Is this you?
“My challenge is that most of my business has come from referrals. I’ve lost a few bigger clients, and some of my smaller clients have ceased trading for a variety of reasons. At a time when I need to replace lots of clients, many of my referral sources are no longer around.”
If you’ve experienced anything like this, you’ll know what a dangerous position it is to be in.
You know that marketing takes time, but it’s often the thing that gets put off in favour of client meetings, prospect meetings, family time, cutting the grass, organising that sock drawer…
Filling your funnel with potential leads (who may take months or years to make up their mind) has to happen as soon as possible. Here’s why.
1. There is no shortcut to good marketing.
I know you want one. You’re desperately searching one, and you spend more time looking for that shortcut than you do actually generating content or doing marketing for your firm.
It’s like exercising, running, learning a new skill, getting the kitchen redone, building a house, building a business.
You can’t shortcut all the learning to get to the results. Can’t watch a few videos and skip a few pieces of cake and suddenly find yourself a pro marketer who is running marathons.
You know this already – I know you do. But apply it to the funnel you want to be filled up with great clients: and please, start now.
You will be glad you did.
2. There are no marketing tactics or ploys that will get you great business in a hurry.
Similarly, there’s no little trick or tactic that will sneak you past all the other accountants. Google adwords won’t suddenly deliver new clients tomorrow. Telemarketing might get you a few appointments, but most of them will be the wrong sort of client or worse a complete waste of time. Networking will drive you insane and you’ll spend the whole time wishing you had stayed home.
The reason there are no tricks or tactics is because the best results come from the accumulation of great marketing.
If you write one blog post today, and another firm has been blogging weekly for months or years, Google knows which website to return in the search results.
If you start using Twitter and send a few posts but then give up, and another firm is managing it daily and involving their team, your buyer will lean towards the one which has been building relationship for a long time.
I’ll add one caveat to this: if you put a lot of cash investment into your marketing (and I mean a LOT – like tens of thousands per month for a few months), you can zoom past the ones who have been building organically over a few years. But you’ll need to spend 1) a lot of money, 2) with the right people and companies, 3) with your whole firm behind it all, and 4) with plans to continue consistently after your initial burst.
Stop looking for the tactics, and do what consistently works.
- Making a list of all the issues and questions your clients have
- Creating 2-3 new pieces of content per week (start with a bare minimum of one per week). This could be a blog, an infographic, a video, whatever. Download our 29 content ideas guide for … ideas.
- Adding all this content to your website
- Posting daily on social media (use the social platforms your clients like)
- Recording video
3. Your buyer will feel pressured because you are feeling the pressure.
Your buyer is smart.
Your buyer can tell the difference between someone who’s trying to get rich quick (or get clients quick), and someone who genuinely wants to help them.
If your buyer feels pressure of any kind, they’ll either take longer to decide, or they’ll go with someone else.
Even if you come up with the coolest, cleverest marketing plan or project – and you invest a ton of money to make it happen – you have to go into it knowing that the buyer will decide when they are good and ready.
There are a million reasons why someone might not be ready to buy yet:
- They may have sent off a bunch of emails when they had time, and then ran out of time once the replies started flooding back in
- They might not know what they really want
- They may be researching you and other firms to figure out which one appeals most to them
- They could have a family member in hospital
- They might have been angry or upset or annoyed with their accountant, but then things got sorted out and it doesn’t feel as urgent anymore
- They could have lost a big customer and suddenly cash feels really tight
…and 999,994 other reasons including “they have no idea”.
The point is, only the buyer can really decide when they are good and ready. You can encourage, and remind, and send helpful stuff, and be visible and present, but it’s their call – and they will not be rushed into it. The more you pressure them, the harder you push, the less likely it is they’ll decide quickly.
So, if your funnel is drying up..
..or if you have no funnel…
..or you “keep meaning to get around to marketing”…
I’d recommend you start now. In a few years’ time, you’ll be really glad you did.