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Tax TV

IRS TAKEAWAY TUESDAY Take it away! This is the 12th in a series of posts that will be featured on Fonteva’s blog highlighting important strategies associations can take away from other industries. In today’s sixth-degrees-of-separation world, your members are assessing your association not just in comparison to similar organizations but in relation to the totality of their experiences as consumers. As such, we want to help you stay abreast of key trends and best practices, those takeaways that may benefit your association.
Tax TV Yes, today’s the day. Perhaps, you’re one of those people who filed your tax return months ago just as soon as you received the necessary documents from employers, financial institutions, etc. On the other hand, you could be among the one-third of Americans that the IRS says wait until the last minute to file their federal taxes. Preparing those annual returns is not a task most of us look forward to. Certainly, the sheer volume of information and instructions alone is daunting. In an effort to make its materials more accessible, one of the least popular government agencies has taken its case to social media. YouTube is at the center of the IRS’ social media efforts. The agency posted its first video there four years ago, and viewers can watch three different channels for short, informative videos in English, Spanish and American Sign Language. These channels feature more than 100 videos that have been viewed more than 7.5 million times. Videos are also available through the IRS Facebook and Tumblr sites. In addition, according to the agency, more than 95,500 people follow the IRS Twitter feeds, one which provides news and guidance for tax professionals. Further, more than 5.5 million people have downloaded the free IRS2Go phone app, which is available in both English and Spanish for Apple and Android devices. The totally redesigned IRS2Go 4.0 provides features to help taxpayers check on the status of their tax refunds, obtain tax records, find free tax preparation providers and stay connected with the IRS through social media channels such as YouTube and Twitter. For me the key takeaway here is that if the IRS can do it, so can you. If your association is still hesitating to develop a comprehensive social media strategy, what are you waiting for? Social is too important of a channel for communicating with your members and other stakeholders to leave untapped. As I’ve mentioned before, we’ve seen how useful video has been to some of our customers in communicating about new or improved member benefits like the enhanced portals that are available through Fonteva For Associations. Perhaps, it’s time your association took to TV to tout its benefits and programs.        
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