Formulating your ideal client persona

By Francois Badenhorst, Accountingweb


Everything you do should be pivoted toward your ideal client, constantly asking, ‘What is success to them? Some just want to build a nice small business, others want to rule the world. If you try to appeal to everybody, you’ll appeal to nobody.

Accountants should use these questions as a touchstone:

  • What motivates this person?
  • What frustrates the life out of them?
  • What do they need help with?
  • What are the problems in their business?
  • How do they make decisions?
  • How do they communicate?

The big issue with how accountants market themselves is the dependence on generic content. The best content comes from your own head or from the heads of the people that deal with the clients. You know their problems, their frustrations. Generic content doesn’t work. Your very educated client is bored to tears and can tell immediately.

In the long run, the goal is to form a complete brand identity for your firm. Although it’s difficult for a busy practitioner to find time to think branding. Attaining a brand identity is expensive, it’s time consuming and it won’t bring immediate results – but it’s vital. It’s the consistency of your message. It means everything you do reflects who you are, combining your persona and your visual design.With a successful brand identity, your marketing integrates to the point where you won’t be able to identify why a client came to you. Whether they liked your logo, downloaded your white paper, read your content. It becomes a cohesive whole.The brand identity is your practice’s personality. Your brand is tied in your buyer’s mind with your expertise.

The starting point for synthesising your practice’s personality is to think about your own personality as either:

  • Freedom fighter (They work to attain time and freedom)
  • Empire builder (They want to rule the world)
  • Craftsman (Just wants to do the accounts)
You need to know about your professional identity, it changes everything: The clients you target, the marketing and content you produce, and it crafts your firm’s identity.