• Jon Hubbard, Shareholder, Consultant

5 Marketing Tools To Grow Your Advisory Services

Marketing is a crucial part of growing a firm. While many firms have successfully marketed their traditional service lines, they’re finding the same tools and methods that worked for audit and tax don’t work for advisory and consulting services. To help fast track your success, I’ve compiled this list of five marketing tools that every advisory and consulting service needs.

#1 - Clear messaging framework

CPA firms are historically bad at properly communicating the value of their services. They spend too much time talking about their history and experience and not enough time talking about their clients and their successes. This is due to not having a clear framework for developing the messaging for your firm and it’s services. As a result, most prospects and clients are confused when reading your website and materials and are often not even aware of everything you can offer them.

To communicate more clearly, you need to follow a messaging framework, so potential clients know how to engage, follow along and remember your firm. When a potential client visits your website, they should be able to instantly understand what you do and how they’ll benefit from working with you.

#2 – Website wireframe that focuses on client value

As I mentioned previously, your website’s copy needs to focus on what’s in it for your clients. Too often, firms focus on highlighting their own expertise and accomplishments. The truth is, clients don’t necessarily work with the most experienced or accomplished advisors. They work with professionals who quickly demonstrate they can provide value, make their lives better, and solve problems.

Your website’s wireframe needs to focus on client value rather than your firm. You should also include:

  • Client testimonials. Including three or four client testimonials will significantly enhance your authority and show potential clients that the services you offer really work.

  • Clear calls to action. You want to give potential clients an obvious path toward working with you.

#3 – Lead-generating PDF

As I mentioned above, your webpage needs a clear call to action. A direct call to action is like a “buy now” button. It clearly asks potential clients to take the next step toward working with you by scheduling an appointment, placing an order, making a call, etc.

However, sometimes people aren’t ready to take that step. This is where transitional calls to action, such as a lead-generating PDF, comes into play.

Offer visitors to your advisory webpage a checklist, worksheet, or short white paper – something that provides value and builds trust with clients who aren’t quite ready to buy. In exchange for the PDF, you collect something equally valuable – their email address.

#4 – Automated email series

Now that you’ve collected email addresses from visitors to your webpage that have shown some interest in your services, you need an automated email series that triggers specific messages to be sent whenever customers take a particular action.

Using a workflow or automation in your email marketing platform, craft a series of emails that offer value, share your knowledge to make their lives/businesses better and point their attention to your products and services.

A simple framework might be:

  1. Welcome and deliver your lead-generating PDF

  2. Address a major objection to buying your service. For example, “Most people think X, but if they only knew Y, then Z.”

  3. Provide a case study or social proof to show how their life/business will improve after working with you.

  4. Offer help. Ask them to reply with the biggest challenge they’re facing.

  5. A strong call to action. Final email with a strong call to action, asking the potential client to schedule an appointment with you today.

  6. Re-engagement email. If you don’t receive a response to the previous email, encourage re-engagement by asking why they aren’t interested in working with you right now.

  7. Re-engagement email. Still no response? Send a final email asking if the potential client is still interested in hearing from you and offering to take them off of your list if they’re no longer interested.

#5 – Compelling client testimonials

As I mentioned above, including client testimonials and case studies in your marketing plan can help build trust and grow your firm. But how do you gather these testimonials?

Instead of emailing clients to ask for a testimonial (and getting back vague responses), ask specific questions. Here are a few examples to help you get started:

  1. What was your biggest problem or challenge before working with our firm?

  2. How did that challenge or problem make you feel?

  3. What changed after you started working with our firm?

  4. Do you have any specific metrics or other results you can share?

  5. What would you say to someone considering working with our firm?

  6. Anything else to add?

  7. Do we have your permission to feature your company and this testimonial in our marketing materials?

Once you receive their responses, craft the story for them. Compile their responses into quotes, testimonials or case studies and send it back to the client for their final approval. This process will give you better client testimonials that tell a compelling story of transformation.

Generating new clients is a big challenge for every firm entering the advisory services arena. But with these five tools, you can differentiate yourself from the competition and provide more value to clients. The result will be greater revenue and continuous, long-term engagements.

Does you firm have a clear Marketing & Business Development strategy?

We can help provide your firm with clarity and understanding so that you can focus on the right objectives at the right time.​ Schedule a discovery call with one of our Solutions Advisors and get on the path to transforming your firm.

Jon Hubbard, Director at Boomer Consulting helps accounting firm leaders find success in the areas of leadership, talent and growth. Jon is a facilitator for the Boomer P3 Leadership Academy, Boomer Talent Circle and Boomer Marketing & BD Circle. He also guides firms to grow and be more effective in the areas of client service, marketing and business development. Jon speaks at various industry conferences, user conferences, state societies, and associations. He is a Storybrand Certified Guide and Certified Kolbe Consultant.