Starting up a business

Kieron Registered Posts: 24 Dedicated contributor ? ? ?
Hi, I am just completeing my Unit 10 project and once complete I will be fully AAT qualified. I have been giving serious consideration to working for myself and I am just beginning my research. I would like to hear from anybody who has recently done this and be advised of any major pitfalls, I am confident I can start up but as most people are aware it is rather daunting and any advice or tips would be appreciated. I was thinking of preparing some good quality leaflets for distribution initially, has anybody had major success or major failures using this method of advertising?


  • T.C.
    T.C. Registered, Tutor Posts: 1,448
    Leaflet dropping, flyers, mailings - in my opinion not the way to go. Try advertising in local newspapers or local shop windows. Put the word around that you are starting out alone. Don't spend too much money at this stage. Work will come in by word of mouth if you do a good job. My opinions anyway - hope they help.
  • pussycat58
    pussycat58 Registered Posts: 21 Dedicated contributor ? ? ?
    hi Keiron,

    i just renewed my licence. last year I aplied for every service i could to widen the market so didn't get my licence until dec, by then i had gone back part time teaching so didn't really start marketing til this summer.

    i have gone out with flyers and business cards but handed them out in person, i had quite a few will call but not heard from anyone yet.

    i have 2 clients but these were referred.

    it seems most people start up because they have friends and family asking them to do work for them.

    you are like me , its something you want to do but i think it takes time to develop a client base - i too think word of mouth is probably best but you need some 'mouths' to start off with:tongue_smilie:

    some take a job as well to begin with.

    you've got to be determined and keep going. i got some really snazzy bus cards from print24 website, £20 for 250 double sided - services on the reverse and always carry an handfull around cos you never know who youre going bump into!:thumbup1:

    oh PS im on this forum on the lookout for MIPs who need to refer clients!
  • Benny
    Benny Registered Posts: 24 Dedicated contributor ? ? ?
    Starting out

    Well I spent a fortune in advertising some worked and some didnt what yo uhave to remember is the word of mouth effect. If you get one or two good clients then the likelyhood is that they will tell their friends. I was lucky as I work in a specialist area so i only had to target one group.

    I wouldn't bother with the newspaper adverts unless yo uhave a bit of money as they are expensive as there will be three or four other accountants next to you with bigger adverts. Get some business cards made up from the internet you can get 200 or so for less than a tenner make sure you always have some to hand as you never know when you can snag a client. Hang them out like confetti at only a couple of pence each its cheap advertising.

    you could pick and industry to target eg plumbers and then advertise direct to them.

    Go through yell do a mailshot something like that
  • PaulPSB
    PaulPSB Registered Posts: 55 ? ? ?
    Personally I would give serious thought to working in someone else's Practice for a couple of years before going on your own. You will get invaluable experience without any cost to yourself. Look at how they operate and use the best elements of their systems when you go it alone

  • Sue
    Sue Registered Posts: 217 ? ? ?
    I agree with Paul.

    Before I went Self Employed I worked for two years at a Bookkeeping Bureau. Then when I first went Self Employed I worked two days a week at an Accountant's Office.

    Without that experience I don't think I would have lasted very long as Self Employed.

    It also gives you the chance to make some good contacts.

    I've just re-read your message - I guess you could already be working in a practice??

    You could also try writing to other Accountants to see if they sub-contract work. I've just picked up a job this week from an Accountant I wrote to a year ago because one of his Tax Clients was looking for a Bookkeeper.
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