The Turbo Tax 2013 Advertisement Controversy
The Turbo Tax 2013 advertisements were undoubtedly memorable and those who have seen them will not soon forget them. It is also impossible to deny that these advertisements were more aggressive in than previous advertisements aired by the company. Despite the fact that TurboTax is one of the most popular tax programs on the market, the company is definitely trying as hard as it can to put down the competition.
Why Were the Ads Controversial in the First Place?
The Turbo Tax 2013 ads emphasized the fact that many tax preparation companies hire trained professionals who do not work as accountants year round. The ads clearly displayed various people who prepared taxes during the tax season later going back to their regular jobs. More specifically, one individual in question worked as a sales clerk while another worked as a plumber.
The ads did not mention H&R Block by name, except to note at the very end that TurboTax handles more tax clients than H&R Block and all other similar companies combined. However, the fact that Turbo Tax was trying to undercut H&R Block and other, similar companies was unmistakable.
H&R Block retaliated with a swift, harshly worded statement against Turbo Tax before taking the tax software giant to court. In court, H&R Block made a few valid arguments against Intuit, the company that owns and runs Turbo Tax. H&R Block noted that the company puts down those individuals who do not work as accountants on a year round basis, without noting the fact that these individuals do have the training required to properly prepare tax forms. The ads also did not note the fact that many of H&R Block’s employees have extensive experience. Furthermore, the lawyers also note that the ad portrays an unflattering picture of those who work in sales or plumbing.
While the court noted that these arguments were valid, in the end TurboTax won the case and is able to play the ads when and where desired. The courts found that the ads did not breach any laws and, more specifically, did not cause illegal harm to H&R Block. Given this ruling, it is not unrealistic to expect more, similar Turbo Tax ads next tax year.
While Turbo Tax has won the first round of this battle, this is u
nlikely to be the last battle between these two giants. H&R Block does tax preparation in person while TurboTax is a software program that a person can use on his or her own. However, both these companies are vying for the same clients and so are likely to continue attacking each other and other, similar businesses in an effort to reduce the competition and get a larger share of customers.