It’s that time of year again! Tips for tax brand advertisers

Tax season is right around the corner, and with an overwhelming majority of consumers filing online, it's the perfect opportunity for tax brand marketers to reach their target audiences.

Tax season in the U.S. is here again. With nearly 9 out of 10 consumers now e-filing their taxes online(1), tax brand marketers continue to increase their digital ad spend. Here at Yahoo, we see tax advertisers ramping up their digital campaigns in January, with historic peaks in February and again in mid-April as Tax Day deadline looms. With mobile traffic to tax-related sites up 43% year-over-year and desktop traffic on the decline, native ad formats play an increasingly important role for brands and their agencies.(2)

All too often banner blindness prevails — with advertisers turning to the same kind of creative they used historically. Native formats, however, enable advertisers to reach users more effectively, while they’re immersed in content they love. In fact, our research has found that these seamless ad formats drive up to 3x more time and attention than traditional display ads.(3)

Tax advertisers should keep the following tips in mind when developing native ad creative:

  • Emphasize Urgency: Tax season is only a few quick months of the year, so be sure to use attention-grabbing and time-sensitive ads. Tests have shown conversion rates of 2X when using time-sensitive copy in both the title and the description, as opposed to control ads not using verbiage calling out deadlines or other important dates.
  • Offer Help: The process of doing one’s taxes can be overwhelming. Highlight any tutorials or other resources you provide. Remember that convenience and simplicity are appreciated by end users. Words like “simple” and “easy to use” will stand out in the stream.
  • Speak the Consumer’s Language: While everyone pays taxes, not everyone understands accounting jargon. Don’t botch the opportunity to connect with your audience by using esoteric tax jargon. Mention a benefit that enlightens your audience but don’t drown them in the details.


(Note what works well in the above example.)


More than just a direct response tool, native drives both upper and lower funnel activity for tax prep advertisers. In a recent analysis, native in-stream ads generated 172% lift in the first week of the campaign and drove both upper and lower funnel KPI activity for a leading tax brand.(4) By applying best practices for designing ad creative in an engaging environment, tax brand advertisers can stay top of mind amongst consumers before it’s too late!

  • 1. Simmons, Summer 2015 NHCS Adult Study 12-month
  • 2. comScore, Media Metrix, Business/Finance - Taxes, January 2016
  • 3. Ad Environments: The Halo Effect, October 2014
  • 4. Yahoo/Millward Brown Digital Behavioral Impact AdFX study, 2014