AAM Minute - Questions & Answers

Meet a Member

Name: Chris O’Day

Title: Marketing Manager

Years of Experience: 7

College Name & Degree(s): Assumption College | Bachelor’s Degree in English with a Concentration in Writing

Firm Name: Abrams Little-Gill Loberfeld PC (ALL CPAs)

Firm City & State: Chestnut Hill, Massachusetts

Firm Size: 50

Website: all-cpas.com

Email Address: coday@all-cpas.com

Professional Memberships: Association for Accounting Marketing (AAM), Massachusetts Society of CPAs, American Institute of CPAs, Newton-Needham Regional Chamber of Commerce, & Brookline Chamber of Commerce

Community Involvement: Volunteer at Worcester Animal Rescue League, started 5k on Nantucket to benefit the Jimmy Fund (cancer research), & Boston Boys & Girls Club

Twitter Handle: @allcpas

LinkedIn Profile: https://www.linkedin.com/in/christopheroday5/

 

What are your thoughts on creating a marketing culture within your firm?

It is very important to create a marketing culture within your firm where employees at every level are involved in marketing activities. For partners, bringing in new clients is the lifeblood of the firm, and for junior staff, it helps them progress in their careers by becoming thought leaders and building referral networks.

 

What is the structure of your marketing department?

I am a one man marketing team within my firm and have heavy support from our partner in charge of marketing, our marketing committee, and our managing partner.

 

What is your proudest career accomplishment?

My proudest personal accomplishment is paying off $48,000 of student loans in one year by working three jobs. However, my proudest career accomplishment is definitely overhauling our Year-End Networking Event. It was my first large project after being hired and my first chance to really prove myself to the firm. With great support from my coworkers, we were able to increase attendance from 200 attendees in 2015 to more than 300 attendees in 2016; we also received outstanding feedback on the event.

 

What have you learned the hard way?

If someone asks to write a piece on you, ask to see the final draft before it is published. That is certainly something I learned the hard way.

 

What is a ‘must know’ for new accounting marketers?

New accounting marketers must understand the culture of accounting firms and the seasonality of the work. During busy season, you may not have much access to partners and staff, so it is important to already have your marketing plan in place.

 

What are your special skills or what is something people may know about you?

Not many people know that I can hold my breath for more than two minutes, have won multiple eating contests, and own two pets that get along well – a dog named Hunter and a cat named Jada.

 

What is the biggest benefit you receive from your AAM membership or what affect has AAM had on your career?

AAM Connect has been a great resource and AAM members being willing to share best practices has been tremendously helpful in my career. Recently, my firm switched over to ShareFile and I asked for tips. Thanks to a fellow accounting marketer sharing best practices, I discovered a function on the website that my partners love!

 

Share one marketing tip.

I have a networking event tip: everybody’s favorite subject is themselves so listen, ask questions, remain interested, and try to add something to the conversation. They will walk away thinking you had a great conversation even though they may have done 80 percent of the talking.

 

What do you feel is the biggest issue is facing accounting marketers today?

The biggest issue facing accounting marketers today is firms outsourcing their marketing.

 

What would you be doing if you had not become a marketer?

I would be writing novels, financial planning, in sales, or performing stand-up comedy if I had not become a marketer.

 

What is the biggest project that you are working on right now?

The biggest project I am currently working on is a brand refresh; moving from Abrams Little-Gill Loberfeld PC to ALL CPAs (A-L-L).

 

If you had an unlimited budget, what is one thing you would implement immediately?

With an unlimited budget, I would implement a top-notch content strategy. I would hire content writers to make every single person in my firm seem like a thought leader and prodigious writer on their different niches. After creating outstanding blogs, whitepapers, and guides, I would pour money into search engine marketing, paid social ads, and every bell and whistle Hubspot has to offer to help disseminate our content to the appropriate buyer personas.

 

What books have you read recently that you feel would be beneficial to other AAM members?

Recently, I have been on a personal finance kick and highly recommend The Bogleheads’ Guide to Investing by Taylor Larimore, Mel Lindauer, and Michael Leboeuf. In addition to being very applicable to your own personal finances, it gives great material for conversations with accountants, bankers, and financial planners.