I rely on peer support from a number of sharp lawyers and accountants to design and run my practice. It is clear from their feedback that I’ve done a lot of things in an old-fashioned and backwards way compared to the prevailing conventional industry advice. Sometimes it feels discouraging. My practice does not embrace the popular concepts of scaling, offshoring, email lists, systematized workflow, leveraging, AI-assisted communications, or automated marketing systems. Instead, I consider each client individually and manually review their progress every week or two. I learned, (slowly), that my best strategy is to embrace and communicate these significant differences as my firm’s unique value proposition.
Yesterday I added a new client, a small family construction business in California that felt that they were not receiving the same level of care from their CPA after a senior member of the firm retired and handed the account off to a younger CPA. They did not speak with their CPA over the course of the year except at tax time. I reach out to clients often. They did not consider their CPA to be a key business adviser whereas I consider the tax preparation to be the lowest value service that I offer. They were paying their CPA $3,000 per year. I am priced at a minimum of $12,000 per year. The other CPA firm is much larger and prominent in their local community while I am a sole practitioner on the other side of the country. Yet they value the personal attention, the ability to get a quick call or text message conversation and upholding shared core business values. Besides that, I expect that we will save substantial amounts of tax and improve profits – not through fancy manufactured tax planning schemes – but simply by communicating more often and paying more personal attention to the basic bookkeeping and operating strategies.
This is my unique value proposition, and I must focus on embracing and communicating this to current and prospective clients.