[IMGCAP(1)]It has become pretty popular for law firms and medical doctors to advertise in group ads in magazine supplements.

When I glance at the ads I find humor such as the bald dermatologist advertising his hair transplant prowess or the young woman doctor who does proctology, or the photo of the elder law firm partners where no one looks younger than 80. And they pay for these ads?

The ads always get me thinking about what CPAs would say about their firms if they advertised that way. How are you different, better and more user friendly than your fellow professionals who would also be participating in the ads?

Not only do you need to distinguish yourself in such an ad, but also with your clients, referral sources, prospects, other professionals and in some measure fellow accountants. Some refer to it as an “elevator speech,” but it is much more. It needs to explain why a particular firm is better and articulate it quickly. It also needs to be done sincerely, transmitting the serious attitude you apply to your clients’ concerns.

I developed mine and included it in my Aug. 22, 2014 article (see Art of Accounting: E=fs4Uh). I help clients be and feel more secure—by providing financial security and comfort solutions. What is your purpose? What do you do differently and better than everyone else? And how would you advertise it?

Edward Mendlowitz, CPA, is partner emeritus at WithumSmith+Brown, PC, CPAs. He is the author of 24 books, including “How to Review Tax Returns,” co-written with Andrew D. Mendlowitz published by www.CPATrendlines.com, and “Managing Your Tax Season, Third Edition” published by the AICPA. Ed also writes a twice-a-week blog addressing issues that clients have at www.partners-network.com. Art of Accounting is a continuing series where Ed shares autobiographical experiences with tips that he hopes can be adopted by his colleagues. Ed welcomes practice management questions and can be reached at (732) 964-9329 or emendlowitz@withum.com.