Marketing Lessons from Blockbuster Video

You probably read the title of this article and thought, “Wait a minute, is Blockbuster even still in business? I bet this is one of Ed’s bait-and-switch articles…” And you would be right! Blockbuster is still on life support, under the Dish Network satellite TV umbrella. But I’m not here to tell you about anything Blockbuster itself did that will help you grow your business.

So… a guy named David Cook started out in business supplying software services to oil and gas companies in Texas. In 1985, his wife suggested he start renting videocassettes instead, and Blockbuster was born. At its peak in 2004, Blockbuster had 9,094 stores across the world, 84,300 employees, and $5 billion in market capitalization. Read more…

Devious Tax Avoidance

I’ve told you all time and time again how much I recommend using the day’s news to market your business, to join the conversation your prospects are already having, rather than starting your own conversation (which probably won’t interest them very much anyway). So it probably won’t surprise you to learn I spend a fair amount of time, both online and off, combing the news for the information I need to keep TaxCoach up to date, as well as “infotainment” I can use to grab readers’ attention.  Read more…

I, Robot

Before you read any further, go to www.WillRobotsTakeMyJob.com and type in “tax preparer.”

We’ll wait for you.

Ok, now that you’re back, let’s talk.

I realize you’re not just a “tax preparer.” You’re a tax business owner. That’s different, yes. But if your principal product is tax preparation, you’re in danger. Read more…

The More Things Change

I took my summer vacation early this year, and it was a Roman Holiday, minus Audrey Hepburn and Gregory Peck. I started with a night in Milan. Then I took the train down the Italian coast for a few days in Cinque Terre, which is a delightful collection of seaside villages hugging the Mediterranean. Finally, I took another train to Rome. (Leaving Rome was especially hard because it meant a series of three flights to Las Vegas for a speaking engagement. Ugh.)

I think my favorite part of Rome was the afternoon I spent touring the ancient ruins. I started at the Colosseum, then made my way through the various arches, palaces, and temples of the Roman Forum. (A funny thing happened on the way…) Read more…

The Magic Solution to All Your Problems

Yesterday, Keith and I hosted our regular Wednesday Marketing and Management call for a group of about 80 members. It was a larger-than-usual call, with a big group of brand-new members on their very first call. (Welcome to the TaxCoach community!)

As usual, the call featured a lively discussion of both marketing and management topics. Several members had questions about handling problem clients. These included a real estate agent just now getting around to filing three years of taxes, who can benefit from an S corporation, but might not be disciplined enough to manage the paperwork properly. We also discussed a client who insists on bickering over fees after agreeing to pay a member a higher fee than they had paid their last tax professional. Read more…