As an accounting firm, you probably want to retain your clients – it’s a lot easier than finding new ones.
It’s more profitable, too. According to one study, increasing retention rates by just 5% can increase profits by 25% to 95%.
More recently, Harvard Business Review discovered acquiring new customers “is anywhere from five to 25 more expensive than retaining an existing one”.
That could be because existing customers are 50% more likely to try a new product and spend 31% more when compared to new customers.
But how do you boost client retention?
You’ll often hear about personalising everything: meeting your clients, writing to them individually, offering loyalty programmes and so on.
But you need to think beyond that and automate comms.
“Won’t automation just strip away personality and make me sound like a robot?”, you might be thinking.
The truth is, as counterintuitive as it feels, smart use of automation can actually make your comms more personalised than they might otherwise have been.
That’s not to mention the time you’ll save doing your marketing, too.
Automation respects clients’ time
‘Personal’ means different things to different people but for business owners and individuals looking to increase their wealth, a large part of being personal is respecting their time. That is true empathy.
This is where a range of automation tools can make your comms feel more personal.
For instance, a chatbot attached to your website can answer a simple question from a client in an instant, whether that’s about the services you offer, how they can contact you or where they can find any guides you might have.
There are also messaging tools for Facebook Messenger, SMS and even Instagram, ensuring client queries will always be handled quickly.
While chatbots cannot handle every question that comes their way, you will get a notification when someone messages you, allowing you to take the reins if need be.
The payment process is also an obvious tool to automate so you can improve your customer experience.
Sometimes, it’s doing something as simple as allowing clients to submit e-signatures that can make them feel like their time is being respected.
Remind your clients
Personalised comms will also help your clients. We’ll get onto technical information later, but for now, we mean the type of help that will keep your clients stay on track with their business.
One piece of automation we absolutely recommend you implement, if you haven’t done so already, are reminders for meetings with you, whether that’s via a text, email or both.
It’s an inconvenience if you forget about your dog-grooming appointment; frustrating at most.
But for a business owner with a busy accountant who can’t magically make time appear, missing a meeting or a pre-arranged phone call can be devastating.
It would be tough for you to draft every text and email, and send them out at the right time yourself, so automate them.
The messages themselves will show your clients you’re always on the lookout for them.
You could even expand your automated reminders to include upcoming tax dates and deadlines they need to bear in mind or a piece of advice you think they might benefit from at the moment.
Even just an automated message of support for a client could do wonders for their esteem and the way they view your firm.
Creating content is an effective way to keep your clients engaged with you, but it is also a great way to show your clients you understand their needs by supplying them with a wealth of technical information.
You can do this by writing on topics that matter to them and answering the questions you commonly get asked in an in-depth article.
Blogs are a great form of content that more and more accounting firms are getting stuck in with.
But you need to make sure your clients read them, and not everyone checks out their accountant’s blog, unfortunately, no matter how loyal they are.
So, get them reading by getting newsletters with your blogs into your clients’ email inboxes. Automate the process to make it manageable.
But think before you send everything to everyone. Depending on the diversity of your client base, you could really make your content and
newsletters feel personalised.
For instance, you could separate your clients between personal and business services, sending them newsletters with information relevant only for them. In other words, niche clients.
Too often are emails and newsletters sent out on mass with little care and thought to be left untouched in our inboxes.
This method will not only engage people but feel like you’re actually making an effort to connect with them, too.
Talk to us for additional advice on how to automate your client comms.