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Law firm marketing and business development strategies

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The Necessity of Downtime

Posted in Uncategorized

I think most of us would agree that we work hard to have a better life.  Unfortunately, many of us make the mistake of thinking our better life is off in the distance; it’s “someday” rather than today.  And that thinking is what leads to burnout.

The truth is, taking some downtime and disconnecting from work is necessary for human beings to function properly.  Taking an annual vacation is not enough; you need to carve time out of every week to refresh and recharge.  There are proven scientific reasons for doing so, as outlined below.  So this weekend, make it a point to take time away from work and hit the re-set button on your life.

The Necessity of Downtime

Is Your Ugly Office Costing Your Law Firm Business?

Posted in Business Development for Law Firms

One of the main ways to differentiate your law firm is by focusing on the client experience, the way your prospects and clients experience your law firm. At our monthly Rainmaker Retreat, I teach attorneys how to micromanage the client experience by paying attention to these four things:

Analyze every impact point. Impact points are every way a client comes into contact with your firm, from the first phone call to the final invoice and exit interview.

Develop standards, protocols and systems. You need to train your people on exactly how you want the phone answered, what the answers are to frequently asked questions, the process for signing up a client, and so on. Every part of the intake process needs to be standardized.

Train your people to work the system. Train, test and retest your people on your system. Provide public reinforcement by praising them when they go above and beyond. Get rid of the people who don’t follow your system. Without a system, you cannot scale your law firm!

Focus on the client’s experience of your law firm. The client experience begins on the phone, but the biggest impression is made when they walk through your door. What do they see? Is your office tastefully decorated or has clutter taken over? Is your staff dressed appropriately or do they look like they’re working on a weekend? This infographic details how the look of your office may be costing your law firm business and what you can do about it:

Is Your Ugly Office Costing Your Law Firm Business?

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4 Ways Attorneys Can Connect with Today’s Legal Consumers

Posted in Law Firm Marketing

4 Ways Attorneys Can Connect with Today’s Legal ConsumersLast year, an Avvo survey of 1,000 consumers who purchased legal services provided some important insights into what attorneys need to know about the modern legal consumer.  The Avvo study offered a three-point description of today’s legal consumers. They are:

Informed — access to legal information online has made consumers more savvy than ever about the options available to them. They read legal articles, research their particular legal issue, research an attorney and visit legal forums online.

Connected — people now have immediate access to other legal consumers online and they are reading reviews about others’ experiences with attorneys. An overwhelming 95% said that online reviews were important when choosing a lawyer. Of those who received a referral, 45% still researched attorneys online.

Picky — legal consumers know there are a number of different ways to purchase services, including online forms, fixed fee options, etc. They are increasingly attracted to unbundled services, an a la carte solution for their legal issues. In fact, 76% said they prefer fixed fee billing arrangements.

To connect with legal consumers today, attorneys must:

Have a strong online presence. When it comes to online marketing, you should focus on two things: (1) go where your potential clients are, and (2) implement what you can measure. You have to be able to measure your success (or failure) to discover what works for your area of practice and to be able to build on those successes. When it comes to social media, Facebook is a must for consumer attorneys. One of the most powerful features of Facebook is ad targeting, the ability to layer targeting options on top of one another to create a highly specific audience. This enables you to target locally and get your ads in front of people who need your services now. Facebook ads are low-cost, so you can experiment to see what resonates with your potential clients and then repeat what works.

Encourage online reviews. Attorneys need to create a process for making reviews happen. Always look for those moments in your relationships with clients to create a review opportunity – when you have won a case for a client, when you have helped someone avoid litigation – all opportunities for you to generate a great review. Make it easy for clients to review you by emailing them a link to post a review on Google. Better yet, create an autoresponder email with a built-in Google review form and send it to them at the appropriate time. When you have receive good reviews or testimonials, post them on your website, in your e-newsletter and anywhere else that potential customers are likely to stumble upon them. And be sure to ask whoever provided you with that great review if they would also submit it to Google so it shows up in search.

Offer unbundled services. There are millions of people who download legal documents off LegalZoom or Rocket Lawyer for business and personal use. And it shouldn’t surprise you to know that many of them still want a real live attorney to review those documents (which is why the online legal service providers refer customers to attorneys now from their websites). Consider offering unbundled services like online legal document reviews, especially for business clients — the initial fees may not be much, but could lead to bigger things down the road. Remember, many people are looking for a la carte options.

