As an Accountant, there are many ways in which you can add value to your SME clients. More than ever cashflow is vital to your client’s business, and it’s important that you assist them confidently in selecting the right software to help them manage it. This should include a credit control automation tool, cashflow forecasting software, and potentially a reporting tool.
You can support your SME clients in understanding the impact of cashflow software while advising on what can be achieved with this improved cash position. To help you open up conversations with clients about cashflow software, we’ve highlighted actionable tips.
- Your team needs to be familiar with the software
- Clients need to see it in action on their own business
- Back yourself and your firm
Your team needs to be familiar with the software
If you and your team don’t know how a software works, how can you be confident selling it to clients? How will they know which of their clients can benefit? How can you answer their questions, warn them of common pitfalls, and highlight specific benefits?
Your team members are your best sales force, so you should arm them with the knowledge they need to succeed. Ensuring they feel supported and prepared to answer any questions will mean they feel confident to bring it up in conversation.
- Appoint an internal champion to support your team
- Map out the onboarding process in your practice management system for everyone to see
- Organise demo/training providing them with key points to hit, and explaining how to position features in terms of benefits.
Another important point is to collect and talk about stories. Avoid people being ‘scared’ to make mistakes as this can result in inaction. With any new skill a person is learning, they need to be allowed to make mistakes. It is important to foster a culture where people are free to do this without fear of a huge blow up.
Something to focus on here is the sharing of information between team members. Encourage people to collect and share their stories. This could be mistakes they’ve made in setting up clients on a software, a really difficult conversation with a client, or how they have found the support for a particular app. All of these tips and tricks can really help to solidify the software within your practice, and ensure that your team members are engaging with it.
Clients need to see it in action on their own business
So, you’ve got your clients attention and they want more information about the app and a product demonstration. Don’t just show them a run-of-the mill demonstration account. They need to see how the app will impact their individual business.
When you sign up as a Chaser Partner through App Advisory Plus, you can request a credit control Health Score for each client. This is generated using information from their cloud accounting software to show how much time they could be saving, and the potential cashflow boost, if they were to use the software. This makes it easier to personalise the benefits and position the cash flow boost in terms of their business, for example the cost of buying a new piece of equipment.
By following and implementing these key steps, you’re giving your firm the best tools to translate the value of a piece of software to the client.
Back yourself and your practice
You have a duty to your clients – to ensure their financial data is accurate, and to enable them to drive growth and maintain a successful business. A huge part of that is implementing solutions where you identify holes or gaps in their processes.
Do not be scared off or discouraged by the idea of charging your clients for a valuable service. You are the expert here, and a good client will listen to you and take your advice seriously as long as you have built up trust.
You can always be flexible with clients payments depending on the economic backdrop (offer extended trials or longer payment terms), but the key is not to de-value the service by offering it for free or as an add-on to the package they are already paying for.