As a CPA, you’re responsible for helping make smart decisions, whether it be for your clients or your firm. And that means you need to help them understand the importance of technology in their business operations. In this episode, Blake Oliver, CPA talks about how technology is crucial for creating conversions, avoiding potential pitfalls, and increasing revenue! Blake is an accountant, podcaster, and entrepreneur who specializes in financial technology. He shares how you can better understand where your firm is now and where you want to be, and how to utilize technology to get there. Don’t miss out, especially in this technology age. Tune in now!
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Why Technology Can Help Increase Your Conversions And Revenue With Blake Oliver
In this episode, we have a very special guest. He is an accountant, podcaster and entrepreneur who specializes in financial technology. He’s been named twice in the Accounting Todays List of the top 100 Most Influential People and CPA Practice Advisor 40 Under 40 in the accounting profession. He is also the creator of something cool called Earmark CPE, which is an app that offers NASBA-approved CPE for listening to your favorite accounting and tax podcast.
This show is also on Earmark CPE if you want some bonus CPE credits. He is also the host of the Cloud Accounting Podcast. Before we welcome our very special guest to the show, if you are sick and tired of working fourteen hours a day or more, sacrificing your time with family and friends, sick of tax season that’s around the corner and exhausted from being on the financial rollercoaster ride, I want you to know it’s not your fault.
I understand that nobody is teaching or training you on how to fix these problems and connect the dots. If you want to step up and take control over your firm’s profitability, double your revenue with ease and have the confidence to start charging premium fees and pricing your clients the way you want and not be terrified if they leave you, then here’s what I have in store for you. My team and I have set aside the time to speak to you personally about how you can apply a lot of the ideas to your firm. Head on over to TheAbundantCall.com to book your call. Whatever your biggest challenge is in your firm, I want you to know I’ve seen it and I know how to overcome it and help you.
I want to share with you also what we’ll cover on our one-hour call. Number 1) We’re going to get crystal clear on where your firm is at and what are the things that are keeping you stuck or in that, “I can’t go this next tax season like this again next year.” We’ll also identify where you want to be with your firm and your life. Number 2) You get paid first and upfront. We’re going to talk about that with Blake on the show but also how do you avoid all the potential pitfalls along the way? Number 3) We’re going to plan out the exact next steps you need to take to make sure you double your firm revenue. Let’s welcome our special guest Blake Oliver.
Blake, welcome to the show.
It’s great to be here. Thanks for having me.
Thanks for coming back. It’s been a little while. I’m excited to have you back here on the show. It’s always an honor but before we start, could you share with everyone who you are and what you do? You have some cool stuff. Everyone needs to know about your newest latest venture because everyone here probably needs some CPE credits. I’ve already done your intro but it’s always best to come from you. If you could do that for 60 seconds or less and then we’ll dive into it because a lot of it is about having the right technology in your back pocket to not only save you time but also have more dollars coming into your firm. That’s what we’re talking about.
I got into marketing, creating content and doing webinars. I was a product marketer at a company called FloQast. I was a CPA before that. I had my small practice. I worked for one year in a big practice and I couldn’t handle that pace of things so I got into tech. While I was doing technology in companies, I started a podcast called the Cloud Accounting Podcast. We are the number one accounting and bookkeeping podcast in the world by downloads. We’ve been doing that for many years. We went full-time with it in 2022. When I say we, I mean my co-host, David Leary and me. Every week we talk about what’s new in accounting and technology. We’ve been doing it every week for many years without a break.
We keep doing that. It’s a lot of fun. Has made me a much better speaker. I feel it made me more comfortable. I highly recommend everybody find a friend and start creating something. Do something online like that. It helps when you have a friend to do it. We were getting questions from our listeners after a few years saying, “I learned much from the podcast. How do I get CPE for it,” as a joke but we took that joke seriously. I started working on Earmark CPE. It’s an app that allows you to get CPE credit for listening to podcasts like the Abundant Accountant Podcast.
We’re on Earmark. You can go listen and get your CPE credits. It’s a 2-for-1 special.
I’m counting. As we record this, you’ve got nine episodes on there and hundreds of people have earned CPE for listening on Earmark. I’m happy to have you on it.
