How to Get Instant Credibility and Attract New Clients
One of the best ways to stand out in your community as the go-to bookkeeper is to present QuickBooks training workshops or otherwise speak to business groups on a bookkeeping-related topic.
Even if you’re the “shy” type, you can do this. All you need is a desire to help people. Don’t worry, you don’t have to be an acclaimed expert in order to be seen as a valuable professional in your business community.
Why it Works
It works because so few bookkeepers and QuickBooks consultants actually do it! But when you have the guts to be proactive and simply help fellow business owners with the knowledge you have to share, you will be viewed as a leader and trusted resource.
This approach starts an attraction system that can only bring good to you and your business. It’s what I call a no-lose process.
First Level (outer layer)- When you provide useful (low-cost or) free information that helps small business owners run their business more profitably, you’re in the perfect position to get publicity. And since you are offering the information, you are perceived as a credible leader in your field.
Side Note: The perception of “expert” is relative. You need to only have more knowledge on bookkeeping or QuickBooks than your audience does. It doesn’t mean you have to know everything there is to know. You just need a good knowledge of the basic (and you can continue your own learning as you teach).
Second Level (middle layer) – The attendees who are attracted to your talk or class will be “qualified” as those who could become your clients (prospects) or those who could refer clients to you (partners). Either way, you are building up a relationship with each of them and gaining additional credibility since you have their attention and they can see you in action.
Third Level (center layer) – The results you get from speaking and teaching projects are many and can be immediate, as well as pay you big dividends YEARS later!
Results vary, but they usually are a combination of…
= Direct new client inquiries for bookkeeping services
= Inquiries for additional training or troubleshooting projects (small to large)
= Direct and indirect referrals
You will get the best results when you speak or lead classes on a fairly regular basis.
What to Teach
If you are a QuickBooks ProAdvisor® (or certified in whatever bookkeeping software is popular in your area), you can teach a basics workshop, or even a “Top 10″ class that consists of tips or fixes for common problems you see clients struggle with.
If you would rather speak on less “techie” topics, you could also provide helpful information about what small business owners worry about – maximizing profits and minimizing expenses! For example, you could share simple, specific tips based on the ways you’ve been able to benefit your clients that your audience can apply to their own business. Every business owner would appreciate that!
How To Do It (Even if you’re shy)
If you’re thinking that this sounds great, but you’re scared stiff to talk in public, you’re not alone. But that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t seriously consider how you can do it to attract new clients to YOUR business.
Just start small and grow from there. The principles of providing educational information can be applied to…
- Teaching classes and workshops
- Being a guest speaker at a small business event
- Holding a virtual event such as webinar or teleseminar
- Hosting a MeetUp meeting
- Group or individual consultation / coaching sessions
- Being interviewed or participating in a Q&A session (live or recorded)
- Podcasting (such as on Blog Talk Radio)
- Writing articles (online or offline)
As your confidence builds, you can stretch your comfort zone and move toward larger projects. And you’ll be getting the word out about the value you have to offer all along the way!
Like I said – this really is a no-lose opportunity. The only hitch is you have to step up to take action and make it happen.
In fact, if you’ve found marketing your services a challenge, or reaching your business goals difficult, then see first-hand how sharing valuable free information works for EVERYONE by attending the FREE webinar I’m hosting this Thursday (June 7th) entitled, “The Freelance Bookkeeper Success Formula”
So which method will YOU use to get the word out about your bookkeeping services, gain credibility and attract new clients to your business?
Let’s brainstorm more ideas or share experiences if you’ve already tried it!