Over the past month, I have been reminded very strongly about the importance of building your online footprint – particularly if you want to save time doing business development. One of the biggest barriers I hear potential partners tell me about is actually finding and making the time to grow their own client portfolio. After all, it is often the lack of a client following which stops so many talented professionals make the step up to partner.

In this 2nd part of a 3-part blog post, (part 1) I look at the 5 ways in which you can use your online footprint to help you sign up the right clients quicker.

2. Helps to differentiate yourself

I was idly looking over AccountingWeb today, when I saw someone blogging on a very similar niche subject to myself.

Shock horror – how dare they? (Joke!) So, I tracked them back to their website and had a very good nosy around. When I looked around my competitor’s new website, I was comforted. I knew that the consistency of my online content which I regularly provide (combined with quality content which was easily navigable), reinforced my credibility as I wasn’t trying to be all things to all people.

Click here to download our short free guide to creating a LinkedIn profile to make sure you are not losing business or job opportunities. (email required)

If you are trying to claim multiple specialities or sector expertise in your online footprint, this starts to dilute your credibility. Whilst, you may be constrained by your firm’s website and marketing protocols, what quality consistent content have you got which you are freely providing to help being your prospects back time and time again; so that when they are ready to buy, they ring you first.

3. Helps you to get the foot in the door and keep it in the door

One of my former clients was doing incredibly well, and had nearly achieved her objectives for 2012/2013 after only 3 months doing the programme. (Woo hoo!) She was recently given a referral to a prospect for a large piece of work. However, her business development process has hit a slight hitch. Her prospect asked her for her website address, so he could see more of what she did. Cue the need to re-prioritise the re-building of her website. D’oh.

Another of my former clients, started to work with me when she was denied the chance to tender for a piece of work for an existing client. Why? She didn’t have a website, which ruled her out of applying for the tender process. Big businesses, who use tendering as a way of picking suppliers, will want to see a website and use it to check out your credibility.

In tomorrow’s blog post we look at the final two ways to use your on-line footprint to save you time when developing business.

Click here to download our short free guide to creating a LinkedIn profile to make sure you are not losing business or job opportunities. (email required)

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