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Marketing isn't a one-size-fits-all game, especially for accounting firms. The key to success lies in understanding what you want to achieve and tailoring your strategy accordingly. Let's break it down into manageable steps, starting with the most crucial question:

What's Your Goal?

Before diving into the nitty-gritty of marketing tactics, take a step back and define your firm's objectives. Do you want to:

Your goals will shape the entire marketing strategy, from your budget to the channels you choose.

Real-World Example:

Imagine you're an accounting firm specializing in tax preparation for small businesses. You have a steady stream of clients, but you want to expand your services and offer them monthly client accounting packages. In this case, your goal is to upsell existing clients, and your strategy will focus on showcasing the value of ongoing accounting bookkeeping support.

Budget: How Much Can You Invest?

Marketing budgets vary wildly depending on your firm's size, revenue, and ambitions. Be realistic about what you can afford and allocate your resources wisely.

Organic vs. Paid Marketing: Which Path to Choose?

Organic marketing (e.g., blogging, social media, email nurture campaigns, SEO) is a long-term play. It builds brand awareness, establishes your firm as a thought leader, and nurtures relationships with potential clients. It's a slower burn but can yield lasting results.

Paid marketing (e.g., Google Ads, social media advertising) delivers faster results. You can target specific audiences, generate leads quickly, and track your ROI with precision. However, it requires a more significant upfront investment and a commitment to a minimum of 3-4 months in order to optimize algorithms, keywords, etc. We also recommend and scheduled sales coaching for any clients who use paid advertising. After all, you are accountants. Sales conversations and asking for the business can feel overwhelming. We remove the overwhelm and break it down into a conversation that leaves you feeling empowered…not icky. Leads are great, but they aren’t worth much if you can’t qualify and close the right ones.

The ideal approach often involves a combination of both, with organic marketing laying the foundation and paid campaigns accelerating your growth.

Real-World Example:

A boutique accounting firm looking to attract tech startups might start with a blog series discussing tax implications for early-stage companies. They could then supplement their organic efforts with targeted Google and/or LinkedIn ads, reaching decision-makers in their desired industry.

Identifying Your Ideal Client: Who Are You Talking To?

Once you know your goals, define your ideal client. This could be based on industry, company size, revenue, geography, or demographics. Tailor your messaging to resonate with this specific audience, by recognizing their biggest pain points and empathizing with them. 

Real-World Example:

An accounting firm specializing in the construction industry wouldn't use the same language as one catering to healthcare providers. Their websites, brochures, and social media posts would speak to the unique pain points and challenges faced by their respective clients.

Crafting Compelling Messaging: Tell Your Story

Develop a clear and concise message that highlights your firm's unique value proposition. What problems do you solve for your clients? How do you empathize with them, and why are you the expert they should choose to do business with?

This message should be consistent across all marketing channels, from your website and brochures to your email newsletters and social media profiles.

The Starting Point: Put It All Together

  1. Define your goals.
  2. Determine your budget.
  3. Choose your marketing mix (organic and/or paid).
  4. Identify your ideal client.
  5. Craft compelling messaging.

By following these steps, you'll be well on your way to developing a marketing strategy that drives growth for your accounting firm. Remember, marketing is an ongoing process. Monitor your results, adapt your tactics, and don't be afraid to experiment.

Thinking about “DIYing” your marketing? We’ve got you covered. Download our new eBook bundle, and get all of the detailed strategies and frameworks to drive new growth in your firm.

Need Faster Results? Consider Paid Ads.

If you're looking for a quick boost in leads and clients, paid advertising is a powerful tool. But don't forget the long-term benefits of organic marketing. It's about finding the right balance for your firm's unique needs and goals.

By taking a strategic approach to marketing, you can position your accounting firm for success in a competitive landscape. Remember, it's not just about crunching numbers; it's about connecting with your clients and showing them how you can help them deliver the results they are looking for. Most importantly, it’s about building a mutually beneficial and valuable partnership with your clients.

As an accounting firm owner, you know that marketing and client communications are critical for growing your business and retaining clients. But let's face it - writing can be time-consuming and even nauseating for many accountants. The good news is, AI tools like ChatGPT 4,  Claude 3, and Gemini are here to save the day and act as your virtual marketing assistant. 

