TaxACT® and Goliath

Taking it right.

TaxACT®, our longtime client, is the second most-used online tax preparation software. They’re a premium service and were the first to offer free federal tax preparation. But there’s a large gap in marketing spend between them and their biggest competitor, who has deep pockets and does a lot of nationwide advertising.


Truth in advertising

TaxACT had a good story to tell.

Other tax software companies tried to follow their lead on free federal tax preparation but only TaxACT offered all tax forms free without a caveat or upsell. And TaxACT’s state tax return and deluxe options were more affordable than other leading brands. In addition to web ads and other marketing, we felt TaxACT could jolt awareness and firm up ownership of ‘Free’ with one big splash.


One powerful punch

Making the most of a singular message.

We produced a Super Bowl TV spot that used a relatable situation to show how good it is to feel free. Not saying a word, an appealing young actor takes us on a comically frantic journey as he seeks relief, but finds no outlet, until he’s back in the swimming pool where he started. Then, in 16 words, a voiceover tells us how good “free” feels and that federal tax returns are totally free at TaxACT.


Mission accomplished

Nothing succeeds like success.


Riding the wave of previews of Super Bowl TV spots, our “Free To Pee” spot was shown first on the “Today Show” by Al Roker, who enjoyed it and gave it a PR kick-start. After the Super Bowl, it was #11 on the “USA Today” viewer survey, beating Coke and Pepsi spots. Amplified awareness of TaxACT increased filings and further solidified them as a national player.

Find out more about advertising or this project in particular. Contact Dave Morton – 319-378-1081.