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Linford Grey award win AccountingWEB  They key to unlocking excellence in marketing
Accounting-Excellence_ Alistair-Veryard

The key to unlocking excellence in marketing

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In light of Accounting Excellence’s 2024 Marketing Campaign of the Year Award, PracticeWeb’s Philippa Jordan discusses what’s been happening in marketing over the past year and what excellence truly looks like.

29th Apr 2024
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Linford Grey Associates (pictured above) wowed the judges at last year’s Accounting Excellence Awards, securing the Marketing Team of the Year Award with their outstanding content and outreach marketing strategy.

As the doors open for entries to this year’s awards, there’s a chance to win the 2024 Award for Marketing Campaign of the Year.

Sponsoring this year’s category is PracticeWeb. The team works with marketing managers in practice to help them reach their goals through their websites, content and search engine optimisation (SEO), proving that marketing is essential to the accounting profession. 

PracticeWeb_Philippa-JordanBelow, Philippa Jordan, marketing manager at PracticeWeb, emphasises the importance of delivering outstanding customer experiences and building lasting relationships to achieve marketing excellence.

What have been the biggest trends in marketing?

AI and adopting it into everyday practices has been a huge trend and is much talked about. Learning it is not your enemy, but your friend is the way forward. It can help you be more efficient and help with writer’s block but it needs to be used in a supporting role. Human input is still very much needed and required to add your expertise and experience. 

The focus on technology and strategies to enhance the customer’s journey has been another popular trend. Automation tools help with content creation and distribution as well as providing a good customer experience. I think that investing in content automation platforms in 2024 is essential for maintaining consistency and efficiency. 

The customer experience is always a key focus and capturing customers’ attention and growing their loyalty is more relevant than ever. Targeting content to the right people and ensuring that they are getting relevant and personalised content to provide solutions to their challenges is important. 

And lastly, I would say that video dominance continues to remain popular in marketing. More companies are beginning to embrace short videos as a way to reach their audiences. It is also a good way to show the human side to their brands. 

What have been the biggest challenges in marketing?

Every year different marketing trends and new marketing technologies emerge and that can be overwhelming for marketers who are very often their firms’ whole marketing department. There can therefore be this fear of falling behind and not being able to keep pace with every new trend. 

However, if you fully know and understand your customers’ needs and how they like to interact with you then you don’t have to adopt every new technology or platform that crops up. Prioritising what will work to reach and engage your target audiences will be more effective. 

Another challenge has been AI. When it was first announced, everyone thought it was almost certainly going to steal their jobs but now it can be viewed less negatively. It is a useful tool that can help make marketing tasks simpler and more efficient in the early planning stages, such as providing potential subject lines for an email campaign that you might not have thought of. 

In 2024, a robust online presence is non-negotiable. Your website serves as your digital storefront but it’s not enough to simply have a website, you need to ensure that it resonates with your audience. Whether following up on a referral or conducting a direct search, your online presence is often the first point of contact.

It is therefore so important to maintain an online presence and website SEO is a huge part of this. You could have the best-looking website but if it doesn’t perform well and get the traffic needed, it won’t deliver. There’s more to SEO than just content – technical SEO aspects like site speed, mobile responsiveness and user-friendly navigation all play a significant role. Understanding what your potential clients are searching for and integrating those keywords naturally into your content is also crucial to being found online.

This year has shown that marketing for accountants is not just about self-promotion; it’s about creating value, building relationships and staying ahead in the digital curve.

What does excellence in marketing look like?

Excellence is putting clients at the centre of all marketing efforts and providing exceptional customer care. This includes understanding their needs, delivering personalised experiences and building long-term relationships based on trust and satisfaction. 

Ensure that all your marketing efforts are integrated. Your website, blogs, SEO strategy and presence at events should all tell the same story about who you are and the value you provide. Consistency is key. Your potential clients should receive the same message and see the same level of professionalism whether they visit your website, read your blog or meet you in person.

Excellence in marketing also features an emphasis on growth through innovation, and a dedication to learning and improvement to help drive sustainable success. It means marketers need to stay agile and adaptable in an ever-changing landscape, remaining open to feedback and continuously refining marketing strategies for optimal results.

Any final tips?

First and foremost, familiarise yourself with the award entry criteria. These guidelines are your blueprint. They detail what the competition is looking for, the format of submissions and the thematic boundaries, if any.

Give examples and share the outcomes from how you measured the campaign’s success against what return on investment you got for your company. If you had a great testimonial from an end user client this will help illustrate tangible evidence.

A lot of firm marketers last year mentioned how positive it was that marketing was embraced at their firm and seen, not just as a necessary cost, but as a driving force for success.

Think about what projects you have taken to help improve success. It could have been an internal marketing project that has helped your company understand its brand better, helping gain better candidates and addressing recruitment issues. Or it could have been a new marketing channel that you rolled out to better interact with your audience.

Good luck to all the marketing finalists in this category this year. PracticeWeb is proud to be sponsoring this very important award in the industry.

Do you have a marketing campaign that you are proud of? Enter this year’s Accounting Excellence Awards and you could be taking home the Marketing Campaign of the Year Award, sponsored by PracticeWeb. Click here to enter and for more information.

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By FactChecker
29th Apr 2024 22:43

? "outreach marketing strategy" ?

If AI really does have a near-term benefit to bring us, it may start by replacing all 'babble-terms' with wording that communicates ideas clearly to most readers ... surely not a novel idea within Marketing?

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