One Accounting Practice–To Go

A happy owner holding up an Open sign in front of her new businessWould you like to own and operate your own accounting practice?  Doing so would enable you to be your own boss, enjoy a flexible work schedule, determine how much you work and earn, and enjoy a fulfilling career doing something you enjoy.  Do any of these things appeal to you?  If so, it’s time you take advantage of an amazing opportunity to get started—today!

Accounting, marketing and production are the three main business functions.  In order for a business to operate successfully these three functions must coordinate their efforts.  An accounting practice produces accounting services, so production and accounting are closely intertwined.  You use accounting information to diagnose a business’s vitality and inform business decisions while you “produce” accounting services for your clients.  And unless you market these services effectively, the business will fail.  The best business opportunity will provide you with the chance to hone these key business functions: accounting and marketing.  Once you’ve done that, you practically have a ready-made business.

Accounting

Your tax preparation skills have provided you with some accounting experience.  Perhaps you work in the accounting industry full or part-time.  Or perhaps you’ve always wanted to work in the accounting industry.  Regardless of what you currently do, you can start your own accounting practice.  The key is in finding a niche market in need of your valuable services.

Small businesses are in great need of accountants who understand their specific needs and know how to help them make their businesses more profitable.  In fact, many of your current tax clients may fit this profile. However, traditional accounting training doesn’t prepare graduates to work with this niche market and their unique needs.  That’s what makes the Professional Bookkeeper Program matchless.

UAC’s Professional Bookkeeper Program

At Universal Accounting, we understand the needs of the small business like nobody else. We’ve helped people like you advance their careers in small business accounting for over 30 years.  The Professional Bookkeeper Program is designed specifically to address the needs of small businesses, and Universal Accounting Center’s small business accounting course is the most complete of anything offered today.  And depending on your schedule and situation, it will only take you 60 hours to complete.  Imagine earning a professional designation in less than one month!

Marketing

Unless your target market knows about your unique skills, they will not retain your services.  Part of your job as a contract accountant is to promote these unique skills effectively.  The Universal Practice Builder Program is designed to help you master your business’s marketing function.

UAC’s Universal Practice Builder Program

This program is a turn-key marketing solution which will enable you to grow your business with our proven system.   You could work for years on a marketing plan, hitting and missing, only to find your business growing at a snail’s pace.  Imagine learning 12 plus marketing strategies proven to reach your niche market.  That includes helping you secure 15-25 qualified leads per month and earn $30,000 more in annualized billings in just one year!  The Universal Practice Builder Program is designed to teach you the art and science of getting clients.  Top your Professional Bookkeeper designation off with this guaranteed program that will help you coordinate those two key functions: accounting and marketing.  With these two programs under your belt, business success is much closer than you can imagine.

Life is too short to wait for success to fall into your lap.   You must chase it!  This package deal is an opportunity in work clothes.  You’ll have to dedicate your time and energy to mastering the concepts contained in these two priceless programs, but we can promise you that it will pay off.  Call Universal at 1-877-833-7909 to order now and change the course of the upcoming New Year.

Tax News: Calculating Telephone Excise Tax Refunds

Business Owners and Non-Profit Organizations:

The IRS Announces a Formula for Calculating Telephone Excise Tax Refunds

In May of 2006 the Treasure Department announced that beginning April 1 the government would no longer collect federal excise tax on long-distance telephone service. They also announced that taxpayers could request refunds for telephone excise tax collected after February 28, 2003 . To avoid the troublesome task of calculating 41 month’s worth of long-distance telephone taxes, the IRS recently released a formula intended to help individuals, business owners, and non-profit organizations to calculate their refunds. “Businesses and tax-exempt organizations generally have more varied phone usage patterns than individuals,” IRS Commissioner Mark W. Everson said. “The IRS has met with a number of businesses and tax-exempt organizations to understand their concerns. We believe we have developed a reasonable method for estimating telephone excise tax refund amounts while reducing burden.”To request a refund, business owners and non-profit organizations should complete Form 8913, Credit for Telephone Excise Tax Paid and attach it to their regular return. In order to calculate their refund, they must use the new IRS formula. First compare two telephone service statements: April, 2006 and September, 2006. Calculate the tax percentage of each bill (April contains a tax on local and long-distance service while September only includes a tax on local telephone service). The difference between these two percentages must then be applied to the quarterly or annual phone charges to determine their refund. The IRS also provides an example. If a small business had an April, 2006 phone bill of $1000 with $28 in federal excise tax, the percentage would be 2.8 percent. If their September 2006 phone bill was $1100 with $16.50 in federal excise tax the tax percentage would be 1.5. The business would subtract 1.5 from 2.8 in order to get a final tax percentage of 1.3. The business would then multiply 1.3 by their total phone expenses over the 41-month period in order to calculate their final return.Large businesses of 250 or more employees are restricted to a 1% cap while small businesses and non-profit organizations are restricted to a 2% cap on what they can claim. In the example above, a small business could claim 1.3%, because it doesn’t go over their 2% cap, while a large business could only claim 1% of the 1.3 percentage. The IRS has also included a standard refund amount for individuals: $30 for one exemption, $40 for two exemptions, $50 for three exemptions, and $60 for four or more exemptions. The IRS devised the formula after discussing the issue with the business community, specifically the Small Business Administration and representatives from the tax-exempt community. They hope the formula provides a less burdensome approach to calculating the telephone excise tax refund.

