Seven Ways for Accountants to Quickly Attract More Clients

By: Peter George
You might not be able to attract overnight all the clients you need, but you can immediately get yourself in a better position to do so. Implement these seven easy steps, and you're on your way.

1. Your cell phone message voicemail announcement

I've heard just about every kind of message that you can imagine -- from the quick to the humorous to the its-so-long-I-don't-want-to-wait-to-leave-a-message. To me, this is one of the prime opportunities for technology to work on your behalf.

A quick message such as, "This is Susan Smith, providing effective solutions for medical professionals. Please leave a message." is much more advantageous than, "Hi, this is Susan of Susan Smith Accounting. Please leave a message."

2. Your office phone voicemail announcement

The idea above is just as effective for the voicemail announcement on your office phone. Go change it now!

3. Your name isn't that interesting ... really

When you leave a message on someone else's voicemail, take the opportunity to enforce what it is that you do and for whom! Think about how, "This is Paul Jones, the CPA who provides self-employed professionals with insightful tax planning." blows away, "This is Paul Jones." I realize that this might feel a bit awkward at first, but after saying a few times, it feels very natural. And believe me, after the first person compliments you on the message or you get business from it, you can't wait to use it again.

4. Introducing yourself to others

Depending on the situation, there are two ways to accomplish the same thing. One is to simply introduce yourself as, "I'm Bob Brown, the CPA who keeps restaurants running smoothly." The other is to say, "I'm Bob Brown." and then wait for them to ask what you do before answering, "I keep restaurants running smoothly." At this point, they are sure to ask how you do that. It is my belief that the first option is much stronger than the second.

5. Being introduced by others

The example above is just as valid when others introduce you. At networking events, it is not unusual for me to ask someone to introduce me to the attendees they know. But before we jump into the crowd, I ask them to introduce me as "Peter George, the marketing coach who helps self-employed professionals attract more clients and make more profits." On every occasion they have been happy to oblige. You can -- and certainly should -- do the same.

6. Spice up your e-mail name

How does your name appear when someone receives an e-mail form you? Does it help you promote yourself and establish your brand at the same time? If it just has your name, your company, a combination of the two, or your e-mail address, you are missing a great marketing opportunity.

Having a powerful e-mail name accomplishes two things. First, it stands out among all the other e-mail that your recipients receive. Second, it enforces who you work with and how you benefit them. Here's an example.

You send an e-mail to a prospect who asked you to contact her. Which "from" is more likely to not only catch her eye, but also differentiate you from your competition? "Mary Williams" or "Mary Williams, Accountant to the area's best restaurants." You might even decide to use "The area's top CPA." There's no reason to be shy.

7. Sign your e-mails

I can't get believe how many e-mails I receive with no information after the senders' names. At the very minimum, there should be the web and physical addresses as well as a phone number. But why not put that valuable -- and free -- real estate to even better use?

Use your e-mail program to automatically add a signature to every e-mail you send. Immediately after your name, add your personal tagline. Now, every time you write an e-mail, it is signed, "James York, helping consultants spend less time with their books and more with their clients."

Once you do this, you never have to think about it again. It's a lot like the infomercials say, "Just set it and forget it!"

There are many more ways to consistently attract more clients, but these seven can be immediately and easily be put into use. Begin right now. It won't be long before you see the positive results from your efforts.

Accounting
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