Why you need to build your personal brand – and how to make this work for you

By |2021-07-19T10:28:07+01:00July 20th, 2021|Accountants, Business messaging and branding, Conversational impact, Dependability and trust, Experience and expertise, Networking, Reputation|

What do people say about you when you’re not in the room? What would you like them to say? Few accountants seem to think this through. If you are clear about what you want people to say though you are likely to find success a lot faster than anyone who is ‘just

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

By |2021-07-13T11:06:26+01:00July 6th, 2021|Accountants, Business messaging and branding, Lead generation, Marketing and promotion, Mentoring, Networking, STANDING OUT|

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 this if you must. Tell me that

Why you need to tell people who you are – beyond being an accountant

By |2021-06-28T13:32:35+01:00June 29th, 2021|Accountants, Appearance, Business messaging and branding, Experience and expertise, Marketing and promotion, Networking, Referrals, STANDING OUT|

No one is 'just an accountant'. And you know that already. But how clear do you make this on your website, your online profiles and when you are networking? Lots of accountants make the mistake of assuming they only need to evidence their credibility as an accountant. And it's true that sometimes

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

By |2021-05-04T13:30:36+01:00May 4th, 2021|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

Bad advice for accountants that makes me cross

By |2021-04-06T09:31:47+01:00April 6th, 2021|Accountants, Business messaging and branding, Linkedin, Marketing and promotion, Mentoring, Social Media, Sole practitioners, STANDING OUT, Twitter|

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 practitioners. This is quite different from the advice that

Does size matter? Are you pretending to be bigger than you are?

By |2021-03-22T09:21:24+00:00March 23rd, 2021|Accountants, Business messaging and branding, Dependability and trust, Marketing and promotion, Websites|

I have lost track of how many sole practitioners and two-partner accountancy practices pretend to be bigger than they really are. Some overtly claim that their firm is bigger than it really is by adding words like “and associates” to the name of the firm. Even though, in reality, it is only

Fresh marketing insights for accountants

By |2021-03-19T15:31:28+00:00March 16th, 2021|Accountants, Business messaging and branding, Lead generation, Marketing and promotion, STANDING OUT|

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 re-hash of information already in the public domain

How can a mature accountant start to market himself effectively?

By |2021-02-01T15:53:22+00:00February 2nd, 2021|Accountants, Business advice, Business messaging and branding, Lead generation, Marketing and promotion|

During our first mentoring conversation a mature accountant told me how they had been struggling to replace clients who had retired, died or gone bust. The practice was well established and he had never previously needed to spend much time or effort on marketing or promotion. He had done the basics. He

“How can I use social media to promote my accountancy business?”

By |2021-01-08T18:37:54+00:00December 8th, 2020|Accountants, Business messaging and branding, Facebook, Lead generation, Linkedin, Social Media, Sole practitioners, Twitter|

There are two types of accountants who use social media and Linkedin.  Those who understand what works and those who have bought into the hype and hope that what they do will work. Chances are you are in that second category just like most of the accountants I know. Indeed, the vast

The worst mistake an accountant can make – and how to avoid it

By |2020-11-20T11:00:12+00:00November 17th, 2020|Accountants, Business messaging and branding, Servicing clients, Sole practitioners|

A journalist once surprised me with a question I wasn’t anticipating: “What is the worst mistake accountants can make when they are trying to ‘close’ a prospective client?” When I later reflected on my instinctive reply I was satisfied it contained good advice. Thinking about the issue subsequently I quickly constructed this

3 questions you must answer before seeking out new clients

By |2020-12-08T13:59:26+00:00October 20th, 2020|Accountants, Business messaging and branding, Marketing and promotion, Referrals, Sole practitioners|

l am regularly approached by accountants who want to know how they can get more clients. They want to know if social media is worthwhile, where to advertise, what marketing activities to pursue, what networking activities might be worthwhile, how to get more traffic to their website and much more - along

How effective is your reply to the question: What do you do?

By |2020-10-27T10:58:28+00:00September 8th, 2020|Accountants, Business messaging and branding, Career development, Conversational impact, Networking, Sole practitioners|

No one has asked me what I do since lockdown started. I've been thinking about how I might reply next time. What about you? What do you do? I think there are 4 standard ways we can answer the question. I know which approach I prefer. What about you? 1 State your

How special and different are you from other accountants?

