It’s time I developed the next portion of a blog I posted back on January 21st. The blog, Three Keys to Successful Accounting Practice Development, outlined that three key elements of any successful practice development plan are: client experience; lead generation; and lead conversion. In February and March, I posted blogs on client experience and now would like to revisit this series with thoughts on lead generation.
Lead Generation. How will you find new prospective clients? Develop a strong referral network, telemarketing, direct mail, advertising, etc? What are the avenues and components you use or need to develop to generate leads?
For the sake of digestible, short blogs, I will break my thoughts into four blogs:
- Your lead generation foundation (today’s blog)
- Passive Marketing
- Active Marketing
Let’s talk about your lead generation foundation. What are the basic underlying components to support all of your lead generation efforts?
Understand the Value You Provide. If you do not, the customer never will. You need to able to communicate it effectively and concisely. I will give you a hint, if you compete on price and are always trying to stay below the competition’s price, you do not understand your value. What do you do for clients better than anyone else in your market? Why should they come to you instead of a competitor? Get away from price and try to express your value in the eyes of the prospective client. If you don’t do anything better, start today and communicate it.
Communicate What You Stand For. This is both the personal “you” as a practitioner and the collective “you” of your practice. Can you make any guarantees to your clients? What pledges or promises can you make? For reference, you may look at the Our Commitment to You page on our website.
Remember, Benefits Instead of Features. Okay, welcome to marketing 101. Can you communicate your value from the client’s perspective? The difference is often platitudes, “We’re #1”, versus resonating with the client, “We understand what you are struggling with and can solve your problem.” Instead of talking about whom you are or what you do, can you speak of the benefits a client will receive by working with you.
For example, “Our clients come to us because they are frustrated with monthly, quarterly and annual tax filings. We take their headache away by…”
As you define these components, can you document them? Again, try to write these from a perspective of how the client will experience them rather than how you deliver them. If you can document your value to clients and what you stand for, then developing your lead generation initiatives is going to be a piece of cake.