You can find more information on the federal telephone excise tax refund in your 2006 tax return materials, or visit IRS.gov.

Universal Accounting is continuously looking to bring to you the latest in the industry. You are only as good as the training you complete! Take the opportunity, if you haven’t already and get more familiar with what’s all involved in the Module coursework. Click Here to find out more.

Avoiding Sales Mistakes

In our exuberance to sell services, sometimes we make some unwitting mistakes.   In a recent Inc.com article, Geoffrey James lists “10 Dumb Sales Tactics to Avoid.”  Are you guilty of implementing some?  We share four common sales mistakes here:

  1. Answering objections the customer hasn’t surfaced.  Why prepare prospective clients for concerns they may never have?  While anticipating problems can be good, when you begin resolving them for individuals who never thought of them in the first place, you introduce doubts that may ultimately lose you their business.
  2. Leaving the ‘Next Step’ to the customer.  Sending sales letters in which you ask the prospective client to contact you are rarely successful.  Why?  Because you’re asking them to do all the work.  James suggests you “keep the ball in your own court.  Try substituting a closer like this: ‘I will call you next week to discuss whether it makes sense to discuss this matter further.’”
  3. Talking more than listening.  There is a time and a place for the sales pitch, and it shouldn’t happen before you’re learned about a prospective client’s business needs and concerns.  And you will learn more about your prospective client’s needs and concerns by listening to them than you will by sharing a pitch.
  4. Failing to follow through.  What?  You mean that there are professionals who don’t do what they say they will do when they say they will do it?  Yes.  And you can’t be one of them.  James explains, “Drop the ball, even once, and you’re probably out of the game.”   Create a To-Do-or-Die List that includes scheduled times for follow through.

The economy’s tight and it can be harder to close a sale than it used to be.  However, that doesn’t mean it can’t be done.  Ensuring that you avoid the most common sales mistakes is a great place to start.

The Universal Practice Builder Program

Universal Accounting Center is in the business of helping build stronger, more profitable businesses, and we can help you better market your services, enabling you to effectively launch and maintain a successful practice.  Through our Universal Practice Builder (UPB) program, you can attract and retain more clients.

Here’s just a sampling of what you will gain from enrolling in this phenomenal program:

  • A guarantee of $30,000 in new annualized billings in only 12 months
  • The skills to become a Profit Expert for each of your clients
  • 12 marketing strategies that you can implement immediately
  • A process which can produce 15 to 25 qualified leads per month
  • 3 months of coaching via telephone and Internet
  • Training to use QuickBooks to attract more clients
  • Access to a plan proven to help retain clients
  • 5 business assessments
  • A customized business website
  • An iron-clad guarantee

Master proven marketing techniques that will significantly grow your practice!  Allow us to show you how.  Call 1-877-833-7909 now to enroll in the Universal Practice Builder Program today.

Resource

James, Geoffrey.  “Dumb Sales Tactics to Avoid.”  7 September 2012  Inc.com

Guest Blogging

Increasing Traffic to Your Website

A blog can be an effective marketing tool, especially when used in conjunction with your business website.  However, once you’ve established your blog it can be difficult to increase traffic.  Here we suggest 3 tips to build your brand and your readership by guest blogging:

1. Build relationships with fellow bloggers and post to one another’s blogs.  The world of blogging can become a powerful network.  Building relationships with fellow bloggers will give you access to a whole new audience that’s unfamiliar with your services and expertise.  Do a local search to determine who’s blogging, then consider whether or not your skillset would prove beneficial to their readership, and visa versa. 

2. Ask members of your strategic partnership to guest post.  Also called “natural business relationships,” strategic partners are professionals with complementary skillsets that can share referrals, information, and advice regarding critical business issues.  Whether your strategic partnership includes lawyers, financial planners, insurance reps, or loan officers, they become potential guests to your blog, and you to theirs.  Again, information from a leading expert in another field can prove valuable to your readers.  And being given the opportunity to guest post on their blogs will expose you to more potential readers in need of your specific skills. 

