What accountants in practice can learn from the success of Movember?

Word of mouth marketing should be your firm’s best friend.

Word of mouth is a friend that mostly gets ignored whilst other marketing activities receive often-unwarranted attention. And yet the results word-of-mouth marketing can achieve are mind blowing.

Movember is a classic and worthy example of successful word-of-mouth marketing:

Melbourne Australia 2003. A few blokes with a few beers were pondering about 1970’s and 1980’s fashion when one of the few spouted out:

“Whatever happened to the moustache?”

A few more beers and a challenge was laid down: Who could grow the best moustache?

The word spread and a group of 30 blokes grew a moustache for the next 30 days. It happened to be November.

Because it had been such a laugh they decided to repeat the challenge again the following year. This time though they decided to put a cause behind their efforts.

Inspired by the success of breast cancer awareness, they wanted to do something similar for men’s health. They formed the Movember Foundation and adopted the tagline “Changing The Face Of Men’s Health”. At the second running of their challenge 450 guys raised $54,000 for the Prostate Cancer Foundation of Australia.

This worldwide phenomenon is now an established part of the mens health calender – in 2013, in the UK alone, £20.4 million was raised – mostly going to fight prostate and testicular cancer.

So what’s the connection between ‘Movember’ and accountancy?

It is my firm belief that your accountancy firm can grow faster if and when you make more of the word-of-mouth about your firm. The research study we published in February 2013 showed how massively important client referrals are to successfully marketing accountancy firms. Buy a copy

If I could steer you to read a very special book on the subject it would be ‘Contagious’ by Jonah Berger.

In his book Berger talks about: “making the private public.”

This is what Movember has done brilliantly. Outrageous moustaches are now  visible and acceptable in November and prompt many a conversation (including this one) about a previously no-go subject for blokes – prostate and testicular cancer. Why not donate here? http://uk.movember.com/donate

You might see it as glib to suggest you and your firm are not talked about publicly enough – if you were you’d get more referrals and leads than you are now. You are a private part of your business owners lives, you’re not a public part. Some clients will want to keep it that way.

But what if you could do things to make your association with (some of) your clients more public? It’s why we now actively promote the idea of printing and sending high-value content to your best clients and best contacts – if its good enough it will not be thrown away and lie around their office making you more visible.

NB If you’re interested in the Marketing Audit Report please send us a message (we’ll be donating) half of the money to Movember.

What do you do to make your firm more visible, more talked about, more referrable?

For more business insights please read our latest blogs here.

Paul Shrimpling

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