TurboTax opts for an easygoing approach to tax season

The first brand campaign in two years aims to avoid the stress and confusion other tax-prep companies focus on.


Turbo Tax is looking to give Canadians a tax break, in both senses of the term, as it tries to better connect with younger demos.

With its first brand campaign in two years, the Intuit’s brand is celebrating the simplicity of its platform in a lighthearted manner, and urging Canadians to take a break: encouraging people to use downtime to get their taxes done, like at the ice rink, the basketball court, and elsewhere.

“In a category that typically plays off angst and frustration, we opted for humour to help differentiate ourselves and demonstrate just how easy it is for Canadians to do their taxes with the TurboTax app,” says Stefania Mancini, head of marketing, Consumer Group Canada at TurboTax. “Most Canadians get tax refunds, so we want to shift the conversation away from taxes being a fear-laden process, and it’s something you can get excited about.”

In the competitive set, brands like H&R Block have positioned themselves around supporting bewildered tax filers.

Mancini tells strategy its research has shown that a big reason can be reluctant to trial tax software is the perceived complexity of filing, so that’s another area where leaning into a message about simplicity makes sense to potentially resonate with newbie tax filers.

Two years ago, TurboTax positioned itself around the fact that it offered help and wasn’t just a tax software program. This year, she says, that has been tweaked slightly to incorporate a much friendlier user experience, in addition to offering customer support. TurboTax’s first to market mobile experience, Mancini adds, is a differentiator and its “secret sauce.”

TurboTax OOH


The brand is also leveraging its connection with the Toronto Raptors, with a dad in a Raps jersey doing his taxes while his child shoots hoops on the driveway with a VR headset. A contextual 15-second spot, all about how fans can file in the time between halves, is also running during Raptors games. The team callout, Mancini says, is to capture a mobilized fanbase of diverse, younger Canadians. That is a prime target for the campaign, backed by a promotion offering the service for free to anyone under the age of 25.

“Tax Break,” by agency Cossette, is running until May 2 across traditional and connected TV, digital video, radio, DOOH, display and social. Camelot handled the buy side.