4 Questions to put on your next marketing/management committee agendaI read a story in our local paper about a teacher that was embarking on a bike journey from the State of Washington to Maine this summer to help raise his student’s awareness of environmental issues.
It seems that the longest bike ride he had attempted to date was a round trip of about 80 miles.
I hope he took some of that money and invested in a nice cushy seat and a few tubes of BENGAY. I do have a lot of respect for his initiative (and some amount of envy), and wish him the best of luck on his journey.
Let’s see .... an issue, an approach, a goal, the (hopefully) right resources, great story telling content, and a way to measure progress.
Sounds a lot like inbound marketing!
Getting Your Accounting or Consulting Firm Started on an Inbound Marketing JourneyThere are quite a few moving parts to inbound marketing, and for professional services firms, moving down this path is a journey that should not be taken lightly, not unlike the decision to bike across the country.
For most firms, moving into inbound marketing will require a new way of thinking about how to build sales, new roles and responsibilities for marketers and shareholders, investments in resources ranging from marketing software like HubSpot to consultants, and perhaps most importantly, a commitment by the firm’s management team to taking on the journey.
The catalyst for your journey into inbound marketing needs to be understanding and pinpointing the critical issues or flaws in your firm’s marketing program that aren’t being solved by your current approach.
4 Ways to Tell if Your Firm Needs Inbound Marketing
Here are four questions that your marketing team and management committee need to put on the next marketing meeting agenda:
1. Are we converting strangers to visitors to our website?
If you aren’t seeing growth in traffic to your website, then you may need an inbound marketing fix that could involve better SEO, more content, responsiveness or a combination of solutions.
2. Are we converting website visitors to leads?
This is pretty much a problem for every CPA firm website that we see – no mechanisms other than a contact us form or a belief that the brand carries so much weight that it triggers a phone inquiry. If you aren’t getting leads than it’s time to start using content tucked behind forms to capture those eyeballs and bring prospects into your sales funnel.
3. Are we converting leads into sales?
It’s not enough to capture prospects at the top of the sales funnel, you need a process and technology to move them though the sales funnel. This is where marketing automation comes into play – it’s one of those key moving parts of inbound marketing that are critical for getting ROI from you marketing investment
4. Are we creating evangelists for our firm?
Part of the mission of today’s marketing function in professional services firms needs to be developing and strengthening relationships with clients, prospects, referral sources and other influencers. This is done with great content, published and promoted in aa comprehensive manner, along with social sharing capabilities on your site, in your newsletters, and in your content.
Inbound Marketing is a Journey, Not a Destination
Unlike the bike-riding teacher who has a destination, inbound marketing never reaches any type of concluding point. It’s a journey that has many different processes that get continually refined with more ideas, more creativity, and more attention and reaction to analytics.
After reading the story about the teacher, I got inspired and actually rode my bike along the Erie Canal trail and repeated the 80 mile journey ... cushy seat et al. All I can say is that I’m thankful for Advil and BENGAY, although there is another lesson here about being particularly careful about its delicate application.
To the teacher, William “Buddy” Nyhof, best wishes and good luck. If you’re interested in supporting him go here.
To accounting, consulting and other professional services firms, it’s time to hop on an inbound marketing bike and get your journey started!