Thought Leadership Through Content Marketing for Business Professionals

Hiring marketing or content marketing talent?Most small business owners are heavily focused on their core skillset. They are bakers, event planners, lawyers – insert job – first, and accountants and marketers second. As Pamela Slim writes for Entrepreneur, “Most small business owners aren’t marketers by trade, but almost all (95 percent) do some form of marketing for themselves, and many need to master what can feel like a very steep learning curve quickly. Most entrepreneurs and small business owners (64 percent) are self-taught and less than half (46 percent) consider themselves ‘marketing savvy.’”

This means that “basic” concepts of marketing might not be obvious to very capable and intelligent people. One area we see this a lot is with professional firms. Accounting, legal services, consulting, etc. are service-related industries, and services are provided by people. Because of this, when marketing, it’s important that steps are taken to market the professionals behind those services, above and beyond the firm itself. When seeking professional services consumers want to connect with people – not companies. One of the best ways to market professional services is through thought leadership.

How?

There are many ways to work towards gaining acceptance as a thought leader, but some are easier than others, particularly at the outset. For example, appearing as an expert panelist on a national news network would be great publicity for anyone trying to become a thought leader, but those gigs aren’t exactly easy to come by. A good place to start is content marketing, where you provide valuable content – whether in the form of blogs, whitepapers, podcasts or other media – for free.

What?

Make it more about them, than about you. While your experience and credentials are certainly important in attracting clients, be careful about being too overtly promotional in your communications and marketing, especially from a content management standpoint. The content you produce should be focused on answering potential client questions about accounting and how they are impacted by working with a solid adviser. The more value you can provide the more likely you will become a go-to resource for them.

Where?

Content marketing is all about establishing a strong presence online in places where their target audience is likely to be, and likely to be looking for the information the professional has to provide. For instance, if focusing on accounting for individuals and families, this might be Facebook. If focusing on accounting for businesses, this would more likely be LinkedIn. Thought leadership might also include writing blog posts, PR/media outreach (e.g. contributing articles to publications and media outlets that reach your target audience, etc.).

 

Professional services are all about the professionals (i.e., people) providing the services your firm is offering. And a big differentiator for professionals is the perception of that professional as an expert in their chosen field. Thought leadership through content marketing is a great place for any professional to start.

 

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About Us

Strategic Communications, LLC, works with B2B clients to help them achieve their goals through effective content marketing and management with both internal and external audiences. We are adept at evaluating and analyzing communication efforts and working with clients to plan, create and publish high-quality, unique content, through both on- and offline media to achieve desired results. Our background in business journalism, marketing, PR/media relations and online communications makes us well-positioned to serve the needs of 21st-century marketers.

We serve clients who are looking for help creating content for a wide array of channels—from social media posts to full-length manuscripts, and everything in between. We focus primarily on service-related B2B topics and work with a number of independent consultants interested in building their thought leadership through online channels. For ongoing content management, our first step is to fully understand your goals, objectives and competitive landscape.

Then we’ll conduct a thorough analysis and assessment of your digital presence, compared to competitors, and recommend a communication strategy to achieve your goals. But, we also regularly take on individual projects – white papers, blog posts, contributed articles, etc. If you’re interested in learning more, let us know!

(Strategic Communications is certified as a Woman-Owned Business Enterprise through the Wisconsin Department of Administration.)

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