Founded in 2013 by Glenn Sandler, CPA, G. I. Tax Service is America’s premier provider of year-round tax preparation and financial services including tax planning and small business formation assistance. G.I. Tax also reaches out to military vets with turn-key franchise opportunities. G. I. Tax Service believes in corporate responsibility and is active in a variety of local charities that help military families.
Where did the idea for G.I. Tax Service stem from?
I originally thought I wanted to start a company that would do tax returns for guys and girls who’ve served in the military. However, then I determined that I’d rather do more for them and offer them a career, not a job. So after going to a charity event with a bunch of military guys, I realized when they’re together, they have so much camaraderie, that I wanted to create a business that would generate this fraternity of guys and gals that can all work together that have served. So the company took on a life of its own. After meeting all these guys and I want to be able to make a difference for the guys and gals that have served in our military.
What separates G.I. Tax Service from other tax preparation companies?
A few things. One is more level of detail. Second is we do not prepare tax returns when you’re sitting in front of us. We go over them. Sometimes 10 different times before we determine we get every single deduction we can. Our offices are beautiful, they are clean, they’re respectful of our customers from our front desk to our bathrooms, and we bleed America. We donate money from every tax return to support military charities. And we just have a better product.
And we pride ourselves on that.
What has been G.I. Tax’s most significant milestone thus far in business?
Franchising – deciding to take our message to the country.
What does the future hold for G.I. Tax?
We want to be able to donate approximately 10 million dollars a year to support military charities.
How long did it take for G.I. Tax Service to become profitable?
Immediately. That’s what’s beautiful about this business.
We have a formula that if followed, will make franchisees profitable their first tax season.
When the business was starting out, was there ever a time of doubt that it would not work? If so, how was that handled?
When I started researching “starting tax franchises” I was looking for something to be wrong, and up to now, I still haven’t found doubt or anything that would go wrong. I mean I haven’t been waiting for a left-hand turn, but again, it has never come. It’s a very interesting business because you get to deal with a lot of people and they put their financial selves in your hands.
Is that a function of your experience as a business as an entrepreneur or the type of business or a combination?
Being an entrepreneur. It’s understanding that you can be profitable in any business that you endeavor; you just have to make sure that you do it right. And what’s beautiful about owning a G.I. Tax Service franchise is we’re going to give you the “how to do tax returns” that anybody can do. But how to run the business, how to take care of customers, and how to attract customers, is what’s going to separate our franchise from these other franchise.
From the time the customer hears about you till the time the tax return is done, and you collect the money is what we’re going to teach you — the whole business cycle.
We’re going to make sure that you understand how to drive customers to your business, how to make them happy, and how to build a profitable business and keep it profitable.
How did G.I. Service Tax get its first customer?
Referrals. I mean once you start advertising you start talking to people, our brand is very, very American. When people see our brand, they want to come in to do business. People drive by a stop and see the American flag on the door, and they walk in and want to know we’re all about. And when you tell me what you’re all about, they want to do business with you.
How it starts is easy. It starts with friends and family, their friends and family and so on. If you do good work, the word-of-mouth spreads.
The first G.I. Tax location did 300 returns in its first year, 1000 the second year, 1800 the third year and so on.
What is one marketing strategy that works really well to generate new business?
I believe in community-based advertising. I believe in little league teams and youth football leagues, scholarships and generous college charitable endeavors and making sure that people understand that part of their fee goes to support our veterans. And when they do that, then they’re like “Why should I go to somebody that doesn’t do that?” And that’s why our branding and our message is what separates us from everybody else.
What advice do you have for anyone interested in opening a franchise?
Come on in!
About: G. I. Tax Service has provided quality tax preparation since 2013. Glenn Sandler, CPA, is the founder of G. I. Tax Service.