“In professionals services firms, growth depends on several interrelated factors. Tricks therefore only work in the short term. 

What does work is an integrated, professional and systematic approach in which fee earners, leadership, marketing, business development, HR and IT work together closely and reinforce each other.”

Professionalization of marketing and business development

Structural growth as a business service provider

Once, personal relationships, supported by a few folders and seminars, were enough for accountants, consultants and lawyers to win interesting clients and assignments. Those times have passed. Large professional services firms have understood this, and are working hard to professionalize marketing and business development. Many smaller firms still think - or hope - that changing client expectations will not affect them.

Does this mean that a new website is now the path to profitable growth? Or LinkedIn? Content marketing then?

Despite all the promising blogs about THE key to success, the answer is NO. Digitization is certainly extremely important in professional services, but this industry sector is still primarily about people. And even the world's best marketing and sales professional will fail if the fee earners don't participate. Quality of service is an absolute precondition.

My conclusion: there is no single magic bullet for more structural growth. What does work is an integrated, systematic approach in which fee earners, leadership, marketing and business development, HR and IT, online and offline, 'outbound' and 'inbound', reinforce each other.

8 growth drivers

Based on this vision, I've developed eight 'drivers' that determine long-term growth for professional services providers. The better these drivers are in place, and the better they are coordinated, the better the results.

The 8 growth drivers for accountants, consultants and lawyers
The 8 growth drivers for accountants, consultants and lawyers

No growth without clients, and no clients without sales and acquisition. In professional services, the quality of your relationships and how well-known and strong your brand is, strongly determine the effectiveness of sales and acquisition efforts.

This completes the four primary growth drivers. However, their effectiveness is determined by four supportive growth factors. For example, a clear and distinctive proposition is necessary to build a strong brand. And you need highly motivated and commercially skilled people to be successful in sales.

Do you want to learn more?

Download the whitepaper 'The 8 growth drivers for accountants, consultants and lawyers.' for more about structural growth (free of charge).

Do you have questions or comments, or do you want to exchange ideas about growth at your organization? Don't hesitate to get in touch!

Contact

Would you like to exchange ideas about your situation or are you curious about what 4Future can do for you? Please contact Rob Meijers (e-mail: rob.meijers@4future.com), telephone +31 637 601 217).

Rob Meijers, Senior Marketing & Business Development Professional 4Future
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