AI: Your Brainstorming Buddy

Think of these AI chatbots as your brainstorming buddy. By providing the right prompts and direction, you can quickly generate decent-quality content for blogs, emails, guides, social media posts and more. No more staring at a blank screen for hours or struggling to find the right words.

Blogging Made Easy

For example, let's say you want to create a blog post educating restaurant owners about tracking tips. Simply provide the AI tool with your target audience (restaurant owners), the topic (bookkeeping tips), a target word count, and instructions on tone and writing level. In seconds, the AI will spit out a solid first draft that you can then edit and refine to match your brand voice. What used to take hours now takes minutes!

Streamline Your Email Marketing

AI is also a lifesaver when it comes to email marketing. You can easily generate email templates for things that come up repeatedly, like scheduling appointments, sending reminders, or welcoming new clients. By keeping a bank of these templates handy, you'll save tons of time. AI can even help you craft compelling email sequences to nurture leads and stay top of mind.

Create Compelling Downloadable Content

Another powerful way to showcase your expertise is with gated downloadable content like guides, checklists and ebooks. Coming up with topics and outlines for these assets can be daunting, but not anymore. Simply input a detailed prompt describing what you want to create, and the AI tool will generate a detailed outline complete with talking points, examples, and calls-to-action. That’s the hardest part- done for you! From there you can apply your brand voice, edit your copy, design your asset in Canva, and put it on your website behind a gated landing page or form.

Video Scripts in Minutes

The case for video is strong, but the idea of scripting videos from scratch stops many accountants in their tracks. (Not to mention the idea of being on camera, but that’s for another article:) 

Once again, AI comes to the rescue. Whether you need an intro video for your website, a new client welcome message, or an employee spotlight, you can use AI prompts to quickly generate compelling video scripts. Just provide context on your goals and audience. Again, it’s a starting point, but it saves you hours of time by giving you an initial draft.

Best Practices for AI-Powered Content Creation

Of course, to make the most of AI tools, it's important to have quality input. The old adage "garbage in, garbage out" applies. Be thoughtful about the instructions and context you provide. The more specific and the more context you provide, the better. And when you get the AI's output, don't be afraid to ask it to revise, expand or rewrite sections. The AI will learn and build on the content it has already created.

AI: Your Content Creation Starting Point

While AI is an incredible tool for generating marketing content quickly, it's important to remember that it's just a starting point. Think of AI as your brainstorming buddy when it comes to content creation. It bears repeating - don't just take the output at face value and use it as-is. Instead, take the AI-generated content and infuse it with your own unique voice and perspective. This extra step will ensure that your marketing materials truly reflect your accounting firm's brand and resonate with your target audience.

Final Thoughts

AI can be an accounting marketer's best friend when used correctly. They can act as your 24/7 copywriting assistant, helping you generate presentations, blogs, emails, guides, social media posts, video scripts and more in a fraction of the time. You'll save hours of effort and headaches.

Ready to put AI to work in your accounting firm's marketing? You can grab an entire eBook full of prompts, tools, and strategies for accounting firms, along with 3 other eBooks that will give you all of the marketing steps, secrets, and frameworks for your accounting firm right here.

Think you can leave all the cool online stuff to those hip social media companies? Well, forget that! Google Business Profile (GBP) is your accounting firm's not-so-secret weapon to get noticed on the biggest search engine ever. It's kind of like that free billboard on the internet superhighway called Google.

What in the world is Google Business Profile?

It used to be called Google My Business, but they changed the name. Whatever they call it, a GBP is how you get your accounting firm to pop up when someone types in "best accountants near me" or "help with my business taxes!"

Think about it - when you go searching the internet for the answer to life's difficult problems, you probably use Google. Your clients do the same.

Setting up your Google Business Profile is kind of like creating a super-detailed business card and putting it right under people's noses when they're looking for an accountant.

Okay, so why does my accounting firm NEED this profile?

