The business landscape has been fundamentally altered by Coronavirus and the associated restrictions imposed on businesses.
As we begin to emerge from lockdown firms will, of course, be keen to consolidate their position and attempt to sell new services and reach new clients.
However, as much remains uncertain the key focus for clients, both existing and prospective, is how professional advisers, such as accountants and solicitors, can support them.
For this reason, focusing your marketing approach on offering help, rather than trying to sell new services is likely to be more effective.
To help make sense of this new world, here are some tips that can assist you as you market your firm through the help it can offer.
Throughout lockdown you should have remained in constant communication with clients and prospects by providing updates on the ongoing changes to legislation and support that has been delivered by the Government.
During this challenging period, you should keep clear lines of communication open by sending regular updates and advice. This could be in the form of:
- One-to-one consultations
Most businesses are hungry for information that can help them to survive and thrive as they emerge from lockdown.
By showing that you are standing alongside them you are likely to retain existing clients and attract new ones, particularly if your competitors are not offering similar levels of support.
Early on in the pandemic, many clients may have gone quiet or cut their services. These businesses and individuals are probably those most likely to be struggling at this time.
Although it may have been frustrating losing them initially, now is the time to reach out and rebuild relationships.
Businesses now have more certainty about their future and may need specialist support. Even those facing the prospect of insolvency will need advice, so try to be there to offer a helping hand.
It is very easy to become set in your ways and complacent. However, things have changed and firms must innovate to survive.
As a result of lockdown businesses and individuals have become more reliant on electronic forms of communication.
Having grown to appreciate the value of tools, such as video conferencing and webinars, they are likely to expect them in the future.
Now is the time to look at how you can integrate technology and new approaches into your practice that facilitate easier communication online. This could even include offering automated services, such as chatbots or other AI interfaces.
Don’t be afraid to use social media to share stories and information that might benefit your clients.
Many businesses owners will be using social media more frequently during this period and the use of online platforms has increased drastically in recent months as people escape the monotony of being at home.
You should look to get involved in existing online conversations or you could look to create your own online forums or groups via Facebook and LinkedIn to disseminate information to local businesses who may otherwise be unaware of the services you provide.
Being helpful isn’t just about offering advice, it is also about listening to the concerns of your clients and other businesses.
Take time to speak with and learn more about the businesses you work with via one-to-one communication, online roundtable events, Q&As and client surveys.
By listening to clients, you can tailor the help that you offer so that clients get the maximum benefit from the content you prepare and distribute.
Listening to clients can also help with the planning of future events, provide cross-selling opportunities and assist with the development of new services.
Don’t be afraid to seek help
As well as offering help to your own clients don’t be afraid to reach out for support with marketing as well.
Throughout lockdown we have been supporting a wide range of professional services firms as they assist their clients, helping them to produce effective social media campaigns, communicate with local businesses via the press and create up to the minute updates and advice that have been shared digitally via blogs, podcasts, newswires and webinar presentations.
To find out how we can help you, help others as part of a new approach to marketing, please contact us today.