How to Position your Service Offerings on LinkedIn

LinkedIn can be a goldmine for accountant client acquisition. It’s the equivalent of an online business networking event whereby users can connect, interact, develop and grow business relationships.

LinkedIn is home to more than 500 million professional users who engage on the platform every month. That means that your prospective clients are already using LinkedIn.

LinkedIn allows you to access decision makers in any sized business or organisation, generate more leads (almost 300% more than Facebook or Twitter) and distribute valuable content to a global audience. It’s the ultimate B2B marketing platform.

Having such unlimited access to your target market makes the effectiveness of your sales and marketing efforts so much more powerful and scalable.

Today, I’d like to show you some simple tips you can use to help your LinkedIn presence stand out more to your prospective clients.

Identify a niche segment you can serve in your existing marketplace.

Consider narrowing down and targeting a segment of your existing client base. Specifically, a group of people that you’ve been able to achieve consistent results for previously. Once you identify those people, the next thing to do is to craft a marketing offering built around a solution that helps them exclusively. 

To give you an example of how this works, my agency, Leads Leverage, recently helped an Australian-based arts industry accountant. Working with the owner, we targeted a campaign to a specific segment of his market: music industry professionals. We identified a set of common problems he’d solved in the past for these clients:

1.      Because it was generally outside their field of knowledge, many music industry professionals had difficulty understanding and therefore organising the required paperwork for their annual tax returns.

2.      They lacked understanding of what deductions they could legitimately claim and in some cases were paying much more tax than was necessary.

3.      They lacked understanding of the fact that they could pay their annual tax in quarterly instalments and therefore alleviate the large cashflow hit of an annual payment.

4.      In some cases, this lack of knowledge resulted in them not lodging their tax returns for several years.

5.      Because of this, many of them owed back taxes dating back 3-4 years and had also accrued late payment penalties on top of their original debt.

We then helped my client to craft a campaign that spoke specifically to this audience segment and targeted them using inexpensive Facebook ads. Having a more concise audience reduces ad spend because your marketing messages are more targeted whilst allowing you to reframe your services in a way that speaks directly to these prospective clients.

Building your value proposition from this research.

Often, many accountants still ‘market’ themselves by describing the features of their business rather than the outcomes these features help their clients achieve. In the above example, even though my client served a larger marketplace (the arts industry as a whole,) he was still able to focus on a group of prospects and position himself as a solution provider.

By doing this, you give your firm the opportunity to create a value proposition that sets you apart from your competition. Even at a purely campaign level.

Here’s the thing, when I search through LinkedIn I often see examples of people who have already communicated their value proposition without realising it! Here’s a great example of a summary I recently saw on LinkedIn:

Possible USP.png

This summary begins the usual way: leading with features provided by the accounting firm. And let’s be honest: 99% of accounting firms offer these services. This opening offers no positioning or point of differentiation from every other firm out there. It’s like the fire brigade saying: “Hey! we put out fires.” The general public already has a baseline understanding of these services.

What the general public doesn’t always know about are the strategies accounting firms have that can save them time or money or both. As you can see in the example above, this company highlights such a benefit, but it’s quite far down in the summary description. Given the valuable real estate of the LinkedIn summary and the fact that only the first two lines show up in search results, why not give it priority?

If you were a prospective client and searching LinkedIn, which of these two headlines would grab your interest:

Our accounting firms offers tax preparation, tax planning, and consulting services to individuals and small businesses.

versus:

We provide high quality, innovative accounting solutions for healthcare industry clients so they can focus on operations that grow their business.

The second version is built around highlights a benefit to a segment of the marketplace this firm has already listed it’s experience in: healthcare. This makes for powerful positioning around a solution that your firm is already providing and enables your firm to easily target this market exclusively with a campaign either on Facebook or LinkedIn.

Why not communicate your unique value proposition and stand out against competition?

In my next article I’ll discuss some tools and methods you can use to optimise your LinkedIn profile around your value proposition.

Like to learn more? Watch this short video to learn about a simple, cost effective LinkedIn and Facebook based strategy that delivers an on-demand pipeline of sales appointments with your ideal prospects every month in an automated, consistent and scalable way.