When it comes to marketing messages, a lot of professional service firm owners and executives are admittedly following a “make it up as we go” approach. It’s not hard to figure out why – most are feeling overwhelmed when it comes to putting together their online and offline campaigns. With numerous short-term projects and deadlines to see through, it can be hard to “stick to a script” when putting together different pieces or promotions to achieve a consistent messaging strategy.
Despite all of this, we strongly encourage our clients to establish and use a messaging strategy that can remain consistent over time. That is, find a distinct set of benefits you want prospective clients to know about and then emphasize them again and again. Whether you want to be local and friendly, always affordable, or known for five-star service (as examples), you should choose a theme and stay with it.
Let’s look at just a few of the reasons why having a consistent messaging strategy for all your marketing campaigns can be so beneficial.
Consistency Builds Trust
We all like to work with people and firms we can count on. This is one reason we tend to prefer certain brands over others, because they offer known quality, pricing, and experience. Even though professional service firms are not the same as, say, brands of cereal, people use that same process to make decisions about what firms to hire.
If you can be consistent with your marketing messages you’ll train prospective clients to know what they can expect from your firm. This builds trust in a way that would normally take dozens of interactions to establish.
A Consistent Messaging Strategy Makes Your Brand More Memorable
Psychologists say it takes, on average, three instances of hearing a piece of advertising before it will actually sink into our minds. There is a lot of power in repetition.
Even if you aren’t constantly bombarding people with ads, you can do a lot to keep your company at the front of their minds by simply emphasizing certain themes or messages repeatedly. You want prospective clients to think of you first when they have a need for the professional service you offer, so be consistent in the way you promote those services.
Continuity Eliminates Confusion
The opposite of trust and memorability are distress and confusion. If potential clients don’t know what your firm is about, or think you are inconsistent with the way you appeal to them, you’re going to have a hard time winning their business. For some clients, professional services are by their nature confusing; this is why people hire someone to provide these services. Don’t compound the problem by delivering inconsistent marketing messaging.
You can take any ambiguity out of your marketing pitch by simply staying on the same themes from one communication or campaign to the next.
Your Business Can’t Be All Things to All People
While we have focused on the marketing benefits of messaging continuity to this point, it’s worth mentioning that being consistent helps you, too.
Your firm can’t be all things to all people, and when you try, you end up wasting a lot of your time and resources. By sticking with a consistent theme when you communicate to prospective clients you also force yourself to remember what your business stands for and which clients make a perfect fit for the professional services you offer.