PARSIPPANY, N.J. // PRNewswire-FirstCall // -- The results of the Jackson Hewitt Tax Service® "Big Check" social media contest offer a telling glimpse into how taxpayers plan to save or spend their 2010 tax refunds. With a total of 623 entries submitted during the contest run – March 24-April 10 – over one-third of the entries noted a desire/need to pay down on debt versus spending.
The contest invited taxpayers to visit "The Big Check" page on Facebook, where they could share how they intended to use their 2010 income tax refund for a chance to win the "Big Check" grand prize of $3,000 – more than the average 2009 individual tax refund.*
In analyzing results of the contest, Jackson Hewitt found that the greatest percentage of entrants, 36 percent, planned to put their refunds towards practical purposes – to pay bills and loans. Approximately 21 percent had an opportunity to be generous with their refund, saying that they will spend it on family members – by purchasing toys, clothes and other items for their children, or by helping children and relatives pay for college or purchase a new vehicle. Just 10 percent plan to use their income tax refund for a vacation.
"We created this contest to take the pulse of taxpayers while offering them a fun, rewarding way to engage with Jackson Hewitt through our social media space," said Debra Dowd, vice president of marketing, Jackson Hewitt Tax Service Inc. "We were excited to receive so many heart-felt and fun stories from people about how their income tax refunds will impact their lives."
In the competition to name the "Big Check" grand prize winner, over 5,800 votes were submitted during the voting period of April 1 – 15, 2010. The public vote, through the Facebook contest page, led to the selection of Walter Arnett of Lexington, KY as the winner of the $3,000 prize. Mr. Arnett plans to use his $3,000 check to start up a philanthropic sports promotions business to raise funds for a local children's hospital. His entry, as well as others, can be viewed here.
In addition to its "Big Check"-branded presence on Facebook, Jackson Hewitt also utilized other social media channels, including a "Big Check" Twitter feed, to promote the contest. The contest was an extension of the Company's 2010 "Big Check" marketing campaign, which featured individual taxpayers, couples and families happily incorporating an oversized refund check into their daily activities, after having their tax return prepared at Jackson Hewitt.
* Source: http://www.irs.gov/newsroom/article/0,,id=207293,00.html
Jackson Hewitt Tax Service Inc. (NYSE: JTX), with more than 6,300 franchised and company-owned offices throughout the United States, is an industry leader providing full service individual federal and state income tax return preparation. Most offices are independently owned and operated. The company is based in Parsippany, New Jersey. Jackson Hewitt Technology Services LLC is located in Sarasota, Florida.
SOURCE Jackson Hewitt Tax Service