Can You Hear Me Now?

Eight reasons why accounting firms need to work on internal communications first.

By Bruce W. Marcus
Professional Services Marketing 3.0

A terrific definition of chaos is when a client asks two different people in your firm the same question – and gets two different and conflicting answers.

Bruce W. Marcus
Bruce W. Marcus

More for PRO members: Managing Knowledge as a Growth and Management Tool The Secret Formula for Getting New ClientsWhat We’ve Learned Since Accounting Marketing Was LegalizedDo Accounting Firms Really Want an ‘Image’?What Accounting Firms Need to Learn from Personal Financial Planning Specialists The Delicate Art of Positioning Your Firm in the Mind of the Prospect

Another form of it is when there’s a crisis, and the press calls and gets somebody on the phone who hasn’t been briefed – but who answers the questions anyway. There’s real horror for you. READ MORE →

Your Clients Love You? What If You’re Wrong?

A short discourse on random and statistical risk.

By Bruce W. Marcus
Professional Services Marketing 3.0

Risks are different in context and magnitude. A good mathematician can often statistically quantify the boundaries of risk, such as telling you that one in every hundred people will slip in the bathtub and break a bone, but that depersonalizes it and tells you nothing to help you avoid it. And that’s only halfway to understanding it.

More for CPA Trendlines PRO members:   The Three Degrees of Risk  • Four Essential Habits for Building Client Trust   •  The Nine Hallmarks of a Marketing Culture  •  The Four Cornerstones to Building A Marketing Culture   •   Getting the Client is Only Half the Battle  • Practice Development: It’s Not Rocket Science  •  Nine Fundamentals for a Healthy Marketing Culture in an Accounting Firm  •

READ MORE →

Managing Knowledge as a Marketing and Management Tool

What do we really know when we say we know?

by Bruce W. Marcus
Professional Services Marketing 3.0

The road to knowledge management, now well-traveled, seems to end with the science of acquiring and retrieving data. The end of that road, which was built mostly by the brilliance of computer scientists, stops where a clear understanding of the meaning of useful knowledge begins.

Bruce W. Marcus
Bruce W. Marcus

More for CPA Trendlines PRO members: The Secret Formula for Getting New Clients What We’ve Learned Since Accounting Marketing Was LegalizedDo Accounting Firms Really Want an ‘Image’?What Accounting Firms Need to Learn from Personal Financial Planning Specialists The Delicate Art of Positioning Your Firm in the Mind of the ProspectEven a Random Disaster Can Be Controlled with Risk Management

But with the growth of knowledge management as a discipline in many aspects of professional practice, some definitions may help forge a new direction for knowledge management that not only move the subject to a new realm of discovery, but may help find ways to make knowledge more useful as a management and marketing tool. We now seem to know a lot about gathering data, and are learning to turn data into knowledge. Knowledge must now be adapted to work for the firm, and especially for the firm’s leaders. READ MORE →

Managing Risk in Client Relations

Wishful thinking?

by Bruce W. Marcus
Professional Services Marketing 3.0

CPA Trendlines research has uncovered the startling fact of the wide disparity between how accounting firm management perceives their own performance and how their clients see their performance. (Join the survey; get the results.)

RELATED:  Your Clients Love You? What If You’re Wrong?  The Three Degrees of Risk  • Four Essential Habits for Building Client Trust   •  The Nine Hallmarks of a Marketing Culture  •  The Four Cornerstones to Building A Marketing Culture   •   Getting the Client is Only Half the Battle  • Practice Development: It’s Not Rocket Science  •  Nine Fundamentals for a Healthy Marketing Culture in an Accounting Firm  •

Another consideration of risk lies in a tendency to ignore or distort reality, which can lead to a vast expectations gap. READ MORE →

The Competition for Talent: It’s All About Motivation

At Microsoft, they worry about motivation, says Bruce W. Marcus, author of Professional Services Marketing 3.0. When everybody who holds any kind of a responsible job is making more money than any of them ever dreamed they would, and when they’re in an industry that would pay anything to hire them away, how do you motivate people? How do you get them to stay, and to produce at the high levels demanded by Microsoft and other high-tech companies? Two ways.

In this report:

  • Five mistakes firms make.
  • Four strategies that can’t miss.

READ MORE →

The Secret Formula for Getting New Clients

The 16-step plan to focus on landing one new client at a time.

By Bruce W. Marcus
Professional Services Marketing 3.0

Here’s a little secret about accounting marketing: It always comes down to selling the individual clients – one by one.

More Professional Services Marketing 3.0: What We’ve Learned Since Accounting Marketing Was LegalizedDo Accounting Firms Really Want an ‘Image’?What Accounting Firms Need to Learn from Personal Financial Planning Specialists The Delicate Art of Positioning Your Firm in the Mind of the ProspectEven a Random Disaster Can Be Controlled with Risk Management

You can talk about strategies, and image, and niche marketing and branding. You can talk about blogs, and social media, and press releases and webinars. But it always comes down to selling the individual clients – one by one.

Well… if you’re going to have to do that anyway, why not start with target marketing to begin with? READ MORE →

What We’ve Learned Since Accounting Marketing Was Legalized by the U.S. Supreme Court in 1977

For good, bad or indifferent.

EDITOR’S NOTE: This article originally appeared in the September 1980 issue of The Virginia Accountant. It is one of the first articles – if not the very first article – on the advent of legalized marketing for accountants after Bates v. State Bar of Arizona. It is as viable today as it was then.

By Bruce W. Marcus
Professional Services Marketing 3.0

When, a few years ago, the codes of ethics were changed to allow straightforward marketing by profes­sionals, there came into play a new configuration of circumstances and activities that will reverberate throughout the accounting profession for years to come.

Bruce W. Marcus
Bruce W. Marcus

More for CPA Trendlines PRO members: Do Accounting Firms Really Want an ‘Image’? What Accounting Firms Need to Learn from Personal Financial Planning Specialists The Delicate Art of Positioning Your Firm in the Mind of the Prospect

For generations, concepts of probity have pervaded public accounting. Accountants were to be not merely independent, but well beyond the fray of public quarrel of exposure. The sword of the CPA has always been independence and, it was long felt, independence is compromised by public debate. And now comes mar­keting, the crux of which is visibility. READ MORE →

The Three Degrees of Risk

R-I-S-K: It’s amazing that so simple a four-letter word can be so complicated.

By Bruce W. Marcus
Professional Services Marketing 3.0

Bruce W. Marcus
Marcus

There are risks with dire consequences and risks with negligible consequences. There is risk in every human enterprise; in every trade or endeavor. We take risks, in varying degrees (and sometimes unwittingly) every day of our lives. There is even risk inherent in getting out of bed in the morning. But what – on any level – does risk really mean? Can risk be tamed? READ MORE →