Is Your Marketing Message Preventing You From Finding Clients?
One mistake that I see bookkeepers making time and time again is to not have a clear niche and this leads to a very vague marketing message. Here are some examples that I have seen:
“Do you need a bookkeeper?” “I have availability for bookkeeping clients at the moment.” “Are you looking for a bookkeeper in the Glasgow area?” “Bookkeeping services available.”
These messages are too vague and are just not going to speak to anyone. Yes, we all know that a great bookkeeper is a fantastic asset for any business owner but you need to have a clear message about how you can help. As nice as they may be, most business owners are really busy. They don’t care who you are, where you live, whether you work from home or if you have kids – all they care about really is how you can make their lives easier.
For those of you that are thinking, well I don’t want to niche, I want to help anyone and everyone, let’s think about supermarkets for a minute. They probably have a much bigger marketing budget than you do but still, they don’t market to everyone - they market to their ideal customers.
You’ve probably seen adverts from Lidl, Asda and Tesco. Every single person on this planet needs to eat to stay alive, but they don’t market to everyone. They don’t say “Do you eat food?” How vague is that? They have slogans such as:
“Big on quality, Lidl on price.” “Asda. Saving your money every day.” “Every little bit helps.”
These three supermarkets are appealing to families who need to watch their budget when it comes to food shopping. Their adverts feature “real everyday people” out in the supermarket, feeding their families on a budget and saving money in the process.
On the other end of the scale you have your luxury supermarkets such as Marks and Spencer and Waitrose who tempt us with super sexy adverts saying:
“This is not just food, this is M&S food.” “Everyone deserves quality food. Everyone deserves Waitrose.”
These taglines highlight the fact that their food is the best and you deserve the best. They appeal to people with a higher income who don’t mind paying more for quality food. They don’t want a cheap steak, they want the best steak.
Lidl would say that their steak is only £3 – bargain! Marks and Spencer wouldn’t say the price. They would use words such as juicy, decadent, mouth-watering, sizzling and delicious. Their ideal clients would think “I don’t care how much that steak is, I want it.” Others would think “I bet that steak is dear!” Do you see the difference? Families on a budget would go to Lidl for a steak, whilst a middle-aged couple earning a high income would head for Marks and Spencer because to them food isn’t a necessity, it’s a treat and they want the best.
These brands spend lots of time and money on their advertising, but they stick to three golden rules:
- Know your customer
- Know what your customer wants from you
- Know where to find your customer
Have you ever noticed the kinds of adverts that are shown on tv? Companies looking for air time for their adverts don’t want their advert playing at any old time. They want it to air when their ideal customers are going to be watching. That is why toy adverts appear between kids tv shows and why when the football is on a break there are adverts for beer and cars. If you were selling a hoover, would you want it on after a crime documentary, after a darts match or after Coronation Street?
Now I’m not suggesting that you use tv to advertise your services but I do want you to think about where you will find your ideal client. Where do they hang out? How will you reach them?
Look out for Part Two of this blog where I will run through the steps that you need to take to find your ideal client and the right marketing message to reach them.