Meet a Member: Lucas LaChance
JUST THE FACTS
Name: Lucas LaChance
Title: Principal, Practice Growth
Years of Experience: 11 years (8 in audit; 3 in Practice Growth)
College Name & Degrees: Bachelors of Arts in Literary Studies and Historical Studies from the University of Texas at Dallas; Masters of Science in Accounting and Information Management from University of Texas at Dallas
Firm Name: Lane Gorman Trubitt, LLC
Firm City and State: Dallas, TX
Firm Size: 110 employees
Professional Memberships: American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA)—member, Texas Society of Certified Public Accountants (TSCPA)—member, TSCPA Not-for-Profit Conference—Planning Committee Chair and Membe, TSCPA CPE Advisory Board, Institute of Internal Auditors - National Organization and the Dallas Chapter, Dallas CPA Society (DSCPA), DSCPA Management in Government and Industry Study Group—Planning Committee, Leading Edge Alliance Special Interest Groups: Practice Growth, Not-for-Profit, Professional Services, Accounting & Auditing—Member
Community Involvement: Sammons Center for the Arts—Board Member, Audit Committee Chair, Sammons Center for the Arts Endowment Corp.—Board Member, Dallas Institute of Humanities and Culture—Finance Committee, Technology Ball by Digital ConduIT—Event Elements Committee, North Texas Food Bank—Volunteer, University of Texas at Dallas Alumni Association, North Texas GLBT Chamber—Scholarship Committee, Business Exchange Network Group ChairTwitter Handle: @luckylukecpaLinkedIn Profile: linkedin.com/in/lucaslachancecpacia
GETTING TO KNOW YOU
What advice do you have for firms about to celebrate a milestone?
For a significant milestone, start planning early. Our firm will be celebrating our diamond jubilee for 75 years in 2025. Beginning with the 2019 budget, we are setting aside funds for the event in bite-sized pieces and laying the foundation for our marketing. Make the celebration about your clients *and* your employees, and ensure that your marketing has a consistent theme and message throughout. Finally, consider tying the event to a specific goal, i.e. 75 new clients that year for 75 years.
What is the structure of your marketing department?
Our marketing department has four people: a data analyst that handles corporate research, industry data mining, and niche administration; a social media and events coordinator that manages LGT’s presence on the web across our social media platforms as well as planning and executing more than a dozen events per year; a PG project manager that keeps our departmental projects on track, designs and creates all proposals and marketing collateral, and maintains the design and branding for our Firm’s intranet and external website; and myself who works with the rest of the leadership team to develop marketing strategies for the firm’s success, lead business development and the associated training efforts, assist relationship managers in client retention and the expansion of new services, and translate what the accountants in our firm want into an actionable end result or product that marketing can produce.
What have you learned the hard way?
No one does it alone or knows everything. I am unbelievably fortunate to work with extremely talented and dedicated folks in our department. Each of us brings a unique set of talents and skills, and I learn something new every day as part of this team.
What is a “must know” for new accounting marketers?
Practice explaining concepts in different ways; accountants’ brains work differently than creative brains.
What are your special skills or what is something people may not know about you?
My experience prior to public accounting in the publishing industry serves me well every day. One of the first things I did in Practice Growth was review all of our marketing collateral to ensure that we are speaking in one consistent, cohesive voice across all of our communication. Additionally, it never hurts to do a sweep through print and digital media to ensure that grammar and punctuation are correct.
What is the biggest benefit you receive from your AAM membership or what affect has AAM had on your career?
Hands down this has to be the annual AAM Summit. The opportunity to network with my peers from other firms is invaluable. It’s hard to continue to innovate if you don’t know what’s going on in your industry. Over time, you end up in an echo chamber. Learning how my peers are overcoming the same types of challenges helps our team reinvigorate our marketing plans each year to keep our tactics fresh and successful.
Share one marketing tip.
Learn all you can about emerging technologies. Those on the cutting edge of our industry are doing amazing things that can make our lives easier.
What do you feel is the biggest issue is facing accounting marketers today?
Reaching more tech-savvy consumers is a key issue in our industry. The traditional postal service mailings gave way to email. Email is giving way to methods of immediate response (IM, text, etc.) With consumers heavily plugged in, how do you make your message stand out in a digital world?
What would you be doing if you had not become a marketer?
Dream job? I’d be a curator at a museum travelling, writing, researching, and excavating our own histories.
What is the biggest project you are working on right now?
We’re working on the second phase of implementation of our first-ever CRM. Additionally, we’re finalizing the 2019 marketing budget in conjunction with the 2019 marketing plan. We’ve set some serious stretch goals for the coming year, and ensuring management buy-in is essential.
If you had an unlimited budget, what is one thing you would implement immediately?
With an unlimited budget, we’d look into utilizing AI technology to make research and marketing easier. Many of our processes could be automated or enhanced with AI capabilities.
What books have you read recently that you feel would be beneficial to other AAM members?
There is no B2B or B2C: It’s Human to Human; H2H by Bryan Kramer is a great way to help us focus our language to remind us that it all boils down to human interaction. Businesses don’t have feelings.