SMALL BUSINESS RESOURCES

How to grow your advisory business

3 min read

Growing your advisory business won’t come easily.

There are no true shortcuts to growing your advisory business, but at the same time there are measurable and incremental ways you can get started on cultivating growth.

Let’s look at the low hanging fruit you can pluck to start growing your advisory business.

1) Cement your branding

This one is particularly important to smaller bookkeepers and single person advisories who often overlook something that’s seen as expensive and unnecessary.

Granted, when you’re focused on keeping the till ringing and your clients happy, things like branding can fall by the wayside.

If you want to grow your advisory business, focusing on branding is imperative. There’s no way to grow without a solid brand:

  • You need to have a recognisable brand that remains consistent and prominent to cultivate a wider client base and inspire confidence in your services.
  • Start small by pinpointing your logo and any alternate logos you need (think dark backgrounds and negative logo colours). 
  • Nail your associated brand colours.
  • Add a meaningful and catchy tagline or brand statement to accompany your visuals.
  • Make a brief brand guideline to lay out official use of logos, fonts, colour schemes etc. This way you can avoid incremental ‘decay’ of your brand as variations creep in.
  • Remain consistent.

Now apply all of this to your website and social media channels. These days, with great templated web pages from Squarespace and Wix, anyone can create a website that looks professional. 

You don’t need to go deep end on this, as you can easily spend a vault of money, but for relatively little cost and some ‘YouTube University’ you can grow your advisory business with decent and consistent branding.

2) Become highly referable

It’s no secret that, with advisory businesses in particular, reputation and referrals are everything when it comes to gaining new clients. 

Casually and passively awaiting those referrals isn’t a recipe for success. You need to earn your referrals through genuine customer service and an outgoing attitude to winning new business.

Your current clients will often be the best avenue to growing your client base, so pay full attention to your customer service and service quality in general. 

Instigate:

  • regular and effective communication
  • quick and satisfying resolutions
  • competent advice
  • going above and beyond 

Implementing these will help to build an excellent brand that happy clients will naturally tell their colleagues or peers about.

After you’re confident in your brand and services, you can even become even more forward with your clients by incentivising referrals or setting up networking events.

3) Become a beacon of information

People respond to those who are the source of genuine, reliable, verifiable, and useful information. 

If you can position your advisory business as such a source, you’ll be at a far greater chance of picking up more clients. This is because you’ve built trust, exuded professionalism and have become a known quantity to potential customers.

With the ease of social media these days and the ability to propagate a blog or channel with useful, upskilling, and inspirational content, you’re as well placed as anyone to become a ‘thought leader’.

It also helps that you’re able to be researched by potential clients, with a higher and more active profile.

You don’t necessarily have to position yourself individually as the source of information if you’re uncomfortable with too much personal branding. Simply rely on the brand you’ve built. 

Collate and share excellent:

  • videos
  • podcasts
  • blogs
  • news articles
  • how-to’s

If you have the confidence, produce as much as you can personally – even just weekly snippets of wisdom will be better than nothing.

If you can’t create the content yourself, aim at the very least to be a regular poster of shared information by trusted sources.

If people listen to you on LinkedIn or share your blog or advice on Facebook, you can be sure this is a great way to start building your industry cache and eventually your client base.