, there are a number of resources to utilize and experts that can help you.

Although many architects are hesitant to begin marketing their business, advertising is a great way to increase sales and promote their brand.


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