Provide fixed fee options. To be successful with fixed fee billing, firms need to conduct extensive research into their case files going back several years in order to arrive at pricing that will protect profitability. North Carolina divorce attorney Lee Rosen is somewhat of a fixed fee guru and provides good advice for making the switch at his Divorce Discourse blog. He transitioned his firm to fixed fee billing many years ago, when the idea was truly a radical one, and his revenues and profitability soared. Fixed fees can be staged according to specific phases of a case or encompass an entire legal matter.

social media webinar

 

8 Simple Steps to Create a Referral Network of Other Attorneys

Posted in Generating Referrals for Attorneys, Strategic Referrals

8 Simple Steps to Create a Referral Network of Other Attorneys A strong referral base is only built over a period of time, and is based on cultivating great relationships with referral sources. Developing those relationships is a two-way street, especially when it comes to building a referral network of other, noncompeting attorneys.

Achieving this goal is impossible if you are only asking your legal peers for referrals when you see them.  It requires regular contact and you showing as much concern for their business as you are asking them to show for yours.

Here are my 8 simple steps attorneys can use to create a referral network of other attorneys: 

Step 1:  Identify your best possible referral sources. These will be other attorneys you either don’t compete with or those who may also practice your type of law but could potentially refer their overflow to you. Keep in mind that you want to choose those that have the best connection with your ideal client.

Step 2:  Create a database of 100-200 contacts in your local area. This should include every attorney who has ever referred someone to you as well as your identified best possible referral sources (research potential sources on Avvo.com and your local or state bar association websites).

Step 3:  Write up a letter of introduction to serve as a template. Here’s an example of a letter you would send to a noncompeting attorney:

REFERRAL LETTER TO NONCOMPETING ATTORNEY

My name is __________of the law firm _____________ in (city, state).

I’m writing to see if you would be interested in getting together with me to learn about each other’s services and respective target markets. It is my hope that such a meeting can lead to the creation of a referral relationship that would benefit both of our firms.

We have been in business since ______, and we focus our practice on (your area of practice). We are constantly looking to expand our network of professional advisors in the local area, from whom we can identify potential referrals for our clients.

For more information about our firm, we invite you to visit our website at: ________________

In the next week you’ll receive a call from my assistant to see if you are interested in getting together in person.

I look forward to meeting you soon, face-to-face.

Sincerely,

Step 4:  Have your assistant mail out 10-20 letters per week. Do not send a bunch of letters at once — pace yourself.

Step 5:  For each letter you send out, plan on having your assistant make 3-4 calls to try and reach the person you sent the letter to. The purpose of your call is two-fold: to see if they are interested in getting together and to set an appointment if they are.  This is not direct solicitation or a sales pitch – it is simply a follow-up call to see if they are interested in meeting with you face-to-face.

 Prepare a simple phone script for your assistant that includes this information:

  • How long you’ve been in business
  • Your ideal client
  • Your office location(s)
  • Your primary practice area
  • Your website URL
  • How you found the potential referral source (they’ll ask)

Be sure your assistant asks a few questions of your potential referral source:

  • Who is your ideal client? What kind of client do you enjoy working with the most?
  • Do you currently have a (your practice area) attorney you refer cases/clients to?
  • Are you open to discussing developing a referral relationship with our law firm if there’s a good connection?
  • Do you seek to make referrals to other non-competing professionals?
  • How many clients do you serve in a typical year?
  • Where is your office located?

If they are interested, have your assistant schedule a lunch meeting.  Another option is to set up a brief meeting at first just to see if there’s a good connection. Offer to meet them at their office for 30 minutes (lower risk and very convenient for them). The first meeting or two needs to be face-to-face in order to establish rapport and build the relationship.

If they are not interested, tell them, “No problem. I’m sorry to have bothered you. We will immediately remove you from our list of referral sources.”

Here’s the truth…they will WELCOME the call! We have made thousands of follow-up calls for our clients and scheduled hundreds of face-to-face meetings for them and only a handful have said ‘No.’ Remember—this is NOT a sales pitch—it’s just lunch!

