Social Media for Accountants

As is often the case as I ramble through my morning reading, looking and thinking about "Oh it's time for a new blog entry." I was following my nose on a new button for Facebook when a phrase and blog title caught my eye. Social Media for Law Firms. It's a natural. Lawyers are wordy people. Many times they are involved in newsworthy events. As Eddie Greenspan has made abundantly clear in Canada - the law is a battle for the hearts and minds of the public. But I have no lawyers as clients. And it should be clear there is probably a reason for that - my favorite lawyer joke is: What do you call a lawyer buried up to his neck in sand? Not enough sand.

I do though have two accounting firms as clients. And that should be a clue. Accountants have a reputation for being very left brained, very logical. So I Googled and thought about Social Media for Accountants. Looking at this recent survey of accountants using social media, I realized that there were possibilities.

Social media include such services as LinkedIn, Facebook, Yahoo Answers, and a wide variety of blogs - personal, business, and governments.

Personal Benefits

   1. Learning about news
   2. Create social ties with like minded communities
   3. Recruiting assistance (and assistants)

Profitable Benefits

   1. Bring traffic to your website
   2. Strengthen your credibility
   3. Engage and connect with new clients
   4. Generate new business through easy referrals

Are there dangers and risks? It would be foolish to deny that confidential information can leak out, that social media can be a huge time waster, or that you may look bad. All these can easily be mitigated by careful planning however. Basic network security measures prevent confidential matters leaking. Good personnel policies will inhibit the time wasting. And considered responses will show that you are listening and that there are real people who care in your company.

So what can accountants do with social media?

   1. Share useful information and tools on the wide variety of social media.
   2. Use twitter to check for important keywords
   3. Go beyond Linked In profiles and provide Answers
   4. Use Facebook and Twitter to connect to important business journalists and high profile firms
   5. Ensure that website visitors have points of contact for you in the important media

Oh and email me - I love working with accountants!

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