Most accounting firms regularly give some thought as to how they might grow whether it's through advertising, adding more clients, offering a new service or even trying to penetrate a new industry. But how many firms can honestly say they took the time to create a formal strategy?
Creating a plan that delineates the services you will offer, the clients you will target, the industries you will serve and how you will position your brand within those industries is extremely worthwhile. It can give all of your efforts a solid direction. At the same time, it’s an exercise that is often fraught with problems. Sexy strategies can win out over the practical.
New strategies can win out over those that are tested and true. Often, an all-of-the-above strategy emerges because no one at the firm wants to be the one to say, "no, we should not do that right now."
Here’s another thought that rarely comes up: risk. How much risk is involved in your growth strategy?
Put another way, what can go wrong if you pursue a particular strategy and what do you stand to lose? It’s not a question that often gets asked in talks about growing the company, which are often buzzing with optimism. But it should be.
To help frame the growth discussion at your firm, here are five proven strategies for how to grow your business:
1. Increase Penetration of an Existing Market
In the product world, there’s a saying: the easiest sale is the customer you already have. It is usually uttered in discussions that surround retention, but it might also be said about increasing market penetration.
About Lee Frederiksen
Lee W. Frederiksen, PhD, is managing partner at Hinge, a marketing firm that specializes in branding and marketing for professional services. Hinge conducts groundbreaking research into high-growth firms and offers a complete suite of services for firms that want to become more visible and grow.