The concepts of packaged service offerings and value pricing are not new to the accounting profession. Yet, many firms have remained unconvinced or unsure of how to successfully launch these strategies. Until COVID-19, that is.
The pandemic has compelled many firms to accelerate the adoption of packaged service offerings and value pricing as clients have come to them with multiple needs. This includes guidance on COVID-related tax credits, Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loans and best practice solutions to keep businesses afloat. A recent Accounting Today survey shows that COVID-19 has created work for many accounting professional through advisory services for business continuity. This shows that almost three-quarters of firms now offer consultative services as a result of the complex government stimulus packages.
How to Start
“The same model does not work for every firm,” said Korby Boswell, marketing and growth specialist for Kansas-based Adams Brown. “We’ve been talking about packaging our services for a while, and when COVID hit, we knew we had to do something. Like many firms, the pandemic fast-tracked our efforts.”
Boswell shared the following best practices for firms just getting started:
- Start somewhere. Recruit a small group of specialists who would support a pilot program. Come up with a list of solutions and benefits that address the client’s pain points.
- Think from the client’s perspective, not from yours. The high demand around the PPP during the pandemic forced Adams Brown to develop a packaged model that included loan forgiveness support, expense tracking and documentation, as well as human resources consulting support.
- Ask for feedback. The intent of a packaged model is to deliver a solution more than a service. Ask partners what feedback they are receiving from clients and continue to refine the model.
To make it easy for clients to understand which services offer the most value based on their immediate needs and which services they could add, Boswell worked with his partners to offer various tiers that range in deliverables and pricing — helping the client see the value in what they get and how the packages differ. The tiered packages educate clients and prospects on what is necessary, what is possible and what is recommended.
The proof is in the pudding. Boswell said the firm has sold nearly 200 engagements totaling $435,000 in new revenue since launching a packaged service offerings model related to PPP in April.
Click here to read the full story in the Fall 2020 issue of Growth Strategies.
About Jessica Hekmatja
Jessica Hekmatja is the director of marketing and corporate development at BPM LLP.