As we’ve seem to come through the worst of the Covid-19 issues (please can there not be a second spike!), many businesses are in recovery mode after the damage caused by the virus. Businesses are doing all they can to save money by making staff redundant and downgrading whatever they can, which can often include accountants.
If you’ve been lucky enough not to lose many clients during the pandemic, this is now a great opportunity to strengthen your client relationships by really adding value to your clients and show that an accountant is not a liability to their business but a great asset instead.
Having detailed knowledge of your client’s finances means you’re in a great position to guide them through the financial uncertainties of Covid-19 and see them through safely to the otherside.
Offer your services
With your in-depth client knowledge, you should be offering business advisory services to all of your clients. Many clients may feel overwhelmed at what’s going on at the moment and what impact it will have on them both in the short term and long term, so may be interested in looking for some advice on how to handle the situation – which you’re in the best position to provide.
For some reason, many business owners don’t go to accountants for business advice, despite their accountants knowing their business as well as they do! A lot of business owners simply do know accountants offer business advice – they think we just come out from under our rock once a month to do their books and crawl back under when they’re done!
It’s the job of an accountant to make sure that the clients are fully aware of the business advisory services that are on offer and encourage clients who want those services that an accountant already has a lot of knowledge about their business and are probably the best source of business advice.
This is not a cheap way to try and upsell to your clients and you shouldn’t think of it as such, if you’re a good accountant, which we’re sure you are (if you’re reading this!) then it’s just another opportunity for you to add value to your clients and strengthen your client’s business and your relationships in the process.
One thing we heavily promote on this website is that the act of selling is not unethical at all if you’re providing value to those that you sell to. In this case, selling is simply doing your duty as an accountant to ensure that your clients are aware of all the ways in which you can help them. Imagine you don’t let your clients know you offer business advisory services and then they go out of business, with them later finding out you do give business advice and didn’t tell them because you were scared of selling – not selling can be much more unethical than selling can.
Client relationships are key
Client relationships are key during this time. Most deep relationships you have in your personal life are bound through one main thing: shared experiences. It is during these difficult times that relationships will be tested but if you can overcome the obstacles of Covid-19 with your clients, your client relationships will be stronger than ever and they will be extremely loyal to you for having helped them overcome the toughest challenge their business has faced to date. It will be something that you have done together which will really build your relationships.
On the other hand, your client may be adamant that they don’t need any business advice and want to make their decisions alone. That is fine and it shouldn’t be held against them. But you should check up on your clients beyond your normal duties to see how they’re getting on and offer your support to them. While this will also strengthen client relations, what’s more important is that it’s the right thing to do and we believe accountants have some duty of care towards their clients which they should try to adhere to as much as possible.
This is the time to make sure your customer service is of the highest quality and that your clients know you’re actually there for them during this difficult time rather than just doing their books and going missing for the rest of the month.
It’s also important to have a strong digital presence in this time to show the value you can offer to struggling or uncertain businesses. If you want help to improve your digital presence through either your website or social media content, book a FREE consultation call here with Accountac and we’ll find ways for you to show your true value through your online presence.