Whether you’re a small, medium, or large public accounting firm, there are many things you can be doing to maximize your business and become an established presence in the accounting industry.
In today’s day and age when clients and potential new hires are researching what your firm has to offer, it’s imperative that you have a solid marketing plan. This won’t only help you attract new clients and top talent; it will also help build your reputation as a trusted firm and put you on the map for future growth.
1. Optimize and Update Your Website
According to a study performed by Digital Synopsis, “Lack of information, ‘busy’ interfaces, and small fonts are the biggest hindrances” to users finding information they need on a website. In fact, “the average person will spend 1 minute trying before giving up.” We could dedicate an entire article to the importance of good website design. But, in a nutshell, your website is your business card.
A good website will achieve successful conversion if it is modern, simple, aesthetically pleasing, and easy to navigate with user friendliness in mind. As competition continues to grow in every sector, users more and more are becoming intolerant of websites that have bad design and usability.
Therefore, it’s absolutely imperative that you revisit your website and see where you can optimize and update your interface to follow today’s best practices for good web design. We highly recommend hiring a professional to do this for you. Many web designers will work with you to understand what your business is about, who your audience is, what services you offer, etc. They can help you design a website that has proper keywords, landing pages, call-to-actions, and search engine optimization practices that will help your firm become more visible and user friendly. This won’t only capture your audience’s attention, but also encourage them to easily perform tasks you want them to while on your site.
2. Use Social Media
If you’re not already on the social media train, it’s time to hop aboard. Social media has taken the world by storm, serving as an elaborate way for brands, businesses, and organizations to connect, influence, and get in front of their audience. So much so that “social network ad spending will reach $35.95 billion, representing 16% of all digital ad spending globally” this year alone.
However, many accounting firms are not leveraging social media effectively. They either do not post frequently, don’t advertise, or don’t have any social media policies in place.
To make sure your firm is leveraging social media properly, hire a social media manager dedicated to improving your overall social media strategy. They will incorporate it into your short and long-term marketing goals. They will also make your firm more relatable, resourceful, and valuable by giving your audience content that lets them learn more about your company culture and also gives solutions to their problems. In doing so, your firm will benefit from increased brand awareness, building community through social engagement, etc. Learn more about why accounting firms should embrace social media here.
3. Create Valuable Content
One of the best ways to attract new and keep old clients is to continuously provide them with content that is useful and valuable to them. This could be anything ranging from advice about how to prepare in advance for taxes come Busy Season; what to expect when being audited; or how financial consulting can help their businesses grow. It’s also important to talk about trends in the industry and how it will affect all facets of the accounting profession. Providing this resourceful information reassures your current and prospective clients that they have to look no further for a firm to give them all the solutions they need—and will make them want to partner with you even more.
Also keep in mind that the delivery of content doesn’t always have to be in article form. Explore with eBooks, white papers, infographics, quizzes, and especially videos. By packaging your content in a variety of ways, you can appeal to a larger percentage of your audience who digest information differently.
Then make sure you dedicate an area on your website to house all of your content, such as a blog. This will enable you to archive, categorize, and sort everything to make it easily searchable and accessible to users. Again, if you don’t already have someone producing consistent, valuable content for your audience, it’s time to think about hiring a Content Marketer.
4. Amplify Your Content
In order to have a wider reach and to get in front of your targeted audience in an even bigger way, an effective strategy that many marketers turn to is content amplification. If you’re producing great content that addresses a lot of your audience’s pain points and they’re responding to it positively, you’ll want to carry that momentum by getting your content in front of as many of your targeted audiences as possible.
There are many ways to go about doing this. You can reach out to various accounting publications to see if they will publish your piece in their next issue; you can establish relationships with big industry influencers to share your content on their social media platforms; or you can also get involved with niche communities both on and offline that are relevant to your business. You can hire a public relations company or work with your social media manager, marketing team, and content marketer to make amplification happen.
When it comes down to it, content amplification is about forming relationships and partnerships with different people, businesses, and organizations that are widely received in the industry. The formula is simple. The more you get them to push your content, the more it is seen by your audience; the more it is seen by your audience, the more likely you are to become recognized as a thought leader in the industry, which gives you greater potential for client acquisition.
Lastly, nothing beats the age old technique of simple networking. Establish rapport and connecting with people whether in person or online is always a surefire way to market your firm. Attend conferences, get referrals, and make your staff brand ambassadors to ensure that your firm is always represented in a professional and helpful way.