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Billie Anne Grigg joins Mike Michalowicz, Chris Curran, and Ron Saharyan to talk about how affiliating your business with applications will grow your practice. Welcome to Episode 15 of the Grow My Accounting Practice Podcast!
Billie Anne Grigg has more than sixteen years of bookkeeping experience in the retail and professional services sectors. She is an award-winning Mastery Level Profit First Professional, a SchoolOfBookkeeping.com faculty member, and is certified in QuickBooks Online, Xero, Freshbooks, and LivePlan. Billie Anne started Pocket Protector Bookkeeping in 2012 to provide a virtual bookkeeping solution for small businesses, whom she found to be underserved when it came to high-quality bookkeeping and financial consulting services.
When not keeping books, Billie Anne can usually be found with her nose stuck in one…or at least reading something on her Kindle. She is also a life-long crocheter, a fairly new knitter, a dance mom (but she’s not crazy, at least not in a mean way,) and is working with her husband (mostly on the financial side) to build their sustainable farm in northeast Oklahoma.
Everyone should have their own variety of apps that they’re using to help their clients grow their business and manage their accounting better, but many people don’t realize there are certification levels within these different apps (for example, Quickbooks). Get listed in the provider directories on the websites of the apps you use! It will help promote your business.
When it comes to determining what apps you should use, narrow it down to where it’s going to serve your current clients, or the clients you want to attract. You want to make things as easy as possible for your clients, so getting apps that goes paperless.
For example, Hubdoc is great for managing paper and pulling bank statements; it also integrates nicely with Quickbooks online and Bill.com
Bill.com is another app that can help business owners manage their accounts payable. You have your business owners that don’t want to give up control of their checkbook, and yet they spend hours balancing their books… Bill.com takes care of that to where it’s just automatic and you’re bills are paid electronically. If you still want a paper trail they will send you a paper check.
There are apps to help automate other parts of your business – for example: mileage. If you’re driving your car all the time for your business, you can use apps like MileIQ that runs in the background on your phone and will track your mileage for you.
If you have a 30, 60, or 90 day waiting period on a payment for a client, help regain your cash flow by getting the money upfront from Fundbox! Then when you’re client’s check clears, you send the payment to Fundbox.
You do not need to be a technology expert to use these apps – take advantage of their customer service if you have questions.
Consider including the price of the apps in your proposal of your services with new clients. If you package in the apps with the consulting time this may result in better margins for you. It’s proactive vs. reactive accounting.
New apps are released into the market everyday, some free and some paid. But, keep in mind that you have to be on top of your game with your accounting and bookkeeping skills when using any applications. When information is being auto-populated, keep an eye on it and be able to spot errors if they arise (it’s never safe to assume that it’s always being done right!)
The first step is to look at your existing customers, and then the kind of clients you want to be working with. Do you research and know how to solve their pain points.
Commit to focusing on one app at a time, explore it and read the reviews (apps.com). If you decide you want to deep dive into it, then look into their certification processes and what perks/customer service offerings come with the app.
The Psychology of the sale: Horrible Phone Manners
You don’t want to give off the impression that a caller is inconveniencing you by calling. This is giving the person (who might be a customer or prospect of yours) a negative initial conversation. When someone hears negativity over and over, they will start to associate that behavior with that company. Take a listen to how your staff is answering their calls – how are they responding and putting people on hold? You want them to feel good from the moment the person says “hello” – they will want to continue to call you! First impressions matter. Everything that you do needs to scream “value”, and that starts with the phone.
GMAP Now Task: The Paper Pile
Call your best/favorite client and set up a meeting with them to learn more about their business in their office. When you arrive, ask them about the paper pile: “When you’re going through your business processes, where does the paper pile up the most?” This is the thing that needs to be automated the most and is the opportunity for an application. By answering this question your clients are telling you what app or solution they need from you.
Nextiva – VOIP phone providers for small businesses.
TSheets – The #1 customer rated time tracking solution!
Fundbox – the simplest and fastest way to fix your cash flow by advancing payments for your outstanding invoices.