Aug 2 '18
Summer is a fantastic opportunity to make sure all your marketing ducks are in line for the rest of the year. Here are some of our very best summer marketing tips… and the best bit is… you can start right away!
- Would you connect and interact with you? – The first thing to do is take stock of your current social media usage, presentation and tone. Use this summer to take a long hard look at your firm’s social media channels including Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram and so on. Have you filled out all the necessary section such as ‘About’, ‘Contact Details’ and a short bio? It’s also worth noting where you stand in terms of SEO. Is your firm ranking for your chosen keywords when you search for them in, say, Facebook? If they’re not, then consider re-writing your business descriptions and biographies so it best fits your keywords…but be careful not to overstuff your content with keywords of course.
- Make the first move – Whether it’s getting in touch with a long-lost client or making the first point of contact with a potential lead, making the first move reveals a lot about your business. It shows you’re proactive, professional and primed for new clients! Make a list of all the clients you’ve lost touch with over the last two or three years and give them a call or send them an email. Even if, for example, the client lost touch simply because it was the end of litigation you can still get in touch for a catch up to see if anything has changed in their life to warrant the use of your services.
- Find out what your clients really want – Nothing spells out great customer service than making a clear effort to find out what your clients want. A questionnaire can be a fantastic start to digging into your clients wants, needs and preferences. Simply create a survey on Survey Monkey or even using Google Forms. Use a mix of open-ended, closed and multiple choice questions – that way you can collate hard data such as age, location and business type, as well as subjective data such as opinions and new ideas. You might want to offer an incentive to complete the survey such as a prize draw for an Amazon voucher, as it can help boost exposure to your survey.
- Say “thank you” – There are two types of ‘thank you’ you should actively take part in – thanking your clients and thanking the clients who personally recommended you to someone else. Usually, any type of gift or card is embraced by almost every client! So it’s up to you whether you send them a luxury gift hamper or a simple personalised card thanking them for the referral or just for their custom. The beauty of the humble ‘thank you’ is that people tend to share your cards and gifts on their social media pages – meaning you get some exposure out of it. If other people and firms see that you’re treating existing and new clients with kindness then that’ll work wonders for your reputation.
- Life laundry – Spring may be the perfect time for a spring clean, but summer is the ideal time to ensure everything is in order. By this we mean ensuring you’re presenting yourself in the correct way. Is the office clean and tidy? Are the meeting rooms welcoming? Do all the kitchen appliances work? Take a look around the office and communal areas and see if any walls need a lick of paints or whether you need a complete office makeover all together. It may seem trivial to consider your interior design scheme, but it does speak volumes about who you are as a firm and what you stand for. 174 Law, for example, integrates their love for art into their core values. Their office is home to many pieces of local artwork, showing that they approach problem-solving with buckets of creativity. Your office should reflect your firm’s values – it’s an opportunity to humanise the company.
- Who are your dream clients? – Summer is a time when a lot of people are in a more optimistic mood. So that means it’s the most effective time to list your ‘dream’ or target clients. It doesn’t have to be a big database, just five to ten dream clients will do. Find out who the key people are, the contact details, their business values, any social media activity, why you could be a great fit for them and how they could benefit from your services. This is essentially a direct marketing strategy! Once you’ve found out all the key details, you’ll need a plan of action. Ask yourself how you’ll contact them, what approach you’ll use and over what timeframe.
- Keeping your information up to date – Make sure all areas of your website are up to date – including examples of your work, case studies, staff and services you offer. The same goes for all your social media accounts. Ensure all information is relevant, especially your services and blog sections. Review your content every six months to determine what’s old, what stays and what’s missing.
- Be the thought leader – The term ‘thought leader’ may sound like a useless buzzword, but it still has a lot of weight in terms of brand reputation and even client loyalty. Make a list of current affairs that you believe your company should have an opinion on. This could be anything from politics to celebrity news. It’s also a good idea to ask yourself “Do I have a strong opinion on this and does it match my company’s values?” If the answer is ‘yes’ for both then you’re sitting on a golden ticket to becoming a potential thought leader in your industry. Don’t be afraid of writing opinion pieces for your blog or news section – people will trust your judgement as they’ll see you as an expert in your field (which you are!).
- Are you sharing your opinions outside your website? – With the advent of LinkedIn Pulse and Medium, it’s more important than ever before to put your content out there. We’re not just talking about publishing an article on your website, it’s also about prolonging the life of that article through external publishing platforms. Again, this is one of the most crucial ways to become a thought leader.
- Be the voice of your industry – Have you ever watched a news item on TV where an ‘expert’ will give his or her point of view? Well, what if we told you that if, for example, you’re a family law solicitor, you could be that expert for a news story related to your specialist subject? It’s just a matter of making yourself more available as a commentator for your industry. Make a list of publications and media outlets you’d be happy to contribute to….and get in touch. Put yourself out there as the go-to person when the journalists need an industry comment.
- Create some useful digital content – When your clients visit your website or social media pages, they want to be reassured that you know what you’re talking about…and that you can explain tricky terms without using jargon. That’s why it’s crucial you offer lots of useful information on your website such as infographics to explain usually complex situations. Use this summer to create a bank of fact sheets and information sheets to help your existing and potential clients learn more about what they need from you.
- Invest in email – After you’ve ensured you’re meeting the new GDPR regulations, it’s time to re-organise your mailing list into targeted sections. This is so your clients, potential and existing, will receive information that’s useful to their needs. If you don’t know their needs – then make it your mission to find out. Send them a survey (as mentioned in point 3) and funnel them into the correct marketing lists. This strategy is designed to greatly reduce the number of ‘unsubscribes’ from your mailing list, while increasing the ‘open rate.’
- Digitise your paperwork – Law firms still place great importance, and even love, on stacks of paperwork. Unfortunately, not many other individuals and sectors feel quite as attached to paper as law firms do. This doesn’t mean you have to completely get rid of your paper trail. It’s just a matter of tidying up and organising your paperwork into the correct files – you can even create a ‘Might be useful for later’ folder for all those pieces of paper you think might come in handy for certain situations. But most importantly, you should start to digitise the majority of your paperwork. Not only is it great for the environment, it’s also easier for you and your colleagues to find exactly what you need, exactly when you need it – saving you hours and hours of valuable time per week.
- Look at your real profits – When most firms think about their clients producing the most profits, they think about the volume of work rather than the fees. The summer is a good time to sit down and work out who your top ten most lucrative clients are in terms of the amount of financial profit they give you. Ask yourself if you could cover areas that you have expertise in, but don’t currently do? Put together a short bullet list of actions to develop that profit. Once you’ve finished with your top ten, keep working your way down the list until you’ve covered everyone.
- Forward planning – Odds are, you’re probably doing some forward planning already, as it’s a continuous process. But it’s good to keep in mind where you want your firm to go and how you’re going to get there. Set out a three-year goal, work out the processes to achieve it and write a to-do list of required actions. After the summer holidays are over, make sure you put time aside each week to reassess where you are with your three year plan.