Strong accounting skills on their own aren't enough to guarantee success as an accountant. Indeed, to attract and retain clients, marketing and advertising are absolutely crucial; you can't expand your list of clients if no one knows who you are or where to find you. Therefore, every accountant should improve their marketing skills and learn the best techniques for promoting their services if they hope to become a success.
If you're an accountant looking to expand your client list, then this guide will help you to discover how to improve your marketing skills in order to make this a reality.
What is marketing and why is it so important?
We've already briefly discussed why marketing skills are crucial for accountants, but what is marketing exactly? Marketing is the process of attracting an audience and promoting products and services to them, with the aim of selling these products and services.
It's clear how marketing overlaps with both advertising and sales, but marketing itself encompasses all stages and processes within your business. Indeed, marketing features in all business decisions because you must always consider target audience and how each decision you make will affect the likelihood of them being interested in your products or services.
The importance of software
Investing in software is an important part of driving and executing an overall marketing strategy. In the same way that an accounting software package will make your accounting operations more accurate and efficient, marketing software will do the same for your marketing activities. Some examples of marketing software include…
- Social media marketing software: Marketing your business using social media gives you access to a global platform and helps you source and nurture leads in real-time. Software such as Hootsuite and SproutSocial can help you here.
- Email marketing software: Email marketing tools allow you to send your latest business news, products and offers to current and potential clients. Continuing relationships and encouraging new customers to engage. Mailchimp and Sendinblue are popular software options.
- Digital marketing software: Using digital marketing to promote your business makes sense. But to manage this marketing approach correctly, to target the right audience and to generate accurate reports and analytics, you're going to need digital marketing software. The most popular options here are SEMrush and HubSpot.
How to improve your marketing skills
Since marketing affects all aspects of a business, it can be daunting to start learning more about it and implement new marketing strategies. To help you figure out how to improve your marketing skills as an accountant, here's a list of the best marketing advice to follow.
1) Understand your clients
How can you market your accountancy services to prospective clients if you are unaware of their needs? To attract clients, you need to conduct thorough market research to understand the current difficulties facing your clients and how you can step in to help them.
You may find that some of your clients are in the same field. If you decide to carve out a niche for yourself and cater specifically for this niche, such as healthcare or property, you can focus on this in your market research and develop a complete understanding of it. This niche will also help you to craft highly relevant marketing campaigns for prospective clients in this specific market. By becoming a leading accountant in a specialised area, you can build a strong reputation and attract more clients than ever before.
2) Create a marketing plan
Just as a business plan is essential when running a business, a marketing plan is necessary for organising your marketing strategy and aligning your business goals with marketing techniques that can help you achieve them. You should use your market research to help you determine how your services differ from competitors' services and why clients should choose you. This will inform your marketing messages and strategies in terms of what you want to achieve and the time frame you want to achieve this in. Setting clear goals for your marketing campaigns will allow you to track their success and think of ways to improve them in the future.
3) Attend conferences and training courses
If you'd like to give your marketing expertise a boost and set yourself apart from your competitors, then attending training courses and conferences could be extremely beneficial. In these environments, you'll learn about the latest developments in marketing from leaders in the industry. You can apply these new ideas to your marketing strategy to attract more clients. You could also keep up with what's trending in the marketing industry by reading blogs or listening to podcasts. Even when you feel like your marketing skills have been greatly improved, there will always be more to learn.
4) Implement the best marketing techniques
You shouldn't rely on just one marketing technique to help you win over clients. Indeed, a successful marketing strategy will encompass a variety of tools and techniques to ensure that prospective clients hear your marketing communications. Here are some of the best techniques you can use.
- Build the perfect website: Your website may be the main way that your clients interact with your accountancy business, so make sure it's fit for purpose. Display engaging and relevant information on your website, but don't clutter it with excessive text and distracting designs. You should also keep your branding consistent across the site and include plenty of calls to action to direct clients towards purchasing your services.
- Write blogs: Content marketing is a fantastic way to advertise your accounting services. By writing informative blogs on topics related to accounting, you could potentially increase website traffic and attract more clients. Becoming more familiar with SEO (search engine optimisation) will teach you how your blog posts can rank higher in search engine results, which can increase the number of clicks on your website even further.
- Social media marketing: Nowadays, social media is an extremely powerful marketing tool, allowing you to reach a large number of potential clients. By being active on social media and posting regularly, you can increase your following and generate interest in your accountancy business.
- Encourage client referrals: This is a more traditional technique, but it's still highly effective. Many people trust personal recommendations far more than generic advertising. So, encouraging your clients to recommend your services to their network could be a fantastic strategy. Offering incentives to loyal clients who can refer new clients to you is one way you can do this.
- Write email newsletters: Your clients will greatly appreciate you providing them with high-quality accounting information in the form of an email newsletter. By sending out these weekly or monthly newsletters, you can ensure that you stay on your clients' minds and make a good impression, meaning that clients will want to continue to use your services.
- Start a podcast: Podcasts have become incredibly popular in recent years, so it's a fantastic idea to take advantage of this trend and start your own podcast. Similar to traditional content marketing, a podcast will allow you to disseminate important accounting information and therefore generate interest in your business.
- Make use of traditional advertising: Although other forms of marketing and advertising have surged in popularity, the success of traditional advertising methods, such as TV and radio advertising, is still evident. Therefore, traditional advertising still has a part to play in your marketing strategy.
Without strong marketing skills, you may find yourself struggling to secure new clients as an accountant. Indeed, marketing your services or products is an essential part of any successful business. Regardless of how good your services are or how satisfied your current clients are, you won't attract new clients if you don't improve your marketing skills and create a marketing strategy to target this audience and their specific needs. By following the advice listed above, you can realise your potential as an accountant and reach new heights of success.
Copyright 2022. Article was made possible by site supporter Aislinn Carter.