By |2020-09-07T18:07:29+01:00June 16th, 2020|Accountants, Appearance, Business messaging and branding, Marketing and promotion, Networking, Referrals, Reputation, Sole practitioners, STANDING OUT, Websites|

Back in the days when I was a professional speaker (BC -Before COVID-19) I often asked audiences of accountants to look around the room. And then to indicate whether they felt that they were in any way special and different from most of the other accountants in the room. Typically only a

Generating the business you want without networking

By |2020-11-20T10:00:16+00:00May 20th, 2020|Accountants, Business messaging and branding, COVID-19 related, Marketing and promotion, Networking|

Did you attend networking events before the lockdown? I know loads of accountants don't like the concept. Others do it reluctantly and some actually enjoy it.  The same is true for those online networking events that have replaced face to face events during the lockdown. In my experience you probably have one

Want to add advisory services to your offering? Remember these 4 Ps.

By |2020-11-20T09:33:31+00:00February 4th, 2020|Accountants, Business advice, Business messaging and branding, Future, Marketing and promotion|

Thinking of expanding your service offerings? It doesn't matter whether you want to start providing 'advisory' services, tax advice or any other services. The same rules apply. And if you fail to take these into account you will struggle to make a success of your new 'offering'. If you are going to

Are you undermining your credibility by being too modest?

By |2019-08-20T11:11:24+01:00August 20th, 2019|Accountants, Business messaging and branding, Dependability and trust, Referrals, Reputation, Sole practitioners|

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. We all know the old adage that you never get a

How to do better than simply say that your business grows through referrals

By |2019-07-16T09:52:45+01:00July 16th, 2019|Accountants, Business messaging and branding, Marketing and promotion, Networking|

Most of the accountants I meet claim that most of their best new clients come through referrals.  When I dig deeper I find this is typically for one of the following reasons: They remember that their most recent new clients were initially generated by referrals; They don't get many new clients and also

How self confident are you, really?

By |2019-04-30T20:54:32+01:00April 30th, 2019|Accountants, Business messaging and branding, Conversational impact, Experience and expertise, Marketing and promotion, Networking, Sole practitioners|

Do you consider yourself to be a confident person generally? What about in terms of your ability to attract and win over prospective clients? And to keep clients happy and willing to pay you the fees you deserve for the work you do? Whilst many accountants I work with have a fair degree of

Practical solutions for accountants who don’t want to choose a niche

By |2019-02-05T09:52:08+00:00February 5th, 2019|Accountants, Business messaging and branding, Experience and expertise, Marketing and promotion, Networking|

There is no doubt in my mind. The more focused you can be as regards your ideal clients the more chance there is that they will recognise you as an accountant they should approach. And, if you have a clear focus, the easier it will be for other people you know to recognise

What can you do about all the competition from other accountants?

By |2019-01-21T09:20:41+00:00January 22nd, 2019|Accountants, Business messaging and branding, Linkedin, Marketing and promotion, STANDING OUT, Strategy, Websites|

One of the accountants I spoke with recently has been struggling for over three years to build their own practice. Although they had won a fair few clients in year one, some have since moved on. The accountant feels their service is good enough and that their fees were not excessive.  They

Who gets to decide what are your top skills and expertise?

By |2021-04-13T11:01:08+01:00January 8th, 2019|Accountants, Business messaging and branding, Career development, Experience and expertise, Key Business skills, Linkedin|

What are your top skills?  The key question though is not what YOU think they are, but what other people believe you are good at. What do your contacts and connections say when they reference and recommend you? And what do your clients say? A few years ago I had a surprise

Want to attract a different type of client?

By |2021-03-22T11:55:48+00:00December 18th, 2018|Accountants, Business advice, Business messaging and branding, Marketing and promotion, Websites|

When I ask accountants what they would like to be different in their practice, one theme is more common than any others. They frequently express the desire to have better quality clients, to increase their average fees and to be doing more interesting work. One sole practitioner accountant expressed this quite succinctly.

Debunked: Building brand awareness for your accountancy practice

By |2018-10-11T09:49:19+01:00October 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

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