Following a previous tip in which I encouraged accountants to embrace the boring, today’s tip encourages you that even if the accounts and tax work you do seems boring, the results are far from boring for your clients.
When your tax planning work results in a small business owner saving several thousand pounds, that’s not boring. It’s incredibly exciting. It’s helped them hire a new team member, or go on a family holiday, or be part of an exhibition they’ve been meaning to do for years and at last are able to afford.
This is probably the most powerful tool there is for accountants to showcase the exciting – sharing your client stories.
And it’s not just by way of “Client Testimonials” on your website. There are a multiplicity of ways you can share your client stories.
Share client stories from different perspectives
First, there are the perspectives from which you can share them:
- Your client sharing the results you delivered
- You sharing about a particularly challenging case, what you thought it would be, and how it worked out
- A team member sharing their role in a successful client story
Use a variety of media for your client stories
Then there are the media you can use:
- Video clips
- Audio clips
- Blog posts
- Interviews (if you record the interview, you can turn it into an audio clip and/or a video clip)
- Photographs (of your client and their place of business)
- Client rating scores (with something like CustomerSure)
- Feature sliders or images on your website’s home page
Finally, as you’re developing these stories, make sure that it’s not just the usual “We think XYZ Accountants are great, they are nice people, I had a VAT problem and they really took care of it and that was so helpful.”
Include facts. Details. Things that may not even seem to matter as well as those that absolutely do.
Questions to ask yourself and your clients
Here are some questions to ask – yourself, and your clients – when it comes to showcasing the exciting:
Questions to ask the client:
• What were the key issue(s) or problem(s) you had?
• What was that doing to you and your business?
• What did we do for you?
• What results did you see from working with our firm on this problem? (The more specific, the better – get numbers and dates and facts.)
• How did that make you feel?
• What do you most like about our firm?
Questions for your firm to answer:
• How did your firm win this work? (this is for your own purposes, not necessarily to be used in public testimonials)
• What did your firm do to address the key issue(s)/problem(s)?
• Why do you like these kinds of projects?
As always, now is the time to do this. Not in a few months, not next year.
Because if you wait a year, other firms will have picked up on this concept. (I assure you several of our clients are even now hiring videographers to record case studies and clients on their premises.) And if you wait more than two years, it will begin to be a normal standard thing that every accountant has on their website, and those of you who did it now will be on to other amazing things we don’t even know about yet.
The same thing happened with Xero. It was the newest brightest thing a year or two ago. Now you struggle to find an accountant who isn’t using it or signing up. That doesn’t mean you can’t still use that powerfully for your firm and your clients, but you’re not going to stand out as much.
(The same is also happening with auto enrolment, by the way. If you think that’s a new SEO keyword, or you can focus on it, you had better have a very compelling solution to offer.)
Remember too that even showcasing the kinds of clients you have can be a win. Client businesses that are fascinating in and of themselves (a wine merchant, a veterinarian, custom wedding ring makers) give a good impression. Even if you only churn out some accounts once a year, the beauty and fascination of your client’s business will reflect well on you.
By the way, we have a Client Testimonial template you can download in our Free Stuff. (If you’re not a member already, that same link will let you register.)