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Growing an Accounting Firm Beyond $1M

If you’re already at a million in sales…if you’re growing an accounting firm, listen up. I had a client of mine come to me already doing $84,000 a month in sales, he wants to grow. It’s a totally different mentality that gets you from zero to $84,000 a month in sales, the needs to get you from $84,000 to $300,000 a month. That’s about three, four million in sales. It’s funny, a lot of people think to do a million in sales, you need to have the best systems, the best staff, the best team members, the best employees, and all my systems in place get there. It’s kind of funny because you really don’t, I asked him yesterday or the other day when I was speaking with him, I said, “So do you know how many leads you’re getting every month? Do you know how many people got on the phone with your team? Do you know how many people have been actually pitched and given a price?”

He didn’t know any of those things, but he went from zero. He was growing an accounting firm. In fact, this guy previously quit his job and could not get it off the ground, couldn’t make $25,000 a year in sales, had four or five kids, had to go back and take a job, got fired from that job, started up with us. Now he’s doing $84,000 a month doing tax planning. And that’s the key is that to do your first million in sales, you as the entrepreneur or business owner, the tax and accounting firm owner, you need to do almost all of the sales yourself. He just hired a sales person. But to get that first million in sales, it’s not so much about systems, it’s more about packaging, pricing and just sheer muscle.

He said one of the biggest complaints on his team has been that “you just do stuff, you don’t even think about. All you do is you just go out and you just do stuff.” I told him, “they’re kind of right. You know, and when you get to your first million in sales, you just kinda muscle it through yourself.” You get better packaging, better pricing. I mean, think about it. If your price is $5,000 a tax plan, to do $84,000 a month, you really need 17 sales. That’s assuming you don’t get any tax preparation, assuming you don’t get any upsells. So, you really need like 12 sales a month. In fact, he had 10 sales last month. He goes $84,000 in cash sales plus another $29,000 in accounts receivable created. So, you only need about 10 good sales a month on a good service.

You can do that yourself. He asked me, “What do I need to do to get to another level?” What knowledge is needed to start growing an accounting firm beyond $1M?  So, we mapped it out, $84,000 a month in sales, $300,000 a month in sales. When you think about that, it’s a lot. That’s when we’re starting to talk about people and systems. If a lot of people think, “I need people and systems to do a million a year in sales”, it’s hard because you have the wrong set of services. You’re probably doing $300 a month bookkeeping, right? The number of clients that you need to get there, let’s think about it. $300 bucks a month times 10 that’s $3000 a month, that’s crazy, right?

It just makes no sense. You need so many clients, you have to get the prices up, you have to get the packaging in a way where you get the prices up, but you don’t have a commensurate increase in the scope. And that’s where we work on higher value services. So that’s the first thing. But once they’re at that million, to get to three or four or five, you have to know your numbers and you have to start to put in place exactly how many leads have I got? How many leads and how many of those leads are qualified? How many of those are actually business owners in the niche versus just this is a marketer or this is another accountant that signed up for my stuff. How many of those are qualified leads?

Then you have to get on the phone with them and you actually have to ask them, “okay great, you’re like a qualified lead. But is now a good time?” Like do they have the funds, is their business big enough? So are they actually a qualified lead once you’ve spoken to them and then you actually have to pitch them. We do deck pitches now where we help tax and accounting firm owners create 160 slide presentations they go through with the business owner on zoom, makes a giant difference. It shows all the value of everything that they’re going to get too, makes it way easier to pay a higher price. 

So we go through and we do that and then we sign them up. So he doesn’t know all those numbers because he just muscled it up there himself. And so if you want to go from a million to three or four million, you have to start to have a system in place and you almost have to think about your business like an organism.

So it’s like an organism and it’s got all these inputs, right? It’s got all these different inputs and then it’s got all these different outputs and you’re tweaking the system. So, you’ve got inputs, you’ve got outputs, and then you’re looking at the system and you’re taking a step back and you’re like, “Those metrics there don’t look good.” You have reliability over those metrics. Then the other big piece is staffing, you know, he did an amazing job hiring a salesperson. I told him to hire another one right now cause he asked me, “how do I know when to double my advertising spend, I’m spending $180 a day right now?” I said, “Well, take $180 a day times 30 days. That’s about $6,000 a month. If you spent another $6,000 last month, would you have lost money?”

The answer was, of course, no, he’s doing $84,000 a month in sales. I said, “Great, you should double that spend assuming you have the salespeople there every month until you know it stops ROI, until you stop making more on it than what you’re spending by a factor of three to five, three to seven really depending on the company. 

Take a step back, look at your numbers. And he said, “But Andrew, I’ve always just had this mentality of do it now.” I said, “That’s helped you up until this point. But now you’re at the point where it’s more about taking a step back, having a measured response, looking at the data and the information and making the right decision rather than just taking massive action.”

If you’re at $10,000 or $15,000 in sales, I’m not going to tell you that. I mean, you just need to get stuff done. You probably just need to change your pricing, your packaging and you need to go crazy and you need to take control of this business yourself and sell like you’ve never sold before. If you’re somebody that’s already at a million, yeah, you kind of have a little bit of a business and if you want to do three or four, you can go there fast: six months, 12 months, 18 months depending on how well you do, but you’re going to need to think about it in a different way. 

I hope this video was helpful. Growing an accounting firm takes different emphasis from before $1M and it does after $1M. If you guys see below, we have an application to fill out. Basically work with us. If you want to go through this, get your first million in sales or go from one to five…we did $12 million in sales last year. We built all the systems for client acquisition, conversion, getting them to pay high prices in the right package retention, getting them to actually stay and keep paying more in the second and third year, expanding their account and then also going through a system. So if you’ve been looking for somebody to work with and you want to see how we do it, if you sign up below, there’ll be a link to apply. And then if you go through, we’ll actually walk through about 300 slides of what it’s like to work with us and show you how it works. So I’ll see you on the other side.

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AccountingTax.com by Andrew Argue is now Corvee