I need a new accountant in London, and I’ve been searching online for one. By the time a Google.co.uk search lead to Yell, which lead to confusion at the sheer number of accountants alive, I could no way determine which to shortlist for my ultimate choice. Plus I want a really good accountant. No, actually, I want an exceptional one.
So how can a professional’s attributes and work ethic be represented – or misrepresented – by their online presence?
I eventually did visit some sites and was baffled by the poor quality of social media presence and content. Remarkably, some 70% of these websites feature outdated design and communication channels. I called one of these companies and offered to help with their online efforts (no mention of my needing their services was made). When I was politely informed that they were quite satisfied with their current situation, I was speechless.
Staring at the monitor, I couldn’t understand how anyone would find the view quite satisfying, if at all. Credible companies make the time and effort to maintain a solid online reputation: why would you entrust the services of a company that has little interest in theirs? If web activity is so limited, what about their competencies? I thanked them and ended the call.
Out of 100 websites I visited that day, 90 were exactly the same! I’m not joking – go to Yell, search for accountants in North London, and click away. The only differing element is company logo. No-one will associate you or your services/brand as being relevant if you look obsolete. Potential customers are drawn by fresh creativity, so when a company does nothing about their stale online presence, I find it funny, but not good funny.
In my situation, and if I had managed to tell them I was in fact looking for a new accountant, we would most likely have arranged a meeting to discuss my needs. Instead, they lost me as a potential client and certainly many others that stumble onto the dull website (not to mention missing out on my offer to assist them). I can imagine where these types of operations will be in 5 years from now: they won’t.
This generation, my generation, are the leaders of tomorrow, in search of our truth today. And today, we search for everything online. Our decision making process starts online. You get my point….
Going back to one of my favorite articles, yes web and social design are vital, this quote applies to our topic:
Bad design cost them me as a potential client, at a rate of around £2,000. But that’s only me, one individual on company with 9 people working. 10 managing directors (companies) equals £20,000 of potential earnings per month down the drain. The above quote says it all.
The world is evolving faster than your company can adapt. Who will survive the next 100 years? When will Boots close their last shop? Leaders don’t freeze on the battle field, leaders have the courage to inspire change.
It’s time to adapt.
What is your opinion? I would love to hear it! Tweet to me or place your comments below.