Tuesday, January 7, 2014
Most successful attorneys get a great deal of their business through referrals from past clients, colleagues and personal connections. For the most part, these professionals have made a great impression and have become synonymous with effectively resolving a certain kind of legal issue so when a former client hears of a friend who is going through a divorce, they are quick to recommend the lawyer that they once worked with on their own family law matter. In addition to providing excellent service, your firm must also keep in touch with your contacts so they don’t forget your name and instead are constantly reminded of your expertise. An effective top of mind marketing campaign is all about reconnecting with your contacts throughout the year so your name is the first thing that comes to mind when the need for a legal professional arises. In developing the best top of mind marketing strategy for your firm, consider the following questions:
Who am I trying to reach?
As with all other marketing initiatives, your campaign will likely only be effective if it is designed with a specific audience in mind and addresses the concerns of that target audience. When developing your top of mind marketing campaign, you must first identify who your recipients will be so you have a better idea of what they will perceive as valuable. For firms who practice in several different areas of law or are looking to connect with fellow attorneys and past clients at the same time, multiple strategies may be needed to meet the different needs and interests of recipients. Take time to carefully identify your recipients and divide them into specific lists, if necessary, to address their unique concerns or resonate with their interests.
What can I deliver of value?
Once you’ve identified your audience, you will want to create a campaign which not only gets in front of your contacts but also gets noticed by them so that you come to be perceived as an expert in your field. Some may argue that it’s reasonably easy to get in touch with your colleagues and clients but the harder part is getting them to notice and digest what you deliver. To really make an impact with recipients, you need to ensure that you are delivering something of value or of interest.
If you are a bankruptcy attorney trying to reach past clients, you may consider delivering a weekly tip on rebuilding one’s credit after filing. Or if you’re an estate planning attorney trying to connect with financial advisors in the area, you may want to hold monthly roundtable meetings where you share insight into the world of estate planning and keep them apprised of changes in the law.
What’s likely to be shared?
In the past year, how often did you share an ad or solicitation with your family and friends? If you’re like most people, the answer is very rarely, if ever. Keep this in mind as you develop your top of mind marketing strategy. Your messages shouldn’t be self-promotional; sales pitches don’t get shared, valuable information does.
How often should I make contact?
While you want to be remembered, you don’t want to annoy or be remembered for the wrong reasons. Only contact your past or prospective clients and colleagues when you have something really good to share with them. With that being said, making contact once a year probably won’t be enough to ensure you’re remembered and referred. Consistency does matter, as long as it’s within reason. Daily contact is excessive but a monthly digest or quarterly seminar will put your firm on the map and keep it there.
As you work to develop your strategy, make sure that it is sustainable. The more you get in front of your contacts, the more likely you are to stay fresh in their minds and get referrals. Don’t plan on a campaign lasting a few weeks, remember that you’re in it for the long haul and plan on campaigns which can be carried out for months or even years.