Does your accounting business need a blog? The answer is yes! Website content like service pages and blog posts help your business rise in the search engine rankings and this means more people will find your website and inquiry about your service offering. So, if your business website doesn’t have a blog, it’s time to create one.
If you already have a blog, are you keeping it current? When potential clients see a website with an outdated blog, it immediately gives them cause for concern. But, you may be thinking, you’re so busy running your accounting business, you don’t have the time to create and maintain a blog. Why not hire a ghostwriter to write some, or even most, of your posts? By choosing the right ghostwriter to outsource your content marketing to, you can multiply its effectiveness while saving yourself time.
Getting Started With Your New Blog
Professional services businesses have a specific set of challenges when it comes to marketing and content creation for your website. Unlike retailers selling a product, your accounting business is a knowledge-based service and it is burdened with selling intangible items. So how can you make your website content stand out?
Before you can look for the perfect ghostwriter, you need to decide what kind of content marketing plan you want to have. This would include things like topics you’d write about, your target audience, the frequency of posts, and the tone of voice you’d like to have. When thinking through this content plan focus on the people you want to help, the problems they have, and how you can help solve those issues.
The tone of your content is important because it conveys your personality and the way your firm treats clients. If you want to be the down-to-earth, neighborly accountant, make sure you highlight that aspect of your personality in your posts (especially videos and podcasts). If you want to portray more of a professional and business-like personality, you should take a more formal tone.
Here are five essentials for creating quality website content:
- Timing – The best way to attract eyes to your content is to make your subject timely. Try tying your content to something recent in the news.
- Relevance – Not every topic is relevant to all clients. To make sure you offer something for everyone, cover a wide range of topics. Regularly check your website’s analytics to see what topics get the most traffic, and write more on the same subjects.
- Interesting – This is where a great ghostwriter can really make your content shine. It’s not always easy to make accounting topics interesting, so you’ll need a talented writer with a conversational touch.
- Educational – Readers should always learn something from your content, whether it’s 10 mistakes not to make when filing taxes, or that you’ve hired a new associate with small-business expertise. The more you can educate prospects, the more you’ll gain their trust and convert them into paying clients.
- Call to action – Content exists in order to get a response from your reader. To help your content generate leads, offer them something of value in return for clicking on a link, or link to more information on your website.
Even if you hire a ghostwriter to handle the actual writing, you need to keep up-to-date on what marketing efforts are working. Google Seach Console and Google Analytics are two free tools that will help you monitor your website traffic. This will help you adapt your plan and content to increase traffic and website conversions.
Once you have your blog style and content planned out, you’ll need to explain your goals for the blog to your potential ghostwriters. Yes, SEO is important for lead generation, but you also want to portray your thought leadership and problem-solving skills.
Finally, make sure the ghostwriter understands your target audience. If your accounting business specializes in a certain industry or client demographic, for example, make sure you have background materials or buyer personas to share with your writer.
3 Tips for Choosing a Ghostwriter
Now it’s time to find a ghostwriter. Don’t try to rush this process. After all, this person (or people) will be writing under your name and/or the names of your staff. It’s essential to make sure the person’s writing fits with your company culture and your blog style.
There are thousands and thousands of freelance writers looking for opportunities to write for your blog. To find some, ask other business owners for recommendations, or take a look at freelancer marketplace websites such as Upwork and Freelancer.
You can also reach out to bloggers you enjoy reading who have the tone and style you seek. Find out their rates and see if they’re interested in writing for your blog. Most blogs have contact information for their bloggers, or you can reach out to them on social media.
While financial or accounting knowledge is a plus, it’s not necessarily essential. Plenty of people who understand accounting can’t write about it—but a good writer can learn about, and write about, any topic.
1. Ask for Writing Samples
Once you have some possible bloggers in mind, ask for writing samples or places you can find their work online. Ask your candidates to write a sample blog post for you, either on spec or for a low rate, as a test.
Give the writer all the information you can on what you want to see, such as:
- Word count
- Links to include
- Important points to make
- Keywords to use
- Other style guidelines such as subheads and meta descriptions
A test run is important to find out if the freelancer can write, follow directions, and meet deadlines. You never know if the samples you were given were heavily edited until you assign an original topic. You don’t want to have to edit every piece before it gets posted, so look for someone with strong self-editing skills.
2. Establish a Budget
Set a budget for your blog before you start looking for a ghostwriter. Content costs range from very cheap (usually poor-quality items from content farms) to $1 to $2 per word for more experienced writers.
If you like a writer but their price is too high, perhaps they can do fewer, but better quality blogs for you. If the price you’re willing to pay is below their usual rate, some bloggers will reduce their prices in exchange for steady work.
Don’t expect to find a quality writer who understands accounting at a discount rate. You’ll want to spend the money to find the best person to properly promote you and your service offering.
3. Set Clear Expectations
Once you find the right person (or people), set up a schedule for turning in posts. Will you give them access to your website software to add the blog posts? Or will someone internally manage, edit, and post the posts? Will the writer provide photos, or will you do it? Either way, make sure you are licensed to use any photos that run on your site and that you credit the photographers properly.
Before working with a ghostwriter, always create a contract specifying that you own the content they write. Don’t forget to keep a keen eye on everything content related. Your content represents you and your business.
Over time you’ll likely develop a relationship with your ghostwriters. As they become more familiar with you and your business, they’ll become more like a partner, and be able to suggest topics, as well.
Expanding Your Reach
Finding partners is key to your accounting firm’s success. One of the reasons outsourcing your content makes good fiscal sense is that it frees you up to do what you do best—taking care of your client. Teaming up with CorpNet, which offers incorporation services (and more) in all 50 states, enables you to take better care of your clients—offering them more services.
For instance, if you become a CorpNet Reseller you get wholesale discounted pricing on CorpNet’s extensive lineup of services, such as:
- Creation and Filing of Articles
- Federal Tax ID Obtainment (Form SS-4)
- Tax Elections (Form 2553 and 8832)
- Registered Agent Services
- Customized LLC and Corporation Kit
- Customized Bylaws, Meeting Minutes, and Resolutions
- Business Licenses and Permits
- Annual Filings and Business Compliance
Once you sign up for the program, CorpNet securely manages your client’s compliance documents, alerts you to important compliance deadlines, and makes filing an annual report or renewing a registered agent so much easier and less time-consuming.
Explore the Partner Program
The CorpNet Partner Program makes offering incorporation, LLC formation, and annual corporate compliance filing services simple for accountants, bookkeepers, CPAs, QuickBooks Pro-Advisors, Enrolled Agents, lawyers, and tax professionals.