Irene Wachsler - Wachsler CPA “How I Became an Accounting Superhero”| |
Irene Wachsler’s entry into the film and entertainment accounting industry was somewhat of a comedic lark that began over a decade ago.
While filming “Mall Cop” at The Burlington Mall in Wachsler’s Massachusetts hometown, the on-site movie production company put out a call for local CPA services. Mistaking the ad for a casting call, Irene recounts, “I decided to put my name on the list and began brushing up on my CPA jokes.”
Her dreams of a big screen debut came crashing down when a call came in just two days before Christmas. With most accountants out on holiday break, the production company was urgently seeking a CPA to complete a state-required audit, known in the film industry as “Agreed Upon Procedures”. Wachsler happened to be in the right place, at the right time, but for a different reason. Ultimately, she took on the project, and a film industry CPA-superstar was born.
Over the next few years, Irene set out to sharpen her skills and nurture a network within her new-found accounting niche. With a marginal WordPress website in tow, everything was coming up roses until her 14-year old niece pointed out a major thorn in her marketing method - her existing website was marketing to the masses.
Using Disney as a reference model, her niece went on to explain the marketing genius behind creating separate niche websites for each Disney franchise, such as Batman, Spiderman, and Star Wars. Each website is exclusively designed and dedicated to focus on a particular segment of a broader market with the end goal of monetization.
Since a niche website caters its content to a smaller segment, it’s only targeting a specific type of persona, and tends to rank higher for keywords in a particular market. “I decided I had better listen to the kid, after all she was much more tech-savvy then I was,” says Wachsler.
Inspired by her teenage marketing mentor, Irene embarked on a mission to find an accounting niche website developer. One website provider fit the bill perfectly. “Build Your Firm was the only accounting website developer that offered me the flexibility to choose my niche market,” explains Wachsler. “They worked with me on providing suggested language and imagery specifically tailored to the film industry.”
By targeting industry keywords, the niche website SEO generates more qualified leads than a generalist website. The Wachsler CPA niche website, filmindustrycpa.com, focuses on accounting and tax services exclusive to the entertainment industry, such as film production tax credits, state tax incentives, and industry-specific tax laws.
Since launching her film and entertainment niche website in late 2019, Wachsler’s business has grown 30% and continues to boom. In fact, Wachsler recently “complained” she has more business than she can handle, and needs to hire more help.
Wachsler also enjoys the fact that she doesn’t have to spend time chasing down new clients since her fully-optimized website does the work for her. “My niche website more than pays for itself by automatically generating quality online leads.”
Irene is now considered a go-to guru for film and entertainment industry accounting, and because she operates in the cloud, and has protected file-sharing on her website, she is able to service clients nationwide.
What’s next for this superstar accountant?
Wachsler is now looking to make some coin in crypto (no connection to Superman’s weakness). IRS plans to step up the volume and scrutiny of cryptocurrency audits have spurred a need for virtual currency accounting and tax advisory services. “Little IRS love letters have cryptocurrency owners running scared,” says Wachsler. “I see a new space with no one in it, so I’m jumping in.” Irene currently offers cryptocurrency tax services on her base website, and has future plans for a cryptocurrency niche website.
Irene brings it full circle with a favorite quote from another film superhero of sorts, Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson. “Success isn’t always about ‘Greatness’, it’s about consistency. Consistent, hard work gains success. Greatness will come.” She goes on to say, “figure out what you’re good at, and immerse yourself in understanding it vs. being a ‘Jack of all Trades’.”
Wachsler sums it all up with, “the more you can demonstrate your expertise in a particular area, the more valuable you become to your potential clients...and they won’t bat an eyelash at your fees.”