Launching a Mobile App for TurboTax


How do we leverage mobile to accelerate our core business? The TurboTax team developed a really cool SnapTax mobile app to allow customers to file their taxes and earn a maximum refund directly from their mobile phone. The "snap" is that it enables the customer to snap a photo of their W4 and the data is immediately applied to the mobile app form.

Elizabeth Berger, Group Manager, Direct Response Marketing, TurboTax outlined in her keynote this morning that building the apps was not just about immediate revenue or gain, but about the fact that customers are moving onto mobile devices to interact with the brand.  One key is to make it busines goal. Liz said that she put a stake in the ground that 60% of customers will use a mobile app to file their taxes.

However, the fact of having great apps wasn't enough to convince the internal teams that mobile access to TurboTax products was accretive to the brand. Liz did some research of consumers to prove that mobile access was meaningful, welcome and added value to the brand - TurboTax would be perceived as innovative if it launched cool mobile experiences.

This is a success story driven by smart marketing – both internally and externally. Liz showed how including mobile experiences in all TurboTax advertising increased the number of mobile searches, which contributed to decisions to invest in mobile website and marketing.

"We made a decision to base mobile success on log in - getting someone from a mobile search to log into the TurboTax website," Liz said. Mobile and tablet visits to have more than doubled year over year, she said.

To move product and marketing team efforts forward into a mobile strategy, "Get something out there, measure it, test it, and define the goals based on the expectations are for mobile, not necessarily around the desktop experience," she recommends.

The success of the mobile program has good impact on other digital channels. The importance of mobile to TurboTax customers means that email messaging needs to be mobile optimized. TurboTax uses relational design to create dynamic content messaging. SMS has been added in as an alert service - e.g.: when a filing was rejected by the IRS.

Learnings from Liz in bringing mobile forward as a definitive channel and product complement:
- Getting a dedicated team in place.
- Share broadly and share often. There was a need to collaborate and influence internally.
- Setting goals and measuring those goals over time.
- Test, learn, apply and repeat.




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