Your assistant will need to call each contact 3-4 times just to get through. Don’t get discouraged!

Step 6:  The goal is to set 3 to 6 face-to-face meetings per month. At the face-to-face meeting you want to spend 80% of the time getting to know them and their practice to determine if it’s a good fit.

Ask LOTS of questions:

  • How did you first get started in _____?
  • What do you like best/least about your work?
  • What’s the biggest challenge you are facing?
  • How do you find most of your clients?
  • What does your typical client look like?

And the most important referral question of all: How would I know if someone would be a great referral for you?

Step 7:  Invite them to a second meeting if the first meeting goes well. If your initial meeting goes well, immediately invite them to a second one where you can go into more detail about your practice area and how the two of you could start cross-referring some business.

Remember—you cannot promise them referrals, you cannot guarantee referrals nor can you pay them a referral fee! Most of them don’t want a referral fee and their professional code of ethics doesn’t allow it either.

Exception: Some state bar associations allow for the payment of a referral fee to another attorney under specific circumstances. Please verify with your state bar prior to giving any referral fees.

Step 8:  Follow up! When it comes to getting more referrals from other attorneys, the fortune is in the follow-up! Here are some tips:

  • Send an email immediately after you meet with them. Send the same day when possible.
  • Send a handwritten thank you card or form letter about 2-3 days after your initial meeting.
  • After your meeting put a “to do” or task item on your calendar for approximately 6-8 weeks after your initial meeting.
  • Set up “lunch and learns” where several professionals informally get together over lunch to exchange leads, discuss business, and encourage each other.
  • Make your next meeting more about the relationship than business. Meet at the golf course, over drinks or at a casual place.
  • Send them a copy of your published articles.
  • Create and send out a separate monthly newsletter just for Referral Sources
  • Use social media to stay connected – invite them to connect to you on LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, etc.

At the Rainmaker Institute, we have taught this easy step-by-step system to thousands of attorneys and they have used this exact process to quickly build networks of 50-60 new referral sources in 90 days.

Imagine what would happen to your law practice if you could have 20, 40, or even 60 new referral sources every single year that consistently send you new clients. You can make it happen if you create a referral system that delivers real – not random – results.

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Why the Most Important Rainmaker in Your Law Firm is the Person Who Answers the Phone

Posted in Lead Conversion, Rainmaker Intake University

Take a look at this recent Google infographic on legal market trends:

Why the Most Important Rainmaker in Your Law Firm is the Person Who Answers the Phone

 

If there is one thing that stands out about this research, it’s this: 72% of prospects contact attorneys via phone.  This is why the most important Rainmaker in your law firm is the person who answers your phone!

That’s because people who have a problem large enough to require legal help want answers right away. They want to speak with someone who cares about their problem. They want a solution to make the problem go away.

Before making my presentation during a National Trial Lawyers Summit a couple of years ago, I had my staff call each of the 126 of the firms that would be attending the Summit.  We created a fictitious legal problem and then recorded what the person answering the phone said to our callers. I shared these results during my talk:

  • Only 40 of the 126 firms identified the name of the firm when we called.  The rest answered, ”Law Office” or “Law Firm”.
  • 70% did not ask our staff for any contact information
  • 90 firms left our staff on hold for at least two minutes
  • When our staff left their contact information for a call back, 52% of the firms never called back
  • When our staff asked for the firm’s website address, 33% misspelled it
  • When our staff asked why they should hire the firm, the responses were:
    • 23%  “We have a lot of experience”
    • 21%  “We care about our clients”
    • 17%   “I’m not sure”

Other interesting responses ranged from “I’m not at liberty to say” (intake person) to a partner who remarked, “I’m not going to say why we are different!”

We perform similar call campaigns to the offices of lawyers attending every one of our monthly Rainmaker Retreats, and I have to tell you, the results are not that different.  Most of you do not have a proper lead conversion process in place that begins when someone calls and your staff is poorly trained to boot!

To be successful at turning leads into clients, law firms need to transition their intake personnel from order taker to Rainmaker. If you are running a law firm, you want people who are fully trained and deeply committed to taking prospects from potential client to paying client.

