10 marketing tactics for accounting firms
We’ve worked alongside some of the best financial service and accounting firms in the business. So, we want to share with you 10 of the best marketing tactics we’ve discovered for your progressive accounting firm.
1. Get your brand right
Do you want to stand out from the competition? Or do you want to attract a certain type of customer? Perhaps you want to change traditional perceptions of what an accounting firm looks like.
Your business brand will determine how customers perceive your business, so it’s important to get it right. The different components of your brand, from your business name, to the colours and iconography you use, to your brand messaging and personality you create, all work together to build an image of your business.
Make sure that image is the one you want customers to see.
2. Give your customers the best website experience
Websites should be working hard, but they shouldn’t look exhausted while doing it. When potential customers are researching for a trustworthy and expert accounting firm, don’t offer them a clunky, out-dated website.
Make your website easy to navigate and the content fresh. As a lot of people search for websites on the move, it’s also important to make sure that your site is mobile and tablet responsive.
3. Customer experience
You know you offer your customers the best accounting service. But competing on products and services is no longer enough.
Focusing on how you deliver your product or service to customers is becoming increasingly important. By understanding where the interactions between you and your customer take place, the touchpoints, you can focus making these the best experience for the customer.
Take time to map out your customer experience, developing a strategy to connect with customers and remove barriers to deliver the best experience you can.
4. Offer your customers something
This is an ongoing process to ensure that you continue to build relationships and engagement with your customers, even when they are not currently receiving a product/service from your business.
Include some educational content on topics related to accounting on your website and social media platforms. This could take the form of infographics, articles, webinars or videos and are designed to demonstrate your knowledge to your customers and prospective customers. Although you are not directly ‘selling’ your business, you are showing customers that you are up-to-date with shifts and trends within the accounting industry.
An enewsletter is a great way to consolidate relevant accounting articles and other educational material and distribute it to your customer email list. The key to using enewsletters marketing correctly is to avoid being too salesy in your content.
A business blog is another great way of continually engaging with your customer, while demonstrating your authority. Blog about accounting trends, news, and relevant topics. By regularly adding to your blog, you are also keeping your website content fresh.
5. Search Engine Optimisation (SEO)
Although it sounds complicated, SEO really is a vital component in your marketing strategy. Essentially, what you are doing with SEO is raising the Google search ranking of your website.
The higher your website ranks, the more likely you are to get it viewed by customers. And with most people not bothering to click beyond page one of a Google search, SEO isn’t something to ignore.
So how can you do it? There are hundreds of ‘experts’ in SEO out there, so it is vital that you do your research before hiring anyone.
6. Get social
Don’t shy away from the socials – they can be a valuable way of connecting with your customer. But remember that each platform has its function, and it might not be appropriate to post the same information across all platforms.
LinkedIn is your business social media platform. Use it to network with other accounting or financial service firms, and to build your business brand. It’s not as relaxed as other platforms, so consider the tone of the information you post.
Twitter can be used for your ultra-short snippets of accounting-related information.
Facebook requires longer posts with images. These posts can include links to interesting news or journal articles that you’ve curated for your customer about relevant accounting topics. Facebook is also a great platform to keep customers informed of your community involvement, e.g. charity organisations your business supports.
Post photos on Instagram that show the lighter side of accountancy (we know there is one!). For some inspiration, search Instagram for #accountinglife and #accounting.
7. Go digital
It can take a while for the old SEO magic to take effect, so while you wait, why not try out some of the digital marketing tools available? Digital marketing tools like AdWords, digital display marketing and social media advertisements offer businesses targeted and cost-effective methods of advertising online. You only pay for the value you receive, i.e. per-click or per-impression.
8. Generate and keep your leads
Getting a lot of hits on your website but not capturing any leads? Then you need to get funnelling. A lead generation funnel involves attracting prospective customers to your website, acquiring their contact details and engaging with them directly to turn them from potential to actual customers .
At the early stages of the funnel, where you are asking for your prospective customers details, we recommend employing a lead magnet. This is usually an offer of something of value, i.e. blog articles, a how-to guide, a free webinar, in return for the prospective customers’ details. A lead magnet acts as an incentive for the prospective customer to share their details with you.
Once you have the details of the prospective customer, you begin to engage with them by offering them specific products or services. This engagement should move the prospective customer further along the funnel and closer to becoming an actual customer.
9. Get referrals
When it comes to reviewing businesses, people trust people. Word of mouth is a powerful (and cheap) way of getting referral business. And accounting is an industry that thrives off referrals.
Ask satisfied customers to post a positive testimony to your social media accounts. Prospective customers are often encouraged by the opinions of their peers when making decisions about products or services. Remember to always thank customers that do post positive reviews. If it happens that someone posts something negative, make sure to respond to that too, asking how you can help to rectify the situation. Prospective customers will be encouraged by your willingness to accept where you need to work harder to keep your customers happy.
With so much emphasis on online marketing, many businesses forget how influential face-to-face networking can be as a method of building your brand and attracting prospective customers.
Networking can also help with affiliate marketing, where you align your accounting business with other compatible businesses, such as legal firms or financial advisors.
Connect with local business networks, or start one up yourself. It’ll be worth the time and will help establish you as a solid member of the local business community.