Are you a CPA looking to add more clients this tax season? Webinars are a great way to do just that.
How can you do that? By teaching people how to do their taxes without you.
Okay, I’m just trying to give you some ideas. So this isn’t the only one. But from a business perspective, it’s a pretty good one.
So bear with me and I’ll lay my idea for expanding your list of clients for your CPA business, using your very first, free webinar.
Make sure you consider a few things…
What locations can you handle? You don’t want to get a bunch of traffic that you can’t help.
Who do you want to become your clients? You may not want business owners. You may not want young, single professionals who’s taxes are so simple they don’t NEED help to do them.
(but it won’t hurt to start building a relationship with them… eventually, they will need you!)
Keep in mind that I am not an expert in accounting, taxes, or anything else I’m talking about here (other than delivering profitable webinars). You may need to make some adjustments.
If I’m completely off the mark in anything about your business, I’d appreciate you leaving it in the comments at the end of the article, by the way.
Let’s get on with it.
Here’s the basics I’d build this entire CPA client-building Webinar around…
What Should You Call It?
“Yes, You Can Do Your Own Taxes This Year!”
Do you hear the cash register cha-ching’ing yet? Well it’s not… the title won’t fill your calendar.
The key is having a title that speaks to our highly targeted audience. And you do want a targeted audience here.
To get even more targeted, specify who you want to talk to. Examples might include…
Married Couples: “Yes, You and Your Spouse Can Do Your Own Taxes This Year!”
Teachers (or any profession): “Yes, Teachers Can Do Your Own Taxes This Year!”
New Homeowners: “New Homeowner? You Can Still Do Your Own Taxes This Year!”
You get the idea.
Who We’re Targeting
You need to be highly targeted in your approach. Don’t just go for a bunch of people. You can have a lot more credibility if you speak directly to your audience.
You want your audience to think you’ve been reading their mail. You can’t do that if you have an audience from all walks of life.
For this approach, you should be looking for professionals who have been doing their own taxes up to this point. Maybe they’ve been dropping their income into a 1040EZ form for the last couple of years.
But recently, your target audience has had a change in their life. Taxes aren’t so simple anymore.
EZ just doesn’t seem to apply anymore.
They’ve purchased a home. Just got married. Had their first child.
Life is changing. Taxes are getting harder.
You want to reassure them that they can still handle this. Taxes aren’t that hard!
Speaking as someone who is not a CPA… taxes are that hard. But you want a target audience who is still holding on to that possibility.
You’re going to help them see taxes are still doable, anyway.
Don’t worry, I’ll tell you how this is going to make you new clients in a minute.
As far as where to get your audience, advertising is expensive for CPA’s. This could be a great place to use a word-of-mouth, since almost everyone knows someone that fits your target audience.
It can be as simple as sending an email out describing what you’re planning on doing, and including a link (or posting it on your facebook profile). Let everyone know you want to help and you’re not begging for business. Then ask them to share it with 1 friend who fits your very specific audience.
You’ll be surprised how well that works.
What You Should Be Teaching
There’s a room full of bright eyed young people. 20’s and 30’s professionals with an income and a changing life.
What are you going to tell them?
Well we’ve kind of been through this. You’re going to teach them how to do their taxes.
Go over all the big stuff. You only have about 40 minutes, but don’t worry. You don’t have to teach them everything.
Just enough that your prospective clients are going to walk away feeling 100% ready to do the job that you want to do for them.
Now why on earth would you do that!? OK, listen… you are the expert. You are the tax guy. A few of those folks will take your advice and run with it. They will do their own taxes.
That’s great. You’ve helped a handful of people do their taxes for free. They couldn’t have done it without you!
Maybe they go on and do their taxes for the rest of their life. Maybe they come back to you next year when one more life change just makes it too hard. Who knows.
But you’ve build some street cred, anyway.
What about everyone else? Here’s what happens for them…
They walk away. Sit down confidently with all those forms, ready to go to work armed with all of the information you have provided.
And after several hours… they realize they are in over their heads. Remember how much most Americans hate math (I know, I know… I used to teach math, it pains me too).
So what do they do? Turn to the one trusted CPA who tried to help them. Guess who that was?
The Pitch: What Are You Selling?
Your webinar is a little different that webinars I teach for most industries. You have nothing to sell.
In fact, I think it’s better if you give something away.
The pitch at the end is basically this: Download my Free Tax Guide, then go do your taxes.
Make it good. A legitimate guide to getting your taxes done (remember, you’ve recruited a group of highly targeted professionals, so you can actually help them do their taxes).
At the bottom of every single page, you’ll have your website. A phone number. However you decide to advertise it.
No matter what point in the process they get stuck, there’s you. Your name, your number, your website.
I like a link to a page where they can sign up for your services, but a phone number may be just as effective. It depends on how your business works. (there are several WordPress plugins that let you schedule appointments. I use this one)
Now You’re Ready… Almost
Just one last word of advice. No matter how much you want to…
DO NOT spend an hour convincing your potential clients how badly they need you. Those &#*% tax forms speak for themselves.
Be genuine. You need to have a legitimate desire to help your audience. If you don’t, this just won’t work.
Finally, keep in mind that you can’t make money if you keep helping. Be prepared to field questions from your audience by email or facebook afterwards.
Know when it’s time to say “I’d love to help you complete your taxes. Why don’t you stop by my office?”
Can you use webinars to help build more clients for your CPA business? Tell me what you think in the comments!