This is a first draft: it is not complete. The purpose is to collect information necessary to create a marketing calendar.
I suppose that many of us in business are doing some strategic marketing work this month. For me that means working with adviser Sebastian Meine to make up a marketing calendar. The idea is to start with the intended end result (10 new clients) then work back to how many leads are needed and then make an activity plan on how to generate those leads.
Review of the past:
I started my independent practice three years ago and the number and size of my clients is still inadequate. In 2018 all of my new accounts came by personal referral or direct personal inquiry by a person I already knew; not traceable to any specific marketing plan or action. The perceived problem with this source of new clients is that it is ‘random’ and not manageable for improved results.
The goal of my marketing is to generate 12 new clients in 2019. I estimate that to do this I will need to meet 60 new prospect leads (5 per month) this year by some causal activity that can be measured. Contact with these new people may come initially by telephone, email, text or web form.
Who is a prospective client:
A business owner or self-employed professional in the Philadelphia tri-state region, age 40-75, with business or household gross income over $250,000 or net worth exclusive of residence of over $500,000 who does not have a flourishing relationship with an accountant. (Unfortunately I can’t make a living serving clients without and immediately available source of payment and it makes no sense to interfere with good accountants).
The only other qualifier is that they have to be either attracted to (or at least not offended by) my environmental and social activism and historic role in prosecuting Trump. Unfortunately I’ve learned the hard way that the majority of my natural market and former client base of suburban and rural contractors does not meet this criteria.
The largest and most consistent marketing exposure comes from my web site www.tonynovak.com. I’m now revisiting some basic issues of web marketing that remain unresolved. For me, a main focus of my marketing has been to generate some response from my we site: either a call, email or web inquiry form. But I did not get any from my web site in 2018. This “Get Started” page, for example, had over 34,000 visitors to date but no lead forms were generated. (Yes, I tested it; it does work).
A look at web site visitors:
I know that the large majority of my web site visitors averaging about 150 per day fall into the category of competitors; other accountants and financial services people who are not from the local area. The second largest group fall into the category of people who may wish to sell a service to me, for example, business coaches. Unfortunately don’t have good information on how many are actually prospective clients in the target market business owners without a solid accountant relationship in the Philadelphia region. I know that most of my traffic comes from Google searches by people in the U.S., ie. people looking for free technical information but not necessarily looking for an accountant.
Marketing activity measurement:
The plan is to develop a system with a measurable result of marketing activity that I can start with a small number of results (whatever that specific measurable result is) and then focus on ways to make it into a larger number of results. Starting from zero results is the intimidating part for me. If I had generated one web lead as a result of a marketing program then I would study how it came to me and then to use that information to duplicate and innovate on how to get more.
I understand from marketing advisers that the problem is in framing the value proposition and getting it in front of the right prospects. I’m focusing on learning more on this topic from third party resources.
The marketing action plan is to work through LinkedIn to identify potential candidates and make a plan that builds relationship with some portion of them. I am primarily focused on lawyers operating their own practice so the coaching focuses on ways to identify and communicate with these potential client candidates.