Why would a potential client choose your firm over another?
When you’re one of many accounting businesses, it can be difficult to stand out from the competition.
But there are ways you can ensure you have a stronghold over your competitors and convince your ideal prospect that you are their ideal accounting firm..
Here is how focusing your efforts on a market niche can help your accounting firm grow and succeed.
No matter the industry your clients belong to, they will most likely need specific services that relate back to their industry, or their market segment, location, etc.
For example, if your client owns a chain of daycare centers, they will have specific accounting rules that apply to them. Rules that are not applicable to your other client, say, a dental surgery owner.
By forming a market niche, you showcase that you have the expertise in a particular field.
Every business is unique. While they all need accounting services, each one has their own terminology, ideas, clients, market and way of doing business. And by specializing in these markets, you appeal to those clients looking for someone who knows their specific business needs.
By becoming highly specialized in a particular area, your accounting firm will become the ‘go-to’ firm for everyone in that niche. This comes with many benefits:
It helps clients find you easier. With online searches, your specialization helps define what you and who you do it for.
It sets you apart from the rest. Competition is vast in accounting. But by using a market niche, you can narrow down the field and minimize competition.
It makes you an expert in what you do. When businesses search for a new accounting firm, they’re more likely to choose one that is an expert in their field. Specialist accounting knowledge attracts new clients more than general accounting services.
You’ll improve your own skills and knowledge. As you narrow your market niche, you’ll learn more about the businesses you cater to. Your firm will only grow stronger and your clients’ trust deeper.
Knowing exactly the type of customer you’re targeting will take your marketing strategy from a machine gun approach—where you take a general aim and hope to win some clients—to a silver bullet approach—where you choose exactly the high-value clients you want to secure and focus your efforts on them.
So, how do you choose the right market niche for your firm? There are a few things to keep in mind to help you.
A great place to start is by looking at the clients you have now. See which ones you enjoy working with or what makes them desirable as a client.
Take note of things like industry and size. This will give you an idea of ones that may be the most lucrative or the clients with the largest potential for growth in the future.
And sometimes, the niche finds you. You might already see trends within your clients that hint you’re working towards a market niche.
Keep looking at your lists and rankings until you find the one that benefits you most.
It doesn't hurt to research your competition either. Consider using Google to search for accountants in the area specializing in certain fields. You might find a gap, and you might find a saturated market. Either way, it’s useful research.
And when choosing your niche, it makes a world of difference if you resonate with it. For example, you might love the theatre industry, so perhaps targeting theaters, theatre companies and theatre professionals appeals to you.
Deciding on and building your market niche won’t happen overnight. But it’s important that you make a start.
Once you're known as the go-to firm for a specific market, you immediately have an edge over the other accounting firms in your area.
This doesn't mean you have to only serve one type of client straight away. Instead, you can work towards it slowly. Consider creating a ‘mini brand’ under your main firm that specializes in a particular niche. You might keep it this way, operating under two arms of the same firm, or eventually slowly transition away from the broad focus to the niche brand.
Committing to a niche takes time and hard work. But it pays off by differentiating yourself from the rest.