CPA Marketing Tools for the Professional Accountant CPA Marketing Tools for the Professional Accountant
Periodic tidbits of helpful information for you and your business Some tools that will help with your marketing strategy About David Rachford, his experience, and motivation Home page

Category: Direct Mail

12/12/06

Permalink 08:41:07 pm, by dave Email , 398 words, 390 views   English (US)
Categories: Direct Response, Direct Mail, Marketing

Set Your 2007 Practice Goals In 3 Minutes

90% of the Accountants who receive this email
(and it was sent to thousands of Accountants)
WILL NOT EVEN OPEN IT.

Congratulations...from this day foward, consider
yourself one of the 10%ers...the 10% of Accountants who
earn more, work less and live better than the 90%
of Accountants who are not 'motivated' enough to take
3 minutes to put their 2007 goals in writing.

By taking the time to work on your 2007 goals,
you are ultimately making a commitment to cast
a huge net that atracts a consistent flow of
clients who pay, stay and refer.

This is the 90/10 success formula I referred to
in my previous email.

Okay, let's get right to it. This is a proven
3-minute drill that virtually all of the Accountants
who have purchased my Systems use once a year
to clearly define their practice's business goals.

This is really as easy as 1-2-3. For best results,
grab a pen and paper and put it down in writing.

#1 Put down a figure that, at the very least,
doubles your bottom line income from 2006.
If you are feeling extra confident, triple it.

#2 List any professional goals that include hiring
new staff,including adding an additional Accountant to
handle the load of new clients that will be flooding
your practice in 2007.

Remember, the goal here is to make more and work less.
Maybe you need to bring in a new staff person like
a dedicated Marketing Director, or a new Office
Manager to make sure that your entire staff is on
board with your 2007 goals.

#3 Define your system. What system do you currently
have in place that will guarantee your success in 2007?

Struggling with #3? It's okay...it's where most Accountants fail.
But it's where you won't. Because you are a 10%er...one of
the 10% of Accountants who will have a proven System to propel
your practice to the next level RIGHT NOW...NOT SOME DAY,
NOT SOME YEAR...2007 IS YOUR YEAR!

If you don't have a Solid SYSTEM in place..it's your
lucky day.

For example, you want to begin a regular client communication
program with a client newsletter:
Go to: CPA CLIENT NEWSLETTERS

You are no longer alone. I'm here to help you
live your dream of having a wildly successful practice
in 2007.

To Your Success,

Dave

p.s. One way or another, take action now. You are a 10%er,
and 10%ers take action!
Go to: CPA CLIENT NEWSLETTERS

12/07/06

Permalink 07:57:06 am, by dave Email , 396 words, 411 views   English (US)
Categories: Direct Mail, Public Relations, Marketing

A Little Thing That Matters In Your Practice

I'm a big believer in an 'attitude of gratitude' - I'm
thankful for the opportunities to serve clients (and fellow
Accountants) with my professional services. I try to show
my appreciation by sending 'Thank You Notes.'

Perhaps your memories of sending a Thank You Note go
back to being forced to write the notes to your friends and
family after a birthday (under the watchful eye of mom) or
after the wedding to acknowledge the generosity of those
who came to the reception and left a pile of loot.

Regardless of where it comes from, Thank You Notes are
cool to receive. They are even cooler to send!

A couple months ago, a fellow named Larry Long sent me
a thank you note. Larry is the Marketing Director at
Sageworks, the software company that produces ProfitCents.
A popular financial analysis software for accountants
(www.profitcents.com) I don't particularly remember what the note was about, but it made an impression on ME.
I liked his attitude and appreciation, and I felt compelled
to reciprocate.

Fast forward a couple months, and here we are, putting together
a big conference call for Sageworks on 'How to Earn More
With ProfitCents' (register at : http://tinyurl.com/yf2dbu )
It may be the biggest tele-seminar we've both done. All
because Larry sent me a Thank You Note.

Thank You Notes can be very powerful marketing tools. After
all, when someone spends a lot of money on your services, or
invests their time in a meeting, or provides exceptionally helpful
advice via telephone - those are all worth putting in words, and
that expression of thanks (to the client, business associate or
colleague.)

