Marketing Tips – Are you talking benefits?
When you present your proposal (and you need to present your proposal as opposed to faxing or couriering it so you can overcome objections), is your prospect talking price? Yes? Then you need to start talking benefits. The benefit of working with your firm over another firm is why your prospect wants to work with you. Did you ask him or her what was important when you made the initial contact call? Do you know why he/she is interviewing accounting firms? You should because this is where you will be able to list off the benefits (read differences) between you and your competition.
Anyone can buy a tax return. Does anyone ever really want to buy an audit? If you are listing products in your proposals or in your contact calls, consider talking benefits instead. A lesson from a millionaire landscaper lends a lesson for us all. He said, “No one wants to hear about how great my grass seed is. They don’t care that there’s a lot of chemistry behind a premium grass seed. All they care about is GREEN grass.” First figure out what your prospect is really buying and then start talking about the benefit he/she will gain from working with your firm. Will they get peace of mind because they know they can trust your superior advice? Will they get advice in easy-to-understand language (vs. technospeak)? How about offering the benefit of a respectful partnership of equals (especially important to other professionals such as doctors and attorneys)? Figure out what you do best and make it your offering.
When you express your price, make sure the prospect understands the benefits you are offering. For example, if you are pitching a $30,000 consulting engagement that will save a company $50,000 the first year – say that! An owner can justify spending $30,000 if he/she knows it will be recouped the first year alone.
Voice of the Editor
Which isn’t completely true. I mean, occasionally I drop by when I manage to sneak out of the nonstop frat party over at Going Concern, but I’m mostly a wallflower over there. I’m happy to say that I’ve been given express permission (or explicit orders, if you like) to wander over here to AccountingWEB more often.
Why is that, you might ask? My job is to replace the irreplaceable Gail Perry as Editor-in-Chief. What does that mean? I don’t really know! I think it’ll be fun getting a feel for things, throwing in my own thoughts here and there, and listening to the discussions you’re having about the accounting profession.