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    12 Replies Latest reply on Oct 13, 2009 3:48 PM by JDVTaxes

    Acquiring new clients/marketing

    JDVTaxes Wayfarer
      I am starting up a new personal income tax preparation service.

      I know of a small service that is closing it's doors, leaving 300+ clients without service for this upcoming season.

      I can not get access to this client list to do direct marketing.

      What's the best method of advertising/marketing to go after these folks when all I have is the address of the service that is closing it's business?
        • Re: Acquiring new clients/marketing
          Navigator
          Since it is local, why not try running an ad in the newspaper calling out some of them? Also, look into Geo-targetted internet marketing to mop up a few more lookers, since this one company is going away, people will be searching for a new firm to take over the work.
          • Re: Acquiring new clients/marketing
            LUCKIEST Guide
            Acquiring new clients/marketing, Welcome

            Who are you?? Go to Members page and share some info.

            I have acquiring new clients and did some great marketing to grow my firm.

            How do I get in touch with you?? (ASAP)

            LUCKIEST
            • Re: Acquiring new clients/marketing
              Iwrite Pioneer
              Ask the owner of the business that is closing it's doors if you can purchase the list? They aren't using it. I would start there and then look at some of the other suggestions. If I was going out of business, I wouldn't want to leave my customers stranded, I would want to make sure they were in good hands. There are only two answers you can get "yes" or "no."
                • Re: Acquiring new clients/marketing
                  JDVTaxes Wayfarer
                  ...thanks for the quick responses everyone - as for acquiring the client list from the previous owner, I tried several angles on that one, but to no avail. The business was a franchise, and there are legal issues that prevent the dissemination of the client listing.

                  I even tried to supply the owner with a paid mailing that he could send out to his clients, referring them to me. I structure a deal whereby I would pay him per referral over a 3 year period, but he was either unwilling or unable to make the deal.

                  In all fairness, the owner was moving out of state for a career opportunity, and was under a time constraint.

                  I'm going to speak to some of the locals to see what newspapers they read, and advertising mediums they generally use. I've been thinking of something like those coupon mailings...

                  Thanks again!
                    • Re: Acquiring new clients/marketing
                      Iwrite Pioneer
                      You seem to have done a lot towards trying to get the list. I would focus on building your own customer base.

                      Then you can purchase a mailing list and do you own mailing to the zip codes in the area. More than likely his customers were not coming from too far away, depending on the community.

                      I would look at a mass mailing. I think a flyer on cars might send the wrong message about the level of your service. Look into running 30 or 60 second spots on the local radio stations providing helpful tips for getting ready for the tax season. The local paper may be interested in letting you write a column as long as you don't try to sell too hard in it, and you display a personality that will keep readers interested. Talk with local churched about providing a column or newsletter of money matters that helps the members, even offer to do a seminar on Saturday's at the church building. These are all things I have seen work in the past.
                        • Re: Acquiring new clients/marketing
                          JDVTaxes Wayfarer
                          ...thanks for the response. I totally agree with you about focusing on building my own customer base. I'm starting first with my current handful of current clients, coming up with incentives to elicit referrals from them.

                          I initially looked at buying the business I mentioned in my earlier posts, but when I did my due diligence, it did not make good sense. During my due diligence, I learned of the impending closure if the business was not sold.

                          Knowing that there would be a significant number of folks looking for services due to the closing, I saw the client listing as a way to leapfrog my efforts to build a client base from scratch...

                          Thanks again!
                    • Re: Acquiring new clients/marketing
                      bizconsultant Scout
                      I agree with the last post....ask the owner if you can buy the list. But instead of actually paying for it, see if you can offer him a profit share on clients you are able to do services for. If its an established business, you may want to ask if he would sell the practice on an owner finance basis. We help with structuring those transactions as well as how to create marketing offers that can get those clients to sign with you. If interested in discussing it further, contact me at ajones@abcsolutions.cjb.net
                      • Re: Acquiring new clients/marketing
                        Chris.Black Newbie
                        JDVTaxes:

                        As far as the coupon books in the mail are concerned, one of the larger companies is Valasis/ Red Plum. We have looked into for our own business and we were surprised how much information and qualifiers they have. Their website is www.valasis.com
                          • Re: Acquiring new clients/marketing
                            promo.plan Newbie
                            Knowing that there will be all those people looking for a new provider and being that you are a new business, I would base my marketing on getting visibility on the area and getting people to see you as an expert in your field. Here are some things you can do:
                            • Join your local Chamber of Commerce and attend their networking events, looking to connect with as many people as you can.
                            • Use the Chambers members list and select those that fit your client profile and do a series of postcard mailings, the first announcing the opening of your firm, the following ones with good offers that will get their attention.
                            • As you go to the events, you'll start to meet the same people and start developing relationships, where you can ask them who their tax service is.
                            • Offer the Chamber to do a free conference about "tax deductions must people don't know about" or something like that. Even if not many people come, your name will be seen by most members in the Chamber's announcements and you can also direct mail members inviting them, again, getting your name in front of them.
                            • Run a small ad in the business section of your newspaper a few weeks in a row.

                            I hope this gives you ideas..

                            You can check out my blog for some more http://glorialafont.wordpress.com/

                            Good luck to you!
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