White paper on social media in selling for lawyers, accountants and surveyors
Posted on: December 15, 2010
A while back I got together with a well known consultant in digital marketing and social media to produce a White Paper providing guidance to lawyers, accountants and surveyors – and their business development advisers – on the use of social media in selling and integrating social media into their marketing, selling and relationship management activities.
I started collaborating with Peter Abraham of Econsultancy back in June 2010 to prepare for a series of workshops with the Professional Marketing Forum Annual Conference in September 2010. Questionnaires were issued in advance to assess the sophistication in both sales processes and social media and workshop exercises concentrated on developing best practice guidance. We worked further to build on this information to develop a new model which is described in the White Paper.
Many professional firms have embraced social media in their marketing practices – primarily because the marketing and business development professionals are leading the way. However, the sales process is usually in the hands of the lawyers, accountants and surveyors themselves and we wanted to find ways to integrate with and enhance their traditional new business selling and relationship management practices.
Peter commented “Whilst many of our clients are large, international organisations who are relatively advanced in their use of digital marketing and social media the area of social media and selling is less well developed. The professions focus more on existing client relationship management and new business sales in a much more personal way – often leveraging expert content – and we were keen to find ways to support them in this. We have provided guidance for those firms who are just beginners, intermediate and more advanced in their selling and social media practices”.
Over 40 delegates from 35 firms participated in the research and workshop exercises. The 25 page white paper contains the following sections:
Assessing selling skills and social media knowledge
Best practice – Defining and aligning social media best practice in professional firms
Social media for beginner, intermediate and “star” (advanced) fee-earners
Social media in existing relationship management
Social media in selling to new clients
Key themes emerging
Towards a model that integrates social media and selling in the professions
11 Key Lessons
And next – what’s trending?
Further reading (Professional Bodies, useful guides and books (Selling, Social Media, Digital Marketing))
Peter’s a director at Econsultancy.com which provides best practice in Digital Marketing and assists companies in building effective digital marketing teams. He has an MSc in Digital Marketing, runs various Linkedin groups and Twitter profiles, and has presented on how to use social media with established digital marketing channels and ‘What’s trending in Digital Marketing’. He is currently particularly interested/involved in mobile and social/business networks and how the ‘mobile web’ will transform a world which was wired and static into one which is fluid, mobile and accessible to all.