Here are ten great reasons why your firm should be BFFs with Google Business Profile:

  1. Get Seen in the Neighborhood: Your profile is like shouting, "Hey, I'm here!" when people in your area search for accountants. Those "near me" searches on Google are off the charts! It's your key to attracting local clients.
  2. Hello, Website Traffic! People see your profile and BOOM – they check out your awesome website. More visitors mean more chances of nabbing those new clients.
  3. Reviews are Like Shiny Trophies: Clients leave reviews – good ones, hopefully! It's like those awards you won back when you were figuring out this numbers game. Great reviews build trust and help you look like the rockstar accounting firm you are. Plus, you get to respond and show everyone how great you are.
  4. Show Off Your Superpowers: List all your amazeballs services – tax help, bookkeeping, those fancy audits that strike fear into business owners. Let everyone see why they should hire YOU instead of your boring competitor across town.
  5. Google Loves Data: Your profile shows you how many people saw it and clicked through – that's marketing gold! You can figure out what works to get the most eyes on your firm.
  6. Trust Factor: 10 out of 10! Think of it like a stamp of approval from Google. A complete profile makes you look way more legit and, hey, everyone wants to hire the legit accountant, right?
  7. Hey Siri, Ask My Accountant... The Questions & Answers section is like your personal advice forum. Show off your smarts and help people with their tax woes.
  8. Show Off Time! Did your firm win an award? New blog post? Share it on your profile – you earned it! Flaunt that accounting expertise.
  9. SEO Magic Trick: A good Google Business Profile helps you level up in search results. That means folks find you more easily. It's basically a free marketing power-up.
  10. The Best Price: FREE! Who doesn't love free? Especially when that free thing can bring in clients and make you money?

Alright, I'm in! How do I do this Google profile thing?

It's pretty easy! Here's the basic breakdown:

And that's it for the basics! Keep reading for pro tips and tricks! Next-Level Google Business Profile Hacks

In an era where everyone is online, the influence of online reviews is undeniable. For individuals in the accounting and financial realm, Google Reviews are a crucial part of business growth. They play an essential role in molding your professional reputation online and improving your visibility on search engines.

Let's dig into the significance of Google Reviews and how you can use them to your advantage in your accounting business.

Social Proof: Establishing Trust Through Reviews

Reviews and testimonials are the pillars of social proof, a psychological concept that people are more likely to trust the opinions and actions of others. When considering which accounting firm to choose, prospective clients pay attention to reviews.

Here's an impressive statistic: 91% of consumers say their brand perception is influenced in some way by local reviews, and almost half of consumers trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations from family and friends. [Source: Bright Local]

Regular positive reviews can boost your clients' faith in your services, even before their first interaction with you.

Preferential Treatment from Google for Businesses with Positive Reviews

Google's search algorithms use several factors, including positive reviews, to decide which businesses to feature in local search results. Consistent positive reviews show Google that your business is active, engaging, and highly recommended by users, effectively improving your visibility on search results.

Managing Your Online Reputation: Highlighting Success and Tackling Criticism

Google Reviews offer a platform for showcasing both positive feedback and constructive criticism. Using this platform wisely can offer great benefits:

Remember, your responses are read by everyone who visits the review section, not just the person who wrote the review.

Display Your Social Proof on Your Website

Don't hide your positive reviews! Here are a few ways to do this:

By highlighting these positive reviews, you create a good first impression with potential clients.

How (and When) to Request Google Reviews

OK, let’s be honest. Most accountants feel uncomfortable asking a client for a Google review, but it’s time for some practical advice. Frankly, a vast majority of people are happy to leave a review…if the are asked.

Here are some suggestions on how to gather client reviews:

Final Thoughts

Google Reviews are about much more than just collecting stars. They're a vital tool for building trust, credibility, and enhancing your online presence. By actively seeking reviews, responding to every review professionally, and displaying your glowing testimonials, you will have a robust marketing asset that will attract new clients and enhance your professional reputation in the digital world.

Here are some key reasons why Google Reviews should be a top priority:

Some Best Practices for Getting More Google Reviews:

Key Stats on Google Reviews:

When to Request Google Reviews:

The best times to request a review from a customer include:

Use email and SMS to make requesting reviews simple anytime you interact with customers.

Prioritizing Google Reviews should be at the core of your marketing strategy. 

