Debunked: Building brand awareness for your accountancy practice

By |2018-10-11T09:49:19+00:00October 9th, 2018|Accountants, Business messaging and branding, Linkedin, Marketing and promotion, sole practitioners, STANDING OUT, twitter|

Think about ten top accountancy brands. Or at least the ones you can remember. How many of those do you think your typical client would be able to name - or would even recognise? Once you move outside of the accountancy and finance professions, brand awareness drops off very fast. Even the

What are you really ‘selling’ as an Accountant?

By |2018-09-16T16:44:37+00:00September 18th, 2018|Accountants, Business messaging and branding, Experience and expertise, Marketing and promotion, Networking, sole practitioners, STANDING OUT, Starting out|

What are you selling as an accountant? This is a simple enough question, and knowing the right answer could make a profound difference to the success of your practice. Let’s start with what you’re NOT selling. As I explained in a recent blog post, You’re not selling your time. And you’re not

What’s the best way for an accountant to win new clients?

By |2018-09-27T10:29:33+00:00September 11th, 2018|Accountants, Business messaging and branding, Experience and expertise, Marketing and promotion, Social Media, sole practitioners, STANDING OUT, Strategy|

Many of the accountants I speak with ask me the same question. How can they best attract new clients? I will rarely offer advice however until I have found out enough about the accountant, their firm, their services, their likes and dislikes and what they have tried previously. The simple reason is

Are you a specialist or a generalist accountant?

By |2018-07-23T15:56:13+00:00July 24th, 2018|Accountants, Business messaging and branding, Career development, Marketing and promotion, sole practitioners|

Most general practitioner accountants I talk with (and I talk with a lot of them) are, obviously, generalists rather than specialists. They started out as general practitioners and stay that way as their client base has always been quite disparate. Many of those who specialise do so only because they originally trained

Key ways to improve profitability

By |2018-05-22T23:05:41+00:00April 17th, 2018|Accountants, Inner Circle, Pricing, Productivity, sole practitioners|

At last week's meeting of The Inner Circle for Accountants our headline discussion topic was: "Improving the profitability of your practice" I offered an early observation that “If you don’t have profitable clients, you don’t have a profitable practice”. What I mean by this is that if your clients do not generate a profit for you,

Accountants CAN overcome a lack of inner confidence…..

By |2018-05-22T23:06:42+00:00February 20th, 2018|Accountants, Business messaging and branding, Conversational impact, Experience and expertise, Marketing and promotion, Networking, sole practitioners|

All too often I encounter another accountant who is lacking in confidence. And this invariably holds them back from achieving the success they seek. Just last week an accountant emailed me back after receiving a message I'd sent out on a totally different topic. Included in her reply was the following: I know I lack

Debunked: The one thing you must do….

By |2017-12-12T10:31:22+00:00December 12th, 2017|Accountants, Business messaging and branding, Marketing and promotion, sole practitioners|

A popular approach to getting your attention (and often your money) is to instruct you that there is 'one thing' you must do. What do they say? Many journalists, consultants and sales people assert that there is just 'one thing' you must do to remain in practice, to generate new clients, to increase your fees or

How can accountants use Linkedin for marketing purposes?

By |2017-12-05T09:06:51+00:00December 5th, 2017|Accountants, Business messaging and branding, Linkedin, Social Media, sole practitioners|

This was the headline to a question I was asked recently. I have summarised the question below and expanded on my reply and advice as this may help other accountants too. Question How can accountants use LinkedIn for marketing purpose? I have a company page, I have a profile, I am in some groups but

Has your practice plateaued?

By |2017-11-28T08:45:55+00:00November 28th, 2017|Accountants, Future, Marketing and promotion, sole practitioners|

My conversations with sole practitioner accountants over the years suggest that many are happy enough once their business has plateaued. 'Happy enough' is hardly an enthusiastic summation of how things are going. It suggests a degree of reluctant acceptance. The underlying message perhaps is that things could be better but the accountant is used to

Cloud accounting – Do you lead your clients or let them lead you?

