How To Avoid The Tyre-Kickers and PITA Clients

Do you ever go out to meet a new potential client and during the meeting you start to realise they are just a tyre-kicker, they just want the cheapest - those clients are a pain. My American students call them PITA clients (see if you can work out what that stands for).

When I started my accounting firm back in 1996, probably around half the meetings I went to were a waste of my time.

Our time is precious. Not Every Client Is a Good Client. So, how do we deal with these time wasters?

You can watch the video here to find out.

I’m going to share with you 3 strategies for avoiding tyre-kickers and PITA clients… (if you want to know a 4th, you can read this blog too: How To Pre-Qualify Clients And Avoid Time Wasters)

#1 - Positioning

Think about your website. Think about the wording on your website.

What is the message? Have you made it clear who your ideal client is? Or, like most accounting professionals, does the message say that you are available to everyone and anyone?

If your website positioning is designed to attract absolutely anyone, then that is exactly who you are going to get. Many of those people will be complete time wasters.

You need to be really clear who the right type of client is for your business, and who the wrong type is. You need to display this on your website so that the right type of client becomes more interested, whilst the wrong type is put off and goes to look for a cheap price somewhere else.

If you only like to work with businesses that have a turnover of £1 million, make that really clear, otherwise the local corner shop with a turnover of £100,000 will contact you too and waste your time.

#2 - Customer Intake Form

If someone goes to your website, likes what they see and wants to book a meeting with you, one of the things you can do is ask them to first fill out a customer intake form.

In this form, you can ask a series of questions to determine if this client is actually right for you, or if they will just be another time waster.

You can embed this form on your website, or send them to a programme like SurveyMonkey once they fill out their contact details on your ‘Contact Us’ page.

The questions will help you to decide whether you want to meet with this prospect.

If, again, you only like to work with people with a turnover of £1 million or more, one of the questions may be:

“What is the annual turnover of your business?”

If someone does not meet your criteria, you can politely decline their request for a meeting and save yourself the time.

#3 - Pre-Qualification Meeting

Rather than diving straight into a full meeting with a prospect, you could have a quick online pre-qualification meeting.

Having a full meeting can be time consuming. The meeting itself could be a couple of hours, and you might have to travel as well. It takes a big chunk out of your day.

Before you commit to that lengthy meeting, if you aren’t totally convinced by their customer intake form response, have a quick 15-30 minute call online through Zoom, Skype or GoToMeeting.

You can learn a bit more about the client in this short meeting and decide whether you do want to actually meet with them properly to go into more detail.

If they’re not the right fit, you can politely decline them at this point and save yourself a whole lot of time.


If you would like to learn more about value pricing, I run a live online training session with a different topic every month, which you can attend and ask me questions. Click here to register and I will send you an invitation to the next session.

And if you would like to join a community of like-minded accounting professionals learning to price more effectively and confidently, you can join my Facebook Support Group here.

Wishing you every success on your pricing journey.

Mark Wickersham

Chartered Accountant, Public Speaker and Author of Amazon No.1 Best Seller, “Effective Pricing for Accountants”

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