Does marketing work? (Awards vs Results, Case study template, SEO guide etc.)

I know you don’t have much time for marketing so I’ll make this quick!

Does it work?

Like any marketing company owner, I’m constantly being asked whether certain tactics work or not.


My answer is always, “it depends”.


What does it depend on? Mainly where your audience is. For example, if you’re marketing to lawyers, you’ll find them on LinkedIn and not so much on Facebook. But if you’re marketing to creatives, you might have more joy on Instagram.


Results also depend on execution. It’s funny how often people tell me “email marketing doesn’t work” or “we get nothing from social media” as if it’s the platform to blame. It’s a bit like saying, “I played the piano, it sounded like crap – music doesn’t work”. Perhaps look closer to home!


To illustrate my point, two tactics many firms would dismiss are direct mail (old-fashioned) and TikTok (just for kids).


In terms of direct mail, I have a friend who is ex-KPMG but is now a freelance bookkeeper. He lives in one of the most expensive areas of New Zealand yet still spends plenty of the working week hunting and fishing.


The only marketing he does is send a direct mail twice a year to his clients, asking for referrals and if he can help with any additional services. This keeps his revenue growing nicely.


At the other end of the spectrum, here’s a CPA with 3 million followers on TikTok and a huge following on other social platforms.


Most tactics work if you have a solid strategy (two-thirds of firms don’t have a marketing plan) and execution (very few accountants are trained, marketers).


My proviso is that with limited time and budget for marketing, focus on what works best first.


Awards vs results

It must be awards season as my LinkedIn is filled with people in bow ties and evening dresses.


I’ll not bore you with my cynicism about awards but this article about Burger King’s poor recent performance caught my attention last week.


The same publication was recently praising Burger King’s “edgy” campaigns which have won numerous awards. In the meantime, they have been overtaken by Wendy’s in the US and McDonalds have streaked ahead with their supposedly boring marketing.


Marketing is about making money, not winning awards. Many marketing companies forget this. Be wary of agencies who spend more time talking about their brand than yours! It’s your dollar they are doing it on.


Case study template

Case studies are an evergreen marketing tool for professional services firms.If you don’t have any or need to refresh what you have, use this template to ask your best clients to be a case study subject.


Subject line: Case study for {firm name}


 –body of email–


Hi {first name}


We’re looking to get case studies from our valued clients and use them in our marketing. 


We’d love to interview you and get your feedback.


I’ll ask you a few questions about why you chose {firm name}, how you’ve found working with us and we’d love to hear about the results you’ve seen from our support. It will only take about 15 minutes.


Does this week suit you for a chat? Please let me know what time works for you and I’ll give you a call.


Thanks so much, I really appreciate it!


{your name and contact details}


Once you have case studies, post them on your website and then use snippets across all of your marketing from brochures to social media posts.


Sending a relevant case study to a prospective client, especially if it’s relevant to their industry or situation, is a great way to close a deal.


Complete guide to local SEO

Most firms are local businesses with an office and a client base drawn from close by. So an accurate and complete Google Business Profile (they’ve changed the name again!) is a must.


This article from Search Engine Journal is a complete guide to local search engine optimization.


Copywriting course

As a regular reader, you’ll know I think writing is a marketing super-power. One of my industry contacts asked me if I knew of any good copywriting courses this week.


I directed him to Copy Hackers which has a bunch of great courses plus general writing resources.


Connect on LinkedIn

I love LinkedIn and often share content similar to the Bulletin on there. If you’ve not already, connect with me on LinkedIn.


Taken from Bizink’s CEO, Matt Wilkinson’s email newsletter, the Bizink Bulletin.

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