Since online reviews are immensely influential in today's marketplace, implementing a proactive strategy to generate more Google Reviews will benefit your business. It leads to higher visibility, increased sales, improved search rankings, and builds customer trust through social proof. Firms that don't focus on getting reviews risk falling behind competitors who do.

Make getting positive Google Reviews a regular part of your customer experience and marketing approach. If you need help automating and managing Google Reviews, Cajabra offers turnkey solutions designed specifically for accounting firms. Click here to schedule a consultation and get the reviews your business deserves!

The Google Business Profile is also something many firms often overlook.

Your Google Business Profile is essentially your business card on Google - it's what shows up when potential customers search for accounting firms in your area on Google Search and Maps. Given that over 90% of online searches start on Google, your Google Business Profile can have a huge impact on your discoverability and visibility. That's why you need to make sure it accurately represents your accounting firm and convinces searchers that you are the right choice.

Here are some key reasons why optimizing your Google Business Profile should be a top priority:

It Makes You More Discoverable in Local Searches

Accounting firms that optimize their Google Business Profile are up to 4 times more discoverable in local searches than firms that just rely on their website. When customers search for accounting services near them, your optimized Profile will have higher placement in the search results map and list, putting you in front of lots of potential new clients.

It Builds Your Credibility and Reputation

Your Google Business Profile allows you to showcase important credibility markers - like years in business, client reviews and ratings, certifications, awards, and photos of your office and staff. This gives potential clients confidence that you are an established, reputable firm they can trust.

It Highlights Your Specialties and Services

You can use your Profile to feature your specific accounting specialties, areas of expertise, services offered, and focus industries. This helps you attract the types of clients that are a great fit for what you do best.

It Encourages Direct Client Engagement

Your Profile makes it easy for prospective clients to contact you directly to ask questions or request appointments. You can list phone numbers, live chat widgets, email addresses, and online booking links to drive conversions.

It Supports 24/7 Visibility

Your Google Business Profile gives your firm a presence on Google that is accessible 24/7, even when your office is closed. This always-on visibility means you never miss out on connecting with potential new clients.

Optimizing your Google Business Profile For Accounting Firms

To maximize the impact of your Google Business Profile as an accounting firm, focus on these best practices:

The Bottom Line

Optimizing online visibility should be a top focus for any accounting firm looking to grow in today's digital landscape. Putting time into expanding your Google Business Profile is one of the most impactful steps you can take. With a complete, optimized Profile, you'll be able to turn more of your website traffic into conversions, consistently attract clients that are a great fit, and stand out from the competition in your market.

If you need help managing and optimizing your Google Business Profile, Cajabra offers automated marketing solutions built exclusively for accounting firms. Click here to schedule a consultation call today

When was the last time you updated your marketing message? I know- tax season has been all consuming this year, but it’s over! Once your wounds heal, and you come up for air, it's time to focus on your business. And, as we navigate how to shift from compliance to advisory work, one of the most important steps in the process is updating your marketing message.

Not just tweaking a few things on your website...I mean a well thought through real deal update. Especially if you haven’t re-visited this in a few years. The shift in the entire profession was accelerated by the pandemic, and you can’t afford to get left behind with the clients that nobody else wants!

How people find you has changed, my friends. While referrals are still very important, finding the business you want is going to take a far more proactive strategy with a clear brand message.

A few facts...

If 85% of consumers conduct research online before making a purchase, how likely are your prospects to select your firm based on your website?

Wait, you get your business from referrals, you say? Guess what they’re doing before they call you…

There is a handy keyword tool you can check out called Ubersuggest. I typed in the phrase ‘accountant near me,’ today, and saw that the search volume for that phrase is 40,500. Say what?! Without going down the SEO path in this article, let’s focus on how the right message can help you stand out from your competition and attract the clients you want…many of whom typed ‘accountant near me’ into the search bar.

So...where DO you start?

I get it. You’re an accountant, not a marketer. But, you’re also a business owner in a very competitive profession. You need to stand out.

Start with a very simple ‘one-liner.’

A ‘one-liner’ is essentially a 10 second elevator pitch. It is what you- and anyone in your firm- says when you are at a networking event, a cocktail party, or anywhere that someone asks, “so, what do you do?”

