By Sian Phillips, an Accountant that likes to write.
We Accountants sometimes have a tag attached to our name and I don’t mean the letters ACCA or ACA. We’re classed as boring! Fancy that! We all go to the pub, have fun hobbies, families, pets…don’t we? Not always do we have our noses stuck in the books and never seeing the light of day. But how do you tell that to the normal Joe Bloggs who dreads’ getting a call from us as it’s that time of year again? He only sees us sifting through his books or boxes of paperwork, maybe picking up on this or that he thought he may have got away with. It’s not always that we have a client that we can save loads of the dreaded tax for unfortunately.
So how do we get away from this boring tag? Because we really do need to. Especially with Social Media as people will normally check out your bio and the word Accountant flashes up. You can almost imagine the sigh and bored look that then occurs and they probably go no further. You’re not in a networking meeting seeing people face to face so they don’t get to see the fun side of you and realise you are actually quite normal.
As an accountant you’re qualified (I hope) so for a client we may all seem much of a muchness. Not even location is that important these days as accounts are easily done remotely and a few hours drive to meet a client a couple of times a year is easy. Fees probably won’t differ too much although a client should be aware of the old adage “you get what you pay for!” So at the end of the day on Social Media it boils down to personality and getting it to shine through somehow. Online is the same as when you meet people face to face – you want them to like you and hopefully become a client. So be a bit of fun online, engage with other tweeters and chat. Your accountancy skills are a given so it’s your personality that now has to be sold. And you do have one really.
I often work with Tom Holmes at Ballymount Accounting and he is a relative newbie to Twitter but doing very well. Here are his comments on how he sees it for Accountants.
“Accountants and Twitter don’t really seem to go together in one sentence. Accountants – grey suited types who work in offices with ledgers and journals; and Twitter – the hip, new-fangled social media thing for talking about and sharing good stuff!! But hey, us accountants need to come out of the closet, so as to speak, and embrace this new thing called Twitter. It is not just a new fad that will fade away and we can just go back to our ledgers and spread sheets – this Twitter thing is here to stay and will be become bigger and better. I think there is some statistic somewhere that if all the Twitter accounts were put in one country it would be one of the biggest in the world!!
For Accountants and other professionals Twitter is a whole new world of leads, potential clients and information at your keyboard and it is free; well, other than the time you spend interacting. As with all interaction with clients and potential clients, the conversation should not be just about accounts or tax or deadlines – even though these things are important to us accountants and to our clients, we do, and should, talk about the weather, last night’s football game or what’s on TV or whatever you are into. A well rounded interaction on Twitter should encapsulate aspects of our professional business through the dissemination of information and tips etc. but it should also include some other sociable stuff.” Well said Tom!
My view is to most importantly be fun, personable and approachable online as you would be in person. Shake off the boring tag and let people know the real you. There are lots more tips on how to do this in my previous post Twitter Tips For Tweeting Accountants.
I hope you have liked this post and it helps with your approach to Social Media. Now in the comments below prove to me you’re not all boring accountants