It’s probably not enough to know the tax code better than most other accountants. It is helpful, it shows that you are a serious and competent professional. But in the end clients don’t care.

What they care about is how you make them feel. That you take the time to carefully explain a matter, to avoid jargon. To talk to them like they are valued and important. This, of course, means that you already have already earned their trust. But you have to get their attention first.

One man’s opinion: there is nothing wrong with a gimmick.

If you have ever attended a Chamber of Commerce or other business-related luncheon or cocktail party, you have probably met a person who sells retirement plans. There might be five or more in any given room. 

I might pay attention to the guy who is a surfer and dresses the part. I might pay attention to the woman in the cowboy hat. I might pay attention to the guy who races dragon boats. I might pay attention to the guy who’s business card is a candy wrapper.

But there is one person I will always pay attention to.

The guy who asks me about me. And actually listens to my answers.

There are fewer of these guys than you think.