I thought it was a genius idea. I remember when you and David were talking about it and I was like, “That’s genius. That’s fantastic.” Many firm owners are driving, walking or trying to walk and get some exercise because they sit all day like, “What is a way to get your CPEs every single year?” Instead of cramming it all at the last minute, you can sign up and listen to one a week or get one CPE for free every single week. If you block it out and schedule it, great things come from that.
Kudos to you for great accounting technology because that’s a piece of technology that’s benefiting your license for whatever you have like your CPA, EA license or whatever it is. You don’t have to spend extra time because one of the biggest problems a lot of firm owners have is a lack of time. They’re overworked. We have too much on our plates talking about technology and having standardized processes. We’re paid and more efficient. It is a good thing.
The talent crunch is real, fewer accountants and CPAs every year. People aren’t having as many babies as they used to. That’s the fact of it. It’s been going on for decades. I only have one kid. I’m not having more.
I have a dog.
There are more dogs in this country than children. You can feel bad about it. Some people think it’s horrible. Some people think it’s great. It’s a fact of life and we have to adapt to it. What do we do when they’re fewer workers? We have to use technology to increase our efficiency and be more productive. Why our show has done well is it’s starting to become a real business case. You have to implement tech to keep up with the demand. I’m eager to talk to you about tech and accounting.
I’m excited to talk about tech and accounting and how a firm owner can increase revenue and profitability even if their expenses go up because they have to invest in a piece like technology but also save on the human side.
The thing that you do that is important, and I’ve realized this as I’ve matured, is you can’t just implement technology without having a process and a vision. A lot of times people skip to the tech. They think that’s going to solve things but they aren’t doing their sales process. If you apply technology to a bad sales process or bad marketing, it’s going to be bad. It’s not going to help.You can't just implement technology without having a process and a vision. Click To Tweet
The sales process, I still believe. I’m passionate about it and that’s all we do at the show. If you can’t convert, you’re never going to have any top-line revenue or it’s going to be low. You won’t be able to afford the technology or have a profitable firm. You’ll have a job and then you won’t need the technology.
If your conversion rate is low and you apply technology to increase efficiency, you still got a low conversion rate. It doesn’t help.
The biggest challenge most firm owners think they have is a lead problem. When we have our conversations and our calls to make sure they’re a good fit and all that, what we uncover is that we have a conversion problem. There are so many leads. There are not as many CPAs or accounting firm owners as there used to be because people are not having as many babies. You have fewer firm owners and the same amount of people needing the services, if not more, businesses and individuals so you have 2 engagements for 1 person, yet you don’t need any more leads. We have a conversion problem.
The other thing about conversion is that you can put all the technology behind it but if it’s not priced right and you don’t feel like you’re being paid your value or your worth and you feel underappreciated by your clients and I could keep going down the list, then no technology’s going to fix that problem either.
Jason Staats in 2022 on Twitter, and he’s big in tech so I follow him, posted an analysis of, “Increasing your prices versus increasing your efficiency with technology. Hands down, increasing your prices has a much bigger impact on the bottom line when you do the math or the accounting.” I’m with you on that but I feel like it’s got to be both. You got to do both at the same time. The other thing with conversions is I feel like a lot of times and I’ve been guilty of this too, the reason that we failed to convert but when we say conversions, do we need to explain that?
We can convert that. We can explain what a conversion is. It’s always important to define what we’re talking about. Everyone has a different definition. What I hear from a lot of firm owners is when they think of sales, they think about finding the client. That’s not sales. That’s a marketing effort. Sales and marketing are two different things. It’s important to always hone in on the definitions of what we’re talking about. Just because they think most people listening and you guys can email me if I’m wrong, you didn’t think you were signing up for a 24/7 sales career either or like, “I have to market. I have to get clients. I need to do sales. That’s the conversion on getting paid part.”
There are so many elements. When you’re like, “All I want to do is do the tax plan. I want to do the resolution work and technical work. I don’t want to deal with any of this other stuff,” or with Blake’s going to talk about the accounting technology can help standardize your process and make sure you’re paid upfront to go along with what I always talk about. What is the definition of conversions in your world?
