Growing the B2B side of your tax/accounting practice obviously requires that you surround yourself with business prospects. Good ol’ networking, rubbing elbows, and generally being seen in order to become known is particularly important if you operate a local-oriented practice.
In other words, if you want small business bookkeeping clients, 1120S return clients, advisory clients, and, yes, 941 resolution clients, you need to hang out where other business owners hang out. That will be our central theme for this entire week.
First up: Your Chamber of Commerce.
Chambers of Commerce can be incredibly hit or miss, depending on where you are. Some Chambers provide an incredible value for members, are very active and visible in the local community, run great leads groups and networking events, and serve as a central B2B hub in a local area.
Other Chambers are the complete opposite, and just don’t know they’re dead yet.
If you’re in a location with a zombie Chamber, then today’s tip might not be helpful… OR maybe they need a new president, eh? Eh?
But if you’re in a location with a healthy and active Chamber of Commerce, then it’s a good place for you to be. Even if none of the members have tax problems, they probably know people that do.
- If you’re not yet a member, go join. Chamber memberships in most cities cost around $400 per year, and it’s a solid investment.
- As soon as you sign up, scour the membership directory. Are there other tax/accounting professionals? If so, call them and establish relationships, based on the fact that you’re both Chamber members. Bust out the elevator pitch, and ask if they do resolution work. 9 out of 10 will say “no”.
- Add the next several Chamber mixers, brunches, etc. to your calendar and show up.
- Some Chambers run leads groups, similar in nature to BNI. Join and attend these.
- Volunteer on a Chamber committee. If they have a “Welcome Wagon” or “New Member Ambassador” sort of thing that welcomes new members, join that. Those members will meet you first before other accountants that might be Chamber members.
If your Chamber doesn’t have some of the things I just mentioned, then take it upon yourself to start them within the organization. Be proactive. Be the person that makes things happen. Commit to it long-term, and business will come your way from it. Be consistent with your activity, and consistent with your marketing message (e.g., elevator pitch), and within a few months or less you’ll easily become THE go-to tax resolution person in the entire Chamber of Commerce.
Tomorrow, we’ll go loiter in some other spots where business owners hang out.
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