Budget 2011: How to inform (and engage?) businesses

Hmmh, so its this time each year (more than once per year in recent years) that accountants / tax advisers, like myself, scratch our heads and wonder how best we can inform our clients on issues relevant to them that emerge from the Budget speech.

This approach is constantly evolving – my plan for tomorrow’s Budget speech is to:

  1. Tweet points of interest as they emerge during George Osborne’s Budget Speech on Twitter. I’ve used CoveritLive! in the past but fail to see exactly what this adds over and above using Twitter directly. Tweeting comments as the speech unfolds in realtime also allows me to take notes ready for blog posts to be drafted post speech.
  2. Set up the hashtag #budget11 on Twitter to check for interesting conversations (and of course to keep an eye on the competition :)) Also set up RSS feeds for “Budget 2011” on Google for emerging news and commentary.
  3. Download the Treasury Budget Notes from the HM Treasury website as soon as George sits down – the devil’s always in the detail! Usually, lots to digest.
  4. Extract the key points relevant to my clients and targets and draft short commentaries as blog posts and separate client briefings. Post links to blog posts on Twitter and keep an eye out for feedback, comments, questions etc.

Then of course cascade and discuss points of interest directly with our clients – normally via a meeting or call.

This approach is a lot different to the approach in the past in which it was largely a ‘fact race’ to be 1st to clients and targets with a summary of the key points. The internet has blown this approach out of the water for all but the biggest and bravest. This, in my view, is no bad thing as the prize is now more about contextualising the issues relevant to clients and in looking at new ways of sharing this information with clients and prospects in ways that not only informs but also engages (both them and us).

Any thoughts, comments or observations on how we can better engage with businesses on issues emerging from the Budget speeches would be gratefully received…