Thursday, September 29, 2016

Developing Business Relationships with CPAs

By: Oscar Toledo, Director of Sales and Marketing, Partners Advantage

A common inquiry I receive from insurance professionals is the request for leads. We all look for those creative ideas that will help place us in front of the right clients. One suggestion is to partner with CPAs that have mutual business values and are willing to work together to develop prospects for both of you.

The first step in getting to know possible CPAs is to get to know their gatekeepers. You will find more success getting past gatekeepers if you treat them as decision-makers. Ask them a few questions about the business and make sure you make it clear that you don’t want to waste the accountant's time – or the gatekeeper's time. Communicate your reason for the visit/call and qualify the CPA. Do they already work with an insurance professional/advisor? Ask for a place on their calendar.

Once you are in the door, here are some key questions to ask during your first meeting with the CPA:
  • Who is your target client?
  • What kind of services do you offer?
  • What are your strengths/challenges?
  • What is your ideal working relationship?
Remember, the focus is to get to know them.  

Help them understand you are looking to establish a business relationship to benefit them, your shared clients, and you.  Provide examples of the type of services and solutions you offer. 

Formalize your relationship by discussing your roles and developing a plan. You should also walk the CPA through the process you take your clients, such as:
  • How often you meet with your clients
  • Fact-finding
  • A discussion with the client to inquire about their current CPA relationship as well as other industry professionals such as attorneys, P&C, etc. 
Be a resource for the CPA, just as you expect them to be your resource. Offer to have their website link on your website, reference them in your client monthly newsletter, or ask if they would like to write an article for the newsletter.

Having a relationship with CPAs with mutual business values will help both of you develop your prospects and strengthen both of your businesses.  

Looking for more CPA relationship resources? Contact me at 888-251-5525, ext. 124 or by email at

For financial professional use only.  Not for use with the public.

This material is intended to provide general information only. It is not intended to render legal, accounting, Social Security or tax advice, and the services of those professionals should be sought. Financial professionals who utilize this material may be able to identify potential retirement income gaps and introduce products, such as fixed annuities, as potential solutions. The testimonial may not be representative of the experience of other financial professionals and is no guarantee of future success.  

Always follow your firm's policies and procedures regarding review and use of third-party templates, creation and distribution of client and prospect materials, hosting of client and prospect events, offering giveaways or prizes, and your firm's employment process.