Professional services firms would do better to talk first about the client’s business problem.
Larry Cheng makes a great point about start-up businesses articulating the problem they are trying to solve. But his point is in many ways just as valid for established professional services firms. What problem(s) is your firm trying to solve? Or to be more precise, what client problem(s) is your firm trying to solve?
At Muzeview, we like to say that client’s don’t have legal, accounting or tax problems in isolation. They have business problems first. Those business problems, or challenges or opportunities, may in turn have, say, a legal or tax or technology component that requires expert advice. Below are a few examples of the kinds of problems and challenges clients want help with (with an example of the related expert issues):
- Successfully launching a new product (while protecting it’s brand and design)
- Building a cost effective supply chain (that minimizes tax exposures)
- Using social media technologies to enhance customer service (but avoiding inappropriate employee behavior)
So when law, CPA or advisory firms spend time talking about their legal expertise or their accounting and finance skills or discuss legal or technical developments in isolation they are having the wrong conversation.
Firms need to be talking about solving the client’s business problem first.
What percentage of your firms marketing activities and client conversations truly start with the client’s business problem?