Email marketing remains the most effective way to reach prospects and referral sources for all companies, including law firms. And there is one thing you absolutely must have to succeed at email marketing: a great mailing list.
Whether you’re in the beginning stages of building your law firm marketing email list or the mid-to-late stages, the key is to build, cultivate and vet the list on an ongoing basis.
Here are some proven ways to build a great law firm marketing list:
Insert a newsletter sign-up form on each page of your website and on your blog, including a brief summary of the benefits of receiving no-cost, ongoing legal information they can use.
Offer a free guide or report on your website and gather the email addresses of all those who sign up to download it.
When you have a speaking engagement, provide a sign-up sheet for your “complimentary” newsletter. This technique has a very high response rate because the audience is already interested in your area of the law.
When you take someone’s business card, ask if it’s OK to add them to your complimentary newsletter list.
Partner with other professionals who serve a client base similar to yours. For example, if your area of practice is estate planning, financial planners or brokerage houses might have a target client similar to yours. Once you locate these “list partners”, you can insert your offer for a free trial newsletter into their outgoing communications to that client base (and they can do the same with yours). In that way, you are getting permission from the recipient prior to sending your law firm marketing newsletter – which is much more effective than purchasing a list.
The overall goal of your list is to cultivate relationships that move the prospect to become a client.
A word about the value of Unsubscribe
The value of “unsubscribe” — allowing prospects on your email distribution list to leave your list at any time and for any reason they like – is that it helps you reach your goal of creating a highly motivated core list of clients and prospects more quickly.
Of course, there are many marketers who believe that openly allowing prospects to leave their list only encourages them to do so. And that may be true.
The question is – why would you want to keep sending free legal information to an individual who doesn’t want it, won’t use it and isn’t interested in your services?
The truth is that by allowing those individuals to leave your list, you are actually increasing the health of your list.
You are refining it into a tighter, healthier, more highly focused, highly motivated group of people who are interested in what you have to say and the services you have to offer.
So, don’t hide the “unsubscribe” option in fine print at the bottom of your newsletters or bury it in text in your e-mail tips or create a long, convoluted process for them to remove their name.
Display the “unsubscribe” option prominently along with a succinct message that spells out what they will be missing – insightful answers to their most pressing legal questions at no cost.