The Keys to Success: Differentiate and Diversify

We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again—one way to establish yourself as the premier accountant in your area is to differentiate and diversify your services.  Well, we’re not the only ones saying it! Jeff Haden, BNET columnist, has one simple piece of advice that could help you do just that in his article entitled, “If You’re Struggling to Get Ahead, Try This.”


It’s simple, really.  Haden says, “Pick an always.  An always isn’t based on style; an always is something you will do, without fail, no matter what.”  For business owners, he suggests you start small and consider always doing one of the following:

  • Respond to calls or emails within 30 minutes
  • Follow up the day after every sale
  • Suggest alternatives
  • Proactively caution customers about potential drawbacks or risks

It may take some time, but your reputation as the accountant who always does X, Y or Z will begin to build and suddenly you will have solidified your brand as a reputable practice because you’ve decided to be consistent with one important thing.


While it may sound counterintuitive to increase your service offerings during economic turmoil, in the long run, it can be the one thing that will ensure survival for your accounting practice.

The longer the recession runs, the more competitive the market will become.  A prospective client will have less money to spend, and he’ll be looking for a financial provider that can give him more bang for his buck.

Consider the accountant who has access to much of the same information you do.  If that accountant offered tax preparation services in addition to accounting services, might you lose a client to a financial provider who is not only more convenient, but perhaps more cost efficient?

You gain a competitive advantage by becoming a one-stop financial shop for prospective clients.

Increase Your Options and Your Earning Potential

Becoming a tax preparer enables you to increase your competitive advantage and your earning potential!  And the training necessary to become a tax preparer isn’t as long and painful as you might expect.  Universal Accounting Center has made it easy.

Our income tax course, the Professional Tax Preparer program, includes the following:

  • Informative video instruction
  • Full 1040 training
  • Full business return (1065, 1120, 1120S) training
  • One year follow-up Support from expert tax preparers

Many programs will lecture you on tax law and preparation practices, but Universal’s online tax course is much more effective because it provides you with the hands-on practice that will perfect your skills.  Theory is taught as guiding principles, but the focus is on actually doing taxes to gain proficiency.

The PTP course consists of 20 hours of video training. Most tax preparation courses include books and some worksheets. Our training uses engaging and entertaining tax preparers who give practical advice on tax issues; they also provide real-world solutions that will give you the edge in productivity and profitability. Our instructors know what challenges you will face because they have been there themselves.

You also have also probably heard that the IRS has imposed stricter regulations on paid tax preparers, opening the door to a narrower margin of individuals willing to fulfill requirements which include additional training and required testing.  UAC’s online tax training will enable you to become proficient in tax preparation while helping you comply with new IRS regulations.  You’re just in time for next tax season.  Call Universal at 1-877-833-7909 to enroll in the Professional Tax Preparer program today!

Please leave your comments.  How have you chosen to differentiate and diversify?


Haden, Jeff.  “If You’re Struggling to Get Ahead, Try This.” 8 Sept 2011