“There’s a small pond, and all the accounting firms are fishing in it. So you have to be different, do things differently..”
Fact-IS: a brief intro
Fact-IS is not your average accounting firm. A quick visit to their website will confirm that. But they’re unique by every account. Most accounting firms in Belgium tend to hold on to their old ideas, so they’re slow to adapt to the needs of the market. Wim De Pauw’s firm, however, looks at things differently. They’ve put together a very interesting and multicultural team with representation from Kyrgyzstan, Armenia, Afghanistan, and Pakistan. If that doesn’t immediately set them apart, they’re also setting a precedent by hiring young potential talent.
The bookkeeping profession is still largely thought of as an essential facility rather than a marketable service, and up until recently, accountants weren’t allowed to advertise. That is, however, still the case with Fact-IS, which is now turning towards digital tools and services to help them step into the digital era.
Since a lot of their customers were present on channels like Linkedin and Facebook, social media had a role to play. But people are generally very cut-off from the bookkeeper. They don’t expect to hear from their accountant over social media usually, but that’s the space Wim wanted to exploit. He wanted Fact-IS to be more in touch with their target audience on social media, and explain why they do what they do - a transparent and inclusive approach.
Initially, Fact-IS launched its efforts on social media, but there was a lot of manual work involved which took a lot of time. Posts had to be manually created and sent out from a phone to different channels. It was also difficult to keep track of what kind of content their audience preferred.
It helps to have clarity in what you want as a business on social media. For Fact-IS, this is super clear. They want:
- To demystify what they do as an accountancy firm.
- To build a connection with their target audience.
- To be seen as a digital accounting firm that is tech-savvy.
- To get more ideal customers.
Fact-IS started with Contento to take advantage of the platform and the services that come along with it. And they’ve found it to be a good solution for scheduling on multiple channels and adding the right hashtags to make the content more discoverable. Plus it’s simple and easy to use, even for accountants who might not use social media regularly.
Since Contento also curates content for the needs of Fact-IS’ customers, they’re already on their way to building a connection with their audience and explaining what they do better on social media.
Since times are tough for every small business, cash flows are of the utmost importance. So for the next steps, Fact-IS are looking to approach their ideal customers through social media and online marketing. And they’ve already begun to see some results. Prospects have started to reach out to them through their network on social media.
But this is just the beginning. People who want to move away from old-fashioned bookkeeping services are already searching for Fact-IS and reaching them through referrals online. The next step is to standardize this path and become more accessible online and through social media.
The future of Accounting
For an accounting firm, this is already a step in the right direction. As Wim De Pauw puts it, “There’s a small pond, and all the accounting firms are fishing in it. So you have to be different, do things differently, and I’m convinced that Facts-IS is different from other firms in how we do things. I am convinced that to get to our targets we have to do things like nobody is doing.”