3 Accounting clients who need a ProfitCents report
A lot of new ProfitCents customers understandably want to get the most out of the solution without devoting a ton of time in order to ramp up. One of the first steps in making sure you generate an acceptable return on your investment is to identify quickly a small number of clients with whom you can incorporate the industry data, financial analysis and projections available through ProfitCents.
As you consider your entire client list, it may seem overwhelming to figure out which clients are best suited, but don’t let that stop you! Instead, consider which clients come to mind immediately as you read the following descriptions of some business owners. Each of these clients can benefit from your expertise coupled with the financial analysis or industry data that you produce quickly using ProfitCents.
The “Can I ask you one thing?” client
This business owner tends to slip in questions about managing business finances at the end of a meeting or a call related to something entirely different. For example, a discussion about preparing tax returns ends with what the owner thinks may be a simple question about how to get clients to pay more quickly. While this type of client may test your patience during busy season, he or she is a prime candidate for additional engagements because of their desire to learn best practices from someone they trust. Each question is an opportunity to offer value-added services that will generate more revenue and profits for your practice. Offer to meet with them for an analysis of their financial performance so that you can begin to teach them how to use financial information to build a better business.
The get-in, get-out client
These clients NEVER ask for advice. Instead, they sign their tax paperwork and scurry out the door. Meanwhile, you’ve noticed that year-in and year-out, they have tapped a line of credit or have climbing expenses but stagnant revenues. Generating a ProfitCents narrative report tailored to and focused on these issues is a great starting point to pursue additional discussions about meeting with them quarterly to provide services they may not know you offer. It can also ensure that cash-flow problems or other risks don’t turn this regular tax client into a former customer – one who either went out of business or who sought assistance from another professional because they didn’t know you could help.
The glass-half-empty client
This client rarely has a positive thing to say about how business is going when you ask, “So how’s it going?” Like many business owners, they worry about what can go wrong instead of focusing on what is going right, so they perpetually seem downtrodden and hopeless. As a trusted advisor, you have an opportunity to not only provide encouraging data points about the company’s current performance but also to guide the business owner to address some of the areas causing concern. Run the company’s last two years of financials through ProfitCents, quickly download a narrative report and identify one really positive metric of financial performance and one that can be improved. Share this information in person with the client and let the discussion unfold about how you can help. Another option is to produce a report showing how the client’s key financial metrics compare with industry peers, focusing your comments on the areas where they are outperforming. Help the business owner see how they can apply those same successes to other aspects of the business.
Not every client will be well suited to receiving value-added services, such as business advisory or planning services, valuations or risk-management audits. But many of your clients will, and the sooner you identify them and begin offering your expertise through ProfitCents, the faster you can begin solidifying those relationships and generating additional engagements.