Everyone’s looking for ways to grow their business online, and luckily, there’s a simple process we use here at Leaders Online that works.
This process is perfect for someone who is just jumping into digital marketing or for someone who wants to create a bigger splash. You can use this process yourself or have your staff use it.
Watch the video below to learn more.
Want a downloadable copy of the 4 C Process? Head over to www.leaders-online.com/4CProcess.
Katie Thomas CPA (00:00):
Hey, Josh and John, thanks so much for having me on I’m Katie Thomas, a CPA, and I run a digital marketing agency that has worked with hundreds of accountants, CPAs, bookkeepers, and finance professionals. And there’s a common problem that all of us face and that’s that marketing can be confusing. There are so many strategies available. So how do you find one that is going to work for you? Well, luckily today, I’m going to teach you guys a process that will work for every single one of you. If you do it consistently and properly
John Williamson (00:30):
Also, and I liked the way she saw it set off by us. It’s like, you’re a CPA yourself, right?
Katie Thomas CPA (00:35):
Yeah, I am. So
John Williamson (00:37):
You bring in that to the table, this isn’t some consultant, give them consultant speak about what might happen or could happen or should happen. This is from the trenches. You’ve been there, seen it done at KTA.
Katie Thomas CPA (00:47):
Yeah. And I think most of us can say, we love a process. We like to see things balanced. We like to follow a set of like rules. And so that’s what I really wanted to find as part of my journey, even marketing for my own marketing firm. And so after trying this with myself and hundreds of other accounting firms, I can tell you this does work. And it is a very much a process
Josh Rhodes (01:11):
Processes. I love processes. Yes. So where do we start there, Katie?
Katie Thomas CPA (01:17):
So it’s the four C process and we can dive into each of them today, but it’s going to be choose connect converse for you. And so what’s, you’re first going to do is you have to choose your platform, but how do you choose it? So you don’t need to overthink this, but first ask yourself, where does your ideal client hang out? So ideal client, where are they? Are they going to be on LinkedIn? Are they going to be on Instagram? Facebook? Maybe there are a lot of places, but I want you to think about one place and then you need to ask yourself the next question. So what are my strengths?
John Williamson (02:00):
They’re in the space between speaking there, Katie, when you say ideal client in your experience, and this is probably a subject for another session, but in your experience, how well do most accountants or how will it be defined who the ideal client is? Do you think they know who they’re actually looking for? Or most of them like really like ambiguous about who could be a great client?
Katie Thomas CPA (02:21):
It’s a great question. And I think it depends on when they started their firm. Nowadays I think that the niche is introduced to a lot of people as they’re like just starting their firm. But if they’ve had it for a while, it’s, you know, they’ve served a lot of people. And since it’s traditionally been very referral networking, how do you an ideal client wasn’t as important because it was more about who knew who, and just doing it that way. Can we find out where,
Josh Rhodes (02:48):
I mean, you say choose our platform and it’s where our ideal client hangs out, but how do we find out where they actually hang out? Is that that’s for this too?
Katie Thomas CPA (02:59):
Yeah. So that’s a great question. And a lot of it is going to be doing market research and figuring out like one, you have to define that person. If you haven’t, as you all brought up, if you don’t know who it is, figure out first who it is, whether it’s an industry that you really like, it’s also the, you know, maybe where the person’s located. It’s how old they are. If me a lot of things. And that would be a lesson in itself, but then you’ve just got to go on the platform and figure it out. So if you work with say a lot of like business owners that are they are in the B2B space, LinkedIn is going to have a lot of those people, but maybe you like working with like in the beauty industry and you like hairstylist and you like, or like photographers more like creatives.
Katie Thomas CPA (03:44):
That’s probably going to be like Instagram and Facebook. And they might be on multiple platforms. So this is why it’s important to consider that second aspect. Once you’ve defined who they are and either the platform or platforms that they’re likely hanging out on, you want to consider your strengths. So if you’re on social media, which it’s, the last piece is you’re gonna have to create content. And if you’re telling me, Hey, my people, they are on, let’s say Instagram and they are on Facebook. But I really don’t like taking photos then maybe Instagram does not play to your strengths because it’s got a lot of photos. Maybe you like writing, or maybe you like posting videos. Those are both work on Facebook, but Instagram is going to be, have a hard time creating that nice feed. So starting out on Facebook might be better.
