Seven Critical Mistakes of Professional Services


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Client attraction is very difficult today. We are in a crazy busy world with too much noise created by the wealth of technology. Consumers today have way too many choices and look to each other to decide who to recommend and who to trust.

Yet there are other reasons why clients might not be attracted to your message! In coaching professional services for over 30 years believe it or not I often find that no matter how good you think you are you might actually be pushing people away from you! I know many gifted people but sometimes it is not about how you are saying things but what you actually might be saying.

  1. Stop the titles and stereotypes. If you truly want to get people to pay attention to you and your practice then ensure you are speaking in terms of value. Too many say they are a lawyer, consultant or doctor rather than simply saying the value provided. For example when speaking with others Tom frequently states that he works with small business that desire to dramatically eliminate debt and increase margins. Now that is a conversation starter.
  1. I typically find that so many today forget to realize that they are really detectives in different clothing. Think for a moment about the crime shows you desire. Whether CSI or some other favorite the fact is this, no one gets implicated until questions start to get asked. Professional services individuals have such a passion for their business that they forget one thing – customer focus. Stop telling people about your practice and start asking them about issues they need rectified.
  1. Stop the charity. I was speaking with Richard and associate in a consulting office who was telling me that his partner Angela was bartering advice to 8 of his 9 clients. Then Angela worries why she is not gaining revenue! When you give out more than you keep you not only have a revenue issue; you deflate your value. Did you ever see a physician or a lawyer give away free service? Why should you? Your practice is built from intellectual capital do not give it way. Think in terms of large organizations with brand value.
  1. Follow Up. Why is it the easiest things seem to be so difficult? If you want clients then follow up. One client recently found 9 new prospects and when I asked about action steps he stated, “Well that is a good idea!” No it is the purpose of business. Do not let the little things pass you by.
  1. Creating a series of messages that create brand. Clients are too busy to pay attention to only one message medium – they multitask. Too many focus on one medium to gain client attraction but in today’s information crazed world small business must use the concept of integrated marketing to achieve attention.
  1. Service Orientation. During the recent summer months I needed home repairs. I called 12 contractors to only receive two calls. Another actually had the audacity to send me a proposal without returning a call or meeting with me! If you ever wondered why so many sit by their phones or troll the streets seeking business think in terms of their customer service. The only excuse for not returning calls and email – laziness.
  1. One of the easiest and underused forms of marketing – the referral. Referrals are clients methods for extending their admiration for your services. More importantly referrals are the best and easiest way to build brand. Each time a client visits with you ensure you ask for four to five friends and colleagues that desire similar value that you provide.

Republished with author's permission from original post.

Drew Stevens
Drew J. Stevens Ph.D. (Dr. Drew) is the author of Split Second Selling and the soon to be released Ultimate Business Bible and six other business books on sales, customer loyalty, self mastery and business development solutions. Drew helps organizations to dramatically accelerate revenue and outstrip the competition. He conducts over 4 international keynotes, seminars and workshops per year.


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