Most of the accountants I work with shudder at the thought of having to go out and market themselves. Many have no idea how to do it, and others don’t really enjoy that part of the business.
So when I teach a sales class to my favorite group of accounting professionals, I make sure they understand that their livelihood is at stake here.
If you as a business owner don’t learn how to sell without feeling sleazy and then go out and market yourselves, your firm could very easily crash to the ground if you are unable to enroll new clients to work with you.
Before we go ANY further, let’s define what I mean when I’m talking about marketing.
Ross Jeffries, a guest on The Abundant Accountant Podcast, said it best, “Marketing is everything you do to position yourself and communicate in such a way that when it comes time to ask for the sale, the person is primed and ready to buy. You’ve already enrolled them to buy.”
This is way more than just approaching your accounting client prospects with a generic sales pitch. This is all about building a relationship with them and showing your prospects how you can help serve their needs.
I can assure you that without proper marketing there’s no way to show the world how much of a rock star you really are. It doesn’t matter if you’re doing bookkeeping, tax planning, or tax resolution, if you don’t have the proper marketing and messaging it’s going to be very difficult to show your clients what’s possible.
Just like building a personal relationship, business relationships take time. So get to know your prospect and then use the following marketing techniques to woo them into becoming your next big client!
Tip # 1: Content Marketing
In my opinion, content marketing is one of the best, most strategic ways for an accountant to share their knowledge with potential clients. Use your expertise to show them what you know and how you can help them.
I know a lot of accountants right now are probably thinking that there is NO way they’re going to write and that there is NO way that they are writers, but Ross Jeffries shared an excellent tip that he learned from his marketing and copywriting guru, Gary Halbert.
Gary calls it his “Can It and Clone It” technique.
What you do is sit across from a friend and start telling them what your accounting marketing firm message is. While you’re talking, you ask your friend to record you. Once you’ve been recorded, you can take that content, have it transcribed and then turn it into amazing, informative, evergreen blog posts.
This makes creating content so easy! You NO longer have to sit in front of your computer with a blinking cursor, stressing over the words that just won’t flow.
Once you’ve published your blog post on your accounting firms’ site, you can push that same content out to all of the social media channels that you are on as well.
Doing this will allow you to target even more prospects who are your ideal client!
Most individuals learn in three styles: visual, auditory and kinesthetic. So, for the visual people you can put your content in a video form and put it on YouTube. For the auditory individuals you can put pieces of your content in short sound clips attached to images, and push it out to your LinkedIn account. And, finally for your kinesthetic people, you’d want to produce some sort of cheat sheet or template that they can be reviewing while they listen or watch you. Maybe a cheat sheet has 10 tips to save money in taxes.
This is exactly why I put so much content out into the world. I have my podcast, The Abundant Accountant Podcast, so that all of my auditory prospects can listen to what I’m sharing. For those that are visual, I have my Facebook Live show, and then for those who are kinesthetic, I have my Abundant Accountant Masterclass, where I teach my five-step system that will help remove the stress of selling for good through a webinar style format with slides.
The key here is to “Can It and Clone It!” and make creating content for your accounting firm easy.
Tip # 2: Capturing Leads
I work with A LOT of accountants and many of them do not have a good system to capture their leads.
If you’re not familiar with what I mean by capturing leads, I mean things like building an email list, asking for referrals and then putting them in a follow-up sequence. It could even be something as simple as having meetings with your ideal clients, so that you can nurture and grow them.
Something I want to remind all of the accounting professionals out there is that if you want to have an abundant accounting firm, it’s all about the quality of the leads, not the quantity.
Tip # 3: Use Social Media
Many of the accountants I work with are not fans of social media. Many of them actually avoid it at all costs. But I truly believe that one of the best ways to get your content out there and showcase your expertise is by connecting in communities online.
LinkedIn is an amazing place to find potential accounting clients for your firm, as are some of the groups on Facebook.
For example, I might meet a new accountant or CPA who is looking to work with high-level entrepreneurs like myself or Ross Jeffries. One way to connect with us is to start following us on Twitter and begin interjecting your knowledge of tax laws to us via Twitter. However, you want to do this in a way that is educational, NOT spammy!
If you’re looking to grow your credibility you want start posting content on a specific topic as an example. If you want to work with online entrepreneurs, the best place to post educating content would be in specific facebook groups for digital nomads or online entrepreneurs. Teach them the basics of your expertise.
In January of 2018 there were SO many shifts in the tax law. Sharing your expertise so openly without expecting anything in return will start to create high engagement, and you even have the ability to connect directly with those high-level clients that you desire.
When it comes to LinkedIn, there are well over 500,000 people subscribed to the accounting topic. Share your expertise here! Share posts that you’ve written, or other tips that might help taxpayers come tax time.
The stats are in your favor! It’s simply a matter of being consistent and posting to the platform where you are getting the most engagement.
If you don’t have the time to post regularly to social media, do what I do and hire a dream team of people who can support you in the areas where you are not an expert.
Tip # 4: Create a Passive Income Stream
One of the accountants that I’ve worked with, John, created a program that he called his hub-and-spoke model. Every time he’d have an accounting prospect walk through the door that wasn’t an ideal client for him, he would refer the individual out to someone who was better able to serve them.
Another example would be if you really like using a site like Bill.com you recommend any new client uses this service.
Each time you refer someone and they join, you could receive a payout of an affiliate commission, which helps your overall income goals. I don’t know how many of you have tried building your affiliate income, but it is absolutely worth it.
Another alternative is to partner up with mortgage providers, lawyers, financial advisors, and then ask if they’d refer potential accounting clients to you, and you’ll return the favor when you have a prospect looking for their services.
Dan Kennedy a strategic business coach and a mentor to Ross, coined this acronym NEER. It stands for Naturally Existing Economic Relationships.
This is an easy way to remember that if you’re an accountant, creating a relationship with a mortgage broker is an easy way to generate referral business. If you don’t build these relationships you’re just throwing money and clients away.
But the key to remember is that these relationships must be reciprocal. If you want referrals from these businesses, you have to turn around and do the same thing. This does NOT mean that if you refer 15 people that you’ll get 15 back, but it does mean that when the right accounting prospects come along they’ll be referred to you.
*BONUS* Tip # 5: Generate Free Publicity
Find locations where your accounting services would be welcomed, and give free talks. It doesn’t have to be anything complicated. You can share the Top 5 Biggest Tax Planning Mistakes for Dentists (or whatever industry your niche is in).
The point is to get in front of an audience and start networking. Get your name out there so that if an individual at one of these events can’t use your accounting services, they can refer you to their friends who may be looking for an accounting professional.
To start successfully marketing your accounting firm you want to put the following tips into practice as soon as you can:
Using Social Media
Create a Passive Income
*BONUS* Give Free local Talks
My goal for you is to implement at least one of these techniques within the next month. Which do you think you’re going to try first? I’d love for you to tell me in the comments!
PS. Learn the 3 proven strategies my accounting professional clients use to easily build their accounting practice with premium clients who are eagerly willing to pay what they’re worth. Sign up for the FREE masterclass NOW at abundantaccountant.com.