A lot of people think of what we need to do is get the lead. Get the person talking to us. Usually, that’s not the issue. We need to get that person to go from being a “lead” or a prospect to being a customer or a client. That is the conversion that happens. The biggest conversion is like, “Did they sign up and pay you? Would they call themselves your client?” All these little conversions happen along the way and they go from different stages. We can divide up the whole process into stages. Most of the time, people focus on marketing. It’s funny to me saying this as somebody who’s specialized in marketing that it’s not that important in accounting. Marketing is way less important than sales and that conversion happens because we have plenty of leads most of the time.
Most firm owners have way too many clients anyway. You’re trying to get rid of volume and you want quality high-plan clients. In reality, you don’t need more people. We need to sift through, weed out, clean up, get rid of low-hanging fruit, focus on these AB clients and then also say, “When a new lead or referral does come to me, which is the marketing part, how do I convert only the good ones, the ones that I want?”
Identify the ones that will be the right fit for your firm, are willing to pay and need the services you have that will value you.
That’s the important part. I like how you said that there are many conversions along the way.
When I was in a tech company, we defined these pretty well. We had leads, marketing-qualified leads, sales-qualified leads and all these different acronyms. Honestly, we argued a bit too much about what they meant but they defined certain actions that the prospect took. If you got to the stage of sending out a contract or an agreement for them to sign, that was a specific stage. Signing it was another stage. We could bucket all of our leads or contacts into different stages and know whom to follow up with.
That reminds me of something I wanted to say when we started this conversation, which is in my experience, a big problem in the conversions in the sales process in most firms is the lack of follow-up. We all get busy. We don’t have time that we don’t follow up in a timely manner with people who want to engage us. We all know that’s not a good experience. Nobody wants to be left hanging when they’re ready and eager. That happens way too much. A lot of times, we don’t follow up with the right prospects.A big problem in the conversions in the sales process in most firms is the lack of follow up. Click To Tweet
Another challenge is following up and knowing what to say, not doing it in a way where you’re pushy, annoying or like a nag. That’s why most people don’t follow up. At least that’s what I was told when I’ve done my talk on follow-up, “I don’t want to be annoying or pushy. They’re going to call me when they’re ready. I don’t need to follow up with them.” You’re then wondering, how come they never called you and if you’re doing tax planning and you could save them $100,000. If you don’t get it done by December 31st, you know that they’re going to pay a high bill to the IRS and you’re shaking your head like, “Why didn’t I hear from them?” It’s because your prospects are too busy.
I know a firm owner who does not do any follow-up. He’ll do a call, a proposal and send that out and then they all hang out there forever.
I call that proposal land which is why if you’ve been reading my blog for a while, you know that you never send out a proposal in Michelle’s world. That doesn’t happen because otherwise, they end up in proposal land like this firm owner that you know. They’re sitting in somebody’s inbox forever. You’re never going to hear from that person.
At the end of the day, people do want to be led and told. They’re looking for leadership and guidance in one of the areas that they suffer in the most. You are the most trusted advisor. If you’re reading this blog or listening to Blake and David, you guys are the most trusted advisors out there. If you are, then you have to guide your clients and tell them what to do so they have a successful business, their QuickBooks and books are all intact, they’re paying the least amount to the IRS or they’re out of resolution or you’ve negotiated with them for whatever it is.
You are the leader. You get to solve their problem and you need to take ownership. Doing a proposal is a passive approach to your conversions, which is why you probably have a low conversion rate in this situation with the firm owner, their conversions are very low whereas the clients that I work with are all above 50% conversion.
I imagine that with this method. It’s probably 10% or else.
It’s less than that because they’re in proposal land. A lot of the proposal stuff goes into people’s junk and spam boxes. It doesn’t even land in their inboxes.
When you say don’t use proposals, that makes me think of some of the sales folks that I get to know over the years who do enterprise software sales. That’s a long sales process. It’s as difficult if not more difficult than what we do in CPA land, in terms of signing people up.
In CPA land, you can do it right then and there on the first meeting.
These guys are trying to get somebody to buy NetSuite and it’s going to be a multi-hundreds of thousands of dollars contract for a year or something. One thing I’ve seen that they do that’s successful is they never leave a meeting without another meeting scheduled. It’s easy to implement because you make it a discipline thing where you’re talking to a prospect and you say, “We’re going to decide now. Do we continue or stop?” You’ve got it boxed out on your calendar so there’s going to be a follow-up. You don’t have to worry about a task that you’re going to forget to do because you’ve got one million things.