If you would like to learn more about implementing a proven process for converting prospects to clients, check out the Rainmaker Intake University. We’ll secret-shop your law firm for free and critique you on the 10 critical factors for creating an exceptional experience for callers so you stand apart from your competition.

intakeWe will review the results with you over the phone and discuss a variety of effective strategies to implement immediately so your firm can convert more prospects into paying clients.

Headline Hacks: 8 Proven Formulas + 100 Ideas to Grab Attention on Social Media

Posted in Social Media Marketing for Law Firms

When you post something on social media that no one comments on or likes, it almost feels like a personal rejection.  And when you’re posting to get attention for your law firm and no one cares what you’re writing, you are wasting your time.

One of the most important ways to get noticed on social media — especially on Twitter — is to make sure your post has a great headline.  There are actually very good psychological reasons for using certain words that makes it almost irresistible for people to click.  Here are 8 proven formulas to craft your headlines around:

  1. Surprise — using words that surprise or startle captures attention because we love novelty.  Words that break the pattern stand out.
  2. Questions — using questions works because a question mark stimulates the human brain to seek an answer.
  3. Curiosity — use incomplete information in your headline to pique curiosity.  A famous example of this is the 1926 ad with the headline, “They laughed when I sat down at the piano…but when I started to play…!”
  4. Negatives — using negative superlatives like “worst” or “stop” intrigues us because we want to know if there is something we shouldn’t be doing.
  5. How to — we all want to get better, so using “how to” in your headline makes a promise of improving the reader’s knowledge.
  6. Numbers — because humans dislike uncertainty, we respond well to numbers in headlines.
  7. Reader referencing — using phrases like, “For those who don’t know what to do after a car accident” — or even just the word “you” — are powerful drivers.
  8. Specifics — quantifiable facts and figures that elicit an image in our head are incredibly intriguing.

Still stuck for good headlines? Keep this headline template list handy when you’re crafting your next post:

Headline Hacks: 8 Proven Formulas + 100 Ideas to Grab Attention on Social Media

 

Rainmaker Retreat Revealed: Exactly What You’ll Learn at Our 2-Day Law Firm Marketing Intensive Workshop

Posted in Rainmaker Retreat Boot Camp

Rainmaker Retreat Revealed: Exactly What You’ll Learn at Our 2-Day Law Firm Marketing Intensive Workshop If you’ve ever wondered exactly how much legal marketing information and training attorneys really receive at a Rainmaker Retreat, take a look at exactly what we cover:

Session 1: Achieving Expert Status as an Attorney

  • 5 Proven Strategies To Position Yourself As A Specialist
  • Pros And Cons Of Positioning Yourself As A Generalist And Specialist
  • How To Ethically Position Yourself As A Specialist
  • How To Avoid The Most Deadly Mistake Attorneys Make
  • 4 Solid Tactics To Position Yourself As The “Go-To Attorney”
  • 5 Incredible Strategies To Market To Your Ideal Target Market
  • 3 Reasons Why Failing To Define Your Target Market Will COST You Big
  • Easy Steps To Successfully Define Your Ideal Target Market
  • Step-By-Step Instructions To Create Your Ideal Target Market
  • Break-Out Session To Effectively Define Your Ideal Target Market

Session 2: Creating a Unique Competitive Advantage & Micromanaging the Client Experience

  • 7 Secrets Of Highly Successful Attorneys
  • 4 Keys To Micro-Managing The Client Experience
  • Special Touches That ‘Wow’ The Client
  • 3 Specific Ways To Use The Internet To Find More Referrals
  • How To Build Collateral To Take The Client Through The Firm’s Process
  • 3 Easy Ways To Automate Follow Up And Follow Through
  • Client Appreciation And Why It’s So Important
  • 7 Strategies To Strategically Improve The Client’s Experience

Session 3: Building a Strategic Referral-Based Law Firm

  • 3 Powerful Strategies To Foster Mutually Beneficial Relationships With Referral Sources
  • 7 Best Practices For Building Referral Partnerships
  • 5 Best Practices For Handling Incoming Referrals
  • How To Successfully Educate Potential Referral Partners To Increase Your Referrals
  • 4 Great Places To Find Strategic Referral Partners
  • 3 Questions That Allow You To Quickly Assess Your Partner’s Potential
  • 5 Powerful Questions To Land More Referrals Than Ever Before
  • The #1 Reason Why Attorneys Don’t Receive More Referrals And How To Overcome It

