4 Ways to Get New Clients Without Spending a Single Penny!
When you set up your bookkeeping practice, the chances are that you won't have a huge budget for marketing. In your mind it's easy to think that this will put you at a massive disadvantage to those who have deeper pockets and can spend money on paid adverts or SEO experts but this isn't always the case. When you don't have much of a budget you just need to work harder finding those opportunities to get your name out there. They do exist, though, and I'm going to share with you 4 absolutely free ways to do it.
People you meet probably won't really understand what a bookkeeper is and what they do. This is your opportunity to educate them. You don't need to go all teacher, just explain what you do and who you help. Tell everyone. Your parents, your siblings, your friends, the other parents at the school gate.... everyone. You never know who will know someone that could use you. I'm not suggesting you become like the Avon reps trying to recruit everyone you meet, but at least make sure everyone you know has a basic understanding of what you do and who you help.
This builds on the last point, but now we're talking about official networking with other businesses. Many of these groups will let you try for free, or in some cases, be free forever. Don't limit yourself to in-person networking, though. There are loads of networking groups online too.
When you start networking it's important to understand that, just like the school gate, you're not selling to the person you're speaking to. They are just the route to your new clients. It's all about accessing their network. There's nothing worse than people going to networking meetings just to sell, sell, sell! They quickly find that others start avoiding them.
Othere bookkeepers and accountants are a great source of work for many. Typically they will have lower-level work that they don't want to do themselves or don't have time to do. Contact all other bookkeepers and accountants in your area. Explain how you can help them. Did you hear that? Explain how you can help them. Everyone wants to know what's in it for them. Make sure you explain to them how outsourcing work to you can assist them to grow their business with that extra time you release.
We have a whole blog all about this with a sample letter: https://www.bkprsalliance.co.uk/blog/17246-writing-to-accountants
We had to get there at some point. Social media can be a great way to get new clients. You don't just want to post that you're a bookkeeper and can help with VAT here though. So many do this and the results aren't amazing. Instead, treat it a bit like networking. This is your stage to prove that you know what you're talking about. It's your chance to become the go-to expert. Share your knowledge. Join groups. Answer questions. Before you know it you'll be the person everyone in the group is pointing to. Once you get through the know, like and trust sales will follow.
These are just 4 free marketing strategies that you can employ in your business. They are not silver bullets. Nothing beats consistency. If you post in a couple of Facebook groups a few times you won't see any results. If you go to a networking group a few times it'll be the same. Whatever strategy you choose make sure you employ it consistently over weeks and months.