We’re all too busy. It’s almost like when you and I talk, I’m always like, “When’s our next podcast? When’s our next meeting?” If it doesn’t get on the calendar, it’s not going to happen. Even when I saw you in person and you were like, “We’re going to schedule something for 2 or 3 months out,” I go, “ let me make myself a calendar reminder to send Blake a couple of options in the next two months because if it’s not on the calendar, I’m not going to remember anything from two months ago. We’ve got way too much going on.”
Never leave a meeting without a follow-up scheduled. It is the best way to go about anything you’re doing. Be it with a current client, a prospect or your staff. Always have something on the calendar in the future. It’s like your personal life. I know you got a kid and your family but do you all go to the dentist?
Yes. I got my reminder for my appointment.
Every time you leave the dentist, they’re always booking you out for your next 3 or 6-month appointment. I like to go every three months. It’s like clockwork. They have it dialed in. We all need to be like our dental offices.
There’s something that the dentists that I go to did that I’ve never seen before, which is if you’re rushing out and forget to book, their software will automatically book you an appointment six months out, send you the calendar invite and then starts reminding you. That happened to me once. I was like, “I didn’t book this appointment.” I called and asked. The receptionist said, “That’s how it works. If you don’t book, it books for you.”
I thought that was genius because most people are going to accept the appointment and come in or if it doesn’t work for them, they’ll call. We can get into the tech stuff. Their software sent a text message asking you to confirm. You have to reply with letter C to confirm and they call you. They do all that follow-up for every appointment. I’ve not gotten both a text message or a phone call from their office.
I have had the same. It is a great technology. For a firm owner, what do you feel is the latest, greatest accounting technology that could help with follow-up and standardizing some engagement letters? I’m all about getting paid right then and there. What software could also implement that where the firm owner could get paid right then and there on that first meeting?
This is nothing crazy new. This has been around for a few years. That’s why it’s worth looking at because it’s matured. It falls into the broad category of proposal software or if we don’t want to use that word, engagement letter software. There are three options that I would recommend checking out. There’s Ignition, which used to be called Practice Ignition, which is focused specifically on the accounting profession.
There’s GoProposal, which is similar to Ignition, out of the UK. There’s then a more generic solution that I used personally in my practice because those two accounting-specific tech solutions weren’t mature yet when I started my practice and that’s called PandaDoc. I like all three of them for different reasons. I know people who love them and are passionate about them and would recommend you check out all three.
What they do is provide you a way to create a document, call it a proposal, engagement letter or whatever it is. It outlines the scope of your services and what you’re going to do for the client. They put it all in writing as you should. If you are a CPA, you always need to have that engagement letter protecting you. Even if you’re not a CPA, you should have that engagement letter protecting you in defining what you’re doing, put it in writing, because you’ll be surprised what people think that you were going to do if you didn’t. It goes out in writing.
The digital document allows the recipient to sign it electronically. There’s an eSignature involved in all of these. The most important part and the part you’re going to love is they can put in their payment information right then and there. You can require it for them to be able to sign and accept. You can have it be ACH. You’re getting paid electronically. You can have it be a credit card. You can choose most of the time what you want it to be or turn that off, bill them directly, send them an invoice every month or whatever.
I highly don’t recommend that.
I try to avoid that if at all possible. Sometimes if you’re working with big companies, they’ve got this AP process where it’s like, “It’s not going to happen. You don’t have the leverage and you got to do it.” Whenever possible, get them on automatic payments. The part I didn’t mention yet is you can set it up. That payment information, their credit card, ACH and bank account gets billed every single month, quarter and week or you could probably even do it daily if you wanted to.
I do know a firm that has done well that does weekly billing. I’m curious if you have run into that with any of your clients. Instead of doing a monthly fee, they say, “We’re going to break that up into weekly payments and we bill you weekly.” It’s worked great for them. The firm is called Summit CPA. Jody Grunden, the Founder, is the Chair of the Digital CPA Conference. He’s a big shot. He’s the only one I’ve ever heard doing it.
I’ve never heard anyone doing it weekly. I would recommend that if a client is having cashflow problems or challenges on a monthly basis and it would help them from a cashflow perspective weekly, if you have the system set up and the right accounting technology in your firm to do that, then that would work. Do Ignition, PandaDoc and the other one allow weekly billing?
