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10 unique marketing strategies for accounting firms

May 07, 2024
  • 11 min read
  • Omid G

    In today’s hyper-competitive business landscape, merely crunching numbers won’t guarantee success for an accounting firm — no matter how great you are at navigating spreadsheets and ledgers.

    The truth is, marketing for accounting firms isn’t much different from any other kind of marketing. It’s all about crafting captivating narratives, establishing a strong brand presence, and enticing potential clients with an irresistible offer. By mastering the art of marketing, you can position your firm as the go-to resource in a sea of options, engaging your target audience and leaving your competitors in the dust.

    In this article, we unveil 10 powerful strategies that will turbocharge your marketing efforts and drive your accounting firm’s growth to new heights. From harnessing the potential of digital platforms to leveraging the power of strategic partnerships, we’ll guide you through the process of ramping up your marketing efforts to new levels.

    How much should an accounting firm spend on marketing?

    Most accounts spend an average of 2% to 4% of their firms’ net revenue on marketing, although that doesn’t necessarily mean they’re getting the results they want. Some firms know exactly how they are spending their marketing dollars and budget accordingly, while others wind up wasting money on marketing activities that don’t support the firm’s goals. How does an accounting firm waste its marketing budget? Let us count the possible ways:

    • Spending money on marketing to prospects who fall outside their target market or on poorly qualified leads
    • Not following up on the leads that are qualified
    • Focusing heavily on the generation of new leads instead of marketing to warm leads or current accounts
    • Failing to nurture and retain existing clients
    • Failing to collect email addresses or make the most of email marketing

    Simply put, you don’t want to be spending money on marketing without getting a return on investment (ROI). Generally speaking, that ROI should be a 5:1 ratio or better, and anything below a 2:1 ratio is considered unprofitable. Each organization is unique, however, and ROI isn’t always easy to calculate with certain marketing activities like social media marketing.

    One thing is clear, however: marketing is a must if you’re hoping to grow your firm. The top high-growth accounting firms are seeing annual growth rates of 29%, up to five times greater than that of slow-growth firms, according to the Marketing Budget Benchmark Study from the Association for Accounting Marketing. The study attributed this high rate of growth to three key factors, including digital marketing. (Digital maturity and workplace culture were the other two.) So whether you have a larger budget for marketing activities with greater impact or you need to start small and grow, don’t overlook the power of marketing to propel your firm to new heights.

    10 powerful marketing strategies for accounting firms

    If you’re hoping to gain a competitive edge and achieve high-growth status as an accounting firm, it’s a must to invest in marketing initiatives that align with your firm’s goals and objectives.

    Here are our top marketing strategies for accounting firms:

    1. Start a newsletter (build an email list)
    2. Sponsor finance content creators
    3. Write SEO-optimized blog posts
    4. Write guest articles on finance publications
    5. Create short-form video content
    6. Run PPC ads on Google
    7. Provide templates or tax calculators
    8. Create content on LinkedIn
    9. Partner with finance tools & companies
    10. Create a client referral program

    Let’s dive in for a detailed look at 10 powerful marketing ideas for accounting firms you can start implementing now.

    1. Start a newsletter (build an email list)

    An informative, useful newsletter is the key to building an engaged community and establishing your accounting firm as an industry thought leader. With the right content delivered at the right time, you can create an engaged email subscriber list that eagerly anticipates your latest insights, tips, and updates.

    Newsletters for accountants

    With your newsletter, you can forge meaningful connections, deliver valuable content, and nurture relationships with potential clients. Share industry trends, expert advice, and insider knowledge that will leave your readers craving more. Whether it's demystifying complex tax laws or offering practical bookkeeping tips, your newsletter will position your firm as the go-to resource for all things finance.

    Pro tip: Craft attention-grabbing subject lines, deliver personalized content, and don't forget irresistible call-to-action buttons to book a call with your firm. By consistently delivering value to your subscribers’ inboxes, you'll cultivate trust, loyalty, and a strong sense of community.

    2. Sponsor finance content creators

    In a digital world where influencers reign supreme, it’s time to tap into the immense power of finance content creators. From popular YouTubers to podcast hosts and newsletter curators, these influential figures hold the key to unlocking a vast audience of finance enthusiasts eager to discover your accounting firm.

    LYFE Accounting on YouTube

    By sponsoring finance content creators, you gain access to their loyal followers, leveraging their influence to promote your firm’s unique offerings. Imagine the impact of a well-placed mention or an engaging collaboration that introduces your services to thousands, or even millions, of passionate finance seekers. Watch your firm’s visibility skyrocket as you ride the wave of influencer marketing.

    Partnering with finance content creators allows you to amplify your brand message and tap into their established credibility. Be strategic in your selection, targeting creators whose values align with your firm’s mission and vision. Together, you can create exciting, informative, and entertaining content that engages and educates your shared audience.

