Accounting clients are always looking for more from their Certified Public Accountant
One way a Certified Public Accountant can create better experiences is through niche services. Some Certified Public Accountants focus on a specific industry or narrowly-defined tax, assurance and advisory services. The success of a niche, however, depends on whether the Certified Public Accountant has identified a genuine niche or a commodity pretending to be a niche.
As a Miami Certified Public Accountant, who’s in the top 10 Healthcare Accounting Firms in Florida, I know what is, and what isn’t, a niche — and what your Certified Public Accountant should know to promote themselves as such.
Before you hire a Certified Public Accountant declaring a niche, review these criteria:
Your Certified Public Accountant has a real niche if:
1. They offer more than one expert to clients.
Certified Public Accountant Firms will often have one person who is so good at a certain thing that leadership starts calling their service area a niche. The problem with one star service provider is that your star can leave or retire. One trusted advisor is not a niche. To have a true niche, you need to train and develop several people to serve it for the foreseeable future.
2. Their team “gets” it.
They don’t have a niche if the entire firm is not aware of it. Everyone — from administration to leadership — can talk about why they are the best in this area. Develop competitive differentiators around this niche to train staff on selling your firm as the best provider of this service or the best advisor for this industry.
3. You will invest real time and dollars for its growth.
If the Certified Public Accountant is fearful of growing a niche because of budget constraints or small potential client base, it is not a good niche. They need to commit to staff development and leadership in this niche, invest time in your sales process, promote it in your marketing and speak about it in publicity. Will they promote it on their website? If the answer is no, then don’t call it a niche.
4. Pricing isn’t a concern.
We’ve seen Certified Public Accountant firms who want to call a commoditized service a niche when in reality they’ll get little return for their efforts. Niches attract premium fees from ‘A’ clients. Your clients choose you for your knowledge, not because you offer the lowest price among several very good firms. If other firms don’t view you as one of the best (if not the best), then you don’t have a niche and can’t hope to have one in the future.
5. Your goals are measurable.
If they can see the profit potential in this niche based on past client experiences, then they can set new measurable goals. If they are just entering a new industry, make sure the client and profit potential are there by researching competitors and analyzing trends that point toward a growth area. If you can develop a niche based on a merger or acquisition, this is another way of analyzing potential by looking at the targets past success.
6. Recruits are attracted to it.
Niche-focused Certified Public Accountant firms also consider the potential to attract great talent because they own a strong market position. By promoting their top status in an industry or service, they set their firm apart from competitors to attract new graduates and experienced hires who want to help them grow a niche-firm.
Sensing a trend? If a Certified Public Accountant firm can prove to you they have the best team, the best expertise and the best ROI for clients, then you just might have a niche Certified Public Accountant. Be willing to invest real time and dollars to sustain the relationship with your niche Certified Public Accountant.