Tax Season -- What Does It Mean?

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For Americans, taxes and everything about them seem to be elusive. They know they have a certain period where they have to do their taxes and a date that they have to be done by, but everything else doesn’t make sense. Many Americans don’t even seem to know that the tax season officially starts on January 1st -- they could have their taxes done months before April 15th!

Each year, though, there are almost always reports of accountants and local tax groups being flooded in early April and working around the clock right to the deadline. Why don’t people know about this? Is it because their companies are vague about sending them tax returns, or is everyone a procrastinator when it comes to the amount of forms? There are so many tax refund companies out there willing to help that it just doesn’t seem to make sense. How can the general public be made aware of the four months they have to do their taxes?

It’s tempting to imagine some kind of commercial, and in fact, many tax companies do run commercials. They run on TV and on radio stations, and they’re beginning to pop up online. TV ads don’t always work well, because many people have the power to skip ads. In addition, it’s expensive to run commercials during the most popular shows! It’s not Super Bowl levels of expensive, but trying to run a commercial for taxes during a show like How To Get Away With Murder? Many tax companies are smaller, and can’t afford the costs, even if a lot of people would see that ad. The radio has similar issues, in that not a lot of people listen to radio stations these days, and trying to get an ad on streaming music like Spotify is tricky. The Internet seems to be the last place for advertisers to go, but if people are picky about their TV and radio, they’re downright snobs when it comes to companies on social media.

What can tax companies do? They rely on word of mouth and their websites. Even if people are coming in at the last minute, they’re going to help them as much as they can, and hopefully those people will remember to come in earlier next year. Tax season is always busy, but it can be made less stressful for companies and taxpayers alike by getting it done early.

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