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When you start your bookkeeping business you tend to say yes to everyone. You don’t consider if they are the right fit, in your target market or someone you can do your best work with. Never wanting to turn someone down, if you’re good at what you do and have the right marketing strategies in place, your books will fill up soon enough. But if you haven’t been discerning you’ll find yourself with a business model that’s filled with “rats and mice” clients who gnaw and gnaw at you. If you can relate to that perhaps it’s time for a shake-up to create a model you love.

If you have existing clients, create a spreadsheet with the names of your clients and columns indicating:

  • Annual income they bring in to your business
  • Where are they located?
  • Do you work at their office (onsite) or yours (offsite)?
  • How many hours a month do you do?
  • What industry are they in?
  • Do they have payroll?
  • And any other criteria that’s important to you to help you assess if they are an ideal client

Then go through your list and give them a score out of 10. Zero being they are the worst client and 10 being ideal. At the end of the process you should be able to sort your list so you can identify the “rats and mice” clients and then plan how and when you’re going to move them on. And BTW, you don’t necessarily have to sack them. If you can bundle them up you may be able to sell them to another bookkeeper. Just because they aren’t your ideal client doesn’t mean they may not be suitable for someone else.

CreateAModelIf you don’t have clients, spend time thinking about your ideal client. The more specific you are the better e.g. size of business, what industry they are in, where they are located, etc. Then you can customise all your marketing strategies to target those clients.

Whether you are starting up or already have clients it’s never too late to create a business model you love and that you’re passionate about. One that doesn’t drain you but sustains you.