What Small business owners want from their accountant has evolved over time. Modern business owners want someone who does more than just their tax returns and bookkeeping. They want a long-term strategic partner with someone who can act as their trusted adviser – and that’s easier to achieve when you present a personal, open and human face to the world.
People buy from people, after all. Being seen as the kind of person that clients want to work with is central to engaging with these clients and prospects. But what’s the key to making this work?
Building a relationship of any kind takes time. Moving from being a casual business acquaintance to a trusted adviser requires effort and hard work. So it is important to present the most open and honest view of you and your team to the wider world. The following are tips to help you with this
Instead of being a distant technical presence, open up and drop the formality. Build a firm culture where you can share more about yourself, interact with clients on a more personal level and see the impact it has on enhancing your relationships.
Rather than providing a one-dimensional, functional service to clients, turn yourself into a rounded individual who can deliver that positive impact and experience.
Approximately 30% of time spent on the internet is spent within Social media. With that in mind, social provides a brilliant way to raise your personal (and brand) profile in the digital space. It’s easy to follow and interact with the right people, and it’s an area where you can quickly build 1-2-1 engagement. To make the most of your online presence:
Getting the best return on your marketing investment is important. But knowing if your marketing and PR was working – i.e. that your audience was actually getting value from it – used to be largely guess work in the pre-digital days.
Marketing apps now give you clear analytics and stats to measure your content and social marketing performance – and that makes it easier than ever to see where you’re having an impact and getting the right engagement levels as an adviser.
Using software tools, you can send out blogs, social campaigns, emails or newsletters in one hit – with personalisation that reinforces the perception of your individual and firm brands.
Building deeper relationships with clients is vital for your firm. The days of being a pure ‘number cruncher’ as an accountant or bookkeeper are over, with relationships, customer experience and advisory now king – and that means reassessing how you connect with your customers in the online world and in person.
By becoming a more rounded and human presence in your clients’ lives, and using marketing tech to speed up engagement times, you move away from the traditional stuffy perception of accountants and morph into a trusted and valued adviser.
We’re not going to suggest this is a straightforward and simple ‘caterpillar transforms into butterfly’ process – but by getting proactive about building better relationships you will see the results in the long-term.
By revealing the real you, you encourage a more genuine and long-lasting kind of engagement. And that’s great news for the long-term retention of clients, and the future of your firm.
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This article is an extract from the BOMA website and is written in general terms and therefore cannot be relied on to cover specific situations; application of the principles set out will depend upon the particular circumstances involved and we recommend that you obtain professional advice before acting or refraining from acting on any of its contents.