Painless Marketing For People Who Hate To Market



Painless Marketing for People Who Hate to​ Market
We don’t have time – we’re busy enough and have to​ maximize our billable hours.
We can’t afford to​ market – we have no extra money.
We have brochures and a​ website – isn’t that enough?
We don’t know where to​ start,​ even if​ we do want to​ attract more clients.
We can’t get key people inside our firm to​ agree on​ how – or​ if​ – to​ start.
Promoting our firm is​ unprofessional,​ unethical,​ and tacky .​
These are all legitimate perspectives and shouldn’t be minimized .​
But what if​ there was a​ painless way to​ get the​ following results? High-quality prospects seeking you​ out and coming to​ you,​ instead of​ you​ having to​ seek them out.
Your firm reaching and helping more people with what you​ have to​ offer.
Increasing the​ volume of​ clients from which you​ can choose,​ allowing your firm to​ be selective and work with only those you​ truly want.
Differentiating your firm from your competition and articulating what makes you​ and your firm special.
Tapping new networks that don’t know about your firm yet.
Wasting no more money on​ ineffective brochures,​ flyers,​ web sites and other marketing materials – better yet,​ knowing if​ the​ investment you​ make is​ worth it.
Raising your fees and being paid what you​ are worth.
Learning how to​ grow and sustain your practice in​ any market .​
My guess is​ that you’d be willing to​ take a​ closer look at​ some basic marketing principles and practices,​ if​ they could generate these results for your firm.
The Ugly Truth
Here’s the​ ugly truth about attracting more clients: you​ have to​ make it​ a​ priority constantly,​ consistently,​ and carefully .​
So what can you​ do to​ make it​ less painful…or even painless?
The answer depends on​ your firm’s view of​ marketing .​
Many of​ the​ professional service firms we work with tend to​ fall into one of​ two camps .​
Some firms are committed to​ using internal resources (i.e.,​ partners,​ designated business development staff,​ or​ junior marketeers),​ and some won’t or​ can’t .​
Either way,​ marketing systems must become a​ core part of​ your day-to-day business practices.
Look Before you​ Leap
In both cases,​ you​ have to​ spend some time thinking about,​ developing,​ and testing what happens before you​ print brochures,​ develop a​ website,​ introduce yourself at​ a​ networking event,​ or​ write an​ article for a​ trade publication .​
Robert Middleton’s Five Laws of​ Marketing captures this well:
Build your base (careful attention to​ your message):
Get Attention: what you​ say and write to​ grab your prospects’ attention,​ introduce yourself,​ headline a​ talk or​ article,​ etc.
Uniqueness: what makes you​ stand out from your competitors,​ such as​ a​ specific promise,​ standard,​ or​ guarantee; you​ must be very clear on​ who you​ do and don’t serve
Value: what you​ demonstrate through information that you​ share before you​ get hired – free articles,​ white papers,​ survey results,​ workshops,​ etc .​
– so that when the​ need arises,​ the​ client thinks of​ only you
Authority: the​ proof that you’re qualified to​ deliver what you​ say you​ can do; demonstrated via case studies with measurable results,​ media appearances,​ testimonials,​ bios,​ company background,​ etc .​
Reach out to​ the​ market (being constant and consistent):
Relationship Building Systems: networking,​ direct outreach (personal or​ mass mail); keep in​ touch systems; centers of​ influence (banker,​ advisors),​ joint ventures,​ client relationship strategy,​ customer creation system,​ relationship selling strategy,​ value-based pricing strategy,​ next level strategies
The key to​ these five laws is​ that all aspects of​ marketing must pull in​ the​ same direction .​
So if​ you​ have one vendor doing direct mail,​ another your website,​ and another your ads – particularly before you’ve built your base (laws 1 through 4) – chances are they’re all pulling in​ different directions .​
You must have a​ holistic plan that keeps your firm and your vendors pulling together.
Making it​ Happen
Knowing what to​ do is​ not the​ same as​ making it​ happen .​
That’s where most busy professional service firms fall down when it​ comes to​ marketing.
Whether you​ do it​ yourself or​ hire an​ outside firm to​ help you,​ here’s the​ basic process you​ should follow: Make a​ research-based plan of​ action that’s strategic,​ contextual,​ and seamlessly aligned with your firm’s business goals; set priorities.
Establish a​ process to​ stay on​ track and motivated.
Use an​ approach that gets your team aligned and all working toward the​ same goals.
Factor in​ support,​ guidance,​ and resources for the​ hard work of​ implementation.
This Won’t Hurt a​ Bit!
You don’t have to​ tackle all of​ this at​ once .​
Take it​ one step at​ a​ time .​
Effective marketing takes hold organically and grows over time .​
a​ steady pace lets you​ experience and evaluate any changes thoughtfully .​
You can reasonably expect to​ put all of​ these things in​ place in​ about six to​ nine months .​
You’ll see results much sooner if​ your first steps are thoughtful,​ strategic,​ and carefully focused on​ building your base.
Want a​ prescription that will keep your business pipeline full of​ high-quality clients? Decide to​ add a​ little painless marketing to​ your weekly business routine and call me in​ the​ morning!
References
Levinson,​ J .​
Guerrilla Marketing .​
Boston: Houghton Mifflin,​ 1984.
Middleton,​ R .​
Laws of​ Marketing TeleClass .​
Action Plan Marketing,​ Inc .​
2003.
Putman,​ a​ .​
Marketing Your Services .​
New York: John Wiley & Sons,​ 1990





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