The purpose of this article is to go through a little bit of the details about how we use LinkedIn to attract clients to our business, and how you can use this method too to attract clients to you practice.
Now, whether you’re just starting your practice or you just are looking to kick things up a notch in the growth department, you obviously want to start with the low hanging fruit: Your existing referral network and existing clients. The main reason to start here is that its like shooting fish in a barrel. The problem with shooting fish in a barrel is that the barrel is only so big. There’s only so much that’s in there (i.e. there’s only so many fish).
Sure, take as many gunshots as you can, but then it’s done. The fish in the barrel are dead, you’ve claimed them all.
Once you’ve exhausted your existing referral networks I’d then focus almost exclusively on cold traffic. Now, cold traffic is really just people that you don’t already know. These are ideal clients out there in the marketplace. They have a business, you’d like to work with them, you have the skills to help them, but there’s no string that ties you together (yet). You don’t have a referral that’s introducing you. You don’t have mutual friends, you’re not currently connected on LinkedIn. You didn’t meet at a networking event. There really is nothing tying you together, so the only way for you to get them to decide to work with you is to win it on value, to actually be something they need, to actually define yourself in that way, get your messaging right, and then actually reach out to them in a way that gets their attention.
That’s really most of what we do – is help people grow their practice with cold traffic.
What I love about cold traffic is this…
While it is harder and most people aren’t able to do it because they don’t take the time to learn how to do it; it’s predictable and you can actually take control of your growth. Once you take responsibility and you implement a process around this, you can get predictable growth through cold traffic, through people you don’t know.
But you have to be very good, and you have to have the best methods and you have to take the time to develop systems and process to correctly implement those methods.
So, what are the methods that we’re typically using? Well there are two methods we recommend accountants, bookkeepers and tax professionals focus on, although in this article I wanted to focus exclusively on just one of those methods: LinkedIn.
The great part about LinkedIn is that it’s the largest professional network in the world.
How many years have they been in business? What industry are they in? How many employees do they have? All the basics you would need to say yes, that’s my ideal client. That is a construction company that’s doing at least $1 million a year. I can work with them on accounting, tax, I can be an outsource CFO, I can do job costing. That would be an awesome client.
We work with you to determine exactly how to search for these people. How do you find out how big the business is? How many team members do they have? How long have they been in business? What industry they’re in? Are they an owner, and how do you directly reach out to them in a professional, non-sleazy, non-salsey way?
We’ve developed a process that we use where we’re directly reaching out to those ideal clients. If we reach out to 100 we’ll get 20%-40% of those people to accept with us. We reach out to 100 people, 20 to 40 of those will say, yes, I want to accept. I’m interested in learning more about you with the message that we craft together to see. We’ll send the requests, and then 20%-40% accept, and then, out of that, we should get one to four consultations with genuinely interested and suitable potential clients. So to recap, if we reach out to 100 ideal clients, we’ll get one to four consultations with genuinely interested and suitable business owners.
The part about this that makes is better than just sending someone an email is they’re on LinkedIn. You know they’re real, they’ve accepted your connection request, they’re active on LinkedIn, they’re doing stuff, they’re actually a real person. This is incredibly powerful.
I can tell you right now, I don’t care what your niche is, LinkedIn is basically a bottomless pit. It will ever, ever end. You’ll never be able to reach out to every single business owner on LinkedIn that is your ideal client.
So as a client acquisition strategy this could literally never stop. When set up correctly, this strategy runs in the background of your practice like clockwork. It’s like keeping a rod in the water without wasting time standing next to it all day long.
A large part of what we do is set up all the systems and processes for you and provide you with a battle tested system in order to connect and generate consultations with qualified business owners through LinkedIn.
Now doing this all by yourself without proven systems and processes would probably take you months to figure out. Once worked out, it would then probably take you the entire working week to implement successfully. But with systems, processes and the internal team of specialists that we have, it takes literally less three to four hours per week to pull off, which is pretty amazing.
Probably the greatest part about LinkedIn is that we’re not doing any advertising. So, because we’re not doing any advertising, once you learn the systems and processes, and also get clear on your messaging sequencing; you can really crank up your client acquisition efforts without spending significant amounts of money.
The trick is in the messaging and subsequent follow up sequence. That is:
- What do you say to get them interested in connecting with you;
- How do you structure your profile to make this something that’s appealing so they’ll be drawn in to reach out to you and learn more?;
- What do you say to them that get them interested in meeting with you?; and then
- Once you get them in a meeting, how do you actually run that consultation in a way that gets them to decide to move forward with you?
Those are really all the little steps in the process that make it seem pretty complicated. However, once you get it set up, once you get it humming, it takes you all but two to three hours a week to generate anywhere from 5 to 40 meaningful consultations each week.
So, LinkedIn is really one of the most powerful things that we use, and the best part about it is no advertising. Your competitors and others who are not your ideal client won’t even know you’re doing it!
The barrier to entry is very low. You just have to learn how the whole LinkedIn thing work. How do you find people? How do you craft good messaging? What systems and processes can you use to not kill yourself and do this thing all week long?
That’s really where we come in. We walking you through, step by step, how to implement this process into your practice and keep it going for years.