“I’m a CPA” is not good enough. It doesn’t tell the listener that they have a problem, and you have something to solve it. In Donald Miller’s book called Marketing Made Simple, he outlines a way to craft a compelling one-liner.

Your one-liner should be a simple 1 or 2 sentence statement about the problem your ideal client has, your solution, and the result. It should be so compelling that it rolls off your tongue and off the tongues of everyone on your team. Why? Because it is a very simple way to turn everyone in the organization into sales people without feeling like they are sales people. More importantly, everyone is on the same page with a message that supports your culture and why you exist.

It can go in your email signature, on the back of your business cards, on your website, even your conference room wall if you want it there!

This is exactly where I start with clients who need help clarifying their brands and creating a comprehensive marketing strategy that delivers results.

Getting clear on your brand message

You wouldn’t be in business without the customers who pay you for your services. However, not all customers are ideal customers, am I right? Years ago, when public accounting firms were heavily focused on compliance work like audits and tax returns, your clients looked very different.

Today, small businesses are emerging from a global pandemic needing far more than tax returns and bookkeeping. They need consulting and advice from financial professionals who can proactively guide them to make smart decisions for their business and achieve their goals!

Your ideal customers are the heroes of your story. So, who are they?

You have to know them. Start by defining exactly who your ideal current clients and prospective clients are. What is their demographic? Profession? Industry? What do they fear i.e. how could they fail? What do they need to achieve success? Why would they need you? How does all of this align with what you offer and what your firm’s goals are?

Think of it this way. Imagine a prospective business owner that you believe would be a great client for your firm. Think about that person's business for a moment. They can find any number of people who can do the tax return. So, why would he or she pick your firm? Does Ms. Ideal Prospect know how to interpret financial statements? Maybe. Does she know how to use them along with other financial data in her business to plan her cash flow for this year? Or whether or not she should hire people? Make a capital investment? Change the business structure? Apply for loan forgiveness or tax credits? What industry is she in? How often does she want to hear from you? Does she expect to get a bill every time time she calls or emails? Or, does she prefer to pay a monthly retainer?

As a small business owner, it’s doubtful that Ms. Prospective Client opened her business because she wanted to interpret financial statements or strategize about how to minimize her tax liability and stabilize her cash flow. It’s also unlikely that she has the expertise to create a comprehensive financial strategy to hit her business goals. This is where you come in.

Clearly, she needs your advice and expertise. But, she needs to hear specifically and clearly how you can help her avoid failure or achieve a financial goal she has for her business.

It’s your job to craft a story that invites me in and guides me down the path to financial success in my business.

What's next?

Once you have clarity around your message to the world, the next step in your marketing strategy is to create a compelling content outline for your website.

Because your website is such a crucial part of your marketing strategy, I’ll be devoting the next blog post to it. Check out Part 2, coming soon, for tips on creating a content wireframe for your website that will drive new business and serve as part of a sales funnel to build your prospect list.

Having a compelling website is paramount, and it starts with a clear brand message on the home page.

Mythbuster: your website is all about you. Wrong, it’s about your client.

Think about the last website you saw today. Did you read the history of that company? Did you care? If you read anything at all, did you just skim the headlines? Or, did you click off the site or page after a few seconds and move on?

Now, think about the last website (besides Amazon or social media:) that captured your attention and caused you to take action. If a website does a good job of making their company/product/service about YOU, well, now you’re interested, right?

How about your website? What impression are you giving your clients and prospects? Your clients don’t care that you’ve been in business since 1972. Or, that the firm prides itself on exceptional customer service and attention to detail (frankly, they expect this).

Your entire brand message needs to tell a story. More importantly, it needs to invite your prospects into that story and make them the hero.

A ‘Must Read’ that will help you craft your story.

If you haven’t read Donald Miller’s book, Building a Story Brand, I recommend it. This is a quick and compelling read for anyone trying to create a clear, concise message around a brand- especially in a competitive environment.

As he states on the first page, “Customers don’t generally care about your story; they care about their own.”

Focus on your website first.

Look at every page of your website through your ideal customers’ eyes. Make it about them. Invite them into your story, and become the guide that leads them to success or helps them avoid pain.

