5 Proven Growth Strategies for Professional Services Firms

By Lee Frederiksen

We’ve all been in those meetings when ideas for stimulating growth get tossed around. Before you know it, an entirely new growth strategy has emerged and everyone’s moving full speed ahead in hopes of seeing benefits sooner. There’s just one problem: by letting excitement take over, firms often don’t take the time to analyze risks and determine how likely a new growth strategy is to truly be successful.

However, there are a few strategies for growing a company that have been proven to work, time and time again. While every approach has some amount of risk, these strategies can deliver new growth without making dramatic changes to your process. Depending on your situation, one strategy may be a better fit for your firm than another.

Below are five of the most common growth strategies. Let’s go through them one by one, from lowest to highest risk:

1. Increase Market Penetration

This approach involves offering more services to the same client. Since it doesn’t require introducing anything new, it’s a relatively low-risk strategy that can be achieved fairly easily. For instance, let’s say your accounting firm offers auditing services, but few of your clients know about it. By making your current clients aware of your other services, your firm can increase your relevance and get more revenue from a market you’ve already tapped.

Now, it’s important to note that even this conservative growth strategy isn’t without risk. When you depend on a small pool of clients, you can’t afford to lose many of them. Further, convincing your clients to buy additional services can be an uphill battle. As we discovered in our research for our book Inside the Buyer’s Brain, most clients aren’t aware of a provider full range of services. In other words, clients have a tendency to seek out other providers for additional services — service that you offer — because in their minds they don’t associate those services with your firm.

2. Develop New Markets

Another relatively low-risk strategy involves finding new markets for your existing services. This is a common growth strategy in the professional services industry, as many firms seek to roll out their services to as many audiences as possible.

While the concept of “more buyers equals more sales” might seem logical, it has its potential costs, too. It can be time-consuming and costly to educate and nurture new audiences, so your firm runs the risk of underinvesting in potentially valuable markets while overinvesting in those with less opportunity. If you aren’t careful, this approach can dilute your brand and any industry specialization you may have developed.

However, if you approach new markets thoughtfully, this growth strategy can be quite effective. For example, if your law firm currently caters to small businesses, but a new Fortune 500 manufacturing firm is relocating to your area, a large corporate client could be a beneficial growth opportunity.

3. Develop Alternative Distribution Channels

While this strategy is less common in professional services, it can still be effective. By partnering with complementary — but non-competitive — service firms, your firm Go to the full article.

Source:: Business 2 Community

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