Accountants can no longer rely solely on word of mouth to grow. Most firms are implementing a marketing strategy to attract new clients. With all the time and money spent in acquiring these clients, would it be beneficial to recruit a specialist to complete the process?
Is it necessary to recruit a specialist?
In general, client prospecting is undertaken by the partners of accounting firms, but this may not be where their expertise lies. Therefore some firms will recruit a salesperson for their firm. These firms usually stand out from the competition as they have a dedicated individual to not only acquire clients but also provide ongoing support throughout their relationship
Although the benefits are clear, many firms are still reluctant to recruit a salesperson. Accountancy as a profession is very complex and a salesperson must have the required knowledge to communicate properly with clients. Even if regular training is provided, it is preferable to recruit someone who has had experience within the industry, if not directly in an accounting firm, then through accounting software companies.
Developing a Sales Culture in an Accounting Firm
As with any company, accountancy firms must establish their identity as a business . To do this, they must answer several questions:
- What services do we want to provide?
- What is our price point?
- What Industries do we work with?
- What areas do we specialise in?
- How do we reach out to our target audience?
By answering these questions, the firm can develop different strategies and decide on the best option for moving forward. The next step in prospecting new clients communicating your value offer. These days this is done via the firm’s website, social media platforms and email campaigns. These methods will bring the clients to the firm, but without the final step in the process, potential clients could be lost.
Without a salesperson to ‘’close’’ the deal, a sales culture must be cultivated throughout the firm and all the account managers. While incentivising sales for the account managers may help to develop a more proactive approach, not everybody is cut out to be a sales person. With this in mind, the implementation of this culture must be supported with thorough training, allowing the potential of stronger sales minded profiles within the firm to be highlighted.