Virtual bookkeeper demand is on the rise with statistics revealing that people are increasing their quest to live out the American Dream by putting Entrepreneur or Small Business Owner on their LinkeIn profile and private resume.
There’s never been a better time in the history of our global economy where the cost to launch a small business is easier and cheaper than ever. No business plans. Put it on a napkin they say. Yes, there’s a formula for that.
A big, napkin-size formula that’s making millions online! 🙂
A dream and a website will suit us just fine to put those wheels on the bus in motion! This includes the need for service-based professionals, aka virtual bookkeepers, who can lend a helping hand in matters of finance and tax.
While the American Dream to own what you build online rings true, it is also true that there is an epidemic of entrepreneurial poverty as the tides of change rise and fall. This stems from a crisis on the part of business owners new and old identifying with a truth that they are not “numbers” people.
This “avoidance” statement typically leads to the owner keeping all “non-sexy” to-do’s like bookkeeping off the spinning plate until the IRS comes knocking at tax time.
Or, maybe the proud few who aren’t afraid of getting dirty with their financial digits believe the claims that tech is flawless and can actually create a “hands-free” bookkeeping experience. After all, they are business owners and even prouder DIYers wearing their bootstrapping prowess as a badge of honor.
This false sense of work being done “automatically” often leaves owners overwhelmed with the reality that there is work to be done once they take a closer look so Uncle Sam can get the 411.
Dare I even say they are leaving even more on the table undone besides the work?
All kinds of things happen when owners don’t keep a closer eye on their books…. like not paying themselves properly, not knowing all the numerical facts of the business, overpaying for things, under-reporting things, and being ill-prepared when they need a banker to help take them to the next level or buy their dream home.
Intelligent tech has created insane efficiencies, but accounting is a far cry from being “hands-free”.
No matter how smart the accounting tech gets, as long as we have a need to know the timely facts around our business and report to government agencies, virtual bookkeepers can play a big part to help small business owners build a sustainable business with a healthy bottom line.
A good, no – scratch that, a BRILLIANT virtual bookkeeper can help them save their cash flow sanity too! The #1 question asked about being a virtual bookkeeper then becomes….
“How do I find clients who need and can pay for a virtual bookkeeper?”
Aw, yes….. this is THE question. Picture this.
You’re ready to share your gift of organizing the moolah with the world or turn all those years of being a bookkeeper into a side gig, better yet a reason to leave the full-time job that isn’t cutting the mustard any longer!
Now is THE time to get your dream going.
You’ve done your homework, counted the costs (you are a “numbers” person after all) and your OPEN sign to the world is now hung on your virtual door.
And then what? Crickets.
The truth in love about business is that until it pays you, it’s just an idea. Mike Michalowicz, author of Profit First says, “Ideas don’t make money. Effort does.” I agree! Ideas don’t make a dime.
Ideas that solve a problem, kill the pain, and are priced just right for a willing market are how you “make it rain”. 🙂
Here are three things to attract your ideal client as a virtual bookkeeper.
1. You’re not “special.” BE special.
I know, this seems so insensitive to say. I say this with love. I promise. This is about your business, not you.
Of course, you’re special, wonderfully, and fearfully made! Don’t doubt that at all.
I’ve been where you are driving the virtual stake into the big online world letting them all know “bookkeeping for hire”. Crickets.
After a few months, lots of cheesy chips, sleepless nights, and thousands of dollars later on my quest to make our now thriving virtual practice relevant — the truth came to light that we stood for everything.
The trouble with have-it-your-way kind of everything? The language translated into… we stood for nothing.
It’s not that people didn’t like us, they just couldn’t “see” us.
Make some decisions about who you want to serve and how you want to serve…. and shrink them down until they scare the living daylights out of you.
You’re almost there.
Now, do it one more time. Like, so small it’s still big but you can’t breathe.
Then, YOUR peeps will SEE you. They’ll share the virtual love and their peeps will start to see you too. Google will see you.
BE the special that only YOU can be as an in-demand virtual bookkeeper.
2. You’re not here to sell. SERVE first.
Do you like being talked at or being talked to? Consider yourself and how you like to be treated when having conversations with others.
When clients are trying to make decisions around building a team and investing in people, they often make decisions about who they are connecting with and not your business name.
I’m not saying that buying decisions aren’t based on a variety of factors, but the bottom line is you’re not building just any kind of business…. you’re building a trust-business.
Businesses do business with people so remember that when you’re speaking to someone new about how you can support them, their team and their dreams.
Speaking of dreams or goals, in order to serve others you have to know what they need, want, and like.
Anticipate the next thing, don’t be a reactor.
In my experience, no business owner likes talking about their money, their accounting, or taxes. I say “yuck!’ to those things too!
Make the conversation about them and their business.
Solve the problem, kill the pain, and make it rain. From the moment you meet, whether on a call, at a coffee shop, or a visit to your website —-
GIVE undeniable value and the rest will follow. #InternetFamous
3. You weren’t hired to train. LEAD your client.
You most certainly need information in order to do your job in a way that exceeds expectations.
However, a failure to lead when working with your clients will often be your failure to launch.
A busy small business owner wears way too many hats, especially in the startup and building season of the business. The heart’s desire of a small business owner is to hire the pro that’s gonna “get” them, their business and rock their virtual world.
More importantly, they want someone who gets the job done efficiently, effectively and with as little supervision as possible.
There’s no better way to get that dreaded notice to cancel email once you’ve scored that prized client than to make sure they are doing their job…. and yours too.
They also want you to think about them and their business, present them with ideas, and protect them with your crazy attention to detail.
They may not say that, but they do, they all do because as a business owner myself — I find we’re the most insecure people on the planet! lol. Small business owners ong for “unicorns”.
Yes, it’s a two-way street. You have responsibilities and clients have theirs.
It’s important to establish that at the beginning of the relationship, not as a solution to a problem when it creeps in.
Manage the expectations by setting them up front!
Just know….. if you behave like “the help”, you’ll force your client to treat you that way until something better comes along for them.
At the end of the day, it’s about them.
Which brings me back to numero uno, BE special.
Virtual bookkeeping is an in-demand need as more people than ever launch into the small business world.
The way you stand out from the virtual crowd?
The bottom line is to stake your claim as a brilliant bookkeeper in three ways.
- Know who you are and what special gifts only you can bring.
- Serve the way you would want to be served.
- Lead in a way that helps your client grow and manage their money in a profitable way.
We want to hear from you! What do you think of the three ways you can stand out as a brilliant bookkeeper?