'Great,' you say, 'Can't I just send an email instead.' -

'No,' says Dave - 'Just send a card or note. It'll only take a
minute, and it will be remembered and appreciated for weeks.'

'But, I don't have any thank you notes...' you say.

'They don't have to say 'Thank You' on them; you can write
it on the inside of the card.' says Dave.

And if you'd like a very unique card made especially for
accountants and CPAs, take a look at my special gift collection
of cards produced by yours truly at the CPA Marketing Center
with licensed cartoons from the New Yorker and Cartoon Bank.
Click here to check them out: Gift for Accountant

David Rachford, CPA Marketer

09/28/06

Permalink 10:19:31 am, by dave Email , 425 words, 512 views   English (US)
Categories: Direct Mail, CPA Marketing | Tax Marketing For Accountants

Don't Be a Newsletter Nincompoop....

For all you readers who check my spelling - please let me know if I mispelled "Nincompoop.." I confess that I've never typed that word before.

I recently recieved a question asking if I produce and sell a
quarterly newsletter. I don't. I don’t plan on doing a quarterly. I do two supplemental tax issues (mid year and year end) which are optional, to subscribers of Dollars & $ense, CPA Client Newsletter

Tremendous value can be generated by sending a monthly newsletter – quite simply – I wouldn’t do a monthly and sell them to CPAs and Accountants across the country if I didn’t believe I was providing value on a monthly basis. All business is about RELATIONSHIP, not how great of a CPA or Tax Guru you are – often times, the client can’t even measure our competency. Sendind a monthly newsletter is quick, easy and a fun way to keep in touch with the clients.

Bottom line: if your customer / prospect is not worth $12-$24 year in sending a monthly newsletter to sustain the relationship, they shouldn’t be on your list – and if none of them are worth that? Maybe we’re in the wrong business…

To draw a parallel in the accounting relationship – when we strive to market MONTHLY accounting services over Quarterly – don’t we use the same value proposition? “We're in better touch, we speak monthly, your records are up to date, we’re able to plan throughout the years, etc.” Customers see the value in those things. After all, 9 times out of 10 – we sell our services on increased contact and ATTENTION – the other guy’s CPA/ Accountant dropped the ball, and here we are. We say "Lets get you caught up, and fix those problems."

One other BIG benefit with the monthly newsletter – When sent out near the first of the month, it reminds customers that 1) they like you b/c they like the increased communication and 2) Oh, yeah, I’d better get my records to the accountant asap….

It doesn’t happen with everyone – but I personally have seen improved client reporting from using the monthly newsletter.

That’s my opinion – I’d really like to hear what you think….

I’d love for you to test Dollars & $ense, free for two months – and if you and your clients like it – continue beyond the free trial. My bet is that you’ll like it – over 90% continue! (that’s how I measure the success of the monthly newsletter program). read more about Dollars & $ense CPA CLIENT NEWSLETTER

06/19/06

Permalink 03:09:16 pm, by dave Email , 199 words, 394 views   English (US)
Categories: Direct Mail, Marketing

Sample of Newsletter Marketing

It's been a while since I posted a new issue of Dollars & Sense, My CPA Client Newsletter that is available for distribution to your clients. Click Here to preview the July issue.

I get great feedback from my clients (who love it) and other CPAs and Accountants who liscense the content for use in their local markets.

" David- Sorry I haven’t gotten back to you sooner. I have been very busy with my marketing efforts. I wanted to tell you that I have had some very positive responses to the monthly newsletter that you developed and I was sending out. My clients loved the new addition and I even was sending the newsletter the prospects to keep my name in front of them. The clients couldn’t stop calling to enter the drawing for the free dinner certificates. They were like little kids.

I would love to talk to you about continuing the letter on a monthly basis. - PB"

If you are not using a monthly client newsletter which puts a soft touch with great, practical business advice, and is a fun read, check out Dollars & Sense, a great CPA Client Newsletter resource available to you.

05/31/06

Permalink 04:44:15 pm, by dave Email , 263 words, 351 views   English (US)
Categories: Direct Mail

When the Client is Ready - Are you There?

Yesterday I recieved yet another call from a prospect that I had met with over two years ago.