John Williamson (04:35):
Awesome. Yep. Good, good. Finally
Katie Thomas CPA (04:38):
On that platform, we just need to optimize it once you’ve, you’ve chosen your platform. So I’m just going to put, optimize your profile and this, this could be very in depth. So just to quickly think about it, your banner, if there’s a banner, your profile picture and your tagline, who you help and how you help them, if you can nail all three of those, you’re going to be off to the races with having a nice inviting profile for your ideal client.
John Williamson (05:05):
We can come back and look more of this in future lessons. You can go a little bit deeper maybe with individual aspects. Yeah,
Katie Thomas CPA (05:10):
Yeah, absolutely makes sense. So we froze in our platform. Now we need to connect with our people. So how can we find them? We’ve done some research. We know that they’re on there, but now it’s like, okay, how am I going to actually find them? And there’s a variety of ways that you can do it. So depending on the platform, one way you might be able to do it is by their title. So for example, on LinkedIn, you can go and search by title by industry, by company size. So title we’ll call these. They’re very, very like specific things that you can go search for, but not all platforms will let you do that. And maybe your people aren’t on LinkedIn. So what’s another way you can do this. Well, you can look at influencers. You don’t need to build your own audience. Think about who already has it.
Katie Thomas CPA (06:02):
So maybe you work with a lot of marketing agencies. Well people, a lot of marketing agencies follow Russell Brunson, and he’s the owner of ClickFunnels. So maybe you go to Russell Brunson’s profile and you see all the people liking his content and you start filtering through those people. So another one is influencers don’t need to reinvent the wheel if we don’t have to, he’s already built the audience. So that’s another way. Another great way is groups. So Facebook has tons and tons of groups. And let’s say that we serve bike shops. That’s our niche. There are groups just for bike shop owners and people that like bike shops. So groups and that’s, that’s kind of like influencers, you know, there’s already a group of people there. And then the final way that we could talk about finding people online is hashtags. So Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram, other platforms, they have hashtags and you can find industry or niche related hashtags and go sort through people that are using those. And that’ll get you also help you find the right ideal clients and connect with them. So we also have hashtags.
Josh Rhodes (07:15):
So suppose that I already have a bunch of clients, how do I go about inviting them onto my social media profile?
Katie Thomas CPA (07:23):
So that’s where we’re going to get into the converse. Cause you’re saying that you’ve already like connected with a bunch of them or you already know where they’re at. Yeah. So then we got to actually start talking to them. And whenever we’re thinking about talking to people, you know, we might have, we found our, we have our platform, we’ve connected with them or we know where they’re at. Now. We actually have to start talking to them because talking to them is the basis of everything. It’s starting that relationship. And when you first talk to somebody, you may, or you may not know that they’re looking for your services. You just need to find out if you can help them. So one of the things I like to say is we can just stumble upon this ideal person and send them a direct message. So I’m going to put direct message.
Katie Thomas CPA (08:10):
I’ll put VN for short VM, and this can be intimidating, but it doesn’t have to be. So for example, let’s say stumble upon somebody’s profile on Instagram. And I see that they have two kids. I could send them a message like, Hey, name, I see that you have two kids. They’re adorable. How old are they? And so it’s not even related to your services. It’s just to start having a conversation. And at some point you can turn it, maybe ask about their business. What’s going well and start to develop yourself that relationship with them. And we’re going to come to your profile if it’s set up, right. They know what you do. So they’ll start to see what you do. You start having those conversations. Another thing is in groups. You’re going to see people post in these, like, Hey, does anyone know for example of a good accountant, I need help with X, Y, Z.
