6 Ways Your Marketing Will Fail
Online marketing can be a great way to build your law firm. That’s how I built mine. When you’re marketing online, email campaigns will be a big part of what you do. They can certainly help you quickly grow your business, but there’s a fine line between being useful and relevant and setting yourself up to fail. Here are six pitfalls that you must avoid:
Spamming is often thought of as sending useless, unwanted emails. You shouldn’t do that, but that’s not what we’re talking about right now. You also need to keep your emails from looking like spam. That means no all caps or tons of exclamation points in the subject line. Don’t be vague or overly familiar either. Need a primer on what not to do? Open up your own email account’s spam folder and never send emails that look like what you see.
Never send an email just for the sake of sending an email or for some vague purpose like “keeping customers engaged.” Give customers a reason to want to read your emails or at least don’t motivate them to delete your emails without reading them or to mark your mailings as spam. You can provide seasonal tips related to your practice, announce a major change in the law that might help your clients, or make a special offer to your clients on retainer. Just make sure they never feel like they’ve been tricked into opening an email or that reading it was a waste of their time.
You may have very few clients that are worth a truly personalized message. That doesn’t mean you shouldn’t make your emails feel personalized. Before all else, make sure your email program properly inserts recipient names into your messages so that your emails aren’t going to [INSERT NAME HERE]. Next, make sure the information will actually be relevant to the recipient. This might mean breaking down your mailing lists. For example, a vet might create separate lists for dog and cat owners instead of having dog owners getting “personalized” messages about caring for their cat.
Along the same lines, you can’t try to please everyone. The quickest way for customers to decide reading your emails is a waste of time is to see content that’s completely out in left field. That doesn’t mean you can’t have a general practice or a general marketing campaign, but you should still always answer the question, “What are you good at?” If your practice is based on prevention being better than cure and predicting client needs by maintaining long-term relationships, make sure your emails follow that theme and aren’t just random snippets from different practice areas.
Not Updating Your Mailing List
On a technical note, always keep your mailing list up to date. You might be able to send unlimited emails, but bad addresses still hurt you. A mailing list that sends emails to a large number of addresses that bounce is likely to be marked as spam and risks being blacklisted by the major email clients.
Driven By Budget
Lastly, be sure to have clear goals in mind beyond spending X dollars or Y hours on marketing. If time or money is your goal, you’ll certainly spend it, but that doesn’t help you grow your business. Focus on specific, tangible results such as recipients visiting a specific web page on your site or former clients contacting you about new matters mentioned in your emails. That way you’ll know exactly what you’re getting in return for your efforts and whether you should continue or move on to something else.
Where time seems so limited to being able to read emails, making your email stand out is crucial to retaining and growing your email list. Have you changed something in your email plan that has worked to eliminate some of these pitfalls? Did incorporating any of these tools increase business or numbers of read emails? Do you want to learn more about how to market your law firm like I did? Feel free to send me an email.