Oct 3, 2019
Chris Micklatcher started off as a lawyer in Portland, Maine, focusing on estate planning and tax work. The transition to tax resolution came 30 years ago when a client came into his office that needed some help with his back taxes. Back then, it was very easy to find new clients, but now the market for the business has completely changed.
[5:40] There are around 3,300 counties in the United States, and for some of them, when the IRS files a tax lien, you will be able to find that info on their website. You can also buy a list from a list broker of federal tax liens.
[6:55] Chris met Michael and signed up to his Tax Domination program in Orlando. Prior to that, Chris did tax resolution work in addition to general law work, but it wasn’t a focus of the business. He wanted to do something he loved, and he found that people really appreciated the tax resolution service, which is very different from the experience of working with law clients.
[8:30] The tax resolution side of Chris’s business was around $5000 a month. After purchasing the Tax Domination program and coming into the mastermind group his tax resolution business has grown to $55,000 a month with additional deferred revenue each month as well.
[12:00] Chris has hired four employees to help with the workload and is now hoping to start retiring slowly, minimizing his work schedule over time. His team handles approximately $850,000 in yearly revenue.
[14:55] The first major lesson that Chris learned was putting the processes in place and understanding the value of his time. Before the program Chris never spent any time on marketing, he did most of that on the fly. Now he spends a minimum of half a day a week focusing on marketing and trying to think outside the box. Eliminating the deadwood in both clients and employees was the third major lesson. The concept of Chris’s employees selling his business for him changed the way he thought about hiring.
[16:45] When people call your office off of your marketing, the first impression they have is the person who answers the phone, and most practitioners don’t give that enough thought. Your front office people have to be very good. There is a big difference between a receptionist and an intake person.
[18:15] Non-Filers are some of the most common clients that Michael has been seeing, mainly due to the focus of his marketing efforts.
[20:35] This is the first time in seven years that the IRS has gotten over $300 million added to their budget from Congress. The pendulum is swinging back now to compliance enforcement.
[23:25] If Michael had to do it all over again, he would have set aside one day a week to plan his marketing strategy out. You also have to understand that you will be overloaded with business, so you need to be able to complete the business that comes into your office.
[24:30] Many practitioners believe that marketing is below them, and that once they open up shop, they deserve the business. For Michael, the problem was never marketing, it was delegating the work to an employee. The key thing is being able to hire the right people and being able to delegate in confidence.
[26:15] You want to put yourself out there as a tax resolution expert because everyone thinks an accountant is a tax resolution expert as well, but that usually leads to a bad experience for the customer. There are three distinct areas of taxes: tax planning, tax preparation, and tax resolution. You can do all three, but the way you present your business matters.
[27:45] You need to brand yourself because it will put you into a position of authority. Tax resolution in the only field of taxes where you are solving a big problem which is why it’s the most lucrative and profitable. Resolution is here to stay whereas planning and preparation are slowly being automated and commoditized.
[30:15] You can succeed as long as you like working hard. The ones that just want to get by are going to have a very tough time in this business.
[31:50] Most colleges teach branding and image marketing, but any business can be successful if they know how to do direct response marketing.
[34:05] Michael has a turnkey program that has been very valuable for Chris in his business and helped him understand the key areas that he needed to focus on to grow his tax resolution business.
Mentioned in this episode:
Fresh Start Tax Solutions
Michael Rozbruch's Tax & Business Solutions Academy