What did you do when you started your accounting practice?
If you are not the firm owner, what made you more competent to deliver value to your clients?
As an accountant, what did you have to do before you could achieve higher levels of success?
Starting and growing an accounting practice requires you to make upfront investments – e.g. of getting accounting education, of gaining experience in serving accounting clients, of developing your processes, of creating / hiring resources, of learning how to use the technology stack you need to serve your clients, and of course the monetary investment in facilities.
The common thread? You need to make investments before you start/grow your practice.
But, when it comes to growing the practice, investments dry up significantly. In general, accounting firms are not known to invest in marketing and advertising. But the good news is that it does not require investing hard dollars when you help:
- your clients reach a better situation than when you started working for them
- your prospects with a better understanding of the choices they need to make to improve their situation.
That is where the strategy of preeminence comes in.
The strategy of preeminence
Marketing legend, and America’s highest paid marketing consultant, Jay Abraham, is credited with helping his clients create new revenue of more than $21.7 Billion. And at the core of how he made it happen is the “Strategy of Preeminence”.
At AccountantsWorld, we have been interacting with Jay Abraham for the last few years, with just one objective – how to apply Jay’s powerful insights to help accountants enhance their success. And we found that – by the sheer nature of their business – accountants are better placed (compared to many other professions) to leverage Jay’s strategies.
In this post, we are sharing the essence of one of Jay’s several insights.
The strategy of preeminence is not different than what you did to start/grow your practice. It essentially requires you to position yourself as the authority. To do so, you need an upfront investment of your time to help your prospects discover that you are the authority in your field. You will as the north star of your prospects, no matter what it costs you i.e your time investment. In return, you gain their respect and trust. By following this strategy, you gain their trust before making the sale. In fact, when you earn their trust, you don’t have to do any selling.
Preeminence is radically different yet not difficult for even small firms to implement
At the core, everything you (and your competitors) do is to address the pain and/or help achieve the aspirations of your clients/prospects. More often than not, you are solving their problems. They can get the solutions either from you or from your competitors.
If you try to do traditional marketing, here’s what you will do:
- Describe a problem (hopefully they feel “exactly my problem”) and show them a solution,
- Describe consequences of not taking an action – fear, uncertainty, cost of inaction, and…
- Describe why you are best suited to solve their problem (hopefully not because of lower price)
Traditional marketing methods will make your prospects make a “have-to” decision. People want to pay as little as possible when it comes to “have-to” situations.
Now let us contrast that with preeminence:
- You provide risk-free solutions (e.g. one month free) / advice (free consultation / share your expertise),
- You provide upfront value to the prospect,
- You help them discover a solution, even if it costs you time, and
- You give away your advice, knowledge, expertise, wisdom, etc. even before asking for a sale – and at times, not even asking for anything in return.
The strategy of preeminence will inspire your prospects to make a “want-to” decision. People invest more when they want to acquire what they “want”.
Essentially, when you leverage preeminence strategy, you are NOT selling your resource capabilities, technology, services or anything else. What you are selling is your unique brand. You are helping your prospects discover that you are the one who can, and will, solve their problems and/or help them turn their aspirations into reality – and do so better than anyone else.
When you do that, one very critically important thing happens. You are not selling a commodity that can be easily compared to your competitors. You are selling something that is difficult to compare i.e. you yourself.
In today’s technologically advanced world, you can actually multi-leverage your time by methods such as doing webinars/podcasts (one to many), addressing local chamber meetings, blog posts / articles, newsletters, etc. There are many more methods. For example, one of AccountantsWorld’s customers, a CPA firm owner, created a Facebook group for a niche industry and that helped his firm sign up clients from 14 states. The key was to regularly share very useful insights that the group members could put in place in their day to day work.
Besides the strategy of preeminence, Jay Abraham has several other extremely valuable insights. Jay Abraham’s work coaches you to run a perpetual “mastermind program”, on autopilot. It helps you gain powerful insights from your own clients and prospects. And when you share those with your new prospects, you are actually selling your brand. At times, the jewels of Jay’ wisdom are so quickly and clearly evident that it is almost embarrassing to feel “why couldn’t I think of such simple and easy things?”.
At AccountantsWorld, since inception, we have made an exclusive commitment to accountants. We sell our solutions only to accountants – not to their clients. Hence, day in day out, we interact only with accountants across all 50 states, with firms of all sizes. We can, therefore, vouch for the fact that accountants – being at the center of the universe of their clients – have unique advantages to leverage Jay’s methods to deliver powerful value to their clients and prospects.
To give you a real perspective of Jay’s own value, here is a fabulous documentary on marketing legend, Jay Abraham, with cameos by Tony Robbins, Daymond John, Dave Asprey, Ramit Sethi, a top mind in the world on Six Sigma—and many more. Six-time Emmy-award winning director, Nick Nanton released a 47-minute “director’s cut” of this film.It’s unimaginably interesting and contains enormous diamonds and nuggets from Jay’s ultra-steel trap / mammoth mind.
Jay has it on his website at thejayabrahamstory.com
And it’s gratis, no opt-in required.
P.S.: Here is a practical example of strategy of preeminence in action. Download this rare, exclusively for accountants, “how-to” practical guide to build a highly profitable Client Accounting Services (CAS) practice in 60 days.