Texting is an incredibly effective marketing and communication tool for tax preparation services. Online data shows that 98% of text messages are read within 3 minutes. And our 2021 State of Texting research found that consumers prefer texting over other communication methods such as phone calls, email and third-party messaging apps.
With business texting, clients can have direct access to you without you giving out your personal cellphone number. Individuals can sign up for text alerts simply by texting a Keyword to your text-enabled landline, VoIP or toll-free number. Just like that, they’ll have provided consent and immediately be subscribed to the text messages you send.
You can text enable your existing business line quickly and easily. See how Zipwhip works.
Send clients text promotions as tax season approaches
As an income tax expert, you can help existing clients and attract new ones by putting their minds at ease. Simply send a text letting them know you’re ready to help them file their federal or state returns, and that you’ll walk them through the entire process.
Getting a jump-start on advertising for your tax preparation service can also serve to even out the demand on your time. If you’re a solo tax preparer or part of a team, sending texts about getting started now can prevent an avalanche of tax filing appointments at the last minute. Combining a reminder text with a discount for filing early is a smart approach.
Encouraging clients to make an appointment can keep them from procrastinating. It can also prevent them from going to a competitor who may entice them with an even better offer.
Why use texting for your tax preparation business?
It benefits tax preparers and taxpayers. If there’s one date on the calendar that many Americans dread, it’s April 15th—Tax Day. Simply thinking about filing a tax return can fill people with anxiety. It’s not just that they worry about owing money to the IRS; for some, just talking about money can be stressful.
As a tax professional, easing clients into the tax filing process with helpful text reminders delivered well in advance of the tax deadline can alleviate many of their concerns. Using SMS to promote your services makes text marketing for accountants and tax preparers one of the most high-value, low-cost advertising options out there.
Texting use cases for income tax preparers and accountants
- Send out appointment reminders to cut down on no-shows
- Text clients the list of documents they should bring to their appointment
- Alert clients of missing paperwork needed for their tax return
- Ask clients to text photos of documents they initially forgot to provide
- Notify clients by text when their tax return has been filed
- Send tax return status updates so clients know where things stand
- Send clients a text when their tax refund is ready
Accountants and tax preparers know how challenging it can be for clients to gather all the tax documents and financial paperwork needed to prepare their returns. While some clients keep meticulous records, others may arrive with shoeboxes filled with random receipts and unrelated documents from banks, investment companies and other financial institutions.
Texting a list of documents that a client needs to bring to their appointment ensures that when it’s time to work on their return, there’s not a mad dash to hunt down missing forms. Of course, you could send the same information by email, but if your message is important or timely, why risk it being missed or overlooked in a crowded inbox?
Emails are no longer the best way to reach your clients
Research from our e-book, Why Your Customers Don’t Read Your Emails Anymore, found that consumers trust text messages over phone calls and emails when it comes to receiving important messages. We also found that most consumers receive over 25 emails a day, and over 25% of those individuals receive more than 50 messages—many of which are spam.
Your emails to clients may be getting overlooked, or accidentally deleted, which could delay their response time if you requested any additional documents to complete their return.
Text marketing for tax professionals really pays off (it does for accountants, too)
Professional texting software increases productivity and streamlines communications, which can be incredibly useful during high-pressure crunch times. Instead of phoning clients and leaving voicemails or answering calls throughout the day, both parties can send texts.
Zipwhip’s business texting platform lets users send one-to-one or group messages via the desktop or web app, or the mobile app when you’re away from your desk so you never miss a message.
Our 2021 State of Texting report found that 58% of consumers said that texting is the fastest way to reach them, making it an ideal communication method for scheduling and confirming consultations, following up on quick client questions and sending appointment reminders.
Texts simplify communication, making your tax job less taxing
Encouraging clients to schedule an appointment early is easy with text marketing for tax preparers. Once a client has opted in to receiving texts, you can send reminder messages or marketing texts at the perfect time, whether that’s at year-end for federal tax returns or quarterly estimated tax payments for self-employed workers who may need a gentle nudge.
