Today is Get To Know Your Customers Day and tax season is next week. We thought today’s blog post would be a great time to talk about the importance of knowing your customers since you’re about to see all of them within the next few months!
For tax preparers, really knowing your clients is important. On the one hand, you need to build strong relationships with each one in order to build trust and loyalty. On the other hand, the better you know your clients, the better tax preparer you can be when it comes to tax planning and deductions.
Here are seven ways to build better client relationships, starting with actions you can take this tax season.
Conduct Thorough Tax Prep Interviews
For new clients, the tax prep interview is crucial to building a relationship. Your interview shouldn’t feel like an interrogation, it should be a conversation that makes them feel comfortable and confident in your tax preparation skills. We’ve got a great blog post on this topic you should check out if you haven’t already: How to Conduct a Tax Preparation Interview
This seems so obvious but for some tax preparers it’s not. Ask questions beyond the standard things you need to know to file their taxes this year. How was their Christmas? What are their plans for 2017? How are their kids/husband/wife/family?
Your clients likely haven’t seen you since last tax season. A lot has probably happened in their lives since then! Listening more means paying attention to everything that is said. Their stories, questions and answers to your questions will tell you a lot about them and give you more insight that will help you be of better service.
Knowing your clients better also means knowing their preferences and their impression of your services. A great way to learn this is by sending out a company survey to clients. Making it anonymous makes clients feel more comfortable sharing their thoughts and will give you good look at how your clients feel overall.
Have an open house for clients
It can be hard to get to know clients in a tax situation when both parties have limited time. Hosting an open house is a great way to mingle and chat with clients in a social setting. Open houses are great to hold at the beginning of tax season or even right before the holidays.
With multiple clients, it can be hard to keep track of everything they tell you. Keeping notes on things you talked about with each client is a great way to remember. It’s just a nice to touch to be able to recall that last year your client was planning a big family vacation so that you can ask them about it when you see them this year. Take notes after your client leaves and then review your notes from last time before they arrive each year.
Build demographic profiles of your clients
Getting to know your clients is also important from a marketing standpoint. It’s important to know who your clients are so that your marketing can be targeted to a certain demographic of people. Trying to market to everyone is not a smart way to spend your marketing budget. Take what you know about your current clients and build demographic profiles so that you can zero in on a few specific groups of people.
Getting to know your clients is important. Make it a point to build stronger relationships this upcoming tax season!