How important is social media to the CPA profession? Why?

Social media in and of itself is important to EVERY profession simply because it is becoming the preferred method of communication – period. Just like telephones, then Word processors, then PDAs (personal digital assistants/cell phones) social media is a “must-have” in terms of marketing yourself and the services or product you provide.
LinkedIn (social media in general) has been the greatest thing to ever happen to marketing professional services!

Alas, there are many forums that fall under the umbrella we refer to as social media – and for accounting, there is really just one you need to focus on today – and that is LinkedIn – because MOST (not all, granted, but certainly most) of your referral sources (WHOM you obtain new business from) are currently active in this medium.

Statistically, 1/2 to 2/3 of all new business for CPA firms comes from current clients – and since most industries are well represented on LinkedIn you should be there. (Certain fields like educators or female consumers or if you’re marketing to parents, etc. would possibly dictate other mediums such as Facebook). 25% to 35% of new work comes from attorneys, too, my latest analysis shows, and attorneys are all over LinkedIn!

We tell our clients that LinkedIn is a great tool for connecting with others, researching prospective clients, finding out more, in general, for anyone you are about to meet with – and most importantly, to peruse the numerous groups that are on LinkedIn – groups of people that have come collectively together to hear what YOU have to say. LinkedIn turns asset marketing to permission marketing!! And best of all – it’s free! It requires only an investment of time to learn how to utilize it to your best advantage.

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