Accountants aren’t generally known for their writing skills. Yet in today’s digital world, writing blog posts can be one of the most powerful tools for marketing your firm. Because Google loves websites that frequently add new, relevant, and useful content, blogging is one of the best ways to boost search engine rankings.
And while it’s true that you can hire a freelancer or download posts from your software provider’s library of pre-written blogs, writing your own blog has distinct advantages.
Strengthens your relationships with current and future clients
As accounting and tax services become commoditized, it’s the relationship clients have with their accountant that keeps them coming back. Writing these posts yourself is a way to express your own personality and the distinct personality of your firm. It’s a way to connect with others in your own voice. And because you’re choosing the topics to write about, your posts will reflect the immediate concerns of your clients and community.
Positions your firm as experts and different from the competition
Very few firms put in the effort to write their own posts, so just putting something up on your website can be enough to differentiate your firm from others. It’s a way to demonstrate your unique expertise. Did you recently help a client with a particularly sticky problem? Consider writing about how you helped them. This shows the world that you’re an accounting and business hero.
Saves time answering questions
How much time do you spend answering the same questions from clients? How do I calculate my estimated tax payments? How do I record the purchase of equipment financed with a loan? Can I still claim my kids when they’re in college? Wouldn’t it be great to just send a client or prospect to that post that explains everything in clear detail? This also ensures that clients always get the same consistent answer, no matter who they talk to in your office.
But just as we’ve had to learn how to use tools like 10-keys, Excel and accounting software, writing blog posts is a skill to be learned. It’s akin to writing the essays we all wrote in high school and college English classes. However, writing effective blog posts requires a few additional skills.
Here are 11 tips that help me:
Block out the time to do it. As Michael Hyatt says, “What gets scheduled gets done.” For busy accountants, this is the biggest challenge. Pressing deadlines, demands from clients, questions from team members, and the need to keep up-to-date on industry trends all compete for our time and energy. Putting it on your calendar as an inviolable appointment is the first step to making it happen.
Identify who you’re writing to. If you try to write to everyone, you won’t connect with anyone. Take the time to create an ideal client persona. Who do you like best to work with? What do they care about? What keeps them up at night? What words do they use? Be as specific as possible. Keeping this persona in mind as you write will deepen your connection to your readers. Remember, you’re not trying to attract every possible client out there — just the ones you can help the most.
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About Liz Farr
Liz Farr, CPA, has worked in tax and accounting since 2002. Besides tax returns of all flavors, she’s worked on audits of governmental entities and not-for-profits, business valuations, and litigation support. She is also a freelance writer specializing in content marketing for accountants and bookkeepers around the world.