There’s a reason 90% of marketers plan to invest at least the same amount of money in content marketing in 2022 as they did last year – it works. If you’re struggling to achieve growth, generate sales, or build brand awareness, the right accounting firm content strategy can help.
And if you add in content marketing, you’ll learn just how valuable the right strategy can be for your firm.
I’m going to outline a basic content strategy using a refined approach that your firm can use to reach its goals in 2022.
7 Steps to Building an Accounting Firm Content Strategy
1. Start With a Content Audit
There’s no sense in trying to achieve accounting firm growth with content if you don’t know what’s working and what isn’t working. First, you need to do a full audit, look at your analytics and review everything:
- Paid traffic
- Social media
- Types of content – blogs, videos, podcasts, etc.
- PR outlets
Now, try and use the data you have available to learn:
- What content works the best
- What content isn’t working optimally
You want to create more content that works and less that doesn’t work to achieve your content goals.
2. Set Goals for Your Strategy
What are your goals for your content? The top 3 goals of most marketers using content are:
- Brand awareness
- Build credibility/trust
- Educate audiences
Since content spreads far and wide, we recommend setting goals for each type of content. For example:
- Social media content may be used to build trust and drive traffic to your site
- Blog content may have the goal of growing your email list and generating leads
Plan out realistic goals for three months, six months, a year, and so on. You might want your blog content to lead to X new email subscribers in the first three months. And you may want a certain percentage of leads to come through social media.
Once you’ve created your goals, it’s time to see what your competitors are doing that works and doesn’t work.
3. Analyze Your Competition
Your direct competitors already use content to grow their firms. Begin your analysis by:
- Searching Google for your main keyword
- Analyzing the sites of your top competitors
- Browsing social media channels of your competitors
- Signing up for their newsletters
- Listening to their podcasts
For each channel, pay attention to your competitors’ tone of voice, the visuals they create, and engagement numbers. You want to understand what the competition is doing, what works, and where you can fill in the gaps that the competition is missing.
You may find that the competition is all-in on video, but they don’t offer webinars, case studies, and infographics. Well, you can focus on video, too, consider where you can add in more forms of content that people are looking for to fill in gaps, differentiate yourself, and reach your goals.
4. Create Personas and Identify Your Niche
An accounting firm’s content strategy must have personas and a niche. Luckily, we’ve covered one of these topics in-depth previously: How to find a niche as an accounting firm. As for personas, this is a very detailed topic.
We recommend reading a few guides on creating personas:
Once you have your personas, it’s time to create your content pillars.
5. Map Out 3 Content Pillars
Content pillars are topics that your accounting firm will create content around, discuss and amplify. For example, you may want to focus on tax planning as one of your pillars. Ideally, you’ll start with three pillars and can always expand on them in the future if you wish.
Since you’ve done an audit and analyzed your competitors already, you’re well on your way to completing the next steps:
- Reflect on your audit
- Learn what sets you apart from the competition
- Determine what your personas need to:
If your personas are struggling with tax planning or maintaining cash flow, creating content around these topics is a natural step to take.
6. Plan Your Next Steps
Finally, you need to begin planning the “meat” of your plan. You’ve written out your goals, and know where you can leverage competitor shortfalls, now it’s time to:
- Match your content pillars with your goals
- Analyze how each content pillar can help you achieve your goals
- Determine which platforms and channels you’ll use in your plan
- Research post frequency and the type of posts you’ll make
- Decide who needs to be involved: staff, marketing teams, outside marketers, content creators, etc.
Create a three-month or 12-month content plan. Add in content type, dates and channels you’ll use to achieve your goals. The most successful forms of content in 2021 were:
- Success stories
- Case studies
Add these channels to your strategy and don’t neglect other forms, such as eBooks, white papers, and podcasts, which your competitors may be overlooking. You’ll revisit and adjust this plan in the future, too.
7. Execute, Measure, and Adjust
Everything is in place. Now, execute your plan. Put teams and resources in place to fulfill your plan. Along the way:
- Measure your plan’s success
- Adjust based on data
If your how-to articles are performing well and your white papers aren’t, it may be time to adjust the approach of your white papers or abandon them if they’re not producing results.
If you aren’t comfortable creating the content or monitoring the results, work with a professional. They can not help you handle content creation, implementation, and execution. Further, these professionals can monitor your plan and adjust as needed.
As an accounting firm, your potential clients must trust you. Creating a content strategy that builds brand awareness and trust while educating is a great way to keep your client pipeline full.
The seven steps above will allow you to create a plan that sets you up for success. However, you need to make sure that you’re also marketing the content you create to get it in front of your audience.
Building an accounting firm content strategy takes a lot of time and resources. If you need help with your strategy or want to offload it to the pros, contact us today for a quick, free consultation.