Professional service firms have untapped online marketing potential

Traditional marketing techniques at professional service firms are giving way to online marketing and inbound marketing strategies as buyers of professional services change their habits.

Hinge Research Institute released its 2011 examination of the current state and untapped potential of online marketing in professional services firms. Here are few of their findings.

Results demonstrate that professional service firms embracing online marketing grow faster:

  • Firms generating 40% or more of their leads online grow 4 times faster than those with no online leads
  • High-growth firms obtain 63% of leads online while average firms obtain 12%
  • Greater engagement with online tools is associated with faster growth

Using online marketing also increases professional service firm profitability:

  • The greater a firm’s online lead generation, the greater its total profitability.
  • Firms generating 60% or more of their leads online are 2X more profitable than those generating less than 20% of their leads online.

My take

I belong to several LinkedIn groups, including those focused on professional service firms, such as Association for Accounting Marketing (AAM) and Social Media Marketing for Financial Services. There is definitely a growing interest and involvement in online marketing. There is also a lot of confusion about what it is, and how it works. Oddly, I observe a number of professional service firms updating their websites, but omitting the blogging component.

The blogging component, in my opinion and in the opinion of many well-known online experts, is that the website’s blog is the most important part of an inbound marketing effort. Indeed, the Hinge report shows that high growth professional service firms find blogging to be their most important tool, followed closely by search engine optimization (SEO). Of course, blogging and SEO go hand-in-hand.

Read or download the full report, “Online Marketing for Professional Services Firms,  How Digital Marketing Delivers Faster Growth and Higher Profits” at Hinge Research Institute.

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