There’s no two ways about it: developing a focused and clear market position for your professional firm is a challenge.
It's become something of an obsession of mine after watching multiple firms I worked for over the last 15 years - including some I managed - as they struggled to get traction with their sales and marketing.
But the results of having a laser-focused position for your firm are simply too good to pass up.
It’s a challenge, for sure, but a challenge absolutely worth taking up.
You will get better traction with your sales and improved ROI from your marketing. Attracting and closing new prospects will speed up considerably. This laser-like focus is also the key to unlocking the path to premium fees because you will be able to position yourself as an unqualified expert in your field.
I became determined to find a way to help service firms create, test, and benefit from a solid marketing position to help them grow. As part of that journey, I recently attended an event in Nashville, TN with 50 other marketing experts on the topic of how to position your marketing agencies to create premium pricing and expert status.
That subject - positioning a marketing agency to enhance its status as an expert, and thus drive premium pricing - translates perfectly to professional service firms.
Here are 5 top takeaways that will help you better position your professional firm:
Positioning your firm cannot be a secret. The impact of your position decision requires it to be stated upfront and boldly in your materials and website. Clients and prospects need to know you aren't 'making it up' and changing how you present your focus just to win the deal.
Competition is a good thing! It's a sign of life that your target market has potential. If you have too few of competitors in your space (anywhere from less than 10, on up to 200) it's a sign the market simply does not value spending serious money on your type of expertise. Don't focus on a market that isn't ready to spend to solve their problems.
Don't waste your energy trying to invent a new category. We need to be honest and stop thinking our firm is rare exception that is too difficult to market. That usually means you are combining services in a way that’s simply too confusing to explain.
Focus on delivering valuable expertise focused on solving a common problem. Combine the problem you solve with your unique perspective. Stop trying to reinvent a category.
You are not in the "customer service" business. Pick a specific problem to solve. One that you can become an expert at and can truly solve deeply. From that moment, you don't have to focus all your energy over-delivering on 'great customer service'. Clients are buying your point of view and your results, not your customer service. Focus on delivering results first, customer service second.
The formula is simple - focus on a position, drive home your expertise, win clients and charge appropriately.
It’s a challenge, but it’s a challenge you must meet head on if you want to take your professional firm to the next level.
If you’ve tried to focus your position - if you feel a sharp pain in your head when you even hear the word “positioning” - I’m here to help. I have more than 15 years of experience in marketing and branding, and this is exactly where I’ve positioned my company: helping focus your message so you can drive sales and feel more love for what you do.