Concierge CPA April 2019

April 2019

8221 Brecksville Rd, STE 205 Brecksville, OH 44141

(440) 340-1030

Who makes money on social media? W homakes money on social media? “The only people whomake money on social media are people who sell social media marketing services.”

Even Google uses traditional marketing. I always find it funny when I get a postcard in the mail with an offer to advertise online. Traditional advertisingmust still be relevant; why else would the largest search engine and biggest online ad platform sendme postcards? That quote I found so ridiculous years agomight be closer to the truth than I realized back then. I think online marketing has an important supporting role. Most potential clients check your website and look at your social media profiles. Not

I was fresh out of college when I read this line in one of those“how to build a business”books. I quickly looked up the author, andmy suspicion was confirmed that such a statement could only be made by someone who’d livedmost of his life in the previous century. This statement seemed so ridiculous and out of touch with today’s trends that it stuck withme. We are in a new paradigm in which the top-four marketing strategies are social media, online videos, blogging, and search engine optimization. The internet has changed the business environment somuch that people who are still reluctant to adapt to the online model are quickly going out of business. I’ve been contemplating this question for quite a while. In order to get a better understanding of how business is done in the real world, I started observing what business owners do—not what they write about. Luckily, I had the privilege of working with quite a few startups that grew into sizeable businesses, and as an accountant, I saw how they spent their marketing budgets. The types of businesses I work withmight bias my opinion, but I was surprised by the fact that the majority of business comes from face-to- face meetings, networking, and referrals. Here is the perfect example of why you have to watch what people do, not what they say: I used to work with a person who owned a successful digital marketing agency. He managed online ad campaigns and charged clients thousands of dollars for writing daily social media posts on their behalf. One day, I looked at his own social media profile and found that he hadn’t posted in weeks. I found this to be hypocritical, so the next time I saw him, I had to ask about his source for new clients. Without hesitation, he toldme that speaking engagements, networking, and referrals are the best strategies tomeet potential clients. Not realizing the irony of his answer, he continued by sharing that building trust and selling high value services is best done face-to-face. Is this new paradigm fully realized, though?

having an online presence is a big negative these days, but spending a fortune on Facebook posts is a big waste of money for most of us.

I’mnot a marketing expert, so take my advice with a grain of salt, but it seems like the basics of marketing don’t change:

1. Offer something of value (your service or product). 2. Identify people who would benefit from your service. 3. Find a way to get in contact with these people. 4. Make an offer. 5. Repeat steps 1–4.

It sounds simple, right? Running a business is muchmore complicated than repeating four steps and counting the profits. On top of marketing, you have to worry about keeping your clients happy, delivering your services, hiring employees, dealing with administrative tasks, bookkeeping, taxes, payroll, expenses… I could go on. Don’t let your dreamof entrepreneurship turn into a chaotic nightmare. If you feel overwhelmed and would appreciate an outside opinion, give us a call.

–Laszlo Szilagyi, CPA

1 (440) 340-1030

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