Editor's Note: This is the first in a four-part series that focuses on specializing in the trade contracting niche. Part one discusses the business benefits of building an industry niche and working in the trade contracting industry.
Nearly every business in the world requires taxation and accounting services, so accounting is often referred to in a generalist sense.
But of course, no business is ever the same. While you could approach businesses in the same manner for all accounting, if you did, you'd be missing a perfect opportunity to strengthen your own personal brand, widen your network of clients and make more money.
As an accountant, building an industry niche helps you grow your own business. Why? It opens new doors, new prospects and there are less competitors, so, in turn, you’re able to operate as a speciality provider increasing your own value to clients.
And, as a specialist, you’re typically paid at a higher rate.
The trade contracting niche
Specializing in the trade contracting niche allows you to market yourself to a lucrative and sizable group of prospects typically with straightforward – and similar – accounting needs.
Trade contractors perform activities including (but not limited to) electrical work, plumbing, HVAC services, data networking, roofing, painting, carpentry and sheet metal work. Trade contracting is an underserved market with more than 10 million trade service contractors in North America.
As you immerse yourself in this niche, you’ll learn the nuts and bolts of the industry to truly become a valuable business partner and trusted advisor. You’ll soon gain expertise. And when you can show that you’ve been successful working with trade contractors, you’ll easily win more work with others and accelerate your growth.
To work in this niche, you’ll need to consistently build your knowledge of the industry. You'll need to know what a contractor does, its key players and challenges, industry-specific terms, as well as understand the solutions trade contractors need to ensure business success.
You’ll need to be in their space right when they need you the most.
Take control of your brand and create your own market
As you begin to develop a set of skills, knowledge and language to meet the specific and unique needs of trade contractors, you’ll establish credibility, allowing you to position yourself as an expert in the niche.
Rather than trying to be all things to all companies, streamline your practice and become more assertive in networking within the niche to increase referrals and improve your closing rate.
Once you’ve established a foundation of clients in the niche, you’ll have prospective clients coming to you for your advice and expertise, because they know you’ve been successful with similar types of businesses.
Commit to a niche and you’ll begin to see expanded growth and an increase in client satisfaction. If you have specialist field knowledge and can perform well, you’ll always be in demand.
Kim Gill is Director of Marketing for simPRO US, bringing 20 years of experience in marketing and association management to the position. She is responsible for developing U.S. marketing and communication activities in line with corporate strategy, designing and implementing lead generation campaigns, managing and coordinating events, and initiating and maintaining association partnerships at the local, state and national levels.