Digital savviness isn't just for tech companies anymore. As the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA) noted, digital channels fuel an ever-increasing chunk of the accounting industry's revenue – nearly half in 2020 and predicted to hit 57% by 2025.
Haven't dipped your toes into the digital world yet? Well, it's time. It's not about ditching the good ol' networking and word-of-mouth referrals but rather about enhancing them with the power of the internet.
Making your SMB accounting practice stand out in the buzzing online market is no easy feat. So, what's the secret sauce to being different?
It's simple yet challenging. In an industry where unique services are a rarity, we must flex our creative muscles and dive head-first into the world of consistent digital marketing.
Unleashing the Power of Content and SEO
If you've already made acquaintances with content and SEO, that's a great first step. These two are partners in crime, helping you appear more frequently in internet search results. But beware, there are rules of the game.
Supercharging Your Digital Marketing with Tailored Content
Climbing up to Google's Page 1 isn't a stroll in the park – it demands a robust SEO game. And for strong SEO, you need to roll up your sleeves and write original, problem-solving content.
To put it simply, don't make your content a sales pitch. Instead, turn it into an answer key for your customer's most pressing questions. Everybody is seeking answers, and your content can be their Holy Grail.
Unsure of what to write about? SEO tools like SEMRush, MOZ, and Ahrefs are your crystal balls, revealing the most searched keywords. You can also do a basic Google Search on a topic and analyze the existing content.
Here is an example of a “file tax extension” on Ahrefs Content Explorer - explore existing top-ranking topics, and write one for your website.
Remember, everyone digests content differently. So, you should serve up a buffet of content types, from blogs and articles to webinars, online workshops, guides, and even videos.
Now that you're equipped with an arsenal of content let's discuss how to set it free on the world wide web.
Strategizing Content Distribution
Once you've donned the writer's hat and created engaging content, it's time to figure out where to share it.
Your Own Website / Blog Site
Your website or blog site is a perfect launching pad for your content. Here, you're the boss - you decide what to write and can tweak it anytime. Plus, with free CMS platforms like WordPress and Webflow, you're spoilt for choice when it comes to building your site.
Consistent blogging gives Google fresh content to the index and builds your accounting firm's brand image through insightful content.
Hop onto the social media bandwagon to expand your content's reach. Platforms like LinkedIn, Twitter, Reddit, and Facebook are perfect stages for spotlighting your firm, sharing your blog posts, and discussing hot topics.
On social media, your followers would love to see:
1. Success stories from your accounting firm.
2. The human faces behind the number-crunching.
3. Engaging in discussions on finance and tax laws.
4. Handy articles or checklists.
Online Directories and Review Sites
Don't forget to list your firm on local listing sites like Google My Business and Yellow Pages and industry-specific publications like AccountingWeb and AccountingToday. Reviews on platforms like Capterra, Trust Pilot, Crozdesk, and G2 can boost credibility.
Partnerships and Collaborations
Find businesses that serve your target market but aren't direct competitors, such as automation software companies or law firms. These could be your potential allies for cross-promotion.
The Art of Engagement
Once you've attracted leads, don't let them slip away. In digital marketing parlance, it's time to nurture the lead.
Email marketing is your personal channel to the leads' inboxes, where you can share customized content. Depending on your goals, you can set up different email marketing campaigns, from newsletters discussing tax matters to promotional emails for your services. Tools like Mailchimp and SendGrid are your go-to buddies for automating these processes.
In a nutshell, embracing digital marketing is no longer a choice but a necessity for SMB accounting firms. The above strategies and programs help you get the needed exposure by spending huge amounts on targeted ads without pinching your pockets. A comprehensive digital marketing strategy can unlock immense potential for your accounting firm. With a little creativity and consistency, you can distinguish your firm and drive significant growth without spending too much.
Can Accounting Firms Advertise To Attract New Clients?
Accounting firms in the US and UK can advertise their services. However, there are some restrictions in place that they need to be aware of.
- In the US, accounting firms are prohibited from advertising their fees. This is to prevent accounting firms from misleading clients about the cost of their services.
- In the UK, accounting firms are prohibited from advertising their services in a way that is likely to mislead or deceive consumers. This includes advertising services that they do not offer or advertising services in a way that is not accurate or truthful.
- In India, firms are not allowed to advertise their services in the traditional sense. The Institute of Chartered Accountants of India (ICAI) has a code of conduct that prohibits chartered accountants from advertising their services in the press, on television, or on the radio. They can showcase their practice on their websites, blogs, social media, ICAI journals, and newsletters. They can also write articles and blogs on accounting and accounting practices to make a digital mark.