3. Submit posts to industry websites.  The internet can enable you to secure clients outside your current location.  When you post informative article to websites offering financial information to prospective clients, you not only build your professional reputation, you widen the boundaries of individuals you can serve.  Look for websites prospective clients would frequent and see what they require from guest bloggers/writers.

Small-business blogging is a popular method of marketing.  For little money, you can have your own blog up and running in no time.  Most blogging publishing sites require no software installation, and maintaining a blog requires no help from tech support—creating a blog and adding posts is just about as easy as sending email.  That’s why there are literarily countless blogs out in cyberspace.  But the point is not just to get a blog out there; the point is to have it rise to the top of competing blogs.  By following some of these suggestions, you might do just that.

UAC Can Help You Create a Custom Website for Your Practice that Includes a Blog!

If well developed, a business website can act as an inexpensive marketing tool and a good point of contact.  If you don’t yet have a business website or a blog, Let Universal Accounting Center (UAC) help you build a strong web presence without expending much time, energy or money.

UAC offers AccountWeb, a website development tool, exclusively for financial professionals.  Within a week you can create a personalized website for your practice, enabling potential clients to access your business even after your office closes.  And if you become an Advanced User, your package will include a blog.  To see a sample of a website developed from the Universal Accountweb platform, go to http://universalaccountingsites.com/.

Whether you run a full-time practice or perform financial services on the side, you need a website that tells potential clients about your business even when you are unable to.  If you haven’t yet developed a website for your business, today is the day! Order your subscription now, and your website will be up and running by the following business week.  And if you are a Universal Accounting student you will receive a free six-month trial!

Resource

Demers, Jayson.  “Increasing Website Traffic: 6 Steps to Guest Blogging.”  3 April 2013 Entrepreneur.com

The Power of Outsourcing

Small-business owners must track the daily tasks that eat up their workday, because while there are core-functions to any business, entrepreneurs often become distracted, and sometimes consumed by, necessary tasks that could be done just as easily, and probably more economically, through outsourcing.  The question is, how does one determine which functions should remain in-house and which should be outsourced?

In a recent Small Business Trends article entitled “How I Outsourced My Non-Core Sales Tasks,” author Chris Hamilton details the process in determining whether or not a core task should be handed off to someone who can perform the task for you, freeing up your time for revenue-generating projects.  Here are the five steps Hamilton describes:

1. Keep Track of What You Do During the Day.  List the tasks that you spend time on.

2. Determine if it Helps You Generate Revenue or Not.  Of each task, ask yourself, “If someone else did this, would it allow me to focus on those activities that will make me money?”  If the answer is “yes,” you should outsource the task.

3. Map Out the Process.  After you determine which tasks need to be outsourced, document the steps necessary in properly completing the task—that way, if you hire someone else to do it for you, they can duplicate your process.  Before handing that task off to someone else, however, Hamilton suggests having a friend run through your steps to see if they understand your instructors.

4. Find Someone to Take on This Chore.  Depending on the task, you may need to ask colleagues for references, put an ad in the classifieds or search the yellow pages for contract workers who specialize in the task. 

5. Monitor the Work Being Done.  Outsourcing does you no good if the task isn’t being completed properly.  You should monitor the person you’ve outsourced the task to until you feel comfortable enough with their performance to allow them to work more independently.

Hamilton was driven to reevaluate his core-tasks when he realized that,”…in a typical day, I was spending about 50% to 60% of my time on sales tasks that didn’t generate revenue.  Once I figured this out, I realized that I could be way more efficient and generate more sales.”

To ensure that your work day is comprised of revenue-generating tasks, it’s important that you test Hamilton’s process.  You may find that outsourcing more than pays for itself.

Become the Professional to which Small Businesses Outsource Their Accounting

Certain functions are necessary in order for a business to be successful, and accounting is one of them.  Unfortunately over 50% of small businesses fail, and much of that failure can be attributed to poor financial management.  If you were to become a small-business accountant, you would be the person to which these small businesses outsource their accounting tasks.

Most of your competitors don’t offer specialized small-business accounting services.  But after completing the Professional Bookkeeper (PB) program, you can!  Consider a training program that is catered to your needs and busy schedule—one that will enable you to earn a professional designation after just 60 hours of your valuable time. 

When you enroll in the Professional Bookkeeper Program you receive to the following:

  • Flexible training you complete on your own schedule
  • Rich and engaging training DVDs you can view again and again
  • Hands-on instruction and practice sets through which you gain much-needed experience
  • Training in building and marketing your new practice
  • 6 months of valuable follow-up support
  • The opportunity to earn professional certification
  • Our iron-clad risk-free guarantee

Expand your service offerings by enrolling in UAC’s valuable training programs.  Call 1-877-833-7909 to enroll today!

Resource

Hamilton, Chris.  “How I Outsourced My Non-Core Sales Tasks.”  16 May 2013 SmallBizTrends.com

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