1. You don’t know what you don’t know. Not keeping up with the newer services that accountancy firms have rolled out is a dangerous game. Your competition will be joining the likes of Xero and QuickBooks and you’ll notice the majority of firms gravitating towards the cloud. Becoming a business advisor, who your client relies on for relevant and up-to-date fact-based conversations, is a key way to increase your revenue. If you’re unsure as to how to get started, we have a play-by-play here by our very own Senior Strategic Advisor, Josie Attard.
2. Inability to advise in unexpected situations. If your client turned up for a meeting or picked up the phone and asked you a question you didn’t have the answer to, how would you react? They’re relying on your knowledge to guide them through the rules and regulations of running a business so you need to equip yourself with as much knowledge as possible.
3. Favouring new leads/clients over existing ones. Don’t overlook the needs of those already on your books. There’s a lot of extra cash to be earned from existing clients: up- and cross-selling, referrals and repeat sales, to name but a few. Employ dedicated staff to nurture existing clients, while another team chases new leads. Remember, existing clients will refer you if you’re great at what you do, which is a great way of generating leads for free.
4. Lack of regular contact with clients. Make sure your client has the information they need to make decisions and keep in touch. Even if you are monitoring their accounts in the background, if clients aren’t hearing from you then they’re likely to worry. The more you’re talking to your clients, the better you can identify what their goals and needs are. Once you’ve established these, you can strategise with them to help them achieve goals, therefore retaining their custom.
5. Not promoting all of your services. Be transparent and make sure your clients are aware of what they can be getting from you. Conversely, it’s unbelievable how many accountants and firms will undertake additional work for clients at no extra cost. Put your clients first, but remember you are there to make money too. Some clients will expect the world for the lowest fees.