Editor's Note: This is the first article in a five-part series on how to use digital content to promote your professional practice.
As a professional service provider, you trade time for money, so your firm or consulting practice lives or dies by billable hours. Naturally, you want to maximize hours, but you didn't spend decades accumulating credentials and marketable experience so you can sell services over the phone. Yet without enough time spent seeking new business, income may drop unless you've achieved that enviable state called "backlogged."
Here's a way out of this vexing dilemma: become a source of knowledge, intelligence, and wisdom your clients need and want. Content marketing holds the key to entering easy, natural dialogs that build trust and connections with potential clients. Content distribution enables you to sell by simple demonstration, without self-conscious sales calls or pressurized closes. Your content stream is like a tastefully decorated store window. This approach not only brings more billable hours, but it positions you to pick and choose clients you most want to work with from inbound inquiries.
In this four-article series, I'll show you how to create a powerful and inexpensive content marketing system tailored to your needs. We live in an age of unprecedented online publishing power. It doesn't take much money or time. And it takes a lot less work than making cold calls. Content has become a workhorse that helps many firms establish referral-based practices with a comfortable backlog.
What is Content Marketing?
Content marketing is publishing information in your field of expertise to an interested audience. You connect with your selected audience regularly in your own voice, demonstrate your expertise, become known as the problem-solving go-to person, and forge connections. Your content provides samples of your work, shows how you think and communicate, tells what you're like to work with, and makes the value of working with you obvious. Then clients call when they need what you do. This kind of reputation helps build and nurture long-term relationships—the essence of complex sales.
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