Professional Tax Articles

Growing Your Tax Preparation Business Through Referrals


One way to grow your business is through customer referrals. A tax preparation business can greatly expand its outreach and reach many new customers through referral marketing. Implementing a referral incentive program is especially beneficial, and it’s a much more affordable choice as compared to traditional marketing options. Start by learning more about the benefits of a referral network – It’s an excellent way to help your tax preparation business grow throughout the entire year.


Implementing a Referral Incentive Program in 2023

A referral incentive program can help you gain and retain many new customers. You can implement a referral incentive program in a variety of ways, such as offering incentives for existing clients that refer you to new customers. For example, you might offer a gift card for clients that provide customer referrals, or you may decide to offer a discount on the client’s next tax-preparation service. You can also experiment with different rewards to see which are the most effective options for your business.


Should You Consider Limits on Your Referral Incentive Program?

Developing a terms and conditions document for your referral marketing program is always recommended, whether it be available for review on- or offline. Depending on your budget, you may want to consider limiting the number of compensated customer referrals per client, or maybe not since all new business is good business. It’s also important to precisely define what your clients are required to do to earn the incentive. Clearly defining all the rules of your referral incentive program is essential to ensure that all terms are easy to understand and to follow.


What is an Effective Way to Market Your Referral Program?

Understanding how to market your tax preparation referral program is key to maximizing your outreach. Fortunately, you can promote your referral incentive program using various marketing strategies, whether it’s through your website, social media pages, desk cards, or even with wall posters in your office. You can also grow your business by marketing your referral program using on-hold prompts/messages on your telephone system. The biggest key here is to market your referral program through several different avenues to reach as many people as possible.


Here are a few tips on how to create an effective referral network to grow your business.


Build Your Ideal Client Profile

One of the first steps to developing any referral network is to create your ideal client profile. You can also create numerous client profiles, such as businesses in specific industries, gig workers, or high net-worth clients. Developing a well-defined client profile is key in making it easier to focus on growing your referral incentive program. You can also update your client profile over time to better match the evolving needs of your business. Discussing your ideal client profile with your referral partners can help increase the success of your referral marketing program.


Keep Your Clients Happy

Attempting to grow your business through a referral network is next to impossible if you are unable to keep your clients happy with your tax preparation services. On the other hand, happy clients are one of the most effective marketing tools to help you gain new customers. You can keep your existing clients happy by meeting their needs, helping them solve their tax problems, and making sure they stay in compliance with various tax laws.


Taking a proactive approach by focusing on the unique needs of your clients can help you earn their trust and make it much more likely for them to recommend you to others. Keeping in touch with your clients throughout the year is also important to making sure your clients are well-satisfied with your tax preparation services. You can stay connected with customers in various ways. For example, send a handwritten note thanking each client for their business or send them each a (handwritten, computer generated, or online, etc.) monthly newsletter which provides a monthly opportunity for your business to stay top of mind.

Encouraging clients to leave online reviews about your tax preparation business is also a great way to reach more people – especially since so many of us rely on reading positive reviews before making a decision to switch preparers, and also because good news & great reviews travel real fast.


Closing Thoughts

Preparing for tax season can be stressful, especially if you are short on clients. Fortunately, a tax preparation business can reach more new clients by creating a referral incentive program. Growing your business through a referral network takes time, as it doesn’t happen overnight. Creating an ideal client profile, keeping your existing customers happy, and staying in touch with them are all key aspects of building a successful referral incentive program. Over time, you will begin to gain more clients through referral marketing, as all the hard work is well worth the effort in helping you grow your business all year long.