For the last few years I’ve been involved in judging the Small Practice of the year category for Accountingweb’s Practice Excellence Awards and I’ve been very interested to see how the entrants have been generating new clients for their practice.
Well let me tell you there is no silver bullet answer but the variety of ways that accountants are using just goes to prove the point. Countless entrants mention the usual suspects namely, concentrating on making their website as attractive and dynamic as possible, looking at targeting their social media output and the perennial favourite client referrals.
But I was struck by evidence that successful practices were growing by using a variety of other tactics to augment the usual ones and I have seen a significant increase in networking either via the likes of BNI or less formal local networking groups. Many practices in smaller towns looked to establish their local credentials in a variety of ways from sponsoring schools and local charities to opening their doors to Bar B Qs and breakfasts.
Accountants made themselves available to speak on tax and employment issues at schools, colleges, local radio stations and to breakfast meetings or chamber of commerce meetings and I was struck by the numbers who set up business clubs for their own clients fostering and nurturing their own networking group.
There is no easy way to gain new clients every way has its pros and cons but whatever your plans you need to plan, implement, record and react in that order and if something that you think is an absolute certainty doesn’t work then don’t be downhearted and most certainly don’t give up.
Accounting Practice Online is part of the ICPA, which is an organisation designed to provide support and guidance for accountants in practice. With 35+ practice specific benefits there has never been a better time to join. Take a look at the routes to membership today.