The goal of your website is to get people to take action, so you need to establish a message – a value proposition- that will compell a visitor to take action.

Get rid of hollow, meaningless words.

Honesty. Integrity. Our business is your business. We put customers first. Our professionals set us apart. We provide the highest quality services.

Are you nodding off yet? And, wouldn’t every one of your clients just expect these things at bare minimum?

Be specific and clear.

Less is more. You don’t need paragraphs and paragraphs of words.

Call to Action

As basic as this may sound, make it easy for people to act! If you have a tiny message at the bottom of your site somewhere beckoning the visitor to ‘contact us at’…that isn’t good enough. Make it easy for people to interact with you by giving them a specific button to click (above the fold) that compels them to act. Your call to action should be prominent on your homepage so it’s hard to miss!

Social media

Once you have your message clear on your website, don’t overlook the importance of social media. You have a great message- now get it out there! LinkedIn and Facebook are both good platforms to be visible and set yourself apart! What better time than 2021? According to an article by Katie Tolin, entitled “7 social media strategies for our new normal,” social media engagement increased 61% in a matter of weeks mid-March 2020. Accountants are ESSENTIAL to small businesses- this is a great way to get in front of people and offer value. But, if you are going to do it, be consistent and offer value.

Consider video.

Video is a powerful component to any marketing strategy, and it a great opportunity to showcase your firm's people, knowledge, value, and even client testimonials. According to this article at lemonlight.com, 84% of people say that they’ve been convinced to buy a product or service by watching a brand’s video.

If you aren’t using video to communicate your message, you’re missing a huge opportunity. Whether it’s setting up a YouTube channel or simply including video messages in your emails to clients and prospects, video is an absolute must for getting people to pay attention to your marketing message.

If the thought of updating your marketing message nauseates you…

Hire a marketing expert who knows how to guide you through creating a brand message and marketing strategy that elevates your firm above the competition.

The shift from compliance to advisory services is well underway. Is your firm’s marketing message strong enough to attract new clients and keep your existing clients from going somewhere that offers them a more compelling story?

Why should you even be thinking about marketing your firm during tax season? You’re busy, exhausted, and you can’t see light at the end of the tunnel yet. There’s an elephant in the room that is soooo tempting to ignore with the pressure of tax season bearing down. That elephant has a name- it’s COMPETITION.

People have so many options for getting their taxes done now that they don’t have to use a local accounting firm anymore. Clients who need proactive advisory services will seek and find them. In a few years (or less), you don’t want to be left with the clients you make the least on but who suck up the most of your time.

Marketing your firm during tax season is a great way to increase business with your best current clients and drive new ideal clients through your door (virtually or physically)!

Yes, this tax season has been insane. Despite that, you can set your business up for success after tax season by doing a few simple things now that won’t take any additional time.

Here are 5 simple things you can do right now as you are finalizing and delivering tax returns to clients. You can implement all of these without adding time to your day- you just have to be intentional.

1. What’s in the return vs. what’s on it…is key to new opportunities.

Before you present a return to your client, you will have obviously reviewed it. The question is, HOW are you reviewing it? Are you tediously and manually so in the weeds of a detailed review that you miss an opportunity for tax planning? A business restructure? A contribution to an IRA that could increase a refund or reduce a balance due? A Schedule C that indicates opportunity for bookkeeping or cash flow stabilization?

You have to find a way to spend less time reviewing 1040 returns in order to shift your focus to what the return is telling you. It is easier and less expensive to cross sell to existing clients than to bring in new ones. The tax return is your vehicle to get proactive and offer valuable services to clients that will help them improve their financial position moving forward.

2. Set an appointment for post tax season when you review or deliver the return.

For the clients who represent opportunity beyond the return, get an appointment for the next meeting booked on the calendar when you meet to review or deliver the return. It will save you time and phone or email tag later-and potentially lost opportunity.

3. Ask for Google and Facebook reviews and testimonials when you review or deliver the return.

This is a super easy way to market your firm. When you are delivering a return or reviewing it- you are adding value. You also have your client’s captive attention. Just like booking the next appointment at that point, ask clients if they would mind doing a Google or Facebook review about their experience. I suggested this to a firm recently who followed through, and guess what? They were shocked at how many clients did it!