Texts make it easy to market your tax preparation business during the tax season and beyond. Sending a mid-year group message to the contacts on your opt-in list reminds them that other services are also available, such as the option to hire a financial consultant, payroll administrator or bookkeeping specialist. If you have a notary public on your staff, you can share that, too.
As you’ve learned, early planning and taking small steps are the best ways to help clients prepare for a successful consultation. One tip is to provide a countdown to the tax filing deadline with a series of text messages that let them know it’s time to start thinking about making an appointment, and then gradually reminding them with text messages listing the steps they should take to prepare for their in-person meeting.
Benefits of using text messaging for income tax preparation
- Cut down on lengthy phone calls by maintaining a text conversation history
- Streamline the process of scheduling appointments and sending reminders
- Use your tax preparation software to let clients know their tax return status
- Remind independent contractors to make quarterly estimated tax payments
- Offer free tips about financial planning and ways to save money
- Send links to informative tax-related content, like webinars and how-to videos
- Text about any new services to spread the word fast
- Thank clients for their business and gently ask for referrals
Texting helps build stronger business-client relationships that can lead to increased loyalty, which will position your business for growth in the next tax season. When clients know they can text you and get a reply, it engenders trust and increases confidence in your business.
If you’re concerned about being at the beck and call of your business text line, you can put that worry aside. Simply set expectations by setting up an auto reply that lets clients know when they can expect an answer. Read our blog post about setting client expectations.
Zipwhip’s software and API integrate with leading CRMs
You may be wondering if texting is compatible with the software your tax preparation or financial services business already uses. Zipwhip integrates with many leading software applications, including the financial services CRMs below, to make your workflow more efficient.
When a customer’s mobile phone number is matched to a contact in your CRM, Zipwhip automatically logs the incoming and outgoing texts in real time. Alerts let you know when a new message arrives so you can respond quickly. Messages sent from our apps (for desktop, laptop computer or mobile devices) sync automatically to maintain activity accuracy.
How do I promote my tax preparation business?
Have you wondered, “How do I promote my tax preparation business?” Or “How do I promote my accounting business?” Once clients have opted in to your subscriber list, you can send text marketing messages like the examples provided above. And once you start texting, you’ll want to let others know they can text you as well. Start spreading the word about your texting capabilities with the following marketing ideas.
On-hold or voicemail messages
Update your voicemail to mention texting, as in this example: “Thanks for calling. We can’t answer the phone right now but leave a message or text us at this same number and we’ll respond as soon as possible.”
Email signatures and email marketing
Have employees update their email signatures by including the words “Text or Call” next to your phone number. And if you have a list of client email addresses, send out a brief email to let clients know they now have the option to call, email or text to contact you.
Identify areas on your site that display your phone number and make it clear that customers can now call and text that same number. Start with your “Contact Us” page. You can also use Zipwhip’s Click-to-Text tool to add a button to your website by generating your own brand-colored button that customers can click to text you from their cellphone or computer.
Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Instagram are prime places to tell current and future clients that you offer texting. It’s an effective way to advertise your accounting business so you can reach a wider audience and let clients know who may not check your website often.
Flyers and signage
Print flyers with your text-enabled phone number to hand out. If you have access to Zipwhip’s Keywords feature, encourage clients to start texting by running a contest or promotion. If you have a brick-and-mortar office, place signs in the windows and on front desks to spread the word. You never know when passersby will see it and text you for info.
Sign up for a free trial before the tax season really heats up
It’s human nature to want to try something out before committing to it. That’s why we’re offering a free trial of Zipwhip’s texting software. Start your free trial today!
- What are some of the common use cases for texting?
- Why shouldn’t my team use a personal cell phone to text?
- What are some texting best practices I should follow?