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Our organization has made leaps and bounds around marketing, if I do say so myself. The accounting industry can appear to be stuck in the 90’s when it comes to marketing, and “professionals” tend to be very confident in what they don’t know.

I’ve had debates with accounting professionals around email marketing, advertising and other marketing initiatives, only to find out that their experience in the space is minimal at best. I’m not saying they shouldn’t have an opinion – and many have good ideas, but the idea of moving away from “push” marketing, especially with email and enewsletters, is something that’s been hard to move them away from.

“We just started doing this” is often the exclamation I get.

For pennies they can email thousands of contacts. To any business person, especially an accountant, that’s just too good to be true. So instead of debating an opinion, I now do what Google would do; I let the data tell them.

I convince them to move away from Outlook as their main sender and move their lists and email to Eloqua, which of course, is all measureable. I show them what is really happening – open rates, delivery, click thru and downloads. I combine web analytics and email analytics and show them.

Some have been discouraged by the facts. I tell them not to be, it’s a learning process and that we need to understand what’s relevant and what is not, because their audience is telling us by either clicking thru or not. Yet, some still just want to believe that everyone they “opted-in” to receive a newsletter really wants it. They don’t want to give the recipient the opportunity to “verify” (really opt-in) their information. It’s a tough sell to some. Even the leadership is afraid of their community of professionals, their functional leaders.

I tell them, let’s present them the facts so they understand what is happening, that closing their eyes is not an answer because they are hurting our reputation. They hurt our reputation by assuming that their contact really wants that enewsletter.

For them to assume that just makes an “ass” out of “u” and “me.”

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