Session 4: The Law of 7 Touches

  • How To Effectively Stay In Contact With Prospects, Clients And Referral Partners
  • The Power Of An “E-Newsletter”
  • Why Consistency And Frequency Are Crucial If You Want To Build A Word-Of-Mouth Firm
  • 4 Top Strategies To Automatically Connect With Your Database
  • Top 3 Ways To Build A Database
  • Top 10 Reasons Why Attorneys Don’t Think “E-Newsletters” Work And Why They Are Wrong

Session 5: The Nuts & Bolts of Lead Conversion

  • Turning More Browsers Into Buyers At Every Conversion Stage
  • Defining What A “LEAD” Is
  • 5 Stages Of Lead Conversion You Must Improve To Build A Lifestyle® Law Firm
  • 3 Follow-Up Techniques That Will Set You Apart From Your Competition
  • 12 Keys To Sign Up More People During The Initial Consult
  • 5 Ways To Convert Prospects After The Initial Consult
  • Discover Why You May Not Need More Leads
  • Cutting-Edge Lead Conversion Strategies To Increase Revenues

Session 6: Unlocking the Secrets of Social Media

  • 4 Reasons Why Having A Strong Online Presence Is No Longer An Option
  • What Online Platforms Are Best If You Are A Business-To-Consumer Attorney
  • 5 Reasons Why Social Media Must Be Part Of Your Marketing Strategy
  • Using Social Media To BUILD Your List & Develop New Business
  • Access To The Rainmaker Social Media Blueprint
  • Using Facebook, LinkedIn, Google, Twitter, & YouTube
  • Cutting-Edge Email Strategies To Grow Your Firm
  • How To Leverage Social Media And Gain Clients

Session 7: Internet Marketing Strategies

  • The Changing Game Of Search Engines
  • Understanding Search Results
  • The #1 Fastest Way To Get To The Top Of Google
  • Top Traits Google Is Looking For When Ranking Your Site
  • Top 10 Deadly Mistakes Attorneys Make With Their Websites
  • 5 Easy Ways To Make Sure Your Site Comes Up High For The Keywords You Want
  • 4 Proven Ways To Drive More Traffic To Your Website
  • 7 Secrets To Converting More Website Browsers Into Buyers

Session 8: Your Law Firm’s Marketing Action Plan (MAP)

  • How To Implement The Strategies From Previous Sessions & Turn It Into An ACTION Plan
  • No Such Thing As A PERFECT Marketing Plan!
  • Identifying Your Biggest Area Of NEED
  • An Intense And Fully Detailed Layout Of Tools, Descriptions, Action Steps, Time Lines, And Roles To Get The MAP Started

Each Rainmaker Retreat is geared toward small firms and solo practitioners to help you learn and use proven legal marketing strategies to get more clients now.

Here are our upcoming sessions:

  • March 10-11, 2017 — Dallas, TX/Fairmont Dallas
  • March 24-25, 2017 — Tampa, FL/Le Meridien Tampa
  • April 7-8, 2017 — Los Angeles, CA/JW Marriott Los Angeles L.A. LIVE
  • May 12-13, 2017 — Atlanta, GA/Omni Atlanta Hotel at CNN Center
  • June 9-19, 2017 — Chicago, IL/Hyatt Regency Schaumburg Chicago

Plan ahead and take advantage of the Early Bird pricing, where you can save 30% off the regular price.  You can register here now.

 

7 Social Media Sins Lawyers Shalt Not Commit

Posted in Social Media Marketing for Law Firms

7 Social Media Sins Lawyers Shalt Not CommitBy now, most attorneys have gotten religion when it comes to the importance of making social media a prominent part of your marketing mix. Yet there are still many law firms that routinely commit social media sins that hinder their ability to capitalize on all the benefits social media offers.

Here are 7 social media sins you should avoid like the Biblical plague:

#1: No social media strategy. You should never begin any marketing initiative without outlining a solid. When developing a strategy for social media marketing, you need to give serious thought to the “5 W’s and the H”:

  • Who is your target market
  • What you want to accomplish
  • Where you will be participating (Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, etc.)
  • When you will be posting for maximum benefit
  • Why you want to use social media
  • How you will execute and measure your plan

Created and executed correctly, a social media marketing program can help you connect with prospects you may never have found otherwise and drive the engagement on to more richly rewarding places like your blog, website or newsletter. Just don’t start the journey without a map.

