LancasterThrivingSummerFall2017 - 20
BUSINESS: CONTENT MARKETING
Company has aimed to help their clients understand the
larger picture around the context of their numbers, and
the stories behind their successes and failures. Along the
way, these stories have provided the proof to reinforce the
company's mission to go "beyond the numbers."
"Accounting firms tend to be all about the numbers,"
says Bleacher. "But we want our clients to think about the
strategies that drive those numbers and how those figures
should inform their next decisions."
To that end, last year the firm started hosting an "Executive
Forum," showcasing local business leaders willing to share
their top business lessons. Almost immediately, the Forum
was a success. Since launching, the Executive Forum has
featured Fig's Deb Brandt, Chip Cargas of Cargas, Dave
Hornberger of Orrstown Bank and others.
Held at the corporate training center at The Horst Group,
Bleacher has seen people attending for both networking
and education opportunities, and finds the event to be
attended by customers, prospects and referral sources, alike.
Staying true to content marketing principles, Bleacher's
only rule is that speakers are more interested in genuine
storytelling than taking an opportunity to sell.
"The success of the Executive Forum is that our speakers
have amazing stories to tell and the willingness to share,"
he says. "It's their commitment to openly educating that has
made the program work so well."
While the Executive Forum's success has been impressive,
for Bleacher it also uncovered some limitations in both
the potential reach (the current facility can only hold 50
attendees) and speakers (though a future speaker is flying in
for the event, most have been locals). But when faced with
the inherent limitations of the Executive Forum, Bleacher
decided the answer was even more content marketing,
specifically aimed at remedying these challenges.
20 | LANCASTERTHRIVING! | Summer/Fall2017
TO THE AIRWAVES
To reach a larger audience, Bleacher knew he'd need
to produce something digital. Like Pederson, he briefly
considered doing a regular video. Unlike Pederson, he
quickly dismissed it.
"I knew we wanted to do something with dialogue and
guests, and quite frankly, when I tried to pitch the idea of
video to some people, I got some pushback. When you
begin talking about video, some people are nervous about
how they're going to look on screen, how their hair looks or
even how they're dressed. So for us, a podcast made more
sense. And obviously, it made sense to call the podcast
'Beyond the Numbers.'"
For those unfamiliar, a podcast consists of audio content,
similar to talk radio. But unlike live radio, content is
recorded and can be listened to at the time and place the
listener prefers. And while this seems simpler than video,
production value certainly matters and Bleacher relies on
North Star Marketing to ensure the finished product sounds
"If I step on a line or make a funny mistake, we'll leave that in,
but if the sound quality is bad, that's what we want
At a tactical level, Bleacher hopes the podcast can include
guests from anywhere in the world as well as reach clients
and prospects wherever they might be.
Because there are many distribution channels for podcasts,
Bleacher is platform-agnostic. Listeners can tune in via
iTunes (which will accept shows with a minimum of six
episodes), Stitcher (which boasts more than 65,000 shows),
or even YouTube. Like many forms of digital content, the
greatest commitment comes in the time and expense
required for production. Distribution, in comparison, is easy
and cheap, if not free.