I remember visiting his shop - he had some great systems in place and was the type of business owner I enjoy working with. But at the time of our meeting - he was happy with his accountant - and just checking options. We got along quite well - and I was disappointed that he didn't become a client the month we met. But I have a long term outlook. He'd become a customer - eventually.

So I put him on my mailing list - and sent him my monthly CPA Client newsletter Dollars & $ense.

Those newsletters gently reminded him I was still around.

Yesterday, he called me up. Seemed he was ready to change CPA's and I was at the top of his mind. So as a result of keeping him on my list, and investing about $12 dollars on keeping him on my mailing list for over a year, I won a new customer - who, during our business relationship will pay me $5,000+ a year, for several years.

I can't even do the math at that kind of ROI, maybe I need to average all my direct mail over the earnings of this client - whatever... All I know is that almost each month, I get a call from someone I've met, who is interested in talking again - because they know that I haven't forgotten them.

Direct mail is not rocket science, but it will skyrocket your practice if you employ the direct mail media consistantly, and with the right offers.

04/03/06

Permalink 05:00:12 pm, by dave Email , 273 words, 385 views   English (US)
Categories: Direct Response, Direct Mail

How Do You Know Direct Response Mail Works For Accounting?

You know Direct Response Mail Works for Accounting or any other business when you get a call after mailing it!!!

This is pretty simple- Send Mail, Get Calls. But there are some essential elements that will result in calls.

Here's what you need:

* A Compelling Offer - A Reason to Call!
* Urgency - Limited Time Offers

You should know if Direct Response Mail works within a day or two.

I dropped the April 1 Issue of Dollars & $ense, on Saturday, April 1. Our first class mail in my town is pretty good - usually next day. So most people will recieve the mail today, Monday, the 3rd.

Already my phone has been ringing with responses to this month's trivia questions. The first caller was a prospect that I had visited several months ago - the offer was the right one! Of course, she wants to win the contest (a trip to a day-spa) but she in talking with her, she was glad to have the newsletter, and wants a "tax review" after April 17, and is interested in payroll services, now!

In the months since I've visited her - she's recieved a couple newsletters, and she's warm again! And she's calling me...

That's what direct response mail is all about - create a reason why people should call you, even if it's selfish for them - give them a big juicy benefit - and people will call - and your prospects will stay warm and convert more easily to customers/clients.

Maybe you're still sending out boring newsletters that don't motivate your clients - if so, check out Dollars & $ense, the only DIRECT RESPONSE Client Newsletter Especially for CPAs and Accountants that Gets Results!

03/22/06

Permalink 10:26:17 am, by dave Email , 354 words, 311 views   English (US)
Categories: Direct Mail, Marketing

Email vs. Print - Meaningful Contacts

The debate of whether we should email or mail a Meaningful Monthly Client Contact (MMCC) will rage for a long time. Accountants and CPAs who are interested in marketing more services to their client need to contact those customers more often...newsletters or other communication programs can increase the purchase frequency from current accounting customers.

I agree that Email should be in the mix - whether or not it's "meaningful" would of course be subject to debate. I get a number of email newsletters, and delete a good number of them, but some of them I read becasue I'm very interested in the content or what the author/ business has to offer.

I think a mix of both off-line and on-line is the MOST effective mix. If you offer a nice newletter it will get read. Off line traditional mail and email willl support each other and be stronger than any one type alone.

The problem with so many tradtional Newsletters is that they don't get read because they stink.

If you want to read a newsletter that doesn't stink, check out Dollars & $ense it's designed to get read and stimulate response, cross sell services, generate referrals and make irresistable offers.

Becasue email has low to no cost to send, it's attractive. The big thing is to make it relevant to the customer / prospect and Consistant. However, just because it's cheap, doesn't mean it's best. The true measure is Return on Investment.

Smaill Business Copywriter Troy White recently made a great post on his blog about Email vs. Direct Mail marketing:
Comparing Email to Print

Regarding Email Marketing:

Make sure it's an "opt in" process, and framed to benefit them. Here's a suggested script:

"We have an email newsletter which we like to send which provides helpful business information on a (period- monthly) basis - and when important news breaks affecting your business

Meaningful Monthly Client Contact (MMCC) is a nice place to start, but in all honesty, we should aim for more frequency than monthly. We should celebrate birthdays, anniversaries, holidays, seasons, Tax Freedom Day, April 15, and any other day that strikes your fancy.

