The times, they are a' changin'…

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“Never let yesterday use up too much of today.”
– Will Rogers

Look, you can either sit on your laurels from tax season (or your failures) … or you can reach higher, faster, stronger.

I want to see you and your firm take a big leap this year…and leave your competition behind.

Which is why I am spending so much time banging the drum for Social Media. It’s the new place where you’ve just gotta have a presence. Put aside your skepticism, because the results speak for themselves.

We worked with 35 firms during tax season, and had fantastic results…and it’s not just during tax season. In fact, as happens most days, we receive a number of messages from our client firm accounts, and this one came in just yesterday….

It was sent to one of our clients (from a local law firm we pursued on his behalf):

“It’s good to meet you. I have clients in need of a CPA for some simple tax returns. I settle IRS./FTB debt.”

This kind of stuff is happening all the time for our clients, and it’s because of the power of this new medium.

But you can make some MAJOR mistakes with Social Media, if you’re not careful!

It truly CAN be a waste of time…but not if you follow our formula for it. We designed it with our private Social Media trainer, Mari Smith–who happened to train Richard Branson, Tony Robbins and other worldwide leaders.

And, courtesy of a friend I met on Twitter myself, Erik Qualman (connected through Mari), I’d like to give you some Social Media FACTS in today’s Strategy Note.

[By the way, there’s more noise in the industry about this stuff right now…but Mari told me that she has seen nobody successfully manage the kinds of accounts that we did this tax season–with the kinds of results we saw.]

The FACTS on a MAJOR New Advertising Medium

In 2011–2012, social networks will eclipse corporate Web sites and CRM systems. Communities will become a driving force for innovation and as such, companies will be forced to formally cater to communities, signifying the trading of power towards connected customers.
-Forrester Research (#1 Market Trends Research Firm)

So, some more facts from my friend, Erik Qualman (…

  • 78% of consumers trust peer recommendations.
  • Only 14% trust advertisements.
  • Social Media has overtaken porn as the #1 activity on the Web
  • Years to Reach 50 million Users:

* Radio (38 Years)
* TV (13 Years)
* Internet (4 Years)
* iPod (3 Years) …
* Facebook added 100 million users in less than 9 months …
*iPhone applications hit 1 billion in 9 months.

  • The fastest growing segment on Facebook is 55-65 year-old females
  • By 2010 Gen Y will outnumber Baby Boomers … 96% of them have joined a social network.
  • 80% of Twitter usage is outside of Twitter–people update anywhere, anytime … imagine what that means for bad client experiences?
  • 54% = Number of bloggers who post content or tweet daily
  • People care more about how their social graph ranks products and services than how Google ranks them
  • In the near future we will no longer search for  products and services–they will find us via social media
  • More than 1.5 million pieces of content (web links, news stories, blog posts, notes, photos, etc.) are shared on       Facebook — daily.

So, what will that mean for the tax or accounting professional?

Simple…adapt–or die.

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