Gail, our resident wordsmith sat down and said, “I read your
Trust and Professional Services Blog and I have a few bones to pick with you,
Before I could respond, Rob, Mr Branding, slid into an open
chair and chuckled saying, “That’s two of us darlin’. He’s always rockin’ on
the porch afore the money is in the bank.”
I said, “If I knew what that meant, I’d probably be
Chris and Kate arrived. He held her chair and then pulled up
another for himself and skooched in between the two ladies.
I held up both hands and said, “Before all of you start to
beat me up, I have to tell you that a pile of research landed in my e-mail this
week that you should all be aware of. It is an original study called How Buyers Buy done by the Hinge
Research Institute. They parsed the data and provided reports for four groups
and Financial Services
Engineering/ Construction Services
I brought copies. Have a look.”
Each of them took one report and began leafing through them.
I said, “Look at the page about finding alternatives. I can tell
you that all four studies confirm what I’ve been saying for years: Most people
turn to friends or colleagues when they need a professional of any kind.
Depending on the specialty they prefer information from their personal contacts
rather than an online search anywhere from 12 to 1 in one group down to 3 to 1.”
Gail, who had the Technology report grinned at Chris and
said, “Looks like your customers are at about 6 to 1. They trust the internet
more than most folks.”
Chris pointed to a similar page in the Management Consultant
report and said “But people looking for a management consultant are at a 3 to 1
I asked, “which group was at 12 to 1?”
Kate said, “Architecture, Engineering and Contracting.”
Rob piped up, “Skip ahead a few pages where they compare
buyers and sellers viewpoints about the best way to market. Only 4% of
Financial customers think social media is important. It is second from the
bottom of the list.
Pages ruffled and Chris said, “It is rock bottom for
management consultant prospects. And worse still 35% of the consultants think
it is important.”
“I figured you would all find this data interesting. We
could spend a week looking at it and making comparisons. Here are my takeaways:
- Do not
assume you know how the customer wants to be marketed to. It varies by the
type of professional they are seeking.
is not the most important variable in selection. Expertise and
specialization is, along with your reputation.
can be very loyal if you deliver on your promises.
- If you
want to sell them more or new products, develop a personal relationship
and have regular face-to-face meetings.
clients are the best referral sources but you have to ask.”
Rob cleared his throat and said, “Don’t forget Brand. The
way they look at it here is a combination of reputation and visibility. The
better both of yours are, the better off you’re gonna be. Reminds me of my
millionaire cousin Bobbie Jim who says the secret of his success is to stay
righteous, work like hell and advertise!”
Marketing Rain is easier to make when you put the facts in
your corner. Jerry’s approach is research based and innovative. Learn more
about it at www.JerryFletcher.com
Jerry’s singular stories of his experiences in Networking,
Marketing and Customer Relationship Magic have motivated audiences on three
continents. See videos at www.NetworkingNinja.com