Social media gained its popularity as a way for individuals to connect with their friends on platforms such as Myspace and Friendster (remember those?). Today, Facebook has pretty much become a permanent fixture in many of our lives. It follows, logically that businesses across every industry have embraced social media and were using it to their advantage as both a marketing tool and a way to communicate with current and potential clients. While a static website serves an important role in establishing an overall web presence for financial advisors, it is not enough to reach everyone you want to reach, in order to grow your business.
Even as different social media outlets come and go, as a whole this platform has become an important tool for growing business. This is not likely to be a passing fad. Networking with CPAs, on-line or off-line is so advantageous because of the number of people which they are connected to, through their own work — especially when tax time rolls around. If you’re looking for new business, these are the professional people who can help.
LinkedIn is a good place to start in your search for new CPA contacts. Having your own profile listed is an excellent marketing tool for making new connections, but it can also be used to connect with CPAs and other advisors. While attending real-life networking functions can and does, still, l play an important role, LinkedIn allows you to fine-tune your professional profile. No advisor should be without one.
Twitter is another great marketing tool, but it can also be used to network. Visit Twitter and conduct a simple search for “CPA” and look through the list of results. There will be quite a few, but start by following CPAs or organizations in your city or state. Follow their feeds, and they may return the favor and start following yours. Afterwards, you may wish to contact them, directly. You can also use Twitter to see what individual CPAs, organizations, or other financial advisors are posting and get ideas for your own posts. You’ll get a feel for how they are using Twitter to help grow their own businesses. You can also use Twitter to find organizations which share information on conferences and networking events or about CPA publications and organizations, state by state. Use all this information to your advantage.
Few businesses can afford to sit on the sidelines while millions of people interact on Facebook every day. Financial advisors can use Facebook in the same manner as Twitter. Follow CPAs and organizations, “Like” relevant pages, set up your own page and gain some exposure for yourself. Some CPA firms may post who their followers are on a Fan Page. Connect with those people. Facebook also offers the opportunity to join a seemingly unlimited number of professional groups and organizations.
These are a few social media tools which advisors can use to connect with CPAs online. It is still important to develop personal relationships with people outside of the virtual world. Using social media as an introduction is just the first step. Whenever possible, be sure to make personal face-to-face connections with CPAs in the real world so you can build relationships which last.
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