Take it a step further and ask for a testimonial (quote or video) that you can include on your website or YouTube channel. 85% of consumers conduct online research prior to making a purchase. That same firm I mentioned that got several social media reviews? They also asked for testimonials. Not only did they get several, they also got clients offering to do video testimonials. What do you think that is doing for their advisory business?

According to this article about why and how social proof influences consumers, “an average of sixty-six percent of customers said the presence of social proof increased their likelihood to purchase a product.”

4. Create an incentive for a referral.

Another easy way to market your firm during tax season is to mention a referral incentive at the end of a tax return review or delivery. Your value is never more top of mind with your clients than when you are in front of them. Leverage that opportunity to offer a simple referral incentive. By offering an incentive, such as a discounted future service or gift cards to a local restaurant (client?), you’ll give them a reason to think of others they know who could benefit from your expertise.

5. Deliver value to your clients and prospects by posting FAQs.

You’re getting the same questions every day and answering them over and over again. These are also questions that your prospects have- but may not be asking you. Why not show how proactive you are as an advisor and post a few FAQs and answers each week on your social media?

It costs you nothing, shows that you are in tune with your target audience, and it serves up value at no cost to keep you in front of clients and prospects. Why would they go elsewhere if you are being proactive?

One of the firms I work with is killing it in their niche. When I asked them why these clients are coming to them, the managing partner told me that every single new client said “we needed someone proactive and our old CPA was not.”

Recently, I received a note from an accounting firm owner who said, “I’d like to talk to you about my marketing.” When we connected a short time later, I quickly realized that in his mind, marketing was SEO. And only SEO. 

Many firms I’ve worked with invest heavily in SEO to make sure they are appearing in the right searches and are ranked highly. This is a great strategy for driving traffic to your website, no doubt about it. 

But, the bigger question…a very important question…is what are you going to do with those eyeballs once they land on your site?

Mistake #1: If your homepage doesn’t capture a visitor’s attention immediately, they move on.

Did you know that people will spend an average of between 45 and 54 seconds on a website? Considering that the average human attention span is only 8.25 seconds, you have very little time to engage someone before they move on.

Without the ability to immediately draw someone into a story about your brand on your website, you become a casualty of the human attention span. And, all of the money you spent to get people to your website is lost.

Your brand must tell a story.

Which leads to mistake number 2…

Mistake #2: The story is about you.

As tempting as it is to want to tell people about who you are and what you do, they don’t care. 

But, wait, isn’t that why they went to your website to begin with? To learn about you? Of course. And what they see immediately will determine what they do next. People who are most likely to do business with you are really looking for a clear and compelling path to solve a problem they have. 

Your job is to draw those eyeballs that landed on your page (aka your ideal prospects and clients) into a story that recognizes their problem and positions you as a guide who is going to meet them where they are and help them get where they want to be.

You have to…

So. Your website isn’t really about you. It’s about the story you tell your clients that is about them. A story that is clear and demonstrates that you understand their problem, you can empathize with it, and you are the right person or firm to lead them to their vision of what success looks like in their eyes.

Empty words, and fluffy phrases don’t work.

“Our experienced team is ready to help.”

“We’ve been in business for XX years.”

“Our team of experienced professionals put our clients first.”

Not only is this all about you, but literally every firm could say any or all of these things. They are empty phrases that cost precious brain calories your readers are not willing to invest if you don’t draw them into a story. And, they don’t make you look any more qualified to solve your clients’ problems than everyone else who says the same thing.

So, what do you do?

Think about your brand’s story through a different lens. Put your ideal client at the center of your story. Focus your message around identifying their problem as it relates to your services and positioning you as the expert who is THE choice for taking them from where they are today to where they want to be. Cast a vision for what success looks like for them. And, above all, make sure your message is clear, concise, and compelling to your audience.

Finally, less really is more when it comes to copy on a homepage. Be sure your message is clear, compelling, able to be scanned quickly, and invites your audience into a story that will make them want to take the next step with you. Show them how to do business with you, and then guide them to take action.

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