Katie Thomas CPA (08:59):
So I’m going to put groups here and groups. What you’ll notice is other accountants. If they’re in it, they’re going to come at me, me, me, me, me pick me, pick me. You got to take a different approach. And you’ve got to say, make it about them. Say like, Hey, so-and-so I looked at your website. I’m really interested in what you do. I would love to connect with you and share some thoughts around how I can help you. I’ve helped other business owners and see if we’re a good fit to help. Do you mind if I DM you or maybe ask if you can deem them about what they’re actually looking for in an accountant, like make the conversation more focused on them and their needs rather than pick me. I’m perfect. And you’re going to see that this, this opens up the door for a lot of relationship building, which ultimately that’s what conversing with people is about. So always make the conversations about them
John Williamson (09:52):
John Williamson (09:53):
Two things here, Josh, number one, I know you’re going to get, but I just want to do this little bit, Katie. That was adorable. You know that Mimi choose me, choose me. We should turn that into him into a gift or something and spread it all over the internet. You’re doing that. That was absolutely crazy. So I love that, but it’s so true. That’s exactly what you see in these groups. People just go nuts. Don’t they? And it’s like 20, 30 people acting like seven year old kids at a party. Go me, choose me, choose me crazy. So a hundred percent with you there. Sorry, Josh. I just had to get that. I was just going to ask, we all
Josh Rhodes (10:22):
Know that social media can be a rabbit hole, but we also know the CPAs love their systems and processes. What timeframe or time limit do you recommend that they actually do this? Do you recommend they do it in the morning? Lunchtime afternoon, 30 minutes per day. What’s your what’s your take on that? After working with everybody,
Katie Thomas CPA (10:42):
It’s going to depend on what they want the result to be, how much time they should allocate it. Definitely have those limits as you said. But if someone say, if they’ve got an hour a day and they’re wanting, you know, to have, you know, one to two good sales calls a week or whatever, they want to call them discovery calls, then an hour a day, if you split it up 30 minutes in the morning, maybe you’re, you know, looking in the groups for some specific keywords and then 30 minutes at night to respond to messages. That’s going to get you really, really far. As you said, it’s a rabbit hole, so you’ve got to put constraints, but you’ve also got to be realistic. So if you’re, if you’re maybe wanting like one client a month, maybe it’s 15 minutes each, you know, morning and night, it’s really going to just be up to like how, how many calls you want to book and then
John Williamson (11:32):
The quality of your messaging and the quality. How long does it take people to become proficient? You think like to, you know, somebody started today, they’ve never done this before. They’re listening to what you said and saying, okay, I’m going to dip my feet in. I’m going to have a go at this, this, this is a learning curve. Isn’t it? This is like, start today. Don’t know what to say. You, you, if you’re feeling a bit like, I don’t know how to say it, an actual approach, people. What, what does it for somebody to sort of get to the point where they fit, feeling that little bit more comfortable.
Katie Thomas CPA (11:57):
If you knew it for a month, you’re going to feel really good. After two weeks, if you’re doing this every single day, you’re going to feel a lot better that first week, it’s going to feel funny and you’re going to have to, you know, try out some different messaging and just get, get used to it. But after a month, if you’ve done this for an hour a day, you’re going to feel really good about doing it. Particularly
John Williamson (12:17):
If you get some results, like a client, not please, please me. Me, me choose me.
Katie Thomas CPA (12:23):
Exactly. And you know, I hate I say this with caution it, the numbers game, because you do have to touch so many people to just statistically have someone one that’s a good fit and two that need your services. But why I say that with caution is, as you mentioned, it’s the quality of messaging. So if you just throw out a bunch of junk and be the Mimi, Mimi me, you’re probably not going to see very good results rather than taking more time. Even sending less messages have been really high quality, because what you’ll find is no, no one really responds mainly and maybe they don’t need you, but now you’ve started that relationship and they might know somebody who does need you.
John Williamson (13:02):
Josh Rhodes (13:03):
I think we’re ready to go into create, because you just opened up a can right there on our messaging.
Katie Thomas CPA (13:09):
Yeah. So great is last. And the reason why I create is last is if you just start creating content, even if it’s great, nobody’s going to see that it’s like walking into a cocktail party, standing in the corner, not talking to anyone, but you’re wearing this awesome dress or suit that you want someone to notice. And it’s like, no, one’s even looking at you. No, one’s talking to you so no one’s going to see it. So that’s why it creates last. You need to be doing all of these things first and continuing to connect and converse. Before you worry about create and create, you need to think more about the feelings that you want to evoke from someone rather than stressing about how perfect it looks or the content like, yes, the content is important and what you write. But if you can convey a feeling that you want them to have, whether you want them to be feel like they’re more confident, they’re more educated in their decisions.
