We’ve officially crossed this year’s halfway mark, and it’s time to check in on the marketing strategy you created at the beginning of 2015. Has web traffic increased? Are you seeing more conversions and leads? Is your firm closing more new business?

It may be time to adjust your strategy or incorporate additional marketing techniques to drive your firm forward. In our experiences with clients, we’ve found that a mix of both online and offline techniques create a winning combination for increasing a professional services firm’s visibility.

Online and offline marketing strategies doughnut

Here are 12 online and offline marketing techniques that can increase your visibility—and help your firm grow:

1. A High Performance Website

80% of buyers will visit your website before deciding to contact you. Your website should not only be polished and professional, but a place for you to showcase your thought leadership with educational content. A consistently updated blog allows your firm’s experts to contribute educational content that speaks to prospects’ issues and challenges.

And having content and offers that allow visitors to more deeply engage with your firm will help to generate leads and appeal to middle and late-stage prospects.

2. Online Search and Search Engine Optimization (SEO)

Having educational content on your website is a good start, but you’ll need to make sure that content can be found. Your content should be optimized with keywords to help amplify your content and boost its rankings in search results. Optimize your website pages, blog posts, and other content landing pages.

Use keywords that are relevant to your content, and beware of “keyword stuffing” or putting keywords that are not natural or don’t make sense in your writing. As a good rule, write for your audience first. Write for Google second.

3. Social Media

Social media is the online, modern day version of networking. It’s another essential tool to drive engagement and promote your content. Here are a few best practices to get it right:

  • Use the 80/20 rule and share 80% of other firms’ content and 20% of your own.
  • Only commit to the number of channels you can consistently keep up with. Start small. For professional services firms, we’ve found that LinkedIn and Twitter are the most effective platforms to utilize.
  • Your social media posts should deliver value, not just include links.
  • Using pertinent hashtags on Twitter, Google+, and Facebook will help your content get found.

4. Media and Blogger Outreach

Media and blogger outreach will demonstrate your expertise to a wider audience. Research publications including blogs, newsletters, and online publications that your target audience reads. Reach out to the Editor with a suggested piece of content to contribute that highlights your expertise and that will matter to their readership.

The article should be an original piece that is purely educational and doesn’t push your service offerings. Editors are wary of content that is too self-promotional.

5. Webinars and Educational Events

Webinars are another medium to connect with your audience. Remember that people learn differently. Some will prefer to listen to a webinar and others will prefer to read articles. Webinars have the added benefit of interaction with your audience by being able to answer questions and take comments.

Consider having two people from the firm cover a topic to provide different perspectives. This is also a great tool to use if you are trying to reach a larger audience as webinars have no geographical restrictions. Start with one webinar (and don’t forget to promote on social media!) and then make tweaks as you learn what content your audience is craving.

6. Speaking Engagements

Just like online content, speaking engagements should focus on educating clients and prospects. Start small by researching local events and organizations that serve the markets you want to reach. You can also reach out to any professional associations you or your firm is a member of to see if there are any upcoming speaking opportunities.

As you grow, consider adding a speaking engagement page to your website with relevant biographies and information related to the speakers and their topics. Connect with relevant industry events or conferences within your target market to inquire about other speaking engagements. Keep in mind that a number of bigger events are booked well in advance, so plan ahead if you are interested in speaking.

7. Conferences and Trade Shows

If your firm has not had the opportunity to have speakers at a large event, it can still be worthwhile to attend conferences and trade shows where your target audience will be attending as well. This will help to get some brand exposure, and meet new potential clients.

While you are at the event, make sure you are promoting your firm on social media by tweeting relevant pictures and information and utilizing the conference hashtag, if there is one. You can increase your firm’s visibility by writing and posting a follow-up blog post about what your team learned at the event.

8. Networking Events

While it is a more traditional marketing technique, joining and attending networking events will also help to increase your firm’s visibility and connections. But make the most of that time! Bring related information, such as business cards with your firm’s newest guide and your contact information.

You’ll quickly learn what makes the most sense for your firm to attend, and which don’t. Be strategic, and consider having key firm personnel rotate events, or spread out a few among them so you can reap the benefits of exposure while not bogging one person down with a lot of out-of-office time.

9. Downloadable Educational Content

This can include research reports, guides, whitepapers, or eBooks. Our research found that a book or eBook is the tool with the greatest impact on a Visible Expert’s brand. Downloadable content should be an integral part of your content marketing strategy.

Most people are willing to provide some personal information (like their name and e-mail address) in exchange for good quality educational content. In return, you can nurture those contacts to becoming leads for your firm.

10. Email Marketing

Having a mix of educational and sales related emails will help to nurture prospects into becoming clients. Ideas for your email marketing campaigns include:

  • Industry trends or news
  • Upcoming webinars or other events
  • New pieces of content that you’ve released
  • A roundup of blog posts that’d be of interest to your subscribers

And don’t be afraid to send out a hard offer every once in a while (depending on the amount of emails you send). These could offer contacts a free consultation or a complimentary trial of a service.

11. Partnership Marketing

If you already have some partners in a similar space, consider leveraging those for collaborations. This is not like a typical business partnership, but more to assist with marketing activities.

An example would be to do an email exchange where you can send out an email on behalf of the other organization in exchange for them sending out an educational email on your behalf. You could also do a joint webinar with your partners, and share in promoting to get as many registrants as possible.

12. Physical Collateral

Not to be overlooked, physical collateral can still help your firm’s visibility. Polished collateral and creative collateral that stands out can go a long way. For example, if you have an upcoming networking event, consider creating mini cards that have a link to your recent guide for people to download.

Utilizing these 12 techniques will help boost your professional services firm’s visibility.

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