Marketing has remained a key tool in business. The success or failure of a business solely depends on its marketing strategies which go a step ahead in promoting business operations. Unlike other business tools which are unique to particular businesses, marketing is applicable to every business organization, individual businesses or even business firms. For this reason, every person involved in business has to lay emphasis on good marketing tactics as the way business success. It is clear that countless businesses have been highly ranked in terms of performance due to their advanced and competitive marketing ideas. These tactics are usually aimed at identifying and satisfying the needs of customers who are key stakeholders of every business organization. Like other business organizations, an accounting firm must adopt successful marketing tactics in order to thrive and achieve its set objectives as described in this paper.
Marketing in small firms has always been considered to be a hurdle during busy seasons. The main challenge rests in satisfying the needs of customers and carrying out managerial duties simultaneously. Many managers find it overwhelming to balance the two leading to poor operational output. The truth of the matter is that an accounting firm cannot realize its objectives by ignoring the role of marketing in its daily operations. Strategic marketing has to remain a habitual activity embraced by every person in the firm (5 Marketing Tips for Small Accounting Firms). Many businesses if not all prefer winning outside consumers from other regions. This is quiet encouraging since it widens the domain of customers extending beyond borders. However, winning the trust of local customers is a key strategy in ensuring the success of an accounting firm. This gives the firm a solid foundation to lay its activities and vision. It would be quiet ironical for a firm to consider winning foreign clients when its neighboring market has not been explored. By winning local customers, the target of reaching far placed clients becomes easy through formulation of customer networks. Local clients are able to market the firm to other places because of outstanding results. As a result, the firm is able to sell its products and ideas abroad with a lot of ease. It has also to be emphasized that the firm’s image and message has to be short-gunned in the neighborhood with enough consistency to completely win the trust of customers. Although grassroots marketing approach may differ from firm to firm depending on their sizes, it encompasses plethora of activities including but not limited to email networks, car signage, sandwich boards and bulletin boards. Staff members of an accounting firm can also be key players in winning the local market by convincing individual clients. To promote such an idea among employees, the use of incentives is highly recommended. This is aimed at motivating all participating staff for going a step ahead in marketing the activities of the firm (5 Marketing Tips for Small Accounting Firms). It is however important to mention that most activities employed in winning the local market are usually temporal.
Since the target of a small accounting firm is to establish a stronger customer base, focus has to converge on ways of winning as many clients as possible. This can also be achieved through the creation of a referral program. Such a plan allows is aimed at using existing customers who have been fully satisfied with the services offered by the firm to make recommendations to other potential clients. These target clients may include friends, family members or workmates of existing customers. To encourage this idea among clients, it is rewarding for the firm to consider motivating all participating clients through offers and other additional products. This allows clients to recommend the firm’s activities as away of marketing to other people leading to the widening of clientele domain (Crane, 1993). The use of word of mouth is also powerful in establishing such links. Existing clients should therefore be encouraged to have confidence in the firm and to feel proud of being part of the firm’s customer database. This puts them in a better place in recommending the firm to colleagues, friends and even family members. A referral program can also work well by use of social networks like Facebook and Twitter which have excelled in connecting the world. By including the firm’s link on such sites, recommendations can be made globally, as away of marketing the firm with an aim of winning new clients.
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Another successful marketing tactic for a small accounting firm is by maintaining its trusted clients. Winning and maintaining customers are two different concepts which significantly shape the performance of any business firm. The firm should be in a position to woo clients as far as possible including the locals but also focus on ensuring that none of them gets unsatisfied with services being offered. To achieve this, quality performance has to be maintained by the firm to hold the trust of its customers at all times. It is also possible for the firm’s management to come up with a top hit list which identifies specific clients who may have been served earlier. The purpose of such a list is to reach out to these customers and make them understand the need of the considering the firm’s services for a second or another time. The best approach towards this is sending letters to selected clients and making follow-ups using emails and finally making arrangements to meet (Leduc). This may sound like an honor to most of the clients, generating undoubted confidence and trust. It also becomes quite logical for such clients to make recommendations to other people looking for accounting services; resulting in better marketing results.
In addition, full adoption of website marketing is a key tool of promoting the activities offered by the firm. It is quite evident that the internet has redefined global communication in an advanced manner. How many people are able to access internet services worldwide? With the emergence of internet enabled mobile phones, people are able to share information from any destination at any given time with a lot of ease. This technology has generated a huge opportunity for business people in terms of marketing. As a result, an accounting firm can use the internet to market the firm’s services to prospective clients all over the world (Waugh, 2004). It can also be used to inform all prospects of the exact services offered by the firm. As mentioned before, a firm can take advantage of the social networks like Myspace, Facebook and Twitter whose use has taken the world with surprises. Through these sites, the firm is able to woo clients interactively from any part of the world. Besides this, it is possible for an accounting firm to develop its own website in a manner that allows every person to view it and get informed about the operations of the company. By using a customized website, the firm is able to give potential clients opportunities to join its client database regardless of their physical location. It also allows customers to make comments through feedback collected from visitors. It is clear that a well developed website allows anybody to locate the firm at the click of the mouse. The internet has generally been rated as one the best marketing tool for both small and established businesses.
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Staying in touch with existing clients is also important in promoting the services offered by the firm other planned activities. It is quite important for customers to stay informed of what is happening within the firm including important events, new services, achievements and upcoming events (Rogers, 2001). This allows clients to fully plan for their needs based on the firm’s schedule and calendar. Communication may be via email newsletters detailing every plan and progress of the firm which may be issued monthly depending on the agreement reached by the management. It also creates an easy way of introducing clients to the website.
In summary, a small accounting firm has the potential to grow and thrive significantly just like other established business. However, proper marketing is a paramount factor to be considered. By using the above discussed tactics, there is no doubt that what automatically follows is tremendous success. The desire and purpose of winning and satisfying customers should be the driving force of every marketing idea.