STANDING OUT Articles

What is the key to accountants’ survival in the AI era?

One of the biggest changes to be heralded by the introduction of AI so far as accountants are concerned, links to one of my long-term messages for accountants. How can you stand out from the competition? And, as a result, win more of the business you really want? Even...

Stop talking about your USP – it’s the same as other accountants

I’m often struck by the difficulty many accountants have when trying to identify what’s special about their firm or practice. Many assume that they do nothing different to any other accountant. Others have been persuaded they need to claim to have a USP. But, when...

What’s better than saying that your business grows through referrals?

Are you like many of the accountants I meet who claim that most of their best new clients come through referrals? This is certainly great when it's true. But when I dig a little deeper I find that it's often not quite as accurate a statement as the accountants...

Websites – advice and a checklist for accountants

It seems I’ve not updated my generic advice on this blog about accountants’ websites for some time. So I have pulled much of that advice together into this post. I say pretty much the same things whenever websites come up in conversation with accountants. They know...

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The marketing distractions accountants should avoid

Before setting out those marketing distractions that I believe accountants should avoid I need to offer some context. Over 20 years ago, the start of the century(!) was when I began presenting talks to accountants about practice related matters. I quickly learned...

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Being Known, Liked and Trusted is not enough!

You have probably heard the suggestion that it’s important to help people get to 'know, like and trust' you. Only then will they buy from you. Only then will they even consider becoming your client. This idea originated in the book ‘Endless Referrals’, written by...

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What do you REALLY need to sell as an accountant?

What do you really need to sell 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 2018 blog post, You are...

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Why you’ll find more success if you have an angle

Too many accountants struggle to distinguish themselves from their competition. This is a shame as it is what makes each of us different that makes us memorable and the reason why we are referred and recommended. And then why we are engaged by clients. Challenge...

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What if none of your clients wants anything more from you?

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,...

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Bad advice for accountants that makes me cross

These days it typically takes a lot to get me cross. But one thing that really winds me up is the continuing wave of advice to accountants generally, telling them to do stuff that doesn't work for everyone and is especially inappropriate for most sole...

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Fresh marketing insights for accountants

Sometimes a post on Linkedin can start a conversation that runs and runs.  This was the case just after the Budget when I posed the question “Is it really worth everyone producing a 'me-too' morning-after Budget summary?” I suggested these were typically simply a...

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Forget USPs – what are your KDIs?

I have long advised audiences and clients that claiming to have a Unique Sales Proposition (USP) is typically a mistake - as the word 'unique' means 'unlike any other'. Rarely do I ever encounter accountants with genuinely 'unique' offerings for clients.  And it...

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Do you offer a service guarantee? I bet you do.

Let's be realistic. If you did some work for a client but they weren't happy because you made a big mess of it, would you insist on charging them extra to correct your mistake? I hope you wouldn't even consider trying to charge extra to resolve a mistake of your...

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Is your business name sufficiently memorable?

Most professional advisory firms are simply named after their founders. Some retain the names of just the first two or 3 partners, Others might extend to 4, 5 or 6 names. The longest I have found, unless you know better, was a small Los Angeles entertainment firm,...

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