Sunday, April 27, 2008

Three Recession-Proof Marketing Ideas

Check out the link below for the article, "Three Recession-Proof Marketing Ideas," recently posted in CPA Insider written by Rick Telberg of the Bay Street Group.

Bay Street Group and Capstone Marketing are conducting marketing research on several topics related to the successful operations of CPA firms. The first survey is regarding marketing and business development. Participate in the survey and receive a free copy of the results. It can be found at

Look for more surveys in the coming weeks.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Sell, Baby, Sell!

In his book, The Professional Firm50, Tom Peters ( shows you how to reinvent work including 50 sections and over 200 things to do. Now that you've survived another tax season it's important to refocus your marketing and sales efforts. The following things to do are adapted from Peters' book:
  1. What is our product? Start a series of sessions around this topic.
  2. Put together a superb Sales & Marketing Kit. Start now. Spend semi-lavishly to make it an unqualified "WOW!" (I.e.: Don't be chintzy!) Consider bringing in an outsider to help you learn the ropes of marketing-selling.
  3. As the process above proceeds, talk "sales" with your clients: Let them help you define your product and its clear (we hope) advantages.
  4. Conduct marketing/sales training sessions. The idea is not Arm Twisting 101. The idea is: This Is Our Cool Product ... and this is why it's cool/special.
  5. Include "Sales Talk" in your weekly operations-projects review meetings.

The Professional Firm50 was published in 1999. What I've learned so far is that there are many timeless marketing and sales activities that will contribute to the growth and success of your firm if implemented consistently.

Friday, April 4, 2008

Top Five Challenges to Hiring Salespeople

As CPA firms continue to hire salespeople/business developers it becomes increasingly important to utilize a process to ensure a successful hire. Go-to-Market Strategies recently e-mailed an article, "Overcoming the Top Five Challenges to Hiring Salespeople," which is based on their research:

  1. Determining whether the candidate in front of you will translate into the star employee you're looking for.
  2. Affording the talent you seek.
  3. Selling the opportunity.
  4. Differentiating between a Hunter and Farmer.
  5. Assessing a candidate's "motivation."

Read the entire article at

Thursday, April 3, 2008

Niche Marketing Success Stories

Here is the link to my article, "Expand Your Horizons: Niche Marketing Success Stories," published in the April 2008 issue of Journal of Accountancy. Enjoy!

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

What Should Lawyers And Accountants Worry About In The Current Economic Downturn?

Bruce Marcus, a pioneer in law firm and professional services marketing, writes on this topic in the most recent issue of The Marcus Letter,, including:

The answer lies in firm management. And do it now – before the deluge hits your firm.

First, reassess the situation. Check your client list for potential weak companies. Weak companies that may be caught up in the economic downturn become slow payers, and then no payers. Either increase collection methods, or be prepared to let them go and cut your losses.

Second, check your firm. You don't want to give up real talent, but in today's climate, you don't want to carry staff (including partners) who aren't carrying their share of the load.

Third, think productivity. Review all your management processes, from partnership agreements to cash flow management to marketing. Make sure your electronics are up-to-date, and are really saving you money. Look for potential return on perks and club memberships. Preserve capital as best you can. And take your banker to lunch - you may need him or her.

Fourth, look to your marketing. It's not an expense, it's an investment. If you use it wisely, and give the marketing professionals a chance, sound marketing may give you the best return on your investment.

Fifth, pay closer attention to the industries your major clients are in. That's where the early warning signs will be.