I was asked to speak about marketing professional services yesterday to a Meetup group of professionals in mortgage, real estate, and financial services. I had a great time and found the group very interesting. Others in similar businesses in the East Cobb area should think about joining – click link above to find out more or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
I started my business in the basement of our home in 2002 without a single client. In 2004, my husband quit his job to come to work with me and help continue to grow the practice. All our family eggs were thrown into this one basket! Fortunately, we’ve been able to keep the bills paid. We are now about a dozen people strong, generating more than $1M in revenues and are recognized as one of the top forensic accounting practices in the State of Georgia in our niche market.
While I don’t consider myself a marketing expert, I was happy to share my personal tips and philosophy for marketing success with other professionals who are facing the same challenges. As you will see, they are not rocket science, just good common sense, but often overlooked. And, I’ll be the first to admit that we are not perfect. We often fall short of our own expectations, but we believe that “Success is Progress Toward a Worthy Goal” and we keep trying.
Tip #1 – Be DARNED GOOD at what you do.
Tip #2 – FOCUS!!! Know your company, clients, and competencies. Don’t try to be all things to all people.
Tip #3 – PROMOTE yourself. That doesn’t mean bragging or being obnoxious, it just means don’t be shy about telling people that you are good at what you do and don’t be afraid to apply for that award that you think you deserve. We’ve been named a Top 25 Small Business by the Cobb County Chamber of Commerce two years in a row because we were not afraid to fill out the application.
Tip #4 – Take business PERSONALLY. We have an opportunity every day to make a difference in someone’s life. Make sure your clients know you CARE about them.
Tip #5 – Take a LONG TERM view. A small client today may turn into a big client in the future or may refer one to you. Protect your referral sources. They put their reputation on the line every time they send you a client. Do your best to never let them down. Be prepared to sacrifice short term financial reward for long term gain.
Tip #6 – Make FRIENDS/Be a FRIEND. People like doing business with people they like.
Tip #7 – GIVE time and money; get INVOLVED. Sponsor charitable organizations that you care about. By both writing a check and attending events. serve in a leadership capacity. Don’t just join or send a check and then not show up.
Tip #8 – Work HARD, be ACCESSIBLE. Owning your own business is not a 9-5 job. It takes effort, sacrifice, 24 hour commitment, but it is worth it.
Tip #9 – Use TECHNOLOGY/SOCIAL MEDIA. Web site, blog, LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter. They don’t have to be expensive and it does pay off. In today’s work environment, you don’t need a fancy office but you should have a professional web site.
Tip #10 – Be PASSIONATE. LOVE what you do. ENTHUSIASM is contagious.
ONE HOT TIP courtesy of Randy Kessler, Kessler Schwarz & Solomiany. Try Mobilezen, the newest, greatest way to share your marketing message. Text IAG to 99699 to see how it works. The people at Mobilezen are extremely client service oriented and will help you get the word out!
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