In the downward spiral towards an economic recession, the golden hearts and generosity of various businesses and services will no doubt be played on. Even though it’s difficult, the advice from experts is that we all continue to price as per normal, except in extremis.
Even so, there are few value-add things we can do, to make sure your clients are getting their money’s worth.
Look into the future with forecasting
Cash flow forecasting is a higher-value game changer, and you should absolutely set a fee for it if you’re doing forecasts en masse, but keep it fair for both you and your client. An expensive forecast that can save a business, help them raise capital, or even refinance, is worth its weight in gold.
Debtor management is also important
Charging upfront may not always be an option, and for these scenarios, you can always spread the charge. There are apps out there that help with packaging, pricing, and managing debtors, and these can help ease the strain of operating during rough periods.
Add value with mentoring
Mentoring sessions can help clients move forward with confidence. Decide ahead of time how you are going to manage them, and what you are going to charge. The frequency of these sessions may increase during the next few weeks, but will no doubt decrease once we get back to smooth(ish) sailing.
One-off strategy sessions
These could also be key, and some of these should be free, or keenly priced. Use initial sessions to set the scene, ask the right questions, and determine priorities. After you put together a proposal, it’s up to the client whether they want to execute it or not. But don’t be afraid to be paid what you’re worth. If there are clients willing to pay you to deploy your experience, data, insight, and expertise, there’s no shame in that. You have a business to run too.
Repurpose, recycle, and refresh old content so that it’s relevant for the times. Spotlight Reporting has been updating our Advisory Hub with the most up-to-date and relevant content we have, and it’s a good way to support our community. People are always open to free, tangible advice, and we can all do our part by sharing our expertise.
Create lots of connections
Now is a good time to get in touch with banks that are supporting you, app companies whose products you’re using, and peers you can collaborate with. You can also connect your clients with other clients in the same industry, who are facing similar issues. Bring people together, become a hub for collaboration, host webinars and deploy content to support your community. Everyone is affected right now, and we should get through it together.
“If I was still in practice now, I’d be gathering my clients ‘together’. Gather them online (webinar) and give them simple survival tips, not just about cash flow, but also about how to stay resilient.” - Viv Brownrigg, The Gap.
Finally, although charging for your services is important, you can always throw in a free report or dashboard for added value with compliance work. Not only will your clients appreciate the effort, but you’ll also be giving them a taste of what you can do, and they’ll always remember you for those small gestures of goodwill.