accountant_dogTruth be told, there’s very little chance that when you meet with your accountant to see if you’re eligible for a Sec 179(d) tax credit that he’ll suddenly whip the glasses off of his head, poke you in the chest with them, and say something like “You know, a few more middle and bottom of the funnel offers on the site and a targeted workflow will get you more leads”.

Nuh-uh. Not gonna happen.

It’s a pretty sure bet that your CPA won’t be giving you inbound marketing advice this tax season. But what CPAs revealed about lead generation in The 2013/14 Survey of CPA Firm Best Lead Generation Practices applies to any consulting, A/E/C or B2B company.

Like your firm, CPAs have to market and sell their services, and like any B2B firm, some do it very well, and some do it extremely poorly.

In the survey we conducted, we asked questions about the types of lead generation tactics, offers and promotional strategies that firms considered to be most and least effective. We asked questions about infrastructure, marketing technologies and budget plans. We sliced and diced the data by company size and attitudes about marketing.

And just because we’re troublemakers at heart, we took a peek at the similarities and differences between what the marketing folks in the company thought were effective lead generation strategies and tactics compared to the head honcho’s perceptions. Hoo boy … talk about stirring the pot!

6 Survey Results that Ring True for Your B2B Company

So, what lessons can consulting, A/E/C, and other B2B firms learn from the accountants about lead generation? Here are 6 takeaways that should apply to your company:

Don’t Just Depend On the Schmooze

85% of firms said that referrals, networking, and word of mouth are the best ways to acquire leads, but they’re also using multiple online lead generation tactics to complement their 1:1 marketing efforts.

Think TOFU, MOFU and BOFU

The most aggressive and progressive firms say that their top three types of offers are seminars (51% report either very effective or effective), articles (44%) and free consultations (36%).

Stop Wasting the Marketing Budget

About 8 out of 10 firms say that they don’t use or find telemarketing, pay-per-click, and cold calling ineffective when it comes to lead generation tactics.

Follow the Leaders

Nearly 90% of larger and more progressive firms use call-to-action buttons and landing pages on their website to covert site visitors to leads. However, it's not so similar for medium size firms (60%) and smaller firms (about 25%).

Get on the Same Page With Marketing Analytics

The head honcho and the head marketer don’t always see eye to eye when it comes to their perception of what’s effective in terms of lead acquisition tactics, types of offers and best ways to promote offers. Sounds like a job for marketing analytics!

Get More Site Traffic, More Leads and More ROI in 2014

While your accountants are busy preparing your tax returns, you can get busy generating online leads for your company.  That means moving into inbound marketing, and here’s the first steps you’ll want to take:

  • Get up to speed on the tactics, tools and technologies of online lead generation. A good place to start (or enhance) your education is our whitepaper, The Partner’s Guide to Online Lead Generation, that you can get here.
  • Re-design or re-engineer your website to shift its mission from being an online brochure to a lead generation magnet
  • Install marketing technology like HubSpot to provide the infrastructure and tools for lead capture, nurturing and measurements of effectiveness
  • Develop a content marketing strategy or program that built upon content unique and proprietary to the your company

At the beginning of this blog, I promised you that your CPA could help you get more leads, and I think that the results of the survey accomplish that in the way of insights, observations and data that can help you structure your B2B company’s marketing strategies and budget.

So here’s to an upcoming tax season that’s filled with new leads and lower taxes for you and your firm!

VitbergLLC is a marketing agency specializing in online marketing for CPA, consulting and other professional services firms. Contact them here or call Alan at 585-425-2552 to talk about improving your digital marketing program.

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Originally published Nov 11, 2013 10:00:00 AM, updated October 20 2016

Topics:

Inbound Marketing Lead Generation Content Marketing