Simple Marketing Campaign Strategies for Your Accounting Firm

Gusto Editors

Do you know how to market multiple services to your existing clients?

Marketing your firm’s different services to your client base is a great way to bring in more revenue with no acquisition costs while also increasing the likelihood of clients staying with your firm long-term. 

Gusto, along with our partners at CPA Academy, presented a great webinar covering different marketing campaign strategies your firm can implement this week. Our webinar titled, “5 Marketing Campaigns You Can Run This Week” featured the expert marketing strategist Matt Wilkinson, who is the Founder and CEO of Bizink. You can watch the entire webinar here

Matt outlined several marketing strategies your firm can begin using immediately, and we highly recommend you read the other parts of this webinar article series to learn more strategies. This article is Part Five of the series, and you can read the first four parts to learn about network marketing, niche marketing, and other campaigns. 

In this article, you’ll learn marketing plan objectives, taking action in your plan, and how you can enhance your existing client engagement. 

Marketing plan objectives

One critical marketing campaign your firm needs to incorporate immediately is marketing to your existing clients. Marketing takes repetition, but many firms don’t connect with clients regularly about their available services. Matt told the story of a time in which he discussed marketing services with an accountant. The accountant stated that she markets to her clients, but she only discusses her available services once a year. Without frequency, you’re not going to be able to sell your other services to clients: 

“I don’t know about you, but I can’t remember what I did last week, let alone one year ago. Do you think all of the clients remember what she tells them in that meeting? No chance. Again, this is where repetition is really important because it takes so many touches before people get the message about what you do and how you can help them. You can’t just tell them … one time.”

Matt Wilkinson

Matt recommended that accounting firms that aren’t doing much marketing start using this marketing strategy. He suggests firms write down their services and advertise them based on the month: 

“You write down all of your key services. Let’s say you have six. … You assign each of those services to a month. If you’ve got six, [that’s] January, February, March, April, May, through to June. … Then, in that month, you contact your clients and tell them about that service and then rinse and repeat. … That’s a client marketing plan for the next six months. Now, that might sound stupidly simple, but the best ideas tend to be.”

Matt Wilkinson

You can focus on each service every month, and this will fill out your client marketing plan while also keeping your clients informed about your services.

Business people having meeting at board room.

There are many benefits to marketing to your existing client base. It’s better to sell a new service to an existing client than to a new client because of acquisition costs: 

“If your clients don’t know what you do, … you’re leaving a lot of money on the table because existing clients are so much more likely to buy from you than new leads. They’re $0 [in] acquisition costs, so it’s much cheaper.”

Matt Wilkinson

Additionally, when you provide multiple services for your clients, they’re far less likely to switch to a different accounting firm:

“Clients who get more services from you are more sticky. If somebody has just got a simple service from you, it’s real easy for them to move to another firm. If they’re getting several things from you, then they’re going to be more sticky.”

Matt Wilkinson

Marketing to your existing clients should be a key strategy within your firm, and you need to practice repetitive marketing to ensure that clients are aware of your services.

Action in your marketing campaign plan

An essential part of enacting an effective marketing campaign is taking action. Some accounting firms struggle with implementing a marketing strategy because they’re worried about perfection. Your marketing strategy is never going to be perfect, and perfectionism will keep you from acting on consistent campaigns:

“The key to marketing success is taking action. I know [accountants] are perfectionists, and that’s ideal when you’re preparing financial statements, but it can get in the way of doing great marketing. Marketing is never perfect, but that shouldn’t stop you getting campaigns out. … ‘Good’ this week is better than ‘perfect’ next week because ‘perfect’ never happens. That means marketing doesn’t happen, and it’s consistent marketers who get the best results.”

Matt Wilkinson

Perfection isn’t obtainable, so you need to focus on taking action in marketing. One step you can take in your firm this week is contacting your existing clients with your services. Create a list of your different services and advertise them. 

“How do you contact them? … Email, social media, you could call them, [or] you could have a meeting with them [and] maybe amplify that by doing an event. People buy from people. We all know that, so getting in front of the clients is so important.”

Matt Wilkinson

You need to contact your clients directly, and you should try to meet with them or host an event to advertise your services. 

Businesswoman sitting at table with laptop, having a phone call with client in office.

Another step in taking action is recognizing that advertising your services is about more than your firm’s revenue. You’re also helping businesses with your services.

“You are selling, but you’re helping people. They want this help. If you can save someone [on their] taxes, they want that help. … That’s the primary thing that you’re doing here.”

Matt Wilkinson

Helping people with your services also extends beyond your existing client base. When you reach out to new leads with different marketing campaigns, you can help people grow their businesses:

“Through marketing your services, you’re helping business owners build their companies. It’s not just about more dollars on your bottom line. Business owners want and need your help. Marketing is how you can find them so that … you can serve them.”

Matt Wilkinson

Reaching out to your existing customers and new leads is critical for expanding your firm and helping small to midsize businesses. Your firm needs to overcome perfectionism and begin reaching out today. 

Enhancing client engagement

Increasing existing client engagement is a crucial step in marketing your services. Email is a great way to connect with existing clients and reach out to new businesses, but it’s important to note that some people are skeptical of unsolicited emails because of phishing and other nefarious internet practices. Regardless of some people ignoring your emails, the communication medium has a high return on investment: 

“[People worry about] security and phishing and things like that. … If people are worried about things, then it’s hard to change that behavior. I think email and marketing in general is a bit of a numbers game. Email does work—it’s got a high ROI. Some people might get a bit funny about that [and ignore the email], but I think if you play the numbers, enough people will click on it to make it effective.”

Matt Wilkinson

You can use helpful content that assists your clients, network, and leads in order to advertise your own services. We covered this marketing practice in much greater detail in Part Four of this webinar article series. 

Not everyone wants to consume your content via email, so repurposing and hosting the content on different platforms is critical. You can also use live and remote events to connect with clients: 

“[Have the content available in] different platforms. Then people can self-serve … and consume the content and the platform of their choice.”

Matt Wilkinson

Using helpful content in your social media outreach and events is an excellent way to generate new business and engage with existing clients, but you need to credit the content if you’re taking information from other sources. Also, you shouldn’t take content that other accounting firms created. One excellent resource you can begin using to connect with clients is Gusto’s blog. You can use the information from our blogs to engage with your client base. You can use the content as a jumping-off point to link to a service that you offer. 

Learn more marketing campaign strategies

Connecting with your existing clients about your services is critical for marketing your firm, and you need to provide consistent marketing. Signing up your current clients for multiple services is less expensive than new business, and it increases the likelihood that your clients will stay with your firm for years to come. Perhaps the most important lesson your firm should learn from Matt’s different marketing strategies is that you need to take action this week. Your marketing strategy will never be perfect, so you need to begin your campaigns. Don’t forget to check out Parts One, Two, Three, and Four articles based on the same webinar.

Looking for more ways to expand your firm and help businesses? Consider partnering with Gusto. When you become a Gusto partner, you get exclusive access to tools and resources to support your clients into the future. Streamline payroll and benefits, and start advising your clients in valuable new ways. Join Gusto’s Partner Program today.

Gusto Editors Gusto Editors, contributing authors on Gusto, provide actionable tips and expert advice on HR and payroll for successful business management.
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