#2: Taking on too many social media platforms all at once. Many law firms make the mistake of jumping in to social media by putting up profiles on every network and then find they don’t have the time to maintain them all.

You don’t need to be everywhere. You just need to remember that the most important thing in identifying the right social media platform for your firm is to know your target market.   Once you know the demographics of your market, you can then focus on the social media platforms that do the best job of reaching that audience.

If your market is business-to-business, then you want to have a robust presence on LinkedIn.  If you market to consumers, then Facebook is your best bet.  If you want to go after a female clientele, then be sure you have some presence on Pinterest.

Once you have done the necessary homework on knowing your prospect inside and out, then it’s much easier to find the best places to reach them.

#3: Focusing on follower quantity instead of quality. While it may boost your ego to have thousands of follower and fans on social media, it will do nothing to boost your ROI or user engagement if you are just counting heads instead of gathering users who have a real need for your services.

The key here is to use social media to build real relationships and you can start with the relationships you already have. Once you join a social media network, your first step should be to find all your contacts there and invite them to connect with you. Once you do, and they like or comment on what you post, that will spread to their networks as well.

#4: Putting too much focus on your firm. When crafting social media posts, remember the 80/20 rule — 80% of your posts should be about something of use or interest to your followers and only 20% should be about promoting your firm.

One of the goals of participating on social media is to spread your influence beyond the circle of people who already know you. This occurs when your posts are interesting enough to share.

#5: Treating all social media platforms the same. According to the ABA, 78% of attorneys are on more than one social network. However, many law firms make the mistake of posting the same information in the same way across all social media networks. They neglect to take into account the unique attributes of each social media site, and their results suffer for it. \

#6: Ignoring the “social” part of social media. Social media is a 365/24/7 world, allowing you to engage with prospects at any time, and they with you. You must be vigilant about responding to posts and questions the same way you would in responding to a prospect that calls or emails you. Every point of contact is an opportunity to make a great impression.

By truly engaging on social media regularly, you strengthen your relationships with people you already know and start building new relationships with people you don’t know – your friends’ friends and followers.

#7: Neglecting to budget properly for a social media marketing program. While it won’t cost you a dime to sign up on social media networks, maintaining a robust presence on these sites does cost you – either time or money, it’s your choice. Social media is a long-term play, and you need to commit to spending the time and money (either yours or hiring someone else) to achieve success.

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Free Webinar 2/15: Top 10 Mistakes Lawyers Make That Kill Their Intake & Lead Conversion Rate and How to Fix Them!Free Webinar 2/15: Top 10 Mistakes Lawyers Make That Kill Their Intake & Lead Conversion Rate and How to Fix Them!

There are over 20 different ways you can generate new leads for your law firm. From SEO, PPC, direct mail, TV advertising, and PPL (pay per lead)–each of these sources can work, but which provides you with the best possible lead conversion rate? Which one will give you the best ROI?

In this free webinar on Wednesday, February 15, 2017, at 10 a.m. PT/1 p.m. ET, we are going to pull back the curtain and show you exactly, step-by-step how to identify the gaps in your process and give you practical, easy to implement strategies to fix your follow up and immediately improve your intake!

You will discover:

  • The mistakes law firms make when dealing with leads and how to avoid them
  • Cutting-edge information about how to better track your leads
  • Specific tools to convert more prospects into paying clients
  • The 5 stages of lead conversion
  • How law firms can overcome pricing objections

By investing just an hour of your time — and none of your money — you will learn specific strategies that will help you increase your conversion rate and add thousands of dollars to your bottom line. These are strategies that you can implement immediately and reap the results.

Registrants will receive a recording of the live webinar to watch at their convenience. Register now to claim your spot for this free webinar on Top 10 Mistakes Lawyers Make That Kill Their Intake & Lead Conversion Rate and How to Fix Them!

 

Don’t Be Misled by These 8 Email Marketing “Alternative Facts”

Posted in Email marketing, Email marketing for law firms

Don’t Be Misled by These 8 Email Marketing “Alternative Facts” Not only is email marketing NOT dying, it is still the most trusted form of communication. Combine that fact with the reality that it is also the most cost effective way to market to clients and prospects and you have a real winning proposition!

