Years of Experience: 15 years in marketing, 3 in accounting marketing
College Name & Degree(s): Boston College, BA in English with a concentration in Psychology
Firm Name: Sweeney Conrad, PS
Firm City & State: Bellevue, WA
Firm Size: 90
Email Address: firstname.lastname@example.org
Professional Memberships: AAM Minute Chair, AMA member, Allinial mentor
Community Involvement: Volunteer for Saving Great Animals
Twitter Handle: @sweeneyconrad
LinkedIn Profile: https://www.linkedin.com/in/emily-taibl/
What types of GDPR, CCPA, and data compliance strategies does your firm employ?Our current strategy is to stay informed, and be as communicative with our clients and prospects as possible. We haven’t had to put any changes into practice yet, but I anticipate we will in the next year or two.
What have you learned the hard way?It’s an obvious one, but also something that I must learn over and over again. Always proof, proof and double-proof anything that is going to be externally facing. Make sure that everything that goes out the door has multiple sets of eyes on it. Nothing looks more amateur than a typo. Every time I don’t take my own advice on this, it comes around to bite me.
What is a “must know” for new accounting marketers?Don’t be afraid to ask questions. When I first started at my firm I had been in marketing for over 12 years. In fact, I was coming from running my own business. I did not anticipate how different it would be to market for an accounting firm, and I wish I would have asked more questions right from the start. You can’t know everything, and it’s better to get a good feel for exactly what your partners consider a marketing success, then to try to guess and miss the mark. Secondly, don’t be afraid to shake things up. Make suggestions, even in the face of fear that they will get shot down. The majority of accountants don’t know much about marketing and they are trusting you to be the expert.
What are your special skills or what is something people may not know about you?I can say the alphabet backwards in under 4 seconds, and I am a dog whisperer.
What is the biggest benefit you receive from your AAM membership or what affect has AAM had on your career?Without question it is camaraderie. As a marketing department of one, sometimes it can feel like no one really gets where you are coming from. I have loved the connections that I have made (and continue to make), and lean on my AAM relationships for support, creative ideas and suggestions. We are truly all in this together.
Share one marketing tip.It’s marketing 101, but always lead with emotion. You’re not selling tax returns, you’re selling peace of mind.
What do you feel is the biggest issue facing accounting marketers today?Time. We are tasked with staying educated on what is new in marketing, leading change in our firms, wearing multiple hats and performing a mountain of day to day tasks. Success requires the ability to prioritize, and to realize that it’s better to do a few things really well, than to try to do it all.
What would you be doing if you had not become a marketer?I would have written a fiction novel. I might just do that anyway!
What is the biggest project you are working on right now?We just wrapped up our summer leadership summit, so now I’m working on a new content and lead generation strategy.
If you had an unlimited budget, what is one thing you would implement immediately?Videos galore. There was a great session at Engage on how to do videos less expensively, but if I had the budget I’d create a bunch and leave it to the experts.
What books have you read recently that you feel would be beneficial to other AAM members?Building a Brand Story by Donald Miller is a great book about crafting the right message to attract your customers. Though I haven’t yet read it, a very successful marketer in our region recently recommended What Got You Here Won’t Get You There: How Successful People Become Even More Successful by Marshall Goldsmith. And lastly if you’re up for a more “woo woo” introspective read, The Untethered Soul by Michael A. Singer will get you thinking about thinking.