Looking for 100 new tax clients to grow your tax firm? Start local! Local marketing can help you find tax clients that live near your office while building loyalty with existing clients.  

Local tax clients can also conveniently visit the office or opt for online tools to facilitate the tax preparation process. Whether you’re just getting started or growing an existing pool of clientele, consider these easy-to-implement strategies for finding and attracting local tax clients to your firm. 

What is local marketing? Local marketing is any marketing channel that focuses on and targets potential customers who live or work in a specific area, usually near a business’s physical location. 

Start next door 

The easiest clients to acquire might be right next door. If your office space holds get-togethers like happy hours or networking events, then it’s the perfect time to get to know the other tenants in the building. Activate your marketing charm and let them know what your business offers, including any special incentives you can offer to help your “neighbors.” 

Follow up after the in-person event by mailing a postcard or dropping off a flyer at their front desk as an extra reminder of the services your business provides. Taking the time for another face-to-face interaction goes a long way when you’re growing your firm and actively learning how to get new business tax clients. 

Use direct mailers 

Did you know that the post office has ways to send mailers to everyone in a certain neighborhood or location? It can be a costly way to advertise, but it can yield powerful results if you include a compelling offer like an eye-catching discount or custom bundled services. It may produce results for months or even years to come—depending on your offer terms and how long recipients keep the mailer! 

Be sure to include a clear call-to-action, your company’s contact information, and any benefits that could motivate a tax client to sign up. If you’re considering direct mail, start your research directly with USPS before exploring a third-party solution. 

Optimize local SEO 

When you search “Thai food near me” or “local concerts,” you’re experiencing local search engine optimization (SEO). The results show what the search engine has found nearest your location because the company optimized their online content to help these searches.   

Make your business more likely to appear in local searches for accountants, CPAs, or tax firms by optimizing your website for local search. A few clicks may help to quickly close the gap on finding your 100 tax clients. 

Start optimizing for local searches by:  

  1. Adding your address to the footer of your website, so that it appears on every page.
  2. Getting mentions on local business’s websites or getting featured in the local newspapers. These kinds of cross-references from other local websites help to reinforce your standing with search engines. 

Google My Business 

Google My Business listings are extremely impactful to appearing in Google local searches. Set up your Google My Business listing with all the information you can enter about your business, especially your business’s phone number and website.  

To take your Google My Business listing to another level, you’ll want to focus on reviews, which is the next strategy we’ll delve into. 

Focus on reviews 

Reviews are the backbone of local businesses. According to BrightLocal, 87% of consumers read reviews for local businesses in 2020, a 7% increase from the prior year. BrightLocal also listed Google My Business listings and the Better Business Bureau as the most trusted authorities for reviews. 

Therefore, it’s important to both ask for reviews from your best clients and manage your online review presence. Set up alerts so that you always know when someone has submitted a new review, and have someone in the office who can promptly address any concerns brought up in a less-than-positive review. 

Whenever you notice your score start to dip from an unfortunate review, work to resolve the issue directly with the client. Reaching out to clients that had a positive experience can help to balance out any negative reviews with more positive feedback too. 

Reviews should be a part of your day-to-day business practices. Add a request for reviews at the bottom of marketing materials, business cards, and other client paperwork. You can also send a well-timed email after delivering your clients’ 1040 documents or resolving an issue, so that your best efforts are top of mind when clients get the request. 

Once you’ve built up a healthy library of reviews, you can use this content to highlight social proof to potential clients. Print this invaluable information on your marketing materials to instill confidence in potential clients. Sync reviews to your website for a local SEO boost and to provide potential clients with a convenient link back to this content. 

Create a referral/word-of-mouth program 

In the same vein of thinking, a referral or word-of-mouth program can help you get new tax clients based on the recommendations of your existing clients. 

Are you offering an incentive for your clients to refer their friends and family? Promote an exclusive discount to get them to spread the word. Include this offer when you send out engagement letters or have flyers available for clients who complete their 1040 requirements early in the tax season.  
If you time your marketing right, you’ll be able to boost your clientele in the same tax season without creating a bottleneck as you near the tax deadline. 

Another way to create referrals is to offer related businesses (e.g., bookkeepers, financial planners) a commission for recommending your services to their existing clients. These related businesses should perform essential services for your clients without overlapping and creating competition for your business. 

Network with other local professionals 

Local professionals are an asset to any small, local business because they can work together to share opportunities and help grow each other’s clientele. Networking can be casual, like taking the extra time to ask what people do for a living, or more formal, like attending a happy hour for professionals. 

Join local business associations to find out about events and other opportunities to network. Send your top employees to attend or present at local seminars or conferences to provide educational value to the community while also getting the word out about your business. 

Networking also has two benefits for your referrals: connecting directly with professionals who need your services or getting to know professionals from related businesses that can refer clients to you. Either way, these are pools of potential clients to win over. 

Acquire smaller firms 

A well-known way to immediately grow your client list is to acquire a smaller firm. For firm owners just starting out with a limited client base, it can be appealing to work for a slightly larger firm and share in their resources, so don’t be afraid to reach out and make an offer. You’ll not only gain new clients, but you’ll also gain valuable team members with a proven track record to help you complete the extra work often associated with this growth.  

Another general method for acquiring smaller firms is to look for owners who are considering retirement. And a great way to find any of these local small businesses is, you may have guessed, networking! 

Offer user-friendly tax preparation tools 

With all these ways to get new tax clients, your list is sure to top 100 clients in no time. However, it’s not enough to simply obtain new clients. Without planning for this type of firm expansion, you’ll likely experience some growing pains along the way.  

To ease the transition during this growth phase, you’ll want to use tools that automate parts of the tax process and provide an excellent client experience. Compare solutions to learn what can simplify the document gathering process. You can also provide clients with a mobile app for quick and effective communication with their tax professionals. Most importantly, choose whatever works best for you and your clients! 

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