I believe Ignition does. I’m not sure about PandaDoc or GoProposal. There are ways to work around it if it doesn’t do it natively. All of these electronic payment services will give you a lot of flexibility.
If people are doing their books and everything else monthly, I don’t see anything wrong with staying monthly. If there’s some benefit to going weekly, then go for it.
For me, I would do it for the clients for whom I had weekly services. That would be the higher tier clients. They’re paying more. Breaking it into weekly makes it feel less painful for them and helps their cashflow smoother.
Especially if you’re having weekly meetings, doing their payroll and other more frequent tasks. If it’s monthly books or maybe they’re on a maintenance plan, they’re doing tax and accounting services for the whole year and it’s broken up monthly, at the end of the day, it’s the same number.
It’s whatever works for your firm and your clients, whatever helps someone. That’s what’s great about the flexibility of this. The beauty is you get it on autopay and the money is coming into you on the first of every month or at the beginning of every week or every quarter. You’re not financing your client’s accounting services. You’re getting the cash up upfront and able to pay out your staff. That helped me grow a lot. I didn’t need a lot of capital to build my accounting firm when I started it because I was getting paid upfront.
That is the most important piece and I’m sure you’ve experienced this too. Many firm owners come to me and I ask, “How much is your receivable.” I’ve heard $67,000, $100,000. One gentleman had over $300,000 in AR. Twenty-five percent of everyone we talked even said, “It’s bad that there are even people I’ve never billed for. I don’t even know because I haven’t even had time to do the billing.” That is a real problem.
I know a CPA who’s behind on his billing. He hasn’t billed for 2021 taxes. It is my father-in-law’s client and hasn’t gotten a bill yet, called me asking, “Did I miss something?”I know why. He’s a smart CPA. He’s super good at his job. He is very experienced. He is professional but he’s busy. He doesn’t focus on it and he loses sight of it and then it doesn’t happen. It’s crazy to think that he’s got work he’s done that he hasn’t billed for yet.
He hasn’t even been paid for 2022.
It’s not because we wouldn’t pay for it. It’s because we haven’t gotten the bill.
It’s fascinating to me. I wonder how much revenue he hasn’t collected. He is financing it. The clients are not paying interest on that. It’s a loss all around. I know that if you’re reading, you’re good with numbers so I like to break things down. I have no idea what the investment would be on Ignition, PandaDoc or GoProposal. On a monthly basis, how much would that run the firm to become more efficient and have a standardized process for engagement, getting paid upfront and having a way to collect payment right then and there as the engagement letter is also being signed? What does that run a firm on average? There are a lot of variables.
If you look at the pricing for Ignition, it starts at $69 a month and goes up to $369 a month depending on how many engagements you’ve got. If you’re a decent size firm, you’re going to be paying a few hundred dollars a month to start and then pay transaction fees on top. Whenever you receive an ACH payment, they’re going to take a little piece of that or you could pay the credit card fee.
This is the psychological barrier that you got to overcome as a firm. You’ve got to be okay with spending a few hundred dollars and then it’s going to go up to probably thousands because you’re going to want to take credit cards. In my opinion, it’s way better to pay that percentage than to be spending time trying to follow up with people and get paid.The psychological barrier that you have to overcome as a firm is you've got to be okay with spending a few hundred dollars. Click To Tweet
Let’s say they are spending $2,000 a month. Is that a good amount?
I use it for some of our services with Earmark Media. We do podcast production and I accept credit cards. I am paying up to a few thousand dollars a month for this. It’s worth it to me.
Let’s say a firm is doing $2,000 or $3,000 a month of expenses to get paid upfront and have engagement letters signed. Let’s go through the example of the firm that hasn’t billed for 2021 yet. How many hours do you think it’s going to take him to figure out whom he hasn’t billed, what to charge them and to do all the paperwork, all the admin, get the invoices out and then hope that you get the email and click on the link to pay the bill? How many hours do you even think that that would take a firm owner who has to stop what they’re doing, go back in time, recollect everything that they did for a client, bill for it, put the invoice together, send the invoice and then hope to get paid?
If he hasn’t been doing it for most of the year, which it seems like’s been going on, it’s going to be days of if he sat down and did it. Let’s say it’s a couple of days. That would be generous.
