Want a tax break? TurboTax has you covered

Who: TurboTax, with Cossette for strategy and creative, Merchant for production (directed by Jun Diaz), Saints for editorial, Oso for audio and Camelot Strategic Marketing & Media for media.

What: “Tax Break,” the tax preparation service’s first Canadian-specific brand campaign in several years, with a focus on two key consumer segments: Younger millennials and older Gen Z’s.

When & Where: The campaign launched Jan. 30 and runs until May 2 across traditional and connected TV, as well as digital video, radio, digital out-of-home, display and social. Ads have already appeared in high-profile events including the Super Bowl and Olympics, as well as on services including Twitch and TikTok.

“We’re meeting our target audience where they are spending their time,” said Gah-Yee Won, TurboTax’s head of media innovation and growth marketing, consumer group Canada. According to Won, TurboTax has already seen a 3X increase in site traffic since the campaign launched.

Why: The campaign’s primary objective is brand-building in a crowded category, said Stefania Mancini, TurboTax’s head of marketing, consumer group Canada. The goal is to show how it is empathetic to Canadians during a season characterized by anxiety and complexity.

“With the ‘Tax Breaks’ campaign, we complemented the ease of our product with a new outlook on how easy it is to get started on your taxes, and beat the filing procrastination,” she said.

How: The creative focuses on how it simple it can be for Canadians to prepare their taxes with TurboTax, simply by spending a few minutes using its online tools during downtime.

The anchor spot features a TurboTax representative stopping to chat with people when they’re got some extra time on their hands, such as watching their child at hockey practice, while waiting for a tapped maple tree to yield sap, or for their teenager to outgrow their latest phase. It concludes with a visit to the “Society of Beaver Enthusiasts,” who are still waiting for society to accept the true beauty of their beloved mascot.

The campaign also includes a contextually relevant ad running during breaks in sports broadcasts. It shows two men in sports gear—from hockey gloves to ski boots—and the TurboTax representative saying “Got some time while you wait for the second half?….third period? the sports to resume?” before informing viewers that they can take a tax break whenever they choose.

Contextual out-of-home delivers messages such as “Take a tax break while you wait for that reliably delayed street car.”

And we quote: “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. No obtuse instructions, no daunting in-person appointments. With the TurboTax app, all Canadians can take a much-needed ‘Tax Break’.” — Stefania Mancini, head of marketing, consumer group Canada, TurboTax


Chris Powell