System # 2: Integrated Client Marketing System – Multiple Marketing Activities Generating an Endless Supply of Qualified Prospects
While we firmly believe all 11 Academy Systems need to be up and running smoothly, there is one that makes all the others possible. Generating a consistent stream of qualified prospects and repeat business with premium fees is the very foundation of a successful estate planning law firm.
Unfortunately many attorneys still believe that all you need to worry about is the quality of your lawyering skills. In other words, if you hang out a shingle and don’t mess up too badly, clients will beat a path to your door. There was a time that when doing business was as easy as that, but alas, those days have gone and I’m afraid they’re not coming back.
Today’s marketing strategies are anything but simplistic and in this brave new world if you want someone to see that shingle and notice your firm, it may have to be tweeted, blogged, dugg and stumbled upon first. The basic principles of marketing are changing before our eyes and, believe me, lawyers are not exempt.
Marketing used to be the act of seeking out clients and enticing them with your credentials and skills, but there’s a new world upon us that requires that you be available when clients seek you out. The universe of social media, like Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin and Avvo now aggregate all the potential clients online and the act of bold marketing is frowned upon. The marketplace is now more like a giant cocktail party where directly soliciting business would be offensive.
But even in the face of all these new marketing venues, one rule still holds true – to expand your business, you must do one of three things:
1. Acquire new clients
2. Entice existing clients to buy more
3. Increase the fees your clients pay
Now for most law firms, that first directive is priority number one… but the smart attorney will give their attention to all three.
In fact, while you’re busy working that strategy to attract new clients, your marketing plans for increasing fees and courting your existing clients should be hard at work as well.
Because while you’re wining and dining those new prospects, someone else has their eye on your client base. Now, if you’ve got a good marketing plan in place, there’s no need to worry…
But if you don’t?
Those existing clients might decide it’s time to try someone new.
Someone with more to offer… someone who values their business… someone who’s giving them the attention you should have been giving.
Which brings us to the question at hand:
Does your firm have marketing systems in place? Do they operate without your constant involvement? Are you able to track their effectiveness? Do you keep your eye on your client acquisition costs as closely as your bank balance?
One of the primary components to our 11 Essential Systems is an integrated client marketing system — a system that incorporates all of your activities into one solid plan:
- Systems to generate referrals from existing clients
- Systems to generate referrals from Centers of Influence
- Systems to generate new clients by going directly to the marketplace
- Systems to generate clients using the internet and social media
- Systems to generate new clients through image building and public awareness
- Systems to position the client for additional services
- Systems to position the value of your premium fees
These systems allow you to have multiple streams of marketing activities every month… activities that can be mapped out for the year and seen at a glance…a strategy that’s key to building and growing your firm.
And after all… isn’t that what all this marketing was intended to do?
President & Co-Founder
American Academy of Estate Planning Attorneys, Inc.