Three days of work. Let’s say 24 hours minimum.
Multiply that by your typical billing rate of a partner.
What’s that? $400 or $500?
Anywhere from a couple hundred to over $500 an hour.
We’ll go in the middle. $250 an hour. Let’s say that was the price tag you put on yourself. That’s $6,000 right there. If you had that money in your bank account, what you could have done from a growth perspective in the firm in 2022, which he didn’t do because he didn’t have that cashflow available? What if you collected interest on that money or other things? On the hourly part, you’re already at $6,000 at one time but you also have headaches and stress attached to it.
You have it put on the back burner every month. I’m going to guess this firm owner wanted to do this every month but it’s like, “I’m too busy. I can’t do it. I’ll wait until next month.” You keep waiting. I truly believe that this is going to take someone two weeks to do. There’s no way they can build all their clients in three days.
You can’t just sit down and do it. It’s got to be over time and then you’ve got to deal with people saying, “I didn’t pay you for this yet,” like the confused people.
The back and forth, the email. You’re going to have a slew of emails and then you’re going to have to go through the invoices, see who’s paid you and who hasn’t paid you on top of that.
The other challenge that this solves using this kind of software is that you can create a standard set of services and the language around the library of services and add those to your documents. You’re using the same terminology and you can have standardized pricing for what you’re doing. You’re not having to create a new document from scratch online every time. Part of the reason why people don’t send them is that they don’t sit down. It’s like the end of the day and you’re tired. You’re trying to write an engagement letter from scratch again.
It sounds daunting. I wouldn’t want to do it either.
If you don’t want to do any of this, you’re probably better off having a standard hourly rate engagement letter saying, “Do you want to work with me? Sign this. I’m going to bill you hourly.” I don’t think that’s the ideal way to price services. If you’re not going to have a standardized process for this engagement letter thing and collecting the money, then that’s better than somewhere in between. If you’re trying to do fixed or value pricing, whatever you want to call what you’re doing and you’re not getting away from hourly, you’ve got to implement the tech to do that. This is what I’m trying to say.
Tech has a higher ROI and will also help you have a higher conversion rate because the person who hasn’t billed and you think you did work and you think you got a new client, you’re not having a new client until they paid you. The fact that you’re doing work without getting paid, there’s no value attached to it. People don’t have value to you as the firm owner. That’s a little out-of-date. You can’t do business without getting paid. I don’t think you go on an airplane without paying for your ticket first. There are many services where it’s like, “No. You pay your copay or your ticket in advance before you get on.”
Unless you’re Elon Musk. Twitter has some contracts with airlines. When you’re corporate, you don’t have to pay in advance because you’re special. They have $100,000 for flights that Musk said, “I’m not going to pay it.” That’s the risk that the airlines take when they do that.
It’s probably the worst business model ever. Here at the show, I’m always about you having more abundance in your life, not only in your bank account but in your personal life. If you’re stressed out about whom you build, whom you haven’t billed and how much to bill and you keep putting it off, that’s taxing on your mental health. That’s exhausting. That’s where burnout starts to happen. Invest in one of these technologies like Blake said. He knows them better than I do. It will help on the conversion side. I’m all about conversion. If you convert, that means the money hit the bank account and they became a client. Until someone’s paid you and the money’s in the account, they’re not a true client.
The one thing that people do with this type of software that you don’t recommend is they’ll do the call, put together the proposal and send it out to the client. The client then is looking at it all by themselves.
I don’t recommend that.
Do you recommend creating the document and then showing that to the client on a call?
Totally. You have a sales meeting and then at the end when you share with them what the investment is to work with you, you also will review what I call the engagement letter together. You’ll go through what the engagement is and what’s included in it and also be clear on what’s not included. There’s no scope creep in the future. One of the things this helps with as well is scope creep. You won’t be doing other work or anything else that wasn’t in the engagement letter.
A lot of firm owners we talked to have a lot of scope creep. The other thing that going through the engagement letter and getting paid right away in that first meeting helps alleviate are objections. If a client has an objection to anything, be it they need to think about it, price, talk to their business partner, talk to their wife or husband they need a day, you’re going to get to know what the true objection is right then and there and you can handle it.