03/02/06

Permalink 05:52:35 pm, by dave Email , 176 words, 395 views   English (US)
Categories: Direct Response, Direct Mail

Offer and They Will Respond

When was the last thing you did something FUN for your clients?

During the first few days of the month, I recieve calls on a special line in my office that I have dedicated to the direct response offering in the Dollars & $ense Newsletter - CPA Client Newsletter | Newsletter for Accountants

It puts a smile on my face that my customers and prospects read it - and enjoy it... sure, they are motivated by the chance to win something for basically nothing, but it's FUN for them.

When was the last time they were rewarded for... being your customers?

For those who are trying the newsletter - what type of responses have you had?

****
As a side note - During the busy tax season, I sometimes hate seing that blinking light on my phone telling me I have a voicemail... But when it's just someone checking in, trying to win their dinner gift certificate - that makes me happy. Let's me know I'm doing good, and for a few days, I'll be take those flashing message lights with a smile.

02/22/06

Permalink 01:04:38 pm, by dave Email , 39 words, 358 views   English (US)
Categories: Direct Mail

New CPA Client Newsletter Unveiled

I've uploaded my New CPA / Accounting Client Newsletter and the March Issue is available for download.

Currently, several users around the country are testing it and we are all very excited about it.

CPA Client Newsletter - Dollars & $ense
CPA Client Newsletter  - Dollars & $ense

02/20/06

Permalink 09:42:04 am, by dave Email , 489 words, 360 views   English (US)
Categories: Direct Mail, Marketing

How to Use a Newsletter to Boost Your Accounting Business

21 Quick Newsletter Success Tips For Accountants

Mailing lists:

1) Start with at least 200 names
2) Send to clients AND prospects, and Unconverted Leads And referral sources such as bankers or insurance agents.
3) Don’t mail to people you don’t know or haven’t met – if you have no relationship with them yet – they will wonder why you’re mailing to them

General

4) Get clear on your GOALS for your newsletter – Just why exactly do you want to send one? To Inform Clients? Cross sell services? Referrals? Fun? Reading Enjoyment?
5) Mail – Regular old snail mail – the newsletter. Email will just get deleted.
6) Newsletter must be sent monthly – consistency is key – you want this to be seen as a regular monthly communication, not an occasional promotional mailing
7) Incorporate great offers in each newsletter – we’ll give you a sample, but if you can improve on it or make it more relevant to your business, go for it!
8) Remember to edit the CUSTOM FIELDS with your info before sending to print shop
9) Include third party stories about customers who tried your other services
10) Use the “Thank You” box to recognize those who refer you, and it will stimulate more referrals
11) If you want to substitute an article for a Client Profile or Case study, feel free to do so on occasion.
12) This newsletter in NOT just about Direct, immediate response – it’s about RELATIONSHIPS
13) If you have not had a regular client contact campaign before, it will take time and patience to rebuild or build up a quality relationship.
14) If your customers are not trained to respond, it may take a few months before they “get it” and respond to the offers in your newsletter.
15) Your newsletter may not pay it’s own way as you go from direct response, but over time, you will see and improvement in the overall value and responsiveness of your customers.
16) The Harvard Business School Publishing states that, with just a 5 percent increase in customer retention, service industries saw an average of 70 percent increase in profits. That's one heck of a payback.

Printing & Mailing

17) Send to a local print shop or quick copy shop – I recommend11x17 double sided, one color on pastel or lightly colored paper
18) Inserts – consider printing in your office, especially if you have a color laser printer – the print shop can insert them for you
19) Have print shop / copy shop insert, fold and tab seal the newsletter
20) Consider having kids or staff members stamp and label newsletters if volume is less than 300. If more, look into a mail house that can address the newsletter and apply bulk-rate postage.
21) Print about 50 more copies than you plan to mail to have available as “leave behinds” to other prospects & people you meet.

This is a good base to get you started – and that’s the most important thing – get started! Movement beats Meditation (thinking about it) any day!

David Rachford, CPA www.cpamarketingcenter.com

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