Since email marketing has been around since the advent of email, there are some myths that persist about the practice. Or, to borrow a hot term, “alternative facts.” Here are 8 of them and why they are untrue:

  1. You annoy your clients when you send frequent emails. Research shows that if you are sending relevant content, readers are happy to read them and take action. Just one extra email campaign a month can net you significantly greater opens and clicks.
  2. Timing isn’t everything. 85% of email opens occur within two days of receiving an email, so don’t get caught up in thinking your email needs to be sent on a certain day at a certain time.
  3. “Inactive users” should be culled from your list after six months. Actually, 20% of your annual openers do so after being inactive for six months.
  4. Consumers mark most branded emails as spam.  Less than one subscriber in every 2,000 will mark an email as spam.
  5. The more email a brand sends, the more they are ignored. Actually, if you send four emails a month instead of just one, this actually doubles the number of readers who will open one or more of your emails.
  6. You get better results with short subject lines. It depends on how you define results.  Research shows that email subject lines with under 60 characters increases opens, but subject lines of more than 70 characters increases the number of clicks received. Actually, readers are much more likely to read an email because of who it’s from than the subject line.
  7. Email goes to a spam folder because of subject lines. According to an analysis of 540 billion emails, spam keywords like “free” have little or no effect on whether they will end up in the junk folder. Spam filters are much more sophisticated these days and are more likely to use reputation rather than certain keywords in identifying spam.
  8. Never send the same email twice. In 2016, the average open rate for email marketing campaigns was 24%. That means 75% or more may have never read your email. If you’ve sent an important email, don’t fret about sending it again — just be sure you send it only to those who didn’t open it the first time or use a different template and images with the same copy.

10 mistakes

Twitter Tips for Attorneys

Posted in Social Media Marketing for Law Firms

Twitter Tips for AttorneysIf there’s one thing that’s clear about the new administration, it’s that it has drawn full attention to Twitter. There are many who think not in a good way. But Twitter can be used by lawyers to do good things for their visibility online. Here are some tips on how you can master the use of Twitter for your practice:

 Offer a fresh approach on a trending topic.The most effective tweets are those that provide a unique take on something that is already trending on Twitter.  After you sign in to your feed, look at the Trends feed on the left of your Twitter home page to see what is trending in real-time. You can customize Trends for your geographical area by clicking Change in your Trends box.

 Optimize your Twitter profile.  Use a photo and remember that Twitter followers tend to follow a person, not a company.

 Sync your Twitter account with your Facebook and Gmail accounts to find the accounts of people you know.  Then follow them.  This will usually get them to follow you back and to share your content.

 Use lots of photos and video.  These get more attention on Twitter.

 Focus on quality, not quantity.  You want people who are interested in you and your legal services so you can use Twitter as another means of forging a more meaningful relationship.

 Engage with the people who share your content by sending them a direct message, adding them to your follower list and retweeting some of their tweets.

 Keep tabs on your stats so you can see how your marketing strategies are working.  The stats will tell you how many people engaged with your tweets, how many clicked on the link, and more useful information.

In addition, keep these best practices for attorneys using Twitter in mind:

  • Tweet 4x/day or less
  • Use fewer than 100 characters per Tweet
  • Follow the 80/20 rule — 80% conversation/20% promotion
  • Add links to Tweets to get higher Retweet rates – Tweets containing links get 86% higher Retweet rates
  • Make sure the links are clickable by including a space before the URL
  • Tweet on the weekends – engagement is higher then
  • Tweets get more attention if they are posted in the afternoon
  • Include hashtags in your Tweets, but no more than 2 per Tweet – Tweets with hashtags get twice the engagement
  • Add links to images to increase engagement – Tweets with image links enjoy twice the engagement rate than those without.
  • Use the word “Retweet” as a call-to-action to prompt your followers to share – Tweets that ask followers to Retweet receive 12x higher Retweet rates

With more than 317 million active monthly users, Twitter is a major social media network attorneys should not ignore. It can be a highly useful law firm marketing tool for attorneys to promote their blogs and other thought leadership content.

social media webinar