If you’re ahead on your marketing vernacular, you probably know that everyone who wants to sell products or services would benefit from having a digital marketing strategy. With every consumer being connected to a device every day – either via their mobile phone, tablet, or even through at-home personal assistants, like the Amazon Echo – not having a strategy in place to tackle the digital marketing game is just bad business.
We already know that many brands are knocking their digital strategies out of the park (we’re looking at you, Wendy’s). But digital marketing is about so much more than merely upping your Twitter banter and posting a well-lit photo to Instagram with relevant hashtags. A comprehensive, well-conceived digital strategy goes beyond your Facebook page and into a realm of marketing that is smart, fluid, and branded, proceeding to meet your unique business metrics and engage with your specific clientele.
For those who operate in the field of professional services, it may be more vital than ever to make sure your digital marketing strategy is working for you. After all, it could be one of the primary ways to attract new business and requests for your services.
Careers that fall under the professional services umbrella include specialists who have a license to practice. These include, but are not limited to:
Accountants & Financial Planners
IT or Management Consultants
Since the demand for these services is traditionally driven by external factors – directories, referrals, and word-of-mouth – it may seem as if all you need to maintain the flow of business is a phone and an email address, but you’d be wrong.
Why Professional Services Should Have a Digital Marketing Strategy
When it comes to marketing, many industries are dead-set on using tired tactics to reach existing and new audiences, such as direct mail, billboards, television commercials, and magazine ads. While there are recent cases of businesses leveraging these platforms to make an impression, most investments into these mediums flounder and deliver no measurable results for money spent. Print ads are becoming digitized to live on ezines, television ads are aired on YouTube and other streaming services, and direct mail is now pixelated and sent out via e-newsletters.
Even if you’ve spent enough time with marketers to know that having a Facebook page is as important as a website, owning one isn’t enough. You have to know what to do with this powerful marketing asset.
If you’re wondering what having a digital marketing strategy means, let us break it down.
A digital marketing strategy is a unique set of tactics used to reach and engage with your specific audience across digital landscapes, including websites, mobile devices, and even touchscreen panels. This strategy often includes a fluid form of communication and transferable brand that translates across every digitized touchpoint. These touchpoints can include, but are not limited to:
A Mobile-Friendly Website
Relevant & Active Social Media Accounts
Targeted Online Ads
Brand Ambassadors & Influencers
PR Management – Reviews & Comments
Content Strategy – Blogs, White Papers, and e-Books
Search Engine Optimization
Data Measurement, Analytics, & Reporting
Internet of Things (IoT) – Connected Devices
Professional Services: A Glimpse into The Legal Industry
Let’s use lawyers as an example.
Standard platforms that law firms use to advertise their services include print ads, a few billboards, and maybe a poorly scripted commercial. But for 96% of clients seeking legal help, they are turning to search engines to find a firm that speaks to their needs and interests.
Seems like neglected territory, doesn’t it?
What separates one firm of lawyers from the next is not always about communicating years of experience or cases won with expensive adverts; the difference is in their personalities and competencies around human interaction and relatability. Since 97% of legal websites don’t deliver on personalized content, there’s no better way to share these personalities than by creating a digital marketing strategy that positions your firm as approachable and accessible, as well as communicates your capabilities.
Since consumers love to interact with real, welcoming human beings – with customer experience dominating over product or service as a brand differentiator – a digital marketing strategy can help the often-intimidating lawyer appear to be more approachable.
Let’s say that your strategy includes investing in video. For law firms, this one asset could leverage a 49% boost in annual revenue each year if only one video lived on your website. This one tool could also help 74% of millennial consumers make a decision about using a service, such as legal advice. And if you’re stuck on producing those dated commercials, it could actually lower your revenue. If a firm shares a video of poor quality, 62% of searchers will develop a negative association with your business. Not to mention, you’re also saving thousands on broadcasting costs if your digital strategy includes ways to push that video out across digital landscapes.
Let us lay down some more stats for you, in case we haven’t yet convinced you that having a digital marketing strategy is worth the investment.
40% of law firms don’t even have a website – yikes!
74% of law firm website visitors use the site to reach out to you, yet: 27% do not have a phone number, 68% do not have an email address, and 70% do not have a call-to-action on their home page.
31% of legal-related website traffic come directly from mobile search, and 42% of those people switch between multiple platforms to research legal advice, specifically.
Now, we understand that we’re highlighting just one fragment of the professional services industry by focusing on law firms, but a lot of these stats are transferable among accountants, architects, and engineers alike.
Digital marketing is here to stay, and 75% of consumers want businesses to maintain a consistent experience everywhere they visit – from voice to branding.
If you want to stay top-of-mind in the professional services industry and attract new business by investing in a comprehensive digital marketing strategy that details the platforms, methods, and engagement techniques needed to get a leg up over your competitors – and better yet, have a team of people executing it for you.