Communication is a key pillar your firm operates on. It should be an area you are continuously working to improve. Without it, your firm is a mess of mixed messages, unmotivated staff and unhappy clients.
But you already know that.
Most accounting firms know communication is important as a general concept, but lack the in-depth knowledge of its true power.
Do you know if your staff are communicating enough, at the right times and via the right methods?
Here are some reasons why a robust communication strategy is the most important (and powerful) tactic for your accounting firm, according to the experts.
It’s simple: communicating early with your clients will put them at ease.
By getting in early, you will:
Confirm that you are addressing any industry changes, milestones, etc. related to their affairs
Set expectations around when they will hear back from you and what the next steps will be
Calm their anxieties by giving them confidence that you haven’t forgotten about them
Calm clients are happy clients.
Plus, by getting in early, you increase your team’s productivity. They can divert resources away from fielding anxious client emails and calls, and direct them to actions and output.
When you communicate with your clients, you are building your relationship. Clear and honest communication helps them to trust you.
Jim Buffington from Intuit Accountants explains that when dealing with uncertainties, any type of communication is better than no communication at all.
“The firms that communicated as much as they knew often and early had much better experiences with their clients in 2020,” says Jim.
Another way to build trust (and grow your client base) is via content marketing. By producing useful content for your clients and prospects, you’re demonstrating that you:
Understand their needs
Are tuned-in to the industry
Can provide them with useful (and free) tips and tricks
According to Karen Reyburn from The Profitable Firm, the firms that made it easier on themselves and their clients during 2020, were the ones that “communicated to their clients via content. They wrote blogs, they sent emails, they recorded videos, they posted on social.”
Recommended reading: 6 content marketing strategies for accountants & bookkeepers
A motivated workforce is well-informed and aligned. If you are not constantly communicating with your staff, you are missing out on opportunities to strengthen your business.
With more teams working remotely than ever before, this has never been more important.
Keeping remote employees motivated is a mixture of enablement and communication.
One-way communication with them won’t cut it—you need tools like Karbon in place that will foster culture, collaboration, clarity and feedback.
Taking the time to consider your internal communication is critical to your company’s success.
Your communication strategies, both internal and external, are living, breathing and moving aspects of your business.
They should adapt and change, depending on available technology, circumstances, and client expectations.
Are you strategies serving your firm in the best way possible? To start answering that, ask yourself this question from Collbox’s Eileen Adao:
“Do you have systems in place internally that enable you to keep track of your processes, work flexibly, communicate from anywhere and still be able to build culture?”
If not, it’s time to revamp how your firm deals with the most powerful aspect of your accounting business.