By |2017-11-22T11:38:12+00:00November 22nd, 2017|Accountants, Business messaging and branding, cloud accounting, Experience and expertise, Productivity, Servicing clients, sole practitioners, Starting out|

This is the first of what I anticipate will become a series of cloud accounting related blog posts. Back in 2009 I disagreed with those commentators who were warning accountants about an urgent need to embrace cloud accounting technology. The alternative, warned these merchants of doom, was that accountants who failed to embrace the cloud

Debunking social media myths for accountants

By |2017-11-07T08:30:51+00:00November 7th, 2017|Accountants, facebook, Google+, Linkedin, Social Media, sole practitioners, twitter|

I forget how long ago I added the word 'debunker' to the list of my roles/activities. It's on my business card, my marketing materials, my online profiles and on the title slide for many of my presentations. I was first asked what I mean by 'debunker' when I was facilitating a workshop for an international

WHO do you need to stand out from?

By |2017-09-05T09:30:57+00:00September 5th, 2017|Accountants, Business messaging and branding, Experience and expertise, Social Media, sole practitioners, STANDING OUT, Starting out|

One of my talks for accountants, and much of the advice I share generally, concerns WHY it's important to STAND OUT from your competitors - and HOW easy this is to do when you put your mind to it. A related question I've never really addressed in detail is WHO do you need to STAND

Do people see you as successful or struggling?

By |2017-08-15T09:15:12+00:00August 15th, 2017|Accountants, Dependability and trust, Experience and expertise, Reputation, sole practitioners, Starting out|

Some accountants I know are proud of how efficiently they look after their own business affairs. Others though are embarrassed at their inefficiencies. And there are some who do not appear to give any thought as to how they are perceived. If clients or business associates become aware that you are not running your practice

“What tools do you recommend to help a sole practitioner stand out?”

By |2017-08-01T09:18:19+00:00August 1st, 2017|Accountants, facebook, Linkedin, Reputation, sole practitioners, STANDING OUT, twitter|

This was another question I was asked during a recent interview. This post is drawn from the notes I made before giving my answer on air. Many accountants and bookkeepers reference their best source of new business as being referrals and recommendations. So let's deal with this first. Tools I would recommend here include: Linkedin

3 lessons for accountants from….. personal trainers

By |2017-07-11T10:56:09+00:00July 11th, 2017|Accountants, Business messaging and branding, Career development, Experience and expertise, Reputation, Servicing clients, sole practitioners|

I recently heard John Hardy the Founder of FASTER Health and Fitness introduce his business.  He mentioned he throught there were similarities with accountants. I have taken what he said and adapted it to provide some lessons for accountants from the business side of personal training and fitness. 1  Personality John has noted that a

The end of accountants is nigh. Or is it?

By |2017-05-30T09:15:43+00:00May 30th, 2017|Accountants, Career development, Future, Servicing clients, sole practitioners|

Let me save you some time. Yes, the accounting profession is going through (another) period of unprecedented change. There will be fewer jobs for accountants in the future. There will be fewer large firms of accountants in the future. But there will continue to be plenty of work for savvy sole practitioner accountants for many years

“None of my clients want anything more than the basics”

By |2017-05-09T09:32:30+00:00May 9th, 2017|Accountants, Business messaging and branding, Servicing clients, sole practitioners, STANDING OUT|

Unlike some commentators, I entirely accept that many accountants have some clients who want nothing more than a basic compliance service.  And that you get very frustrated to be told by consultants that you should offer your clients advisory services. After all,  you know your clients don't want, cannot afford and will not value such advisory

Sole practitioners – what can you do when your clients are too tough on you?

By |2018-03-14T22:44:02+00:00October 19th, 2016|Accountants, Servicing clients, sole practitioners|

Many an otherwise savvy sole practitioner tells me about similar problems with their client base. "They won't pay higher fees, they don't want additional services and they leave everything to the last minute" If you have clients like this, you're not alone. Often it's a direct consequence of how desperate you were to take on

How much personality should sole practitioners put into their practice?

By |2018-10-09T18:31:48+00:00July 25th, 2016|Accountants, Appearance, Conversational impact, Dependability and trust, Linkedin, sole practitioners, STANDING OUT, twitter|

I was asked two related questions during a recent interview. This post is drawn from the notes I made before giving my answers on air. 1. With so many businesses competing with each other online, has it become more important to put more personality into your practice? The smaller your practice the more important

Are technical skills enough for sole practitioner accountants?

By |2018-07-12T07:28:09+00:00July 13th, 2016|Accountants, Key Business skills, Networking, sole practitioners, Speaking skills|

Most sole practitioners are justly proud of their technical skills. It is also common to find that some sole practitioners undervalue the importance of ensuring that they have all the business skills they require to be profitable in the short-term and successful in the longer-term. At best only lip-service is paid to the development of non-technical