If you take the passive approach, keep sending proposals and then hoping that they’re going to get back to you, you’re not taking the upfront approach and you’re going to waste more time. If there’s no follow-up process and you’re not following up in a timely manner, then you’re also missing even more opportunities. I believe from speaking to many firm owners that every missed opportunity is the missed person you’re helping. You’re not helping. Each of you wants to help more people. You want to help the quality people who appreciate you. If you don’t have the processes in place, you can’t help people.
The other thing is when you’re sending out the proposal, you don’t get that objection handling option opportunity.
It’s too passive. There’s no way the prospect can share, “I want to think about it. This is a lot of money. I’ve never paid this much before.” Whatever the objection is, they’re not able to handle it.
You don’t get that intel as a firm owner as to why they aren’t signing up. That’s super valuable information. It might be uncomfortable to hear that from somebody on a phone call. That’s what’s going to happen. Even if your close rate is 50% by not doing this, you’re still going to have 50% of those phone calls like, “We’re probably not the right fit for each other.” That can be uncomfortable at first but it’s super important to get the information as to why. “Is it the price or the competitor?” Whatever it is, you got to find it out because then you can improve. You’re not going to get at emailing them a month later saying, “Is there any reason you didn’t sign up for my services?”
They’ve forgotten. They’re not going be honest. They’re going to give you what I call a false objection to make you feel better or won’t hurt your feelings, which is a whole other conversation. This was great. The moral of the story is then best in something on the technology side to make your life a lot easier and never have to wonder whom you build or haven’t and get rid of all of your AR so you can have your best year ever and have more money in your bank account and lots of cashflows. Thank you for being here with us on the show. It’s always an honor to have you. I love chatting with you. Our conversations are always fun. Hopefully, those firms get their act together.
I appreciate the opportunity to come on here. I’m going to be talking to that CPA and doing my best to help them out.
If someone wants to get on board with Earmark and get one CPE a week, how do they do that?
Go to EarmarkCPE.com. You can put in your email address and I will send you all the links to download the app. You can also find it on the App store or the Google Play Store. Download the app and sign up.
Thanks for being here with us. It was an honor to have you.
Thank you all much for joining Blake and me on a very amazing, fun episode. Remember, if you want to get your CPEs or get one CPE per week and Earmark CPE to do that, you can download his app on your iPhone or your Android phone and dive into it. It was 40 hours of CPE in one year by downloading the app and listening to one. You have to take a quiz. It’s such a great thing and tool. We talked about accounting technology. This is a great accounting technology tool to make your life more efficient. Dive in, download the app and get to it because a lot of people cram once or twice a year to try to get all their CPEs done. Make sure to do that.
If you’re exhausted from being on the daily financial roller coaster ride or you’re discounting your fees, you resent your clients, you feel like you’re seen as a commodity and you’re saying, “I can’t have another tax season like what is about to come,” then make sure to head on over to the TheAbundantCall.com to book your call with us. I want you to know that it’s not your fault. No one is teaching you how to not be seen as a commodity, charge premium fees, resent your clients, have burnout and all of these things. It all comes down to what we spoke about regarding conversions.
How do we confidently convert clients and have them pay us premium fees? How do we make sure that our clients appreciate us for the value that we provide, get paid our worth and let go of clients who don’t serve us, who suck the energy and time out of us? How do we do that without any fear, guilt or anxiety? That’s what we talk about here. If you want to book your phone call and explore what possibilities there might be, head on over to TheAbundantCall.com. Whatever your biggest challenge is, trust me, I’ve seen it and I know how to overcome it. My team and I look forward to speaking with you soon. Have a beautiful day.
- Earmark CPE
- Cloud Accounting Podcast
- Practice Ignition
- Summit CPA
About Blake Oliver
Blake Oliver, CPA, is an accountant, podcaster, and entrepreneur who specializes in financial technology. He has been named twice to Accounting Today’s list of the Top 100 Most Influential People and CPA Practice Advisor’s 40 Under 40 in the accounting profession. Blake is the creator of Earmark CPE, an app that offers NASBA-approved CPE for listening to your favorite accounting and tax podcasts. He also co-hosts the Cloud Accounting Podcast, a Top 50 Business News show on the Apple charts and the most popular podcast for accountants and bookkeepers in the world. Blake lives in Scottsdale, Arizona, where he likes to hike the the Sonoran Preserve and play his cello.