13 Essential Marketing Ideas for Accountants

16th Sep 2021
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Ideas

If you want to do something quick, easy and practical to promote your accounting business but you’re stuck for ideas, we’ve put together 13 great marketing ideas for accountants to help you out.

As specialists in marketing for accountants, we’ve written comprehensive guides on marketing strategy for accountants in the past.

This post is something different.

What we want to do here is inspire you to do one single thing today, right now.

With that in mind, these are easy marketing ideas and tips. Hopefully, you’ll look at each one and think, “Yes, I can do that.”

And if you do another tomorrow, and another the day after that, you’ll be on your way.

Content

Effective content marketing isn’t easy – you need to create regular, high quality content. But even doing a little can make a big difference, bringing your website or social media profiles to life.

1. Write a blog post

If you have a spare hour, you can write a blog post. We suggested some ideas for content topics a few weeks ago, such as Making Tax Digital for income tax. Pick one from that list and use this method to structure and write your post. Think about what your ideal client would find genuinely useful – answer one question, or provide a solution to a single problem. Aim for around 500 words. There are also several useful tools out there to help you gauge if there’s enough interest around the topic to warrant writing about; our usual go to is Google Trends.

2. Make a video

Your videos don’t have to be masterpieces. Film them on your phone if you like. It’s all about showing your face and giving people a chance to get to know you. Tell people something they might not know, or that you’ve found particularly interesting. Again, the content ideas list above is a good starting point. Don’t waste lots of time on it, just get it done in two or three takes, and share it wherever you can. Aim for about a minute in length. There’s more advice in our beginner’s guide to video for accountants.

3. Pitch to an industry publication

Have you ever wondered how accountants get those sweet guest articles on AccountingWeb or in property or construction trade magazines? The answer is, usually, by pitching. You need to write to the editor and introduce yourself, explaining your credentials, and suggesting something you’d like to write for them. Set out the proposed article in a few bullet points and underline why you’re the best person to write it.

4. Invite yourself onto a podcast

As above, you’ll probably wait a long time to be asked onto a podcast but you’d be surprised how often their hosts are scrambling around looking for decent guests. Drop the host or producer of a relevant podcast a line showing that (a) you’ve listened and know the podcast well; (b) you’ve got something relevant to talk about; and (c) that you’re available for a chat.

5. Send out an email newsletter

If you’re not already sending out a regular email newsletter to clients and/or prospects, there’s nothing to stop you sending a one-off. You might want to write to a broad swathe of clients with a need-to-know update on upcoming tax issues, reminding them you exist. Or you might want to contact a targeted group of prospects in a particular sector. Keep it short, clear and engaging – and always make sure people have opted in to receiving communications before messaging them.

Social media

6. Tidy up your social profiles

If you haven’t logged into your social media profiles for a while, do the rounds and make sure that your contact information, website links and branding (colour, header, logo) is up to date. Consider pinning a post to the top of your profile (you can do this on most platforms) pushing the service or content you most want people to know about.

7. Post on LinkedIn

If you don’t use LinkedIn, or only lurk, why not stick your head over the parapet and say something? It doesn’t have to be profound or earth-shattering – just share some news about your firm, or a client success story, or a link to your latest blog post. One post won’t achieve much but it’s a start. Some people make pledges to post every day for a year and that can be a good motivator.

8. Follow, share, comment

Draw up a list of five local businesses you’d like to have as clients. Then, on LinkedIn, Facebook or Twitter (wherever you think they’re most active) (a) follow them and (b) share or comment on one of their most recent posts, if you’ve got something useful to say. Don’t go for the hard sell or act like a stalker – it’s just about saying hello and sparking a connection. They’ll see your face and/or the firm’s logo and might follow back.

Search engine optimisation (SEO)

9. Rewrite your website headers

This is something that really is best left to an SEO expert but sometimes there are easy fixes you can make. For example, we’ve seen accountancy firms whose H1 – the big header at the top of their website homepage – doesn’t mention accountancy, or where they are. You don’t have to do those things, if it’s about building your brand, but for a lot of smaller firms something like ‘Accountants in Oldham’ will help you get a higher position in the Google rankings. That’s because that’s what people tend to type into the search box. You can do similar for other pages, e.g. ‘Accountants for construction’ on your construction sector page.

10. Add internal links to your website

Let’s say you want to attract traffic to the page on your website promoting your VAT returns service. With that in mind, you want every instance of the phrase ‘VAT returns’ on your website, in blog posts or in other service pages, to link back to that main VAT returns page. If you sit down for 10 minutes and add five links along those lines, you’ll make a small but potentially helpful contribution to your website’s search performance.

11. Fix your Google My Business listing

Google My Business (GMB) is the service that powers the info box that appears at the top of results when you search for a business on Google. It includes contact details, customer reviews, opening hours and so on. Take some time to claim your account and update the information Google has, in as much detail as you can provide. Make sure your contact information is identical to that displayed on your website. This will help your search ranking and may draw in leads directly via the GMB info box.

Social proof

12. Get a client to write a review

Even your happiest clients probably won’t think to leave you a five-star rating on Google, Trustpilot or similar unless you ask them. Send five or six personalised emails to clients you know to be biggest fans asking if they’d consider taking a few minutes to rate and review your service. Encourage them to be honest and tell them why – it will help you find more clients like them and grow the practice. They’re business people, they’ll get it.

13. Request a testimonial

On a similar note, it’s always good to have fresh testimonials on your website. Think of a recent customer success story in which you played a part and ask if they’d mind you writing it up. If you ask them to write something, you’ll probably never get it, but if you draft it and send it over for them to sign-off, you’re more than likely to get the copy you need. Set out the problem (cashflow was poor), what you did (improved their invoice chasing process) and the result (enabled them to take on more work).

Get in touch today to find out how we can help with your content marketing strategy, or provide tailored content for your firm.

Editorial: Ray Newman, Head of content, PracticeWeb