Marketing Lessons From QuickTax

Last year I did my own taxes using QuickTax; this year I’m using an accountant. I’d all but forgotten about QuickTax until I got a CD in the mail from them yesterday. It was a copy of QuickTax Business Unincorporated, the same one I’d used last year.

carefreeOn the cardboard case it told me that I could use this in three easy steps:

1. Purchase my installation code on their site.

2. Insert the CD; the software will launch automatically.

3. Enter my installation code when prompted.

Boom! How simple is that? Now apart from the fact that I’ve since incorporated, and I’m now using an accountant, both of which QuickTax couldn’t have known, if I had been in the same position as last year, chances are I simply would have followed their directions.

There are lessons in this story to be had for businesses of all kinds, though especially seasonal ones.

Lesson #1: Remember FOR Your Customer

Don’t count on your customer to remember you. Fact is, when that time comes around again next year, some other business is probably far more current in their mind. A perfect example of this is the restaurant industry. Get your clientele to give you their email address and birthday, then every month, send out a special email to all of your clients and offer them a birthday discount.

Own a flower shop? Get your customer’s anniversary dates, their wife’s birthday, etc etc. You might sound intrusive, but if presented right, this could become a selling point. Tell the guy in a panic to get some flowers that next year you can remind him (via email or phone) a few days before he’ll need them, prepare the bouquet of roses for him and even give him a small discount. All he has to do is come in, pay, and pick them up. Done for him as much as possible. Now he doesn’t even have to remember his anniversary! Well, let’s not go there.

Ok, so why not take it a step further? You could offer delivery service as well, so that not only are you remembering for your client, you’re DOING it all for him as well. All he has to do is give you his credit card once a year.

Maybe you’ve got a deli that sells seasonal items. Or a fruit stand even! Get your customer’s email addresses, and send them an update so they don’t miss the strawberry season, or the whatever. Give them a coupon they can print off and redeem right at the fruit stand for $1.00 off. Who said fruit stands can’t do more marketing than what they can fit on a piece of plywood?

Lesson #2: Make It E-A-S-Y To Buy!

Are there unnecessary steps in your sales process? Do customers get fed up half way through and leave? This probably isn’t quite as prevalent in bricks and mortar stores, because it is easy to see someone getting frustrated and help them. However, if you’ve got an online store, or a business website, do you know at what point people are saying enough is enough? Are you satisfied with your conversion rate, or are most visitors simply poking around for a few seconds and then on to the next site?

Maybe there are things you can do to streamline their experience, so that they find exactly what they’re looking for quickly, and easily.

QuickTax boiled things down to three easy steps; even the software installs itself!

How can you do the same in your business?

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