Academic journal article Journal of Accountancy

Become Famous for What You Do

Academic journal article Journal of Accountancy

Become Famous for What You Do

Article excerpt

As a CPA/financial planner you could be the best around, but if no one knows it, clients aren't going to beat down your door. Fortunately, there are techniques even a practitioner with a limited budget can use to become locally, even nationally, well-known. Gaining recognition is a key step to becoming so successful you can handpick your clients, instead of the other way around. Here's how to go about it:

* Ask for referrals.

[] Have a plan to get recommendations from current clients--don't depend on casual discussions.

[] Tell clients early that you would like then] to introduce you to other potential clients if they are satisfied with your work.

[] Work with other practitioners who have a different client profile. If you serve middle-income clients and they focus on wealthy ones, ask them to refer to you any clients with a net worth under their limit.

[] Don't forget about your smallest clients. Even if they aren't a huge source of income, they may know people who could be.

[] Remember the mathematics of referrals: With 50 clients you may get just eight referrals a year, but with 200 clients you might get two a month--or more.

* Hold seminars.

[] Organize these events carefully--they're successful only when you know whom you want to reach and create an event that will interest those people. If you're going after high-end clients concerned about new tax laws, for example, plan a seminar on the most recent income tax legislation.

[] Hire a mailing service that will pinpoint the right people, in the correct ZIP codes, who will be appropriate for your seminar. Don't cast too wide a net--a big room with a mixed bag of people is useless as the attendees won't share common interests and financial goals.

[] Spend money on a handsome room in a good hotel, but don't overdo the food. Otherwise you just get people who want to eat and drink for free.

[] Talk to attendees as they arrive and discuss what concerns led them to your event. Build connections by weaving their stories into your presentation (keeping names private, of course).

* Talk to reporters.

[] Introduce yourself to reporters at major professional and industry publications, but don't ignore local newspapers--they're what your clients read. …

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