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Marketing & Brand Strategy for a Tax, Finance & Law Firm

Marketing and brand strategy

Read our case study to learn how marketing and brand strategy helped reposition Moodys Private Client as a national brand with an international clientele.

The Client

Moodys Tax Law (part of Moodys Private Client) provides tax advisory, planning, and cross-border tax and accounting for individuals with personal and business interests on either side of the Canada-US border – no matter where they live in the world.

The Challenge

Tax tends to have an air of stuffiness surrounding it, but Moodys Tax is a firm that is not afraid to be bold and take risks. They wanted to differentiate themselves and evolve from a boutique firm to a national brand while being seen as thought leaders in tax. We knew right away that this brand was primed and ready to be a “breath of fresh air” in the tax world.

The Strategy

Working with Kim G C Moody, CEO of Moodys Tax, we focused on building a comprehensive marketing and brand strategy and helped to identify their unique selling proposition. Unlike many other firms, Moodys Tax has a team of both Canadian and US tax lawyers and accountants under one roof, giving them a distinct competitive advantage in the tax world. By honing on their strengths, we were able to build the foundation of their marketing strategy.

“The relationship started with trying to understand who we are, how we are trying to differentiate ourselves in the marketplace and what are we trying to achieve overall as a business. Once that great in-depth understanding was obtained by Forward Level, then we worked together to build a marketing strategy and plan.”

Kim G C Moody, CEO of Moodys Tax

We wanted to highlight their full range of services, specifically cross-border tax planning and advisory with in-house lawyers and accountants, which differentiated them from other firms. We identified the markets where these specialized services were of the highest demand.

We also identified two significant audiences:

  1. Referral Network: Tax practitioners, accountants, lawyers, and investment advisors who desire technical advice and rely on Moodys Tax for their expertise.

  2. The End User: The clients who are dependent on the firm for their tax services.

To separate them from the stuffy reputation of the law and accounting professions, we focused on modernizing their brand, including their logo, messaging, and overall personality.

Because their client base was so diverse, we wanted to make sure their brand spoke to everyone by identifying common pain points regardless of their audience’s location or industry. We worked with them to update their brand positioning and develop messaging that was both engaging and approachable. This helped them to reach more people and, more importantly, gain new clients.

“Forward Level is not your typical ‘graphic design’ and ‘build me a website’ firm. There is no shortage of those types of firms available for the low, low price of $x. Instead, Forward Level takes the time to understand your strategy and how marketing ‘fits’ with that strategy. You don’t have a business strategy? Well Forward Level will help you with that since your marketing plan needs to follow your strategy… not the other way around. Forward Level are not ‘yes-people’ who simply agree with you and your ideas. They listen carefully, understand you and then suggest unique marketing strategies that are truly unique and effective. That’s real value.” – Kim G C Moody, CEO, Moodys Private Client

We also redesigned their website from the ground up with these audiences and markets in mind to create a unique and custom user journey that appealed to both audience’s needs.

It was important that the website address both the end-user and the referral network. The challenge was appealing to both audiences at the same time. The content, which Kim Moody refers to as “tax in plain English,” is geared towards the end-user. This includes everything from the simple and succinct home page to the update team features, which we made more personal and less stodgy to reflect the “breath of fresh air” that is Moodys Tax. Value-added content, including webinars, blogs and tax guides, was geared towards the referral network, who saw the value of adding bench strength by working with Moodys Tax.

Having a strong, established national brand allowed them to expand beyond the borders of Canada. We zoned in on a new dimension to their core messaging. Moodys Tax could offer a full range of Canada and/or US tax services no matter where their clients lived in the world. Regardless of where their clients called home, the firm could bring the client back to one of their anchor services – Canadian or US taxes.

Moodys Tax Ecosphere

This evolved into the idea of the Moodys Tax Ecosphere. Whereas some services were farmed out in the past, now everything was brought under one roof. Clients could have access to anything they needed – tax advisory, accounting, immigration, etc. By bringing the clients into the ecosphere, we could market the specific service offerings to those with cross-border tax interests and bring them back to the Canadian or US (or both) service anchors, regardless of what country they called home.

The Results

From a brand positioning and messaging standpoint, Moodys Tax has gone from a boutique firm based in Calgary to a firm with a national presence and worldwide client base. We have helped them introduce the Moodys Tax brand into new markets across the globe.

By marketing their extensive list of services that exist under one roof, they were able to strengthen their brand and firmly establish themselves as a reputable thought leader in the tax world. People now look for Moodys Tax to guide their decision-making and understanding of new legislation, tax changes, and current events. The firm has experienced a 350% increase in engaged users via social media since the brand refresh and a 224% increase in impressions.