Katie Thomas CPA (14:00):
So you educate them whether you want them to be inspired or entertained. So most CPAs and accountants, I would say they aren’t as big on entertaining. Cause this is like a professional service. But education and inspiration are really big. So remember on create it’s the feelings and stories are really good. If you can share stories, that’s amazing way to convey feelings, because think about movies, they tell a story and they give us feelings as well here, as you can think about really easy content to create is going to be, what are the questions that you’re asked? What are the top three ways to get the benefit of what, what problem you solve? What are five misconceptions? So kind of like answering Q and a. So we’ll just call this one is Q and a like five maybe
John Williamson (14:55):
Saying that they should create a Q and a post around something which may get asked.
Katie Thomas CPA (15:00):
Well, yeah, so like a common question I’m asked is X, maybe let’s just throw out an example there. Like what’s the best way to track, track your miles as an entrepreneur. Really there’s two ways. And I’m going to tell you what one is the best and they can go into what one’s the best and maybe their conclusion is that there isn’t a best, it can be whatever you want, but just think about the questions that you’re asked. And then the other thing here is you need a call to action. So I’m going to abbreviate it as CTA.
Katie Thomas CPA (15:30):
And when I talk about calls to action, you’ve got to be careful. It’s not saying call to action means sign up for a call. Let’s have that sales conversation, a call to action is just inviting them to that next step in talking to you, building the relationship. So it could even be asking for someone to share an experience comment, their thoughts on X, Y, and Z. It does not have to be a hard call to action. And this is where a lot of people get it wrong because just posting content on the internet with calls to actions, to book a call, it’s goes back to the Mimi, Mimi me, it doesn’t help that relationship be built. And that’s ultimately what this needs to do. It demonstrates that you’re an expert. It builds the know like and trust, and it facilitates that relationship moving down the ladder of where it needs to be for them to ultimately say like, Hey, I’m ready to work with you,
Josh Rhodes (16:26):
Mike, how you flipped create and converse. Because usually they say, Hey, what do I write to open up these conversations? What do I need to say? What should I ask? But you’ve flipped it on its head by doing it backwards there while which is the right way. But they have the conversations which leads to the ideas for the creation of the content. So
John Williamson (16:50):
Josh, do we see who sit there and they’ve written five and 10 posts or content pieces or whatever. They’ve never actually got to market because they’re getting ready to get ready to get started. But once I’ve got a whole bunch of ready, then I’ll do it. And the fear of actually getting that stock to market when they shouldn’t be having the conversations and then look constantly. So that’s brilliant. Love it. Absolutely.
Josh Rhodes (17:11):
From the market. So
Katie Thomas CPA (17:12):
Exactly, exactly. And you’ll find a lot of like, as you’re looking in like these groups and looking at other people’s content, you’re going to find like questions that people are asking within here too. That’s great market research. See what people are wanting and asking as well as when you’re talking to them. Cause you, this, this is going to be a really long play. If you’re not doing this and you may be totally missing the mark with
John Williamson (17:39):
Your content, love it, love it.
John Williamson (17:42):
So what was the last thing? CTA, give us a CTA for you there, Katie. We’re at that in the session where we could do with the CTL view. So we appreciate the fact that you’re going to be coming back. So we’re going to see you again. You’ve given us some great informative information today and hopefully inspired a few people as well. How did they take a step forward towards you now? Supposedly someone who wants to circumvent seeing you again in a month time or two months or whatever, to see what you like, next thing you’ve got share with them, what would the teacher reach out to you? How can they get hold?
Katie Thomas CPA (18:11):
So the best way is to go to www.leaders-online.com. And you can click schedule to schedule an appointment with me, but if you would just like some more information on this four seat process some examples of specific messaging templates that you can use, ways that you should optimize your profile. Really dive a little bit deeper into each of these. Then you can go to www.leaders-online.com/4cprocess.
If you have questions about the 4 C Process, prospecting, or selling online, feel free to schedule a time to chat.