Tax Marketing QuickTip #5: Collecting Leads Online

Ultimately, the purpose of all your direct response lead generation marketing is to do exactly that: Generate leads.

There are many different ways to collect those leads. For example, you can direct people to call a phone number, go to a web site, physically show up somewhere, send something via postal mail, send a fax or email, etc.

Before you scoff at the idea of using 24 hour recorded information phone lines or having people fax something to you, you should know that for the right target market, offer, and marketing message, those response mechanisms still work perfectly fine.

During my international travels, I developed a distinct preference for email communication above all else, and thus that’s ultimately where I would drive leads, but it would often take some time before they got into my email pipeline.

Now days, I definitely prefer webinars for many reasons, and I now use them in all my business operations, including being the single point of entry into my world for tax resolution prospects. In other words, all of my direct mail, all of my telemarketing, and all of my online lead generation send people to the same place: A webinar registration page.

Regardless of whether you’re doing webinars, offering free reports, scheduling a “Tax Debt Settlement Analysis”, etc., collecting leads online all require the same technology set.

There are a bazillion different ways to do this, but since this is a Tax Marketing QuickTip, I’m just going to give you the short version, which represents the technology stack that I’m currently using to collect leads:

  1. for domain names. I currently own over 150 domain names, and the vast majority of them are simply landing pages for collecting leads. I simply use their URL redirect feature to tie the domain name to the landing page.
  2. for landing pages. There are numerous ways to create landing pages, and you do not need a service to do so. But LeadPages makes it quick, easy, and simple to create beautiful landing pages and tie them into an email list service.
  3. for managing email lists. Again, numerous ways to do this, but Aweber is highly reputable in the email marketing space, extremely affordable, and easy to use. I’ve been using them for over a decade.

Hooking these three things together is incredibly easy. I create the lead response widget for my offer, create a new Aweber list, make a LeadPage for it, and tie the LeadPage to the domain name. Aside from creating the lead response widget itself, the full process literally only takes about 15 minutes.

Are you enjoying these Tax Marketing QuickTips? If so, I’d like to invite you to venture further down the rabbit hole, and join me and Dan Henn, CPA for our upcoming Tax Season Success Webinar Series. Over the course of four webinars (all presented at no charge), you’ll see how to make next tax season your best ever.

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Tax Marketing QuickTip #4: Direct Mail

“I’m not dead!” -sick man in Monty Python’s Search for the Holy Grail

I know that I shouldn’t take things people say on the Internet too personally, but I often do. There is a 1-star review on Amazon for one of my books that chaps my hide in particular, because the reviewer states, “The marketing information is outdated…

What he’s referring to in that particular book is that the marketing plan presented centers 100% around direct mail and telemarketing.

Here’s why this comment torques me so much: I have current Platinum members pulling in six figures annually from direct mail. There are old consulting clients from a few years ago that are doing seven figures annually from old direct mail campaigns that they’ve never changed since I designed them.

Direct mail isn’t dead.

In fact, telemarketing and direct mail, in that order, are the two dominant marketing media used to sell tax resolution in this country. We’re talking hundreds of millions of dollars per year of just tax resolution sold through telemarketing and direct mail.

Here’s something else you may not know: One of the most successful tech companies ever created, Google, still uses direct mail sent to newly registered businesses in order to drive sales of their online advertising platform (Adwords).

Here are my top 3 direct mail tips for you:

  1. Mail in sequences. Mailing once is just a waste of money. If you’re going to do direct mail for lead generation, do it right. Multi-hit sequences are the only way to go.
  2. Send the right message to the right people. Sending your seasonal $29 off coupon postcard to a tax lien list is a recipe for failure. So is sending a tax planning consultation offer to low income 1040 filers. It’s called “market to message match”, and you’ve got to have it. I rarely mention the first book I wrote for tax pros, but read Effective Copywriting for Accounting Professionals for in depth coverage of this topic.
  3. Use direct mail for long-term client/prospect follow up. Email autoresponders are awesome, I love them and use them frequently. However, there is nothing more effective for converting your best prospects into clients, and keeping your existing clients coming back, than using a monthly direct mail contact. Be it a newsletter or otherwise, this is probably the single best monthly investment you can make in your business.

The Tax Marketing HQ blog is chock full of additional direct mail articles. Direct mail can be challenging at times, and I’ll be the first to admit that it can be expensive and frustrating to “dial in” direct mail campaigns. But once you tweak it to work in your market, to your target audience, then you can run direct mail campaigns for years without much change, and profit handsomely from doing so.

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Tax Marketing QuickTip #3: Riches in Niches

You can’t be all things to all people.

Here’s the cliche example: Physicians are regarded as being one of the highest paid occupational groups in America. But who usually earns more: A family practice doctor, or a heart surgeon?

The specialist makes more money.

On October 24, 2010, I flipped my boss the bird and walked out the door (long story — it had been brewing for a while). That’s the day I entered private practice, without a single client.

For the first several months, I took any and every tax resolution case I could find. I was tempted to work the 2011 tax prep season, but I chose not to, because I knew I could make more money if I stuck to my guns and grew my tax resolution clientele. I was a specialist.

Shortly after tax season was over, I was no longer taking any and every case. By late spring 2011, well over half my new tax resolution clients were family owned trucking companies. My fees and revenues continued to increase, because I had become a specialist within a particular niche.

By the end of August 2011, my tax resolution firm had billed over $35,000 in new revenue for the month, and I was working from Sapporo, Japan. Amazing things happen when you specialize and do niche marketing.

What specialization are you known for, that allows you to charge premium fees?

What high-profit niche do you serve, that allows you to command higher prices, even if you do nothing but 1040 return preparation?

Don’t accept just any client that walks in the door. Pick and choose. Position yourself properly, communicate your value proposition through marketing, and dominate a niche.

That’s how you get rich as an EA, CPA, or tax attorney. That’s how you create a lifestyle practice. Regardless of whether you want to galavant around the planet a few times like I did, you want a private jet, or you just want a big house on 40 acres, this is how you do it.

There are riches in niches. Specialize, pick a niche, and dominate it.

If you have decided that tax debt resolution is the right specialization for you, then I’d like to invite you to Baltimore for 3 days, or Los Angeles for 1 day. Whichever is most convenient for you, pick one (or both) and come learn how to knock it out of the park in tax resolution.

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