    Pro tip: Reach out to your favorite finance content creators, and explore creative collaboration opportunities. Consider working with nano-influencers with a smaller following that may be more impactful with their highly engaged audiences.

    3. Write SEO-optimized blog posts

    Take search engines by storm with SEO-optimized blog posts that position your accounting firm as an authoritative voice in the industry. By crafting engaging articles that address your target audience’s pain points, you'll not only boost your website’s search engine rankings but also attract highly qualified leads.

    Become the go-to resource for bookkeeping and accounting needs by offering practical, actionable advice in your blog posts. Whether it's tips for effective budgeting or decoding complex tax regulations, your content should provide genuine value to your readers.

    But don’t stop at informative content alone — make it interactive! Strategically place call-to-action buttons within your articles, inviting readers to take the next step and book a consultation call with your firm. By seamlessly integrating lead generation into your blog posts, you’ll convert curious readers into eager clients.

    Pro tip: Keyword research with a tool like Google Keyword Planner or Moz is your secret weapon for SEO (search engine optimization) blog posts. Identify the search terms and phrases your target audience uses, and skillfully incorporate them into your articles. With every well-crafted blog post, you’ll not only boost your website’s visibility but also establish your firm as the trusted resource for accounting and financial guidance.

    4. Write guest articles on finance publications

    Imagine the impact of your accounting firm’s name gracing the pages of renowned finance publications. By writing guest articles, you can harness the power of established platforms and reach an extensive audience hungry for expert insights and innovative perspectives.

    Pitch your ideas to reputable finance publications, offering unique angles and valuable content that align with their readers' interests. Create compelling narratives, backed by your firm’s expertise, to position yourself as an industry thought leader. Whether you’re sharing strategies for financial success or making complex accounting concepts more accessible, your guest articles will showcase your firm’s knowledge.

    Guest articles not only enhance your firm’s credibility but also expand your reach beyond your existing audience. As readers encounter your compelling content in trusted publications, curiosity will pique, leading them to seek out more information about your firm and the services you offer. This surge in visibility can translate into a steady stream of qualified leads knocking on your door.

    Pro tip: Remember, it’s not just about writing stellar content; it's about strategically placing calls to action within your guest articles. Invite readers to visit your website, download valuable resources, or schedule a consultation with your firm. By seamlessly guiding readers through the customer journey, you’ll transform casual readers into potential clients.

    5. Create short-form video content

    According to Animoto, video content is the preferred medium that consumers want to see from brands. Short-form videos like what you see on social media are especially effective, as these are often the platforms people will use as they search for new products and services. That is, people are likely to turn to their friends, even the virtual ones they don’t know, to exchange ideas and discover new brands.

    Shortform videos on YouTube

    Platforms like TikTok and Instagram Reels offer a playground of creative opportunities to showcase your accounting firm’s personality. From informative snippets to entertaining skits, these bite-sized videos allow you to share valuable insights, explain accounting concepts, and engage viewers in an entertaining and memorable way.

    Infuse your videos with personality and creativity, making complex financial topics accessible and engaging for your audience. Whether it’s through storytelling, humorous anecdotes, or visually appealing graphics, your videos should leave a lasting impact and encourage viewers to explore more of your content.

    Pro tip: Include clear calls to action in your videos, inviting viewers to visit your website, subscribe to your channel, or book a consultation. By seamlessly integrating your brand messaging into your short-form video content, you’ll drive traffic, generate leads, and establish a strong digital presence.

    6. Run PPC ads on Google

    When it comes to reaching potential clients at the precise moment they're searching for accounting and finance services, pay-per-click (PPC) advertising on Google is a low-cost, effective option. By strategically targeting keywords relevant to your firm, you can ensure your ads appear prominently in search engine results, capturing the attention of those actively seeking your services. Keep these pro tips in mind:

    • Craft compelling ad copy that highlights your firm’s unique value proposition and showcases why you’re the perfect choice for their accounting needs. Whether it’s your years of experience, personalized approach, or stellar customer reviews, emphasize what sets you apart from the competition.
    • Target keywords people would be searching for related to accounting and financial services.
    • Leverage Google’s powerful targeting options to narrow down your audience based on demographics, location, and search behavior. This precision targeting ensures that your ads reach the most qualified prospects, maximizing your ROI.
    • Create compelling landing pages that align with your ad copy, providing visitors with a seamless transition and a clear call to action. Whether it’s scheduling a consultation, downloading a resource, or subscribing to your newsletter, guide visitors toward the next step in their customer journey.

    7. Provide templates or tax calculators

    Want to offer your target audience valuable tools that showcase your expertise and make their financial lives easier? Try offering templates or tax calculators on your website. These practical resources not only establish your firm as a go-to destination for financial guidance but also provide tangible value to your visitors.

    Income tax calculator

    Consider creating templates for budgets, expense tracking, or financial planning. These ready-to-use tools can help individuals and businesses streamline their financial processes and gain better control over their money. By offering templates customized to their needs, you position your firm as a trusted advisor committed to their success.

    Additionally, tax calculators are a powerful asset for individuals and businesses navigating the complexities of taxation. Develop user-friendly tools that allow visitors to estimate their tax liabilities, deductions, or refunds. By simplifying the tax-planning process, you showcase your firm’s expertise and position yourself as a reliable resource for tax-related matters.

    Pro tip: Ensure that these templates and calculators are easily accessible on your website, either as downloadable files or interactive online tools. Encourage visitors to provide their contact information in exchange for access, allowing you to capture leads and nurture relationships with potential clients.

    8. Create content on LinkedIn

    LinkedIn isn’t just a professional networking platform; it’s a goldmine for marketing your accounting firm and establishing yourself as an authority in the industry. With millions of professionals actively engaging on the platform, LinkedIn provides a fertile ground to showcase your expertise and connect with potential clients.

    Create compelling and informative content that resonates with your target audience. Share industry insights, expert tips, success stories, or thought-provoking questions that spark conversations. Engage in discussions with fellow professionals, providing valuable input and establishing yourself as a knowledgeable and trustworthy resource.

    Utilize the power of LinkedIn’s publishing platform to share in-depth articles or case studies. This allows you to delve into complex accounting topics, demonstrate your firm’s capabilities, and attract the attention of decision-makers seeking specialized expertise.

    Pro tip: Be sure to optimize your LinkedIn profile to reflect your firm’s unique value proposition. Highlight your experience, showcase client testimonials, and make it clear how visitors can get in touch with you. Regularly update your profile with fresh content and engage with others’ posts to expand your network and visibility.

    9. Partner with finance tools & companies

    Why go it alone when you can join forces with established finance tools and companies to provide a comprehensive solution to your target audience? Collaborating with finance software companies, fintech startups, or other financial service providers can expand your reach, enhance your offerings, and attract new clients.

    Reach out to finance tools and companies that align with your firm’s values and complement your services. Explore opportunities for co-marketing, joint webinars, or referral programs. By partnering with these entities, you can leverage their customer base and tap into a pool of individuals actively seeking financial solutions.

    Pro tip: Consider offering exclusive discounts, special packages, or bundled services to customers of your partner companies. This not only incentivizes potential clients but also strengthens your relationship with the partnering entity. Word-of-mouth referrals from satisfied customers can drive significant business growth and establish your firm as a trusted partner.

    10. Create a client referral program

    Harness the power of word-of-mouth marketing by implementing a client referral program that turns your satisfied clients into brand advocates. There’s no better way to expand your client base than by tapping into the network of your existing and previous clients.

    Create a referral program that incentivizes your clients to refer their friends, family, and colleagues to your accounting firm. Offer rewards such as discounts on services, free gifts, or even commissions for successful referrals. Make it enticing and valuable for your clients to spread the word about your exceptional services.

    Promote your referral program through various channels, including your website, email newsletters, and social media platforms. Clearly communicate the benefits of referring others and provide easy-to-use referral mechanisms, such as personalized referral links or referral cards that clients can distribute.

    To further enhance the effectiveness of your referral program, consider implementing a tiered structure. Offer additional rewards or bonuses for clients who refer multiple individuals or businesses, encouraging them to become dedicated advocates for your firm.

    Pro tip: Don’t forget to express your gratitude and appreciation to clients who participate in the referral program. Send personalized thank-you notes, provide special recognition, or even host exclusive events for your top referrers. By nurturing these relationships, you’ll strengthen client loyalty and encourage ongoing referrals.

    Using Copilot to power your accounting firm

    Copilot for accountants

    Marketing for accounting firms doesn’t have to be complex to be effective. The key is consistency and a willingness to make an investment in marketing. By implementing these 10 powerful marketing strategies, you’ll transform your accounting firm’s marketing efforts into a dynamic force that drives growth, attracts new clients, and solidifies your position as an industry leader.

    As a business owner, your accounting services are invaluable to your clients. However, a CPA can often struggle with making the leap from providing excellent services to effectively marketing those services. It's important to establish a strong online presence to attract potential customers and retain current clients. An effective marketing plan should include leveraging the power of search engines through content marketing and implementing innovative marketing tactics tailored to your target audience. By combining these strategies, you're not only ensuring that your firm remains visible in the vast digital landscape, but also creating valuable connections with your audience, reaffirming the trust your current clients place in you, and enticing potential customers with your expertise and unique approach to accounting services.

    And with Copilot, you can further differentiate your firm and provide clients with a one-stop, secure portal for uploading files, signing contracts, sending messages, accessing dashboards, and more. To learn more and get started, sign up for a free trial today.

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