One of the most hotly debated topics in the accounting industry app space is the use of CRM software. What actually is a CRM? And why is it a highly debated topic?
CRM stands for Customer Relationship Management Software. In short, it's software that helps manage all your relationships and interactions with team members, clients and potential clients.
Accountants are often hesitant about using a CRM because the software that has been designed for accounting practices has never gone to the lengths of capturing the requirements of what a CRM does. For accounting software, tax has always been at the forefront when developed and there has never been a strong focus on sales and marketing, because the ATO has also always guaranteed accountants with a constant and steady stream of clients due to tax work and all other accounting and compliance work related. While it doesn't guarantee that you'll have good quality clients, it does mean that you will always have clients. In addition to this, many accounting practices also rely on word of mouth and referrals allowing them to grow organically. The game, however, is changing.
There's been a big shift in the way accounting practices utilise software to help develop a more specific and dedicated sales and marketing plan. As a result, we've received a lot of questions from accounting practices about what programs to use for a CRM. There is a misconception that on Clarity Street's App Stack Xero Practice Manager would act as a CRM. While it has capabilities and certain features that are similar to that of a CRM, it's definitely not a "true CRM". There are other apps in our App Stack that also have certain features that mirror what a CRM should do, such as FYI. The reason we've added Hubspot to our App Stack, however, is because we believe it is a really good solution that not only manages the client cycle, more importantly also captures the sales and prospecting element. In addition, it also works holistically with other applications such as Xero Practice Manager & FYI.
It's a pretty exciting time in the industry. All of a sudden, public practice accountants are really starting to think like business owners in other industries. In order to get good quality and targeted clients, accountants are now having to search for them. This is the reason why we've added Hubspot to our Clarity Street App Stack!
The free version of Hubspot is very feature rich. In saying that, the free version is only going to give you limited capabilities. As a result, there is justification to consider looking at the paid version which then integrates with other applications in the Clarity Street App Stack including XPM. This will help you search for quality clients and have the time and resources to dedicate to sales and marketing.
If you're interested in finding out more about Hubspot, please feel free to contact us. We'd be more than happy to speak to you about it in more detail! If you're interested in finding out more about the marketing side of things, we can put you in touch with some of our friends that deal specifically with these elements!
We hope you enjoy this App Stack update!
Clarity Street was conceived from years of engaging with Accounting firms on a daily basis and a